Religious Right, Christian Right, religious conservatives, “values voters” and evangelicals are a few of the titles given to the social and or political groups that wish to hang on to the “traditional family values” (TFV) that are passed on from one generation to the next. These values are defined as “the moral and ethical principles traditionally upheld and transmitted within a family, [such as] honesty, loyalty, industry, and faith.” How they go about this maintenance effort varies drastically.
The most radical of these believe they have a mandate from God to occupy all secular institutions and dominate the political process until Christ returns. Unfortunately many evangelicals are participating in this seemingly godly effort, unaware of what’s going on behind the scenes. They’re blindly following Christian Right (CR) leaders down some very dangerous paths.
All In The Family
TFV has its roots in the Bible and is derived from the Ten Commandments. So for Christians there’s nothing wrong with having a desire to hang on to family values, especially when it comes to adopting ethical principles taught in Scripture. In our post-modern culture, however, a growing number of liberal Americans are moral relativists. For these folks there are no moral absolutes and culture, not the Bible, determines right from wrong.
The moral freefall America’s now in stems from the culture war of the 1960s. Expressions such as “anything goes” “if it feels good do it” “sex, drugs and rock and roll” describe the mind-set of the hippie generation. The counter culture movement grew legs in the 1960’s, sprinted into the 21st Century, and continues to gain momentum to this day. The 60’s revolution was actually America’s rebellion against the God of the Bible. Unfortunately much of what was generated then lives on today. I’ll touch on that in a moment.
The problem isn’t with the folks who care about TFV; it lies with some—not all– of the organizations that are fighting on the front lines of the culture war battlefield. In their zeal to defeat liberalism and to bring a modicum of sanity back to America, the CR joined forces with outright heretics, blurring the line that separates orthodoxy from heresy. At one time evangelical was used to differentiate Protestantism from Roman Catholicism and Orthodox Christianity. In today’s culture evangelicals are identified with far right Republicans. It is true, this might be an accurate comparison for some, but by definition an evangelical is a believer who holds that Scripture is the infallible, inerrant, inspired Word of God and the authority by which they live their lives; likewise evangelicals believe in the Trinity, the deity of Christ, what the Bible says about sin, and of course salvation by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone. (Ephesians 2:8) In other words, evangelicals held to the fundamentals of the faith. They shared the Gospel of Christ with the lost as they were commanded to do. (Matthew 28:18–20; Acts 1:8, 1 Peter 3:15) They believed that people are dead in their sins and in need of a Savior. As I implied, for some self-professed evangelicals, these actions are no longer part of their mandate. I say self-professed, mainly because the name evangelical has been hijacked by liberals who say they’re Christians even though they reject many of the fundamentals of the faith. Liberals would never “push their religious views” on someone else. You might ask why they choose not to share the gospel. From their point of view, Christians don’t have a personal responsibility to share their faith because they believe it’s possible for the Hindu, Buddhist, Muslim, etc., to remain in his/her religion and still be saved. My point is, when someone says they’re an evangelical in today’s world, it doesn’t really tell you anything.
“This is a revolutionary age,” said Ray Stedman several decades ago. “The hurricane winds of change are blowing everywhere in our world. The race seethes with unrest and lawless rebellion. What are Christians to do in this hour? Should we surrender the greatest revolutionary message the world has ever heard, which can come to it from no other source, and content ourselves with doing what any worldling can do?
“Shall we become nothing more than another political action group or succumb to the fallacy that change, any kind of change, represents progress? God forbid!”
Stedman went on to say that as Christians we must “heed our calling…renew our commitment to the Lord, who is behind all things, to become individually responsible to tell this radical, revolutionary, life—transforming good news throughout society; that we should invade commercial and industrial life, education and learning, the arts and family life, morals and government with this tremendous, unequaled message.”
The pro-family movement has closed its collective ears to prophetic voices such as Ray Stedman’s. What they’ve done instead is invade society with the not so transforming gospel of pragmatism.
Pro-family Movement Teaming With Wolves
So in essence isn’t the pro-family movement spreading this unequaled message Stedman referred to so long ago? To a limited degree yes, but the sacrifices they’ve made to achieve their goals are significant. Pro-family groups are rife with wolves in sheep’s clothing. Some of them are celebrities who have, not only name recognition that draw crowds to events, they also have oodles of money that they generously share…especially when it comes to mustering additional support for their own private agendas.
Scripture has plenty to say about cavorting with false teachers. The Lord Jesus went after them, calling them “white washed tombs full of dead men’s bones,” even worse “ravenous wolves.” He made it clear that His followers are to have nothing to do with wolves. “Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them” (Ephesians 5:11). Rather than exposing evil doers, many pro-family leaders promote their unfruitful works as well as pray with and even pal around with them.
They’ve obviously forgotten the Apostle Paul’s warning:
I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting him who called you in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel—not that there is another one, but there are some who trouble you and want to distort the gospel of Christ. But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed. (Galatians 1:6-8).
Don’t think pro-family leaders are unaware that they’re playing with fire. They know! In fact, they’ve been warned countless times. They’ve been challenged. They’ve been chastised. They’ve been clobbered by discernment bloggers who’ve tried to get them to look at evidence that clearly demonstrates that they’ve joined forces with ravenous wolves, ironically to “Reclaim America.”
I have a question for “evangelical” leaders who say they represent “values voters”: Have you ever read Isaiah 6:1-8? No? Well, I’ve provided a link to it. After you’ve finished reading it, some of you may fall on your faces and cry, “Woe is me…” Why? Because you haven’t had a clear picture of the God you claim to serve. If you understood His holiness – His power and might and radiant glory–you’d heed His command: “Do not be bound together with unbelievers; for what partnership has righteousness and lawlessness, or what fellowship has light with darkness?” ( 2 Corinthians 6:14) Anyone who knowingly invites wolves into the sheep pen is walking in darkness – woe to you! “If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth” (1 John 1:6).
Martyn Lloyd-Jones sums it up this way:
The real motive for living the holy life should be that it pleases God, and that sin is displeasing to Him. I must not set up my own little standard of holiness and rectitude and my little moral code, and pride myself that I am a man who always keeps his word and lives up to his own code and standard. That is ultimately unChristian. The world acts frequently from such a motive. The only true motive for holy living is that it grieves God and offends Him when I am not holy. My desire must be to please Him; not simply to obey the divine law, but to give joy to God and to the Lord Jesus Christ. That should be the motive in all our actions and activities. (H/T Glenn E. Chatfield)
Before I shed light on what’s at the root of the collapse of evangelicalism and why the pro-family movement is partly to blame for insisting on aligning with apostates and cultists who teach a false gospel, perhaps some background would be helpful.
I’m not a fan of Wikipedia, however for purposes of defining the Christian Right they’ve done an excellent job. To paraphrase : CR evangelicals are Bible believing Christians; as such they oppose abortion on demand, euthanasia, human embryonic stem cell research, both eugenics and human enhancement (transhumanism), and hold to the traditional definition of marriage as between one man and one woman. Thus, CR opposes the expansion of civil marriage for same-sex couples and same-sex child adoption. CR also opposes the legalization of drugs and prostitution. They support censoring pornography, obscenity, indecency, the death penalty, the rule of law, and a defense of “Western civilization from the challenges of modernist culture and totalitarian governments.”
So you can see that evangelicalism is the antithesis of the Secular Humanist religion (yes, it’s a religion, the religion of atheism). Those who identify as secularists are vehemently non-theistic. Without getting too far afield, under the guise of separation of church and state, they’ve made great strides in pushing their godless religion and values on society. The way they see it, organized religion is the enemy of freedom – the freedom to do anything you wish “as long as you’re not hurting anyone.” The anti-God crowd has been chipping away at the “free exercise of religion” guaranteed under the U.S. Constitution for decades.
Collapse Of Evangelicalism
The media as well as evangelicals have been snookered by Social Justice Christians (SJC) who have put on the cloak of evangelical Christianity. Social justice is a euphemism for socialism. And whether SJC realize it or not, they’ve bought into a belief system that’s deeply rooted in Marxism. These so-called evangelicals desire to see people free of starvation, sickness and suffering. To that end, they think it’s necessary to level the playing field. In other words, redistribute wealth. To put it in the common man’s vernacular, robbing Peter to pay Paul. Biblical Christianity has nothing in common with socialism, as it’s a wicked system. Likewise, biblical Christianity has nothing in common with liberalism. In fact, “liberal Christian” is an oxymoron in the same way that original copy…awfully good…gay Christian is an oxymoron.
The media and evangelicals are also unaware that many “Christians” in the social justice movement reject the fundamentals of the faith! For example, some reject Jesus Christ as the only Savior of the world (John 14:6); salvation as God’s free gift to those who believe in Christ apart from good works (Romans 3:24, 28) and the inspiration and authority of the Bible (2 Timothy 3:16). Because of these and many other decidedly unbiblical beliefs, those who buy into this movement are no more Christians than a wolf wearing fleece is a lamb.
As I previously said, Biblical Christianity is all about sharing the gospel of Christ and discipling the lost. (Matthew 28:18-20)
So – why are professing Christians drawn into unbiblical movements like social justice? For the reason that they don’t read/study their bibles to see what God says. Instead they get their marching orders from sinful men. And because of their willful ignorance and their willingness to cast the Bible aside and fall in line behind personalities, a growing number of evangelicals don’t know enough about their faith to share what they believe and why they believe it with someone who asks them probing questions. The term I coined to describe professing Christians such as these is “low-information evangelical” (LIE). Space does not allow for a detailed explanation of LIE, so those who wish to know more will find my articles here. I’ll use variations of LIE such as LIE-celeb throughout the remainder of this series.
Who are the LIE-celebs by name and how have they gone wrong? Stay tuned for part 2.
The Religious Right uniting with Religious Renegades (naming names)—By Marsha West
Christian leaders: It’s about time you test false teachers (naming names)—By Marsha West
Copyright by Marsha West, 2015. All rights reserved.