On Friday, the Supreme Court handed down its “gay marriage” ruling, single-handedly throwing out thousands of years of law, fact, and history and redefining marriage to include same-sex couples, and imposing that on all fifty states. In doing so, SCOTUS has dismantled most of what remains of our connection to common law. This is the telos of the Sexual Revolution.
Welcome to post-Christian America. It’s been here for a while, but on Friday any remaining doubters were silenced.
Does this mean that government is going to be rounding up Christians and putting them into prison camps? Does this mean that government is going to start shutting down churches? Not by a long shot. At least not for a couple decades.
But make no mistake: if you are a Christian and hold to the Biblical teachings with respect to life and sexual ethics, then the public square has become an order of magnitude more hostile. Where the perspective of the Church was once afforded great respect, that is no longer the case in America.
What it does mean: people who hold to particular viewpoints are going to be increasingly marginalized. This is already happening, and you can expect this to intensify.
- If you’ve ever publicly expressed support of historical marriage–in word, financial contribution, or membership in a church or related organization–you may have trouble finding a job in many companies. This is because (a) the Internet is forever, and (b) businesses use data warehouses and data mining to get the goods on almost anyone. And the HR departments go to great lengths to screen out potential employees who “may not be a good fit for our progressive and forward-thinking organization.”
- If you’ve ever publicly expressed support of historical marriage–in word, financial contribution, or membership in a church or related organization–you may be in danger of losing your job. No, your boss isn’t going to call you into his office and say, “You’re a homophobe; you’re fired!” What is more likely to happen: when layoffs become necessary, then your name will be on a short list of those first to go. It will be couched in terms of “fiscal fitness”, but in reality it will be a personal decision.
- If you’re in the military, you’d best keep your mouth shut. Chaplains are already under assault: a Ranger chaplain has received a career-ending “letter of concern” for providing Biblical references in a suicide prevention class, and a Navy SEAL chaplain–who was called the “best of the best” on his latest evaluation–is on the verge of dismissal for sticking to Biblical teachings regarding homosexuality.
If you’re a business owner, you have seen the handwriting on the wall. Bakeries, caterers, and florists must accommodate gay weddings; religious-based objections have been shot down in court. Expect more such encroachments on Christian business owners.
While Hobby Lobby won their case over contraception funding, the same cannot be said of those businesses that directly serve the wedding market. Freedom of association is dead, unless you are a Muslim business, in which case no one will touch you for fear of getting beheaded.
As for churches and parachurch organizations, you’re going to have to look long and hard at the whole tax-exemption paradigm. President Obama’s own Solicitor General, when asked about this in the SCOTUS hearings in Obergefell v. Hodges, admitted, “[it’s] going to be an issue.”
If your church or organization is tax-exempt and refuses membership to gays, that tax-exemption will be on the chopping block. It won’t happen tomorrow, but make no mistake: it will eventually happen. You need to prepare for that eventuality, and you need to do that sooner rather than later. Now is the time to start thinking about an exit strategy from that tangled web of tax-exemption.
A good friend of mine, a pastor at a church in Kentucky, has done this with his church from day one: when he started it, he did not go for tax-exemption. Churches like his won’t be facing the financial crunch when the shoe drops, at least not on that front.
If you’re starting a church, then you would do well to forego tax exemption. Yes, it will be a pinch in the wallet, but at least it’s easier to build from that baseline now than have the rug ripped out from under you later.
Once that happens, the losers here will be the needy. Fact is, the soup kitchens, orphanages, and homeless shelters are supported by financial contributions from churches–many of them large churches. The loss of tax-exemption will directly impact the outflow of services to those in need.
The one good thing here: many pastors will leave the ministry. Why is that a good thing? The good ones–whom God has actually called into ministry–will remain. As for those who leave, I have two words: good riddance. Don’t let the door hit you in the rear-end. The good ones may go underground, but they’ll be bold, strong, and courageous.
Public education will become the new laboratory for the sodomites. You can expect sex education curriculum to become more intense in their indoctrination, eventually beginning in preschool. Academics will write history textbooks and recommend literature selections in English classes in ways that advance the “equivalence” of sodomy.
Whereas parents once were able to opt their children out of public sex education, districts are going to make it harder for parents to do so.
If you are a parent, then this is the perfect time to consider homeschooling. Christian private schools will be under assault, as their tax-exemption will be threatened. Moreover, tuition may become unaffordable as many parents flock to a limited number of such schools.
Homeschooling, on the other hand, gives you more control over your children’s education. And contrary to the grumblings of the critics, (a) there is great flexibility available, (b) you don’t have to be a genius to do it, and (c) you can ensure that your children receive essentials–reading, writing, math, science, even the classics–while avoiding the leftist social agenda.
Even then, the game has fundamentally changed, and isolation from the world is impossible. Like the Christians of the First Century who lived their faith in an environment more hostile than the post-Christian West, you must live out your faith without compromise while providing for your family. You must interact with this post-Christian world, and your children will grow up in this world and must learn to function in it.
I’ll cover that in Part 2.