Sunday, January 13, 2013

Matt 24 watch, 187: Pastor Louie Giglio (of the Laminin Cross fame) preached a Biblical sermon on homosexual sin in the 1990's --"scandal!"; is forced to withdraw from Mr Obama's 2nd Inauguration . . . signs of a Romans 1 world in which, under the word "diversity," we are being expected to approve state-sponsored apostasy

Pastor Giglio (Cr: Wikipedia)
It seems that Pastor Louie Giglio (who is famous for his Laminin Cross sermon ) preached a sermon in the 1990's on homosexuality as sin that should be repented of. As a NY Daily News article reports:
[Giglio preached] sermon in which he said homosexuality is "is sin in the eyes of God." "And the only way out of a homosexual lifestyle, the only way out of a relationship that has been engrained over years of time, is through the healing power of Jesus,"
Of course, that is a direct and faithful echo of what we may simply and directly read from the Spirit-led pen of the Apostle Paul in 1 Cor 6:9 - 11:
1 Cor 6:Or do you not know that the unrighteous[b] will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practise homosexuality,[c] 10 nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. 11 And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God. [ESV]
So, why is such newsworthy, that has been public information for almost 2,000 years (and with abundant cases of sinners of all types saved and transformed by Jesus to back it up, too)?

Well, it seems that to the powers and agendas that surround the Obama Administration, that sort of thinking and preaching is deemed an anathema to the point of being a scandal worthy of being "outed," and of trying to force the Pastor out of giving an invocation at the US President's second inauguration. {Added: cf. Commentary here. Al Mohler's remarks are especially apt: "The Presidential Inaugural Committee and the White House have now declared historic, biblical Christianity to be out of bounds, casting it off the inaugural program as an embarrassment. By its newly articulated standard, any preacher who holds to the faith of the church for the last 2,000 years is persona non grata . . . "}

Taking in the context of the clip just cited from the NY Daily News report:
Rev. Louie Giglio, head of Georgia's Passion City Church, was tapped Tuesday to deliver an invocation at the Jan. 21 ceremony for his leadership in the fight against human trafficking, which the Obama Administration calls modern-day slavery.
The next day, the pro-Obama liberal blog Think Progress reported on a mid-1990s Giglio sermon in which he said homosexuality is "is sin in the eyes of God."
"And the only way out of a homosexual lifestyle, the only way out of a relationship that has been engrained over years of time, is through the healing power of Jesus," Giglio said, according to the report.
Thursday the Presidential Inaugural Committee issued a statement from Giglio, who said that "it is likely that my participation, and the prayer I would offer, will be dwarfed by those seeking to make their agenda the focal point of the inauguration."
"Neither I, nor our team, feel it best serves the core message and goals we are seeking to accomplish to be in a fight on an issue not of our choosing, thus I respectfully withdraw my acceptance of the President's invitation," the statement read.
"I will continue to pray regularly for the President, and urge the nation to do so."
Inaugural committee spokeswoman Addie Whisenant said that the committee members "were not aware of Pastor Giglio's past comments at the time of his selection and they don't reflect our desire to celebrate the strength and diversity of our country at this Inaugural."
The committee is searching for a replacement who does, she said.
 Members of the Committee were "not aware" that the pastor has done what pastors are supposed to do, and view it as a scandal that a pastor would preach the gospel and call sinners -- including homosexual ones -- to repent?

THAT is how deep the demand that Christians approve of sin now runs in the circles surrounding the US President and in the wider American media culture.

To denounce politically correct sin and to call for turning to the gospel as hope, is scandal, and the demand is to choose religious figures who will bless such apostasy with their presence and who will approve of sin repackaged as"diversity."

For shame! 

The real scandal!

Namely, an agenda of state-sponsored apostasy and open defiance of the Word of God, backed up by the deceitful repackaging and marketing of evil as though it were good, joined to the associated attempt to jam out, shame, silence and marginalise the good news that can save us.

I am sorry, but Rom 1 is now speaking loud and clear to us (including -- frankly -- those of us in the Caribbean who have allowed the colour of Mr Obama's skin to warp our judgement on what he has been doing):
Rom 1:16 . . . I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. 17 For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith for faith,[e] as it is written, “The righteous shall live by faith.”[f]

{Paul then continues . . . }

18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. 

19 For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. 20 For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse. 

 21 For although they knew God, they did not honour him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Claiming to be wise, they became fools, 23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things.

24 Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to the dishonouring of their bodies among themselves, 25 because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshipped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed for ever! Amen.

26 For this reason God gave them up to dishonourable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; 27 and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error.

28 And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them up to a debased mind to do what ought not to be done. 29 They were filled with all manner of unrighteousness, evil, covetousness, malice. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, maliciousness. They are gossips, 30 slanderers, haters of God, insolent, haughty, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, 31 foolish, faithless, heartless, ruthless. 

32 Though they know God's decree that those who practise such things deserve to die, they not only do them but give approval to those who practise them. [ESV]
It is clear to me that any pastor or religious figure who steps into Mr Giglio's place under these circumstances is thereby giving his approval to state-sponsored apostasy.

Such would be a plain betrayal of the gospel.

Instead, true men and women of God should make it very plain where America stands at this hour, and stand firmly on the gospel, that credible, historically and prophetically anchored message of salvation that has power to save, rescue and transform sinners, being backed up by the grace of God. Namely, the faith that was once for all committed to the saints and which we are to guard, literally with our lives.

We have come to watershed in our civilisation and the dynamics of a watershed are wedging us farther and farther apart. 

Watershed, driven by state-sponsored apostasy.

I have news for Mr Obama and those around him: there is a Messiah, one Jesus of Nazareth, our risen Lord and Saviour, who died for our sins, according to the scriptures, was buried, and rose again in vindication of his message and person, with over five hundred witnesses. None of whom could be shaken, not by threat nor shame nor by fire and sword. Do you think that such a gospel will be shaken and displaced today, by state-sponsored apostasy?

Listen, then, to the Apostle Peter, on the brink of being crucified in Rome by the demonic, notoriously homosexual, murderous tyrant Nero in AD 65, crucified on a patently false accusation of setting fire to Rome:
 2 Peter 1:Simeon[a] Peter, a servant[b] and apostle of Jesus Christ,

To those who have obtained a faith of equal standing with ours by the righteousness of our God and Saviour Jesus Christ:

May grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord . . . .
16 For we did not follow cleverly devised myths when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty . . . . 

 19 And we have something more sure, the prophetic word, to which you will do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts, 20 knowing this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture comes from someone's own interpretation.  

21 For no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit. [ESV]

 That is where we shall stand by the grace of God.

The gospel, including its call to repent from notorious sins, is not open to negotiation.

And, with our souls on the line, we are not free to compromise or tamper with it to please any politician or media star.

But also, we here in the Caribbean need to reflect soberly on what we have been led into doing, in our understandably enthusiastic joy that -- at last -- a black man has been elected and now re-elected as president of the USA.

For, as I warned in March last year, when Mr Obama openly endorsed the homosexualisation of Marriage:
The continental-divide watershed lines
of North America (courtesy Wiki)
The concept of a watershed is a classic idea from Geography. 

There is an imaginary line, where if two raindrops fall on two sides of it, no matter how close, they fall into different drainage basins, and so could end up in oceans a continent apart. 
(Of course, (a) while two "drops" on different sides of a civilisational divide are still fairly close together, if one is on the wrong side, it is not too late to step back to the right side. But (b) the key thing about a watershed is that it naturally forces drops on either side farther and farther apart. So, (c) time is of the essence if the polarisation that a divide imposes is to be reversed. That is, (d) there is a window of decision, and time is not your friend, when you are on the wrong side of a watershed. And, let us never forget, that those who promoted various divisive heresies, and those who failed to handle them well in good time, between about the fourth and the early seventh centuries created the deep alienation and disaffection of Egypt and Syria, that opened the way for external invasion by the armies of the Islamic Caliphate. A house divided will not in the end be able to stand.)

That is where our civilisation now stands, at a kairos -- a decisive moment and window of opportunity -- where our history will move in one of two ways beyond this point, for good or ill: either we become reconciled now, or soon from now the polarisation being injected into the body politic by the radicals pushing a destructively divisive agenda will create more and more alienation and irreconcilable differences.  
*And, what is at stake today is the destruction or survival of marriage, the foundational institution of stable families and communities alike. {U/D, May 12:} As Girgit, George and Anderson observe in the just linked Harvard Journal of Law & Public Policy paper:
 [T]he current debate is precisely over whether it is possible for the kind of union that has marriage’s essential fea‐tures to exist between two people of the same sex. Revisionists do not propose leaving intact the historic definition of marriage and simply expanding the pool of people eligible to marry. Their goal is to abolish the conjugal conception of marriage in our law 10 and replace it with the revisionist [--> i.e. homosexualised] conception . . .

F/N 10: Throughout history, no society’s laws have explicitly forbidden gay mar‐riage. They have not explicitly forbidden it because, until recently, it has not been thought possible . . . [T]raditional marriage laws  were not devised to oppress those with same‐sex attractions. The comparison [to racist anti-miscegenation laws that forbade inter-racial marriages]  is offensive, and puzzling to many—not least to the nearly two‐thirds of black vot‐ers who voted to uphold conjugal marriage under California Proposition Eight. See Cara Mia DiMassa & Jessica Garrison, Why Gays, Blacks are Divided on Prop. 8, L.A. TIMES, Nov. 8, 2008, at A1.
 [Sherif Girgis, Robert P. George, & Ryan T. Anderson, "What is Marriage?" Harvard Journal of Law & Public Policy, Vol 34, No. 1, p. 250 of 245 - 287.]
Already, the force of the homosexualist civilisational divide is at work, driving people on opposite sides of the issue farther and farther apart, and creating the perception that those who stand up in defence of marriage as it has historically been established are little better than hateful, racist bigots. 
Which, is obscenely slanderous, but is increasingly routine. 
Indeed, this smear- and- demonise strategy is not calculated to foster dialogue and build a new consensus, but to shut it down, and to intimidate objectors to the homosexualisation of marriage -- thus the destruction of its essential character. Then, eventually it is intended to crack down on those who insist on objecting, under the colours -- but not the true substance -- of law.  Which, in some jurisdictions, has already begun. 
The polarising divide has begun. 
So, I am of the view that time is short, and we need to step back from the brink of a division being injected into our civilisation on the core nature of family that once it goes far enough cannot be healed and will do great harm.  Harm, that zealous advocates of "fairness" and "rights" and even "progress" as they imagine them may not even fully understand.
 Already, with this incident, one pregnant with symbolic significance for the next four years, we see that there is a demand (one obviously tracing to the wishes and declared intent of Mr Obama) that we approve state-sponsored apostasy.

Not now, not ever.

Instead, let it be clearly known to one and all:
 "[We are] not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes."   END