Incongruities, Inconsistency, and Confusion In Our Modern World
By Paul Hayden
April 11, 2022
I recently ran across the story of someone in pop culture who I really appreciate. It is David Archuleta. I love his singing voice and demeanor, and I definitely felt he should have won American Idol the season he came in as runner-up. He has “come out” as being attracted to the same sex, something that is still not easy to admit it seems, especially when one is involved in a group like the Mormon Church as he is.
There are still many stigmas against the lifestyle, choice, or condition of being homosexual. You can call it “gay” or “normal” or “God-given” all you want, but there are many of us who still see it as being a sin that goes against the will and commandments of God as we understand it from the Bible. Sin is sin, and there are those who would prioritize certain sins as worse than others. Many times, it can be the sins that we ourselves are not in bondage to that we consider much worse than our own sins.
There is a YouTube video of Mr. Archuleta discussing issues of his sharing this disturbing part of his life. (1) His very personal and sensitive discussion in a video to his followers reveals much self-reflection, struggle, confusion, as well as some measure of faith and faithfulness to God and doing God's will. Attraction or temptation to sin is not itself sin, but yielding to it is. This is one of the most tender and sensitive heartfelt monologues that I have ever heard or seen. He lays himself open down to the heart as is rarely witnessed in public.
There was an interesting reply on this YouTube page (David's discussion) that really took a leap into generalities, but it is worth reading and sharing. It was shared by a Rev. Dr. Andrew W.G. Matthews. I have no idea who this is, but he made some very worthwhile points, and with most, I wholeheartedly agree. I will share some of his points below, as his comment will likely be lost in the hundreds or thousands of other comments.
To understand what someone is for, it can be helpful to see what they are against. And conversely, to see what they are against, look closely at what they support and champion. In this context, it is interesting to observe our modern culture very closely.
Jesus spoke of this concept in a manner that is not direct and clear, but if you tune in to what He was really saying, it can be felt and understood.
“He who is not with Me is against Me; and he who does not gather with Me scatters.” (Matthew 12:30)
"Do not hinder him; for he who is not against you is for you." (Luke 9:50)
We are human, we are “free” and we can do and say and think whatever we want. Except this freedom is now often being called into question. And it is being questioned quite selectively. There are many who wish to remove any and all talk of sin from our society and culture. It is just too uncomfortable, usually because we all are too often involved in sinful activity and thoughts.
There are those who believe they should be able to say whatever they want, about anybody. After all, that is what freedom of speech is, right? But - and this is a big BUT - they don't generally also believe that everyone else should have that same freedom that they want for themselves. If “they” are talking badly about others, then they should be free to do so. But if the others are talking badly about them, then that is forbidden - BECAUSE THEY ARE RIGHT, AND THE OTHERS ARE WRONG! Funny how that works.
In Rev. Dr. Matthews' reply, noted above, he points out the radical inconsistencies in our modern world, like militant feminists being for women's rights, while ignoring the Muslim oppression of women, or the killing of female babies by abortion. And how can feminists ignore men who pose as women and compete in women's athletics? An atheist like Richard Dawkins attacks Christian beliefs all the time, yet “seldom challenges the Koran or the Allah of Islam.”
His point was that so many opponents of Christianity, and Christ, are very divergent, yet they all come against the Christian faith, and thereby, Christ Himself. He goes on to say:
Identifying those who are not “with Christ” can be easy, especially if they do not identify as Christians or [if they] openly oppose the church, but there is a more insidious enemy — the enemies among us. There are people who carry the name of Christ, supposedly follow Christ, but are actually opposed to Christ…
Let us not forget that one of those original twelve apostles, Judas, instead of casting out Satan became possessed by him. Time and time again, Satan infiltrates the church with wolves in sheep’s clothing and attacks the church from within. It is not enough that a person is a baptised member of a Christian church or a duly-ordained minister of the gospel; if they support the agenda of the world, they “do not gather with me [Jesus] but scatter.” (Matt 12:30)
…We are entering a time when true Christian ecumenicalism is not about “birds of a feather flocking together,” but “bands of brothers fighting together.” Those who uphold the veracity of the Scriptures, the creation of male and female after God’s image, the person and work of Christ, biblical sexual identity and morality, the sanctifying grace of the Holy Spirit, the preeminence of the triune God in public worship, and the eternal hope of redemption will need to stand together.
New battle lines are being drawn around these issues, and Christians who stand on the wrong side should no longer be seen as being “for Christ.”
In the fires of adversity, we may be surprised by new friends from unexpected quarters and shocked by old friends who turn against us. As we stand together for Christ may our new alliances forge even sweeter bonds of Christian fellowship.
There must be freedom for all, or there will be freedom for none, or maybe only a select few. That is what freedom of speech and the First Amendment are all about - dialogue, discussion, the sharing and debate of ideas in the public forum.
Feel free to freely speak, but you might do yourself a favor and just listen every now and then. You might learn something.
Let there be no fear in you of speaking the truth. Rather, let there be a deep fear that you do not know the truth, and as Jesus said, “Seek and you shall find.”
Paul Hayden is a Christian believer, and an American patriot, necessarily in that order. He is a student of the Bible, and is avidly interested in our role in the context of history, as understood through the heart and eyes of faith. Paul has lived and traveled somewhat widely, and now lives in the heartland of the U.S. (central Illinois), with his wife Donna - they have five grown children. Since December of 2016, he serves as the Editor-in-Chief of www.ConservativeTruth.org.
"I was raised by a Christian minister, Kenneth Hayden, until his death when I was 10. Then my mom married a farmer. So I was raised in a very down-to-earth home. My faith has grown through the years, but both in conjunction with the institutional church and through small groups and individuals, including books as well as group settings, where deep, sincere faith is shared that aligns with Biblical truth."