In a country like the United States, where easy believe-ism has produced false converts and cultural Christianity that seems to identify more with the American flag and White House than with the Scriptures and church house, this view is understandable. It’s almost a necessary evil.
When a “woman’s rights” group responds to legal action against an organization committing dangerous and harmful crimes against women with “outrage,” it is really hard to take that group seriously. This is a twisted response by the The Women’s March revealing a lack of clarity and consistency in their worldview.
While we may have good intentions for our efforts to comfort grieving parents, Christians must make sure that their intentions, efforts, and words are based solely on Scripture. There is no real comfort in telling someone what cannot be supported by Scripture. So before we tell parents that their child is now in Heaven, we need to examine Scripture to determine whether that is true or not.
The traditional, somewhat historical position can be summed up in a statement by Sam Storms, writing at The Gospel Coalition, when he says:
I recently watched the Cleveland Cavaliers pull off an improbable comeback to win the NBA finals. With their team down 3-1 the Cavs won 3 straight games to bring home Cleveland’s first NBA championship; a promise LeBron James issued two years ago. It was an exciting game and series for fans, but it also reminded me of how much Americans worship sports.
To be fair, I love sports. I’ve been playing and watching since I was a kid. What I am most thankful for is that my parents never allowed sports to interfere with our family, or our life as part of the church. That doesn’t seem to be the case today.
How often have you said to your pastor, “we won’t be around much the next few months, it’s _________ season.”?
What would you do if you walked into the women’s locker room at your local pool and there was a man standing there?
Suppose you took your kids to the pool for a relaxing day of fun in the sun. Everything is going great when you need to make a run to the locker room. As you walk in, you see a man standing there, in a women’s bathing suit, staring at the women in the locker room. What would you do?
That’s exactly the situation one mother faced. The video below, shared by the Family Policy Alliance, tells her story about taking her kids to the local pool and walking into the women’s locker room to find a grown man standing there looking at the women. When this confused mother went to the employees of the pool they politely told her that “he must identify as a woman” and that he was welcome to use the women’s locker room.
In the video, the shocked mother explains that what she saw was a man, watching the women in the locker room, and looking down at his phone. I won’t pretend to know what the man was doing, but it certainly raises serious questions. Furthermore, as a husband or father, how would you feel if you knew there was a man in the locker room looking at your wife or daughter as she changed for the pool?
Efforts to change bathroom laws are not something to be quickly dismissed. It is a dangerous policy position to allow men into women’s facilities. Not because transgender people are inherently dangerous or known to assault women or children, but because perverted individuals will take advantage of such laws.
Watch the video below and ask yourself what you would have done in this mother’s position.
Now I lay me down to sleep,
I pray the Lord my soul to keep,
If I should die before I wake,
I pray the Lord my soul to take.
That was the first prayer I remember praying. I prayed it each night with one of my parents before going to sleep. Somewhere along the way I stopped praying that prayer and started praying my own prayers. But that prayer was said with the heart of a child that sincerely wanted to talk to God but didn’t necessarily know how.
I don’t know if you’ve ever thought about the idea of children praying and all the theological implications behind it. As a theology student I can say I have not. As a parent I can say it never occurred to me. That is, until I read an article by Tim Challies in which he answers a question about whether or not it is appropriate to let kids pray.
Once upon a time people thought it was the church’s job to instill faith into their children. Now only the naïve and mistaken parent adheres to that misguided idea. The faith of my children is primarily my responsibility; the church is there to supplement what I am doing to grow my children in the “nurture and admonition” of the Lord. Knowing that I have such a great responsibility means placing a priority on their spiritual development. Before anything else, musical development, athletic development, or even vocational development, comes their spiritual development.
I’m not arrogant enough to think I can do it alone. I constantly search for resources to aid in my teaching and training. To that end I recently read an article at Monergism that stood out. It was a very simple reminder to Christian parents about what it takes to raise godly kids. One striking feature of the article is that it nowhere mentions the church. Now, this doesn’t mean the author is suggesting the church holds no importance in our children’s faith formation. To the contrary this article is merely giving some practical tips to parents with a deep burden to grow faith in their kids.
Another feature of the article is that every tip given was directly aimed at parents. This reiterates that the responsibility for my kids’ faith development is primarily my responsibility. At least for a while I must lead in instilling those seeds of faith that I want to see grow. It is a very dangerous thing to try and unload this responsibility on someone else; or even the church. Not only are we risking that those seeds won’t be planted at all; we are risking that the wrong seeds will be planted or that they won’t be properly watered and will die.
Take a look at some of the useful advice from the article that can help us instill a life-long faith in our children:
I’m fascinated by atheists. How can I not be fascinated by someone who spends a great deal of effort and energy refuting someone they don’t believe exists?
It would be as if I said “this chair I’m sitting in does not exist,” and then spent the next 2 hours lecturing you about why doesn’t exist, the silliness of believing it does exist, and all the whole pointing to the chair that I don’t believe exists. And yet this is, in my opinion, what many – if not all – atheists do.
Some of the world’s most brilliants atheists are also some of the most educated theologians. Though they seek to discredit the Bible and theology and prove that God doesn’t exist, they certainly know a lot. I can think of no other person that proves more clearly that knowledge does not equal wisdom or relationship than atheists.
In this short video, Pastor Matt Chandler discusses the issue of abortion around the anniversary of the Roe v. Wade decision. (The video is about a year old.)
Chandler starts out by reminding us all that when this landmark decision was handed down in 1973 that the science of pregnancy and the unborn was far different than it is today. Back then we didn’t know just how fully developed unborn children were at 8 weeks, 12 weeks, and 20 weeks. One of the most regrettable decision in American history was made not knowing that the unborn can feel pain as early as 20 weeks (for certain) but perhaps even earlier; making abortion nothing less than the legal torture and murder of innocent unborn children.
One of the aspects of this video that makes it important is the fact that Chandler is the pastor of a Southern Baptist Church. Up until roughly 1979 the Southern Baptist Convention endorsed and support abortion. Thankfully, realizing their mistake, the convention renounced this position and has been a tireless defender of life ever since.
I particularly enjoyed Chandler’s treatment of the pro-abortion rhetoric that a “woman gets to choose what she does with her body.” He frankly calls that lack of logic “bull” and suggests a woman “go prostitute” herself to see if she is truly free to do what she wants with her body.
President Obama supports a woman’s choice.
Unless that choice is to be a stay-at-home mom, then he doesn’t want you to make that choice. He would rather you choose your job and earn more money than to stay home with your children.
That’s the main take away from his recent speech at Rhode Island College in Providence, RI recently. It sounds as though our president would like the government to discourage mother from staying home with their kids. As though money, career advancement, and those things the business world offers are more important than raising children. The President said: