Christianity left behind...

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A prominent evangelical magazine just did a piece on the complaint by Calvin College faculty reps that Calvin's board has issued policy barring members of their faculty from promoting sodomy. The article starts this way:

The homosexuality debate that has torn apart mainline denominations is fanning faculty and student protests at Calvin College, and highlights a growing issue facing evangelical schools.

The magazine, published in Wheaton, continues:

The case is being watched with interest by other (evangelical) schools struggling to balance compassion and doctrine in their policies on gays.

"Struggling to balance compassion and doctrine?" What on earth are they saying?

Well of course, the point is that the evangelical world today is moving toward the normalization of sodomy and the rubric under which it's being done is the silencing of Scripture's denunciation of sodomy as an abomination before the Lord. Other abominations such as fornication, unbiblical divorce and remarriage, and adultery have already been normalized, and now it's sodomy's turn.

The path to normalization is cleared by much talk of compassion with only an occasional tip of the hat to sin and righteousness and judgment. Which is to say that the Holy Spirit is nowhere present in such discussions since "When He comes, He will convict the world of sin and righteousness and judgment."

There's no conviction of sin going on--none at all. Instead, we're busy balancing compassion and doctrine. Wheaton College's "sexuality scholar," Stan Jones, puts it like this...

"I think it's a symptom of the growing lack of consensus about this issue," said Stanton Jones, provost at Wheaton College and a sexuality scholar. "The debates that once were contained within the mainline denominations are spilling over into the evangelical denominations."

Actually it would be better to say that the denial of Scripture formerly reserved for mainline liberals has made much progress among evangelicals. Most evangelicals are liberals, now, although they're lulled to sleep by weekly rest stops in pews where they hear reassuring talk of being "born again" and having "a personal relationship with Jesus." There's no doctrine, though; no membership and submission to elders, no fencing the Lord's Table, no preaching, no repentance; and thus, no Christian faith.

The Christianity of Machen's Christianity and Liberalism has been left behind.

Evangelicalism has become an emotive community, a community of experience and sentiment. It's no longer the Household of Faith, the Church of the Living God, the Pillar and Foundation of the Truth. Balancing compassion and doctrine is really newspeak for killing both compassion and doctrine for the sake of pluralism, inclusivity, diversity and all the other goodies guaranteed to win us acceptance by those on the broad path that leads to destruction.

(Jones of Wheaton College) added that young evangelicals increasingly see homosexuality "not as an issue of sexual morality but as an issue of justice, dignity, or tolerance."

These young evangelicals have been abandoned by their shepherds who were called by God to guard them. They're wandering out on the moors and night is falling, but there's no one who has compassion on them; no one who loves and will give up his life to protect them. The wolves are howling in anticipation of their kill and no man is standing in the gap. Certainly not these professors paid by pious Christian parents who thought if they'd send their precious sons and daughters to their alma mater, they'd be guarded and protected and fed and sanctified.

Instead, these professors are furious that they're being banned from professing sodomy. It's all about academic freedom and intellectual integrity--stuff like that.

For Calvin faculty, the debate goes beyond policy positions to the very mission of the college.

"They are more unified on this than I've seen them unified on anything for a long time," said Karin Maag, vice chair of the Faculty Senate.

Professors wonder why trustees singled out the gay issue, Maag said, adding, "There is a worry among some colleagues that this is the thin edge of the wedge. Will the board of trustees start making statements about other issues?"

Don't worry your little tiny brains, dead consciences, and hardened hearts one bit, precious professors. Your rebellion will do the trick. The trustees will back down, with due consideration to saving face in the process. Then, chastened for their godly leadership, they'll give up the ship. Al Mohler at Southern is the exception that proves the rule.

Dear ones, you have absolutely nothing to fear. There's no Paige Patterson left in the CRC.

Still, as a purely academic exercise, let's ask what "other issues" might have been addressed by godly trustees?

Adultery? Euthanasia? Egalitarian feminism? Greed? Infanticide? Rebellion against authority? Bestiality? Abortion? Fornication? Incest? Can you imagine Calvin's trustees having the temerity to deny their faculty members the privilege of promoting the rebellion of wives against their husbands or fathers having sex with their little daughters?

"Oh my goodness, don't worry about that" says the bad Calvin faculty member. "We're not asking for intellectual integrity and academic freedom to be extended to the promotion of things like bestiality and incest. Just sodomy."

Well, what happens when good CRC men confess to their counselors that their sexual predilection, their orientation is to children--always has been and always will be. That they've tried to repent of it many times, and with tears, but they're the same year in, year out, and they've never known anything else. That God made them differently and their daughter says herself that she wants Daddy's love.

"Here, listen to her for yourself! It's a beautiful thing we have, the two of us."

Good reader, you think this is unfair? You think it would never happen?

Think again. Calvin's professors are already loose among the sheep, devouring souls with their bared fangs of feminism, and they do it with the full knowledge and approval of the shepherds of the sheep. Some good shepherds tried to stop it, tried to warn parents about what these professors were doing to their precious children, but they were silenced and have long since abandoned the ship of the CRC.

Truth is, we all know what's coming. There's just a conspiracy not to mention it among polite company.

Sex between adults and children will be normalized here as it's being normalized right now in Europe. Age of consent is being lowered in Europe and soon it'll be lowered here. Incest, pedophilia, and pederasty are on the agenda and their day will soon come.

But like Hezekiah, most of the shepherds are counting on being dead by then.

The (Calvin) board considered the (faculty) senate's request in late October as members of the Calvin community re-examine what it means to pursue truth at the 4,000-student college owned by the Christian Reformed Church (CRC).

Yes, the CRC does truly "own" all of this at Calvin College and Calvin Seminary--just as the PCA will own a similar mess at Covenant College and Covenant Seminary after woman officers have been normalized across the PCA.

Conversations were catalyzed at Calvin, Wheaton, and other schools in recent years by visits from Soulforce, a national gay advocacy group that toured dozens of Christian colleges.

After Soulforce visited (evangelical) Gordon College in Wenham, Massachusetts, in 2007, students published a volume of stories by gay and lesbian students about their struggles. Gordon encouraged its students to talk with Soulforce but vowed the college would not veer from its policy prohibiting sex outside of male-female marriage.

"Gay and lesbian students?" Will adulterers and pederasts tell their stories next? Will Tony Campolo be invited to give the spiritual emphasis week chapel messages calling faculty and students to confess their pedophobia and bestiaphobia?

...Following the 2007 Soulforce visit, more controversy came to Calvin with Seven Passages, a play about gay Christians conceived and directed by Calvin drama professor Stephanie Sandberg and performed at a Grand Rapids community theater. Drawn from 127 interviews and questioning traditional interpretations of Scripture, it was also performed at the 2008 Lambeth Conference of Anglican bishops.

"Gay Christians?" Is this something like polyamorous Christians or incestuous Christians? Are idolatrous Christians and apostate Christians next?

The board's memo affirms the CRC's position that homosexual orientation is not sinful but homosexual practice is. Though alternative views may be aired, it reads, "The position of the church and the college should be clearly and sympathetically presented."

Yes, of course; homosexual orientation is not sin. Sounds great, doesn't it?

But what about incestuous orientation? What about man's wandering lustful eye syndrome--is it a sin? Woman's rebellious orientation--what about that? Pastor's cowardice orientation?

Let's look at this more closely. What is being said when we talk about homosexual orientation not being sin? Is there any other abomination we want to split these hairs over? A man loves murder, thinks of himself as a murderer, dresses like a murderer, identifies himself to others by a murderer's clothing and body gestures, and what he says and how he says it glorifies murder.

The man's identity is bound up with murder and he's known as the fellow who has been made by God with a unique murderer orientation. What about that man? Is he given a pass on everything else as long as he doesn't actually do what he loves, as long as he doesn't commit the abomination at the very heart of his identity?

Brothers and sisters, concepts such as homophobia and homosexual orientation are simply the way false shepherds wink at sodomy and browbeat sincere Christians into silence. It's all so confusing. Who's fool enough to open his mouth and run the risk of having the man with the terminal degree sitting across from him in the Sunday school class accuse him of homophobia or patronize him with a long explanation of the critical distinction between homosexual orientation and homosexual action? Then, he finished his pedantic lecture with a flourish, quoting that most-esteemed church father, Augustine, who said we are to hate the sin, but love the sinner.

It's all so smutty.

(Calvin's) Administrators say they honor that tradition but walk a tightrope between church doctrine and welcoming gay students.

"Parents continually ask, 'Is my gay son or daughter going to be safe here at Calvin?' " said provost Claudia Beversluis...

Oh yes, your child will be as safe at Calvin College as he was safe at your home and church where he was abandoned to homosexual orientation while being cautioned not to have unprotected sex.

Yes, of course he'll be safe--from any call to repentance, that is. Safe from any loving leadership helping him to change his way of speaking, his choice of clothing, his friendships and method of conversation, his reading matter and taste in movies... Yes, if he's a believer he'll be safe from any help with the hard grace of sanctification.

He'll be safe.

Anna, a bisexual Calvin student who asked that her last name not be used, said she fears a chilling effect.

"This memo silences discussion," she said. "You can't deal with the issue unless you're talking about it."

Next year, on its application form Calvin will be asking applicants to check one of three boxes:




"(Calvin College) has been the envy of every other conservative Christian college in the nation," said Nicholas Wolterstorff, a retired philosopher at Calvin and Yale Divinity School.

Yes, and Las Vegas' slot machines are the envy of every deacon collecting the Sunday morning offering plates.

George Marsden, a retired historian at Calvin and the University of Notre Dame, cautioned against making lists of positions faculty may not advocate. Militarism and abortion could also be considered confessional issues, he said.

"There are too many possible issues," Marsden said. "You're stirring up controversy you don't have to have...."

Thank you, friend George. That's just what we needed from the wise old owl--in the face of the promotion of sodomy, a calm, cool, voice of moderation.

"My sense is we ought to have a broadly based discussion of … the relationship between being a confessional college and academic freedom," Byker said.

Yes, yes; always more discussion.

No firings. No terminations. No repudiation of tenure. Only more discussions.

While our precious children are being led to Hell--the place where discussions of abominations have no end.

( With thanks to several readers.)

Tim Bayly

Tim serves Clearnote Church, Bloomington, Indiana. He and Mary Lee have five children and big lots of grandchildren.

Want to get in touch? Send Tim an email!