By Candice Watters | Focus on the Family Blog
When I was twentysomething, I had big ideas, still do. It's just
that when I was fresh from college, a mere 21-year-old, it was hard to
get anyone to take my big ideas very seriously. Not enough life
experience, not enough maturity, not enough gray hair. (For better or
worse, that last one is no longer an issue.)
If you're reading this blog, and you're young, your beliefs matter. Maybe more than you know.
"No moral revolution can succeed without shaping and changing the
minds of young people and children. Inevitably, the schools have become
crucial battlegrounds for the culture war. The Christian worldview has
been undermined by pervasive curricula that teach moral relativism,
reduce moral commandments to personal values, and promote homosexuality
as a legitimate and attractive lifestyle option."
If you identify yourself as a believer, it's worth asking yourself
where your convictions come from on this issue. What's driving your
perspective? Where do you go first? Newspapers? Blogs? TV? Church? Even
that last one may not be reliable anymore. Dr. Mohler writes,
"The homosexual rights movement understands that the evangelical
church is one of the last resistance movements committed to a biblical
morality. Because of this, the movement has adopted a strategy of
isolating Christian opposition, and forcing change by political action
and cultural pressure. Can we count on evangelicals to remain
steadfastly biblical on this issue?"
Given that young self-described Christians are prone to favor and
even applaud homosexuality, how should the church respond? With courage
and compassion writes Mohler.
"The times demand Christian courage. These days, courage means that
preachers and Christian leaders must set an agenda for biblical
confrontation, and not shrink from dealing with the full range of
issues related to homosexuality. We must talk about what the Bible
teaches about gender--what it means to be a man or a woman. We must
talk about God's gift of sex and the covenant of marriage. And we must
talk honestly about what homosexuality is, and why God has condemned
this sin as an abomination in His sight. ...
"Even as courage is
required, the times call for another Christian virtue as
well--compassion. The tragic fact is that every congregation is almost
certain to include persons struggling with homosexual desire or even
involved in homosexual acts. Outside the walls of the church,
homosexuals are waiting to see if the Christian church has anything
more to say, after we declare that homosexuality is a sin."
And what is it the church should be saying?
"The church is not a place where sinners
are welcomed to remain in their sin. To the contrary, it is the Body of
Christ, made up of sinners transformed by grace. Not one of us deserves
to be accepted within the beloved. It is all of grace, and each one of
us has come out of sin. We sin if we call homosexuality something other
than sin. We also sin if we act as if this sin cannot be forgiven.
"We cannot settle for truth without love
nor love without truth. The Gospel settles the issue once and for all.
This great moral crisis is a Gospel crisis. The genuine Body of Christ
will reveal itself by courageous compassion, and compassionate courage.
We will see this realized only when men and women freed by God's grace
from bondage to homosexuality feel free to stand up in our churches and
declare their testimony--and when we are ready to welcome them as
fellow disciples. Millions of hurting people are waiting to see if we
mean what we preach."
Yes, your beliefs matter. But not just as a matter of public opinion
or even cultural trends. They matter to God. And eventually,
ultimately, we'll all have to stand before Him and give an account for
each and every one of those beliefs.