What connection is there between the tragic events in Charlottesville and the release of an evangelical Christian statement on human sexuality? Absolutely none. That is, unless you are former evangelical Jen Hatmaker, in which case there is now a connection between White Supremacists and biblically-based, sexual values. What on earth was she thinking?
The statement in question, issued in Nashville, Tennessee on Tuesday, was described by Pastor John Piper as a "Christian manifesto" on human sexuality.
He said, "It speaks with forthright clarity, biblical conviction, gospel compassion, cultural relevance and practical helpfulness. It will prove to be, I believe, enormously helpful for thousands of pastors and leaders hoping to give wise, biblical and gracious guidance to their people."
From a biblical perspective, there is nothing controversial in the Nashville Statement, as it affirms sexual norms that have been taught by the church for the last two millennia, including marriage being the union of one man and one woman.
From the perspective of LGBT activists and their allies, the statement has been branded "an affront to God's creative design," a theology that "breeds death."
But this is the expected LGBT reaction to the clear testimony of Scripture, as God's principles of life and freedom are branded a theology of death and bondage.
That reaction shouldn't surprise us at all, although it is tragic and painful to read. Nor should part of Jen Hatmaker's response surprise us, given her abandonment of evangelical Christian values.
She tweeted, "If the fruit of doctrine regularly & consistently creates shame, self-harm, suicide, & broken hearts, families, & churches, we shld listen."
This, again, is a typical, LGBT-related response that buys into the lie that the biblical teaching on homosexuality and trangenderism is destructive and harmful. In reality, the gospel brings deliverance from shame, self-harm and suicide, bringing families and churches together, and it is the rejection of God's life-giving ways that leads to depression and hopelessness and destruction.
For Hatmaker, however, the reverse is true, as she tweeted, "The fruit of the 'Nashville Statement' is suffering, rejection, sham, and despair," adding, "The timing is callous beyond words."
The timing? What was she talking about?
As USA Today explains, "Christian author Jen Hatmaker of Austin, Texas, who came out in favor of same-sex marriage and whose books have been removed from the Southern Baptist Convention's LifeWay Christian Stores because of that philosophy, called the timing of the statement callous because of the Aug. 12 Unite the Right white supremacists' rally in Charlottesville, Va., and protester Heather Heyer's death."
This is utterly baffling and indicates, sadly, how far left Hatmaker has shifted.
What connection do neo-Nazis, the KKK and white supremacists have with an evangelical statement on biblical sexuality? Absolutely none.
What does the tragic death of Heather Heyer have to do with Christian leaders reaffirming that marriage is the lifelong union of one man and one woman? Nothing whatsoever.
Rather, the spirit of the Nashville Statement is summed up by Southern Baptist Leader Russell Moore, who noted, "The sexual revolution cannot keep its promises, and the church must stand ready to receive with compassion the many who are in need of a better hope. The Nashville Statement is part of that mission, and my prayer is that it will help anchor churches and Christians to the gospel of Jesus Christ for years to come."
What does this have to do with the now infamous, "Unite the Right" rally in Charlottesville? Absolutely nothing at all.
Unless, of course, you use the following "logic": 1) Donald Trump was elected by appealing to the worst elements of the racist, alt-right; 2) evangelical Christians also voted for Trump and are therefore part of the alt-right; 3) evangelical Christians penned and signed the Nashville Statement; 4) the statement is therefore related directly to Charlottesville.
As incredible as that "logic" sounds, it's the only way I can understand Hatmaker's thinking, and it's further proof of a tragic and dangerous pattern: Once you replace biblical standards with LGBT theology, you soon embrace the mindset of the radical left.
The very sad fall of Jen Hatmaker, for whom we pray, is a striking illustration of the power of spiritual deception. Once you embrace the first lie, it's much easier to embrace the other lies, which get bigger and uglier by the day.
May God awaken those deceived by LGBT theology, and may He strengthen those who are taking a stand for biblical truth.
Dr. Michael Brown (www.askdrbrown.org) is the host of the nationally syndicated Line of Fire radio program. His latest book is Playing with Holy Fire: A Wake-up Call to the Pentecostal-Charismatic Church. Connect with him on Facebook or Twitter, or YouTube.
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