Rachel Dolezal and Bruce Jenner: transracial, transexual, and transable...

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Think about it with a Christian mind. Rachel Dolezal first sued historically black college, Howard University, for discriminating against her as a grad student because she's white. She said her whiteness caused her to be treated unfairly in the issuing of scholarships and the awarding of teaching assistantships. But this was back in 2002 when she still lived at the station in life God placed her by birth: Caucasian. In time she learned her lesson and, deciding to forsake her God-ordained station, started claiming she was African American. Not surprisingly in North America today, her new identity proved lucrative, allowing her to become an agent provocateur for African Americanism. They say Dolezal is "transracial."

Bruce Jenner first won the gold medal in the men's decathlon competition at the 1976 Montreal Olympics, setting the world record. Back in 1976 Jenner still lived at the station in life God placed him by birth: male. In time he learned his lesson and, deciding to forsake his God-ordained station, started the morbid defacement of his sexuality, and now claims he is a woman. Not surprisingly in North America today, his new identity is proving lucrative, getting him on the cover of Vanity Fair in a bustier...

Those who love living in Vanity Fair now show it by calling him "her" and naming him "Caitlyn." (Don't go looking. Just trust me.) They say Jenner is "transexual." 

No wonder, then, that there are many individuals who were first born able-bodied, possessing both arms and both legs who repudiate their able-bodiedness and have hired physicians to amputate an arm or leg. Some servile academic explains this perversion as "the desire or the need for a person identified as able-bodied by other people to transform his or her body to obtain a physical impairment. The person could want to become deaf, blind, amputee, paraplegic. It's a really, really strong desire." They say these men and women are "transabled." 

Preachers of righteousness ordained to pastoral ministry across these United States must begin to preach as their fathers in the faith once did, regularly proclaiming that the station in life God decrees for us at our conception, whether sexual or racial or physical, is to be embraced and confessed throughout life, as an act of faith. "It is He Who hath made us, and not we ourselves" (Psalm 100:3).

This does not mean it's wrong for a black man to work for racial equality. Racial equality is mandated by all men being descended from Adam and equally bearing the Image of God. This does not mean black men should not marry Asian women; or Asian women white men, and so on. Racial intermarriage is no forsaking of our racial station in life. This does not mean men and women should not work for the end of unbiblical sexism of the sort that confines women's worth to marriage and childrearing, holds up the artificial femininity of prairie-muffiness as the standard of feminine clothing, dismisses the education of women as something indifferent or negative, or relegates sensitivity, aesthetic discernment, fatherliness, and close and intimate male friendships as "gay." This does not mean it's wrong for amputees to employ prosthetics or the deaf cochlear implants.

But there is an essential contentment that is demonstrated by the Apostle Paul when he says, "I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content" (Philippians 4:11). This is how each man and woman is to demonstrate our faith in the God Who Alone decrees all things for His Own glory—including the station in life of every man ever born, from Prince Charles to Elisabeth Elliot to Mephibosheth and Helen Keller. By God's decree, men and women are not born persons, but black, white, man, woman, poor, rich, bright, dense, disabled, able-bodied, hearing, deaf, sighted, and blind. This is that station in life in which we are to confess our faith, learning contentment in it.

Pulling ourselves up by our own bootstraps—the Horatio Algers ideology—is so deeply embedded in our American political identity that it is hard for us even to think in the terms of Biblical contentment John Calvin speaks of, here. But we must ask ourselves what God's decrees concerning each man and woman's station life, what Calvin refers to as "calling," means for each of us and our children? And if our answer is that God delights in every act we take to "improve" ourselves, what is wrong with Bruce Jenner "improving" his sexuality by using drugs, surgery, and photoshop to raise himself into the elevated status of American womanhood today? Or oppositely, what would be wrong with a Christian woman deciding she doesn't want to be limited in who she teaches and exercises authority over, and hiring doctors, pharmacists, and graphic designers to remake her into a man? Which is to ask, what limits are Christians today willing to live under and embrace as their station in life decreed by God? On what basis are we absolutists concerning sexuality while adhering to the universal ideology of the Western world since the French Revolution, liberté, égalité, and fraternité, with everything else?

Here's an excerpt from John Calvin's writings providing a glimpse into two millenia of Christian doctrine on this matter. It will be unsettling to every Westerner, but that's the point.

The last thing to be observed is, that the Lord enjoins every one of us, in all the actions of life, to have respect to our own calling. He knows the boiling restlessness of the human mind, the fickleness with which it is borne hither and thither, its eagerness to hold opposites at one time in its grasp, its ambition. Therefore, lest all things should be thrown into confusion by our folly and rashness, he has assigned distinct duties to each in the different modes of life. And that no one may presume to overstep his proper limits, he has distinguished the different modes of life by the name of callings. Every man’s mode of life, therefore, is a kind of station assigned him by the Lord, that he may not be always driven about at random. ...in every thing the call of the Lord is the foundation and beginning of right action. He who does not act with reference to it will never, in the discharge of duty, keep the right path. He will sometimes be able, perhaps, to give the semblance of something laudable, but whatever it may be in the sight of man, it will be rejected before the throne of God; and besides, there will be no harmony in the different parts of his life. Hence, he only who directs his life to this end will have it properly framed; because free from the impulse of rashness, he will not attempt more than his calling justifies, knowing that it is unlawful to overleap the prescribed bounds. He who is obscure will not decline to cultivate a private life, that he may not desert the post at which God has placed him. Again, in all our cares, toils, annoyances, and other burdens, it will be no small alleviation to know that all these are under the superintendence of God. The magistrate will more willingly perform his office, and the father of a family confine himself to his proper sphere. Every one in his particular mode of life will, without repining, suffer its inconveniences, cares, uneasiness, and anxiety, persuaded that God has laid on the burden. This, too, will afford admirable consolation, that in following your proper calling, no work will be so mean and sordid as not to have a splendour and value in the eye of God.

John Calvin, On the Christian Life.

So now, put on your thinking cap and tell us what your doctrine of station in life, calling, and birth order is in relation to God's decrees. We have hard work before us if we are going to say "no" to Jenner and "yes" to égalité (equality) by any means, everywhere else.

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!