In a stunning capitulation to a powerful sin movement, World Vision's American branch announced Monday that it will now employ people who are in legal homosexual "marriages"—a distinctly anti-biblical position for an organization that professes "Jesus is Lord" and says, "We desire Him to be central in our individual and corporate life."
The cultural cave-in by World Vision was made all the more remarkable by President Richard Stearns' awkward attempts to justify and explain it—even denying that World Vision has caved on its Christian principles. World Vision had previously fought government attempts to force it and other Christian organizations to follow pro-homosexual mandates.
Stearns told Christianity Today that the new policy was "not an endorsement of same-sex marriage. We have decided we are not going to get into that debate. Nor is this a rejection of traditional marriage, which we affirm and support."
Stearns says, "Changing the employee conduct policy to allow someone in a same-sex marriage who is a professed believer in Jesus Christ to work for us makes our policy more consistent with our practice on other divisive issues. It also allows us to treat all of our employees the same way: abstinence outside of marriage, and fidelity within marriage."
Historically, people embracing sin are not regarded as faithful Christians. Homosexual conduct is clearly proscribed in the Bible as a sin (Rom. 1:24-27) but one that can be overcome through Christ (1 Cor. 6:9-11). Many former gays and lesbians, like Anne Paulk, have overcome homosexuality through faith in Jesus.
Christ affirmed the Genesis account of marriage as the union of one man and one woman (Mark 10:6-8). Only in liberal denominations widely regarded as having jettisoned biblical authority does one hear the bizarre concept of two people of the same sex honoring "fidelity within marriage."
Yet Stearns says, "This is not us compromising. It is us deferring to the authority of churches and denominations on theological issues." He denies that World Vision is headed down a "slippery slope."
Americans For Truth About Homosexuality (AFTAH) offers the following points about World Vision's pro-homosexual-marriage sellout:
- Stearns' rationale for the policy change is stunningly dishonest and illogical in its doublespeak. Stearns would be more forthright in declaring that World Vision has abandoned the Bible as authoritative and is denying Jesus as Lord. The same principle applies to individuals and organizations: One cannot embrace and sanctify sin while professing to honor Jesus Christ, who died and rose again so that believers might have victory over sin.
- By recognizing homosexual marriages in its hiring practices and treating them like actual marriages, World Vision has not only entered the debate over this issue but greatly advanced the LGBT agenda by lending Christian credibility to gay activists' misleading marriage-equality propaganda. World Vision also undermines religious liberty by signaling that immoral laws that defy God's law are more binding than Scripture—unilaterally throwing up the white flag of surrender on freedom of conscience.
- World Vision's sellout is part of a disturbing trend in evangelicalism to capitulate in the culture war over homosexuality—while the pro-LGBT lobby only ramps up its advocacy of sexually immoral laws and corporate policies. The World Vision decision comes just days after Chick-fil-A CEO Dan Cathy chose to censor himself by declaring that his public defense of natural marriage was a business "mistake." Cathy vowed to stay out of the marriage debate, reportedly after listening to the counsel of friends—including homosexual activist Shane Windmeyer, whose organization, Campus Pride, advocates for homosexuality, bisexuality and transgenderism on college campuses.
- World Vision now puts hundreds of thousands of biblically faithful and compassionate Christians in a bind. They want to keep supporting poor children through World Vision sponsorships, but they do not want to give their money to a charity that actively undermines God's Word through its policies. Many Christians will abandon World Vision, and children will suffer.
- Ironically, many of the people in poor countries served by World Vision remain faithful to Scripture and resent, if not despise, the watered-down Christianity of decadent Western nations like the United States that seeks to accommodate sexual sin.
- Lastly, World Vision does a great spiritual disservice to its gay married employees. By implying that unrepentant practicing homosexuals can be faithful servants of Jesus Christ while living openly in grave sexual sin and mocking true marriage, World Vision becomes an impediment to their repentance before God. Salvation requires humbly acknowledging and turning away from sin, just as genuine marriage requires two people of the opposite sex joining to produce a natural family.
Peter LaBarbera is president of Americans for Truth About Homosexuality.
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