Gay Is Not the New Black

Voddie Baucham has written a though provoking article (just read some of the more than 300 comments that follow it!) about the current cultural battle over the covenant of marriage. Here is a small excerpt, here is a link to the entire article.

It’s hard to deny that homosexual marriage appears to be a foregone conclusion in America. This is a frightening prospect not only for those of us who understand marriage to be a testimony of the relationship between Christ and his bride, the church, but also for all who value the family and its contribution to the well-being of society and human thriving. And while it’s difficult to watch a coordinated, well-funded, well-connected propaganda strategy undermine thousands of years of human history, it’s especially disconcerting to witness the use of the civil rights struggle as the vehicle for the strategy.

The idea that same-sex “marriage” is the next leg in the civil rights race is ubiquitous. One of the clearest examples of the conflation of homosexual “marriage” and civil rights is Michael Gross’s article in The Advocate, in which he coins the now-popular phrase “Gay is the new black.”1 Gross is not alone in his conflation of the two issues, however. At a 2005 banquet, Julian Bond, former head of the NAACP, said, “Sexual disposition parallels race. I was born this way. I have no choice. I wouldn’t change it if I could. Sexuality is unchangeable.”2

34 thoughts on “Gay Is Not the New Black

  1. Rev Limiter says:

    I’m sorry to report that our once wonderful country is going down the drain, albeit rather slowly. “Gay marriage” is an obsession with this crowd and is not going away anytime soon! (Rom. 1: 26-32)
    I so appreciate Voddie’s words as this hits at the heart of the issue; “many Christians have been bullied into silence by the mere threat of censure from the homosexual lobby.” What an indictment on the church today! What ever happened to preaching Christ in season and out; from the pulpit and on the street without shame! This is the message that the world needs to hear, now! “silence on this issue is not an option.” There is no other antidote available as Paul proclaimed in Acts 4:12!

  2. Good post! You may be interested in a couple of articles concerning the affects of ‘gay parenting’ on children. This article is from a man who sadly is still lost in sin, but he describes how having two moms affected him growing up. It is so sad to read, this isn’t to say this man isn’t responsible for his choices, but he was molded and shape in all the wrong ways as a child. The lack of a male authoritative figure, a father, has had a devastating affect on him. Here is the first link – http://www.thepublicdiscourse.com/2012/08/6065

    This second article is a study done by the same man mentioned in the first article with statistics and more detailed results…http://www.frc.org/issuebrief/new-study-on-homosexual-parents-tops-all-previous-research

  3. Am I the only person here who sincerely desires that this specific issue would die a quick and painful death?

    Forgive me for ranting a little bit…I am worn-out and absolutely sick and tired of having the issue of “gay rights” and/or “civil rights” and/or “lifestyle choice” and/or “gender identification” ceaselessly put in front of me day after day after day, and I truly believe the constancy of it is another form of God’s judgement on our country.

    Even though all of us here surely would love to see homosexuality eradicated from the world, we also know there’s only one thing which can cure it – heart surgery by the Great Physician. Until God spares a people from their sins, this will decline-to-the-cesspool will continue. May we all redouble our efforts in telling lost sinners the good news of Jesus Christ….it’s our nation’s only hope, and their (homosexuals) only hope as well.

    Todd
    Texas

  4. I agree with Todd also. But further than that, I think one of the reasons this issue is so prevelant is because as Christians we’ve NOT spoken the truth enough. We’ve backed down in the name of political correctness, or fear, or whatever and not said loud enough or long enough that homosexuality is wrong and goes against everything the Bible teaches. We’ve been brainwashed about speaking out against something is hate speech. While I personally think the opposite is true…speaking to someone in love and from a Biblical standpoint is loving not hateful. The hate comes in through the nasty language, lewd acts, etc. Stating your own opinion and/or standing on the Word of God isn’t hateful. Now that stores are getting into the act of catering to this very small percentage of the population ~ we are being more choosey about where we spend our $$.

  5. Ray says:

    Being black is not a sin , practising homosexuality is a sin. Unfortunately , the push to move homosexuality from a moral issue to a lifestyle issue is no longer the domain of secularism. There are many in the church who have gladly jumped on board with this.

  6. RS says:

    Ray: Right you are. The inherent problem with it moving into the church is that the Bible must necessarily be altered to accomodate it and render it acceptable. And a different Jesus must go along with it, because an alternate understanding of Scripture, to go along with an alternate lifestyle, requires an alternate Jesus who approves.

  7. RS – These people did that, crafting a false church, based on a false gospel, worshiping a false Jesus: http://www.mccsf.org/ufmcc.html Nobody but the biblical Jesus can save them and nobody but the biblical Holy Spirit can grant them regeneration and repentance and belief in the Lord Jesus. May God have mercy on them!

  8. RS says:

    Manfred: That was phase 1. Phase 2, currently in place, is to evangelize the churches with their gospel. Once they accept it, and indeed it is happening by degrees even now, the Spirit departs from those churches, their candlesticks are removed, they cease to be light, and walk in lascivious darkness. And there will be some very distinct parallels with old Israel in the depth of their depravity. A church simply cannot be a spiritual bride of Christ, while holding to the very antithesis of that foundational doctrine.

  9. Rev Limiter says:

    ” MCCers are hitting the streets in 24 countries” A quote from Manferd’s link-

    “Why isn’t the church willing to do for the truth what so many others are willing to do for a lie?” Hank Hanegraaff

  10. Bruce says:

    Fastest way to identify liberals and people whose conscience is well and truly seared is to link to the voddie article on facebook. the venom and utter hatred of God, christians, morality comes roaring ot the surface. stuff that nobody would say to anyone in person, and abuse gets hurled. you can sense that the reaction is more than just about a social issue. there is something spiritual about this as well behind the reactions (without going all charismatic on you all)

  11. Bruce says:

    Hi Manfred
    We might have crossed our wires. I meant that if you link to the gospel coalition article that voddie wrote (the one that this article references) on your own facebook page, it’s a sure recipe for inciting the tolerant and diversity loving liberals.

    As an example, a woman i know put up a link for friends to join an online petition to keep the definition of marriage. Nothing nasty. Nothing horrible said. I copied in the link to voddie’s article as a supporting piece on her link to the petition. Someone she knew ripped into her, christians in general, and just vomited venom all over her. Mocked her for having an adulterous husband who abandoned her and her child as being a horrible representation of traditional marriage. The sort of thing that nobody would ever dare say in person. I’m pretty much at the point where if someone can’t behave in a civil way on facebook (or other forums), I’m through with them online.

  12. Thanks for the clarification, Bruce. You are right: people of all stripes are more brazen and less circumspect while “talking” on line.

  13. Pete says:

    Gay people will still be gay, married or not – so what’s the point of this exactly?

    I get a feeling of disgust when I see 2 members of the same sex being affectionate in a more than friendly way, as do many others, but there are clearly a lot of people who don’t get that feeling of disgust – some religious some not.

    How do you overcome the problem of convincing non-religious folk that it is wrong? To them (and me) morality is subjective, and we should tolerate other peoples desires so long as they do not hurt anyone else.

    This feeling of disgust is understandable, from an evolutionary point of view. It’s clear that heterosexual traits are more likely to stay in the gene pool. People are different – and we must learn to tolerate them and their beliefs even if they seem wrong to us.

    Obviously from a Christian perspective you can argue that it is wrong for a number of reasons, but non-religious people reject those reasons.

    So I guess what I am saying is that you will not be able to prevent gay marriage, unless you convert gay people to your religion (unlikely) or stop non-religious people from marrying.

  14. Pete – There is no such thing as “homosexual marriage” (even if one misuses the word “gay”), so no matter what reprobates want to do, it cannot be marriage between two of the same gender nor of more than two.

  15. Nick says:

    Pete,
    Marriage can be viewed as both a religious institution and a secular one.
    From a secular standpoint, in a democratic society, marriage is an institution that is defined by the people.
    If marriage is defined as between one man and one woman, and I think most people on this site would agree with that definition, then regardless of anybody’s religion, or lack thereof, and regardless of whether or not people view same-sex marriage as “right” or “wrong,” then a same-sex marriage would not be legally valid in said democratic society.
    Of course, it’s not just the people on this site who agree with that definition, it’s also the voters who have voted in the past to define marriage in this way.
    I guess my point is that I’m not really sure what basis you have in saying that gay marriage cannot be prevented unless you convert gay people to religion, or stop non-religious people from marrying. Gay marriage is not valid unless it is recognized by society, just like regular marriage, and again, that is defined by the people.

    ———-

    Also, Pete, as you say, secular morality is subjective. You have apparently chosen to base your morality on the idea that if something doesn’t hurt someone else, then it’s is morally acceptable. As you know, however, others (such as on this site for example) base their morality on their religion, such as Christianity.
    If you want to redefine an institution such as marriage based on your arbitrarily decided moral point of view, the burden is on you to prove to me why your moral system which allows for gay marriage is better than any other moral system which does not. I’m not sure how you could do that, since secular morality, as you say, is subjective. So again, with regards to secular society, it really ultimately just depends on what the majority think.

    ———-

    Pete, the more I read your post, the more I am curious: what is the basis of your morality? You say that “people are different – and we must learn to tolerate them and their beliefs even if they seem wrong to us.” Can you explain to me your reasoning behind this? I’m not saying I disagree or agree with that statement, I’m just curious as to what your moral philosophy is and what forms its basis.

  16. Pete says:

    @Manfred, so what are you worried about? :)

    @Nick,

    We’re social animals, and as such need to cooperate with each other. Those that don’t usually end up outcast, imprisoned, or dead.

    Those are my reasons for tolerating some things that go against my personal moral beliefs.

    As for the basis of these morals, like I said, I believe they’ve evolved over many millions of years and therefore my morals, emotions, thoughts, are all a result of how my brain works.

    Does that answer your question?

  17. Nick says:

    Thanks for the reply. It is typical of most secular humanistic arguments for morality . You have given me the basis for a moral system, and it is certainly a valid one, in the sense that I can at least understand the theory behind it. But no, it doesn’t really answer my question, as what I meant to ask was more of a personal question: what makes you adhere to this moral system? You say that “we’re social animals, and as such we need to cooperate with each other,” otherwise bad things to us will happen. But if you thought you could really get away with a crime by wronging someone else, say stealing gold from fort Knox, then wouldn’t it be in your best interests to suppress your conscience and do so? Then you’d be ahead financially and never have to worry about material things again. That, in my opinion, exemplifies the hollowness of secular morality – it pays lip-service to morals and ideals we all know in our hearts to be wrong: don’t murder, don’t lie, don’t steal, etc. It gives a theory as to why, if we don’t adhere to these morals, society will fall apart. But what it does not do is give a reason for personal morality: why should you, the individual, give up his own wants and needs in deferment to this theoretical moral ideal, when you could get ahead by being amoral?
    Sure, in theory, if everyone lied and stole and murdered, the ensuing anarchy would not be feasible in a working society. But we’re not talking about everyone. We’re talking about you, or me; the individual, in the heat of the moment. And that’s the problem, isn’t it? When people lie and steal and murder, etc. I think that the majority of the time, they are fully aware it’s wrong. It’s just that at that moment, they have chosen to place their own wants and needs above the needs of society/morality, and/or they thought they could get away with. And from a secular moral standpoint, why shouldn’t they make the attempt and suppress their conscience, if they can benefit from the crime?
    Second, as you mentioned, secular morality is subjective. (I don’t know if you consider yourself a secular humanist, but since your argument pretty much reflects those of humanists, I will assume for now that you are one, unless you correct me.) Because secular morality is subjective, and because humanism encourages individuals to evaluate for themselves what is right and wrong, people will always have conflicting views on what they can and cannot do, especially when one individual’s wants and needs conflict with those of another. Sure, most of the time, most people in a society will agree on what is right and what is wrong in a general sense. But again, it’s in those personal moments: for example if a man is starving and decides that his rich neighbor has too much; he will justify the act of stealing from him in his mind. And why shouldn’t he? From a secular moralistic standpoint, it is up to him to evaluate what is right and what is wrong. Sure, technically it may be against the law, but why should he follow it? This is his survival, after all. Again, the question of adhering to personal morality is something that the moral framework you have given me does not answer.
    The funny thing is, this is not just problem only I have noticed with secular humanistic ethics; it’s one that secular humanists have noticed. You don’t have to take my word for it. Bona-fide prominent atheist/secular humanist Paul Kurtz (the “father” of secular humanism) notes how personal morality is one of the most pressing issues of humanism (a quick google search of “Paul Kurtz” and “personal morality” will turn up the article.) Of course, I would go one step further and state that personal morality is really the fundamental flaw of humanism, which renders it a rather obvious, hollow, and ultimately superfluous worldview, in my opinion, of course.
    Sorry for the long post, but I guess this leads back to my original question, Pete: what motivates your own personal morality?

  18. Pete says:

    When you say we all know that murder, lying, and stealing is wrong, I think you are incorrect – or at least need to define “wrong” more clearly. Lawfully wrong yes (except lying for the most part). Morally wrong, no they aren’t – not always – at least to me. A man could murder in self defence, steal to survive, lie to protect. All of these are fine according to my moralistic viewpoint – but could well be immoral to someone else’s.

    The basis / motivation for my morality is the same as the basis / motivation for my fear, love, excitement, pain, etc. The wiring of the brain, influenced by many millions of years of evolution to begin with, and moulded by at present 33 years of environment and experiences. What makes me act morally, fear, love, etc I cannot change except through my experiences. No more than I can change how and when my brain raises my body temperature, slows my heart-beat, etc.

    If I thought I may prosper by murdering someone, with no chance of getting caught, would I do it? No. Why? Because of the last paragraph – I know that I am incapable of changing the fact that I would fear the killing, feel immense guilt, etc.

    Some people do not feel fear and guilt so much – and they do murder to prosper.

    It all fits doesn’t it? I don’t see the need for moral absolutes to explain any of this?

  19. fleebabylon says:

    “The wiring of the brain, influenced by many millions of years of evolution to begin with, and moulded by at present 33 years of environment and experiences. ”

    Would try that line out of on a judge when you committ a crime and are being tried in his court room? Have you ever done anything that you know is wrong, or better yet something you would be upset if someone else did? Your conscience is God given and witnesses that you have sinned and are in danger of the judgment to come. Christ died to save sinners. Your problem is not how you understand morality, or pretend to, but that you are morally corrupt. Imagine a drunk man who doesnt work and abuses his family trying to explain his philopsophy on parenting to you. You are getting close now. I do not write these things to be rude but to provoke you to thought. Your problem may be that you are to proud to humble yourself and believe the Gospel.

    Blessings -Jim

  20. Nick says:

    You’re right that one person’s secular morality may be completely different from another person’s. In fact, that’s the reason I keep bringing up the subjectivity of secular morality, because it serves to illustrate the point that anything, absolutely anything, can be justified, and that ultimately, human beings will inevitably use their “morality” to either validate themselves or justify some action that benefits themselves. Even when atheists convince themselves they are being moral, it is to satisfy their consciences, or some chemical changes that cause them to feel guilt, or some ideal that they personally adhere to, etc. as you have already described. But always, it is for themselves. You even say that you don’t think murder is always wrong, and that it can be justified; that, of course is my point: that anything can be justified. When one person places value upon himself and his survival above all others and all else, then he is morally “justified” to do absolutely anything, if it will benefit himself. This is not meant to antagonistic statement, it is simply a fact. Human beings are inherently selfish creatures. Perhaps you even agree with it; and it certainly fits perfectly in line with evolution, which you’re very fond of bringing up.
    Now, of course, this is nothing new. Maybe you even agree with it. The point is, again, that every human being’s default nature; every thought, every action, is ultimately for himself, even when he convinces himself otherwise. And it doesn’t matter if you think that people are like this because of Original Sin, or whether you think that this is a human being’s natural state because of evolution, or whatever the reason. It is what it is; I, of course, call it sin. You can call it whatever you like and detach any kind of moral connotation to it, and that’s certainly fine for the purpose of discussion, but its fundamental existence in human nature is undeniable. Again, human beings are selfish creatures who ultimately care only about themselves, or those things which are concerned with themselves. I repeat this because it is central to everything.
    You mention that there is no need to bring up moral absolutes to explain anything. I agree.
    And that’s how fundamentally different Christianity is from literally everything else in the world.
    And now comes the point illustrate what I think it means to be Christian and what it means to be an atheist, and further illustrates exactly why I believe that in discussions between Christians and atheists, very rarely will one ever convince the other.
    Religion, in my opinion, is not really about belief; it is about value. This is what I mean: Christians see how “sinful” the world is, and how sinful human beings are (I know you don’t believe in sin, so just replace the word sin with “selfish/value themselves” or some similar variation). They see how everything that they perceive as wrong (all conflict, all murder, all wars, all evil, essentially) results from an individual, or individuals, valuing themselves over others, since again, that is essentially the root of all conflict. They see how the problem lies within all us, each of us, every individual. Christians see this and they make the decision to turn away from it, by admitting that they, themselves, are the problem. For when a person professes to be a Christian, at the very least, regardless of what domination he adheres to, or what kind of science he believes in or doesn’t believe in, or what have you, all professing
    Christians at a minimum must believe in Jesus Christ’s sacrifice on the cross; and if you accept that, then in the process you must have looked within yourself, recognized that sinful, selfish nature that is in all of us, and which is the root of all evil, and have made the decision to turn away from it. Now, atheists may see this, too, the inherent selfishness of human beings, though certainly many like to pretend that humans are inherently good people. But for those that do recognize it, instead of turning away from it, they embrace it, or they simply accept it. No, they may not embrace a particular murder or war. But they may do as you have done in your post, basically say, “well, that’s the way of things, it’s human nature, it’s how we evolved, and it all makes sense,” and they are satisfied. And they continue to live for themselves and allow themselves to be driven by the same impulses and inherently selfish nature as they always have. Again, it’s about value. Simply put, atheists value themselves, and Christians strive to not value themselves as they value God instead.
    Of course, the obvious argument from atheists is, “prove to me that God exists.” Well, the proof is the religion itself; a religion that says, in stark contrast to human nature itself, that we should go against those very human natures and recognize them as evil. In the Bible, Christians have read the story of Jesus, who lived and exemplified this philosophy. They put value in that philosophy and example. In fact, we put such great value in this philosophy and this simple, yet fundamental, idea, that most of us are willing to accept the other fantastic claims of the Bible, such as the Resurrection, miracles, etc. But again, it’s about value, the value that we place in the philosophy, life, and example of Jesus Christ as written and relayed to us in the New Testament after 2000 years. Now either a person sees this value, or he does not. Either he sees human nature, calls it evil, and turns away from it, or he does not. Either he sees how Christianity espouses a morality that reflects the basic dichotomy of virtue: on the one side, humility, from which comes love, compassion, selflessness, etc. and on the other side of which is pride, which leads to the opposite of those aforementioned virtues; or he does not. And that is really up to each person, and what the person values. People who believe that morality is subjective thus believe that anything can be justified; and ultimately, they will always justify that which benefits themselves. And someone who is a Christian is someone who believes that giving in to one’s sense of Self is wrong; wrong to the point that if someone were to slap them on the cheek, they would turn their other cheek, not because they want to get into Heaven, not because they think that they are better or “above” their aggressor, but because they are truly humble people.
    And yes, I know that what atheists really want with regards to proof is something that they can reconcile with their human minds. But really, such a thing could never be feasible. The whole point is that God is beyond our human comprehension, in the same way that the concept of a human being is forever beyond the comprehension of a single neuron. Any proof from God that a reality beyond this one exists would either be beyond your comprehension, for if it were
    within your comprehension, you would prbobably be able to explain it away, since if you can comprehend it, it likely obeys the laws of this universe. And since you like to bring up evolution in all of your posts, do you really believe that the senses and brain you evolved allow you to comprehend everything this cosmos has to offer? But again, such discussion about proof of God, are, I think, silly, because again, the claim has always been that God is beyond human comprehension and it seems pretty ridiculous to think a human being has all of the senses and brain capacity to comprehend something like God. Also, atheists demanding proof for God again demonstrates how they continue to value themselves; they demand that everything be reconciled to their own senses and their own comprehension, seemingly not taking into account the simple fact that not everything in the universe can, in fact, be reconciled to you in such a way. And let’s face it; if the Lord Himself came down and changed water into wine, you’d probably think it was a magic trick.
    Anyway, this has become something of a digression. So to return back to the topic at hand, namely gay marriage, in this context it is much easier, I think, to see why Christians consider it wrong. It is a symptom, a sign, of the moral direction which America is headed towards: the continued valuation of the individual above all else; the definition of sin. Proponents of gay marriage have taken an institution, marriage which was always meant to greater than the sum of its parts in which two people came together to start a family and a life together, and have made it about themselves, for their own validation and for their own egos. Sorry for the long post!

  21. Pete suggests the basis of morals have evolved over millions of years. Interesting hypothesis but surley it can be observed that in more recent times, that if anything morals are devolving not evolving. And that today they are more socially engineered than “evolving” and are driven by powerful agenda groups such as the gay lobby, liberalism, humanism, atheism, Government, marketing and the negative influence of desentization through advertising, imagery, popular media and the music and movie industries.

  22. Hello, Pete. Just FYI, murder by definition is never self-defence.

    You basically advocate either absolute chaos or tyranny. If there is no absolute morality, and everyone’s moral framework is personal, inevitably frameworks collide. If moral frameworks collide, either a framework will be imposed externally (tyranny) or there will be chaos as individuals seek to force other to accommodate their own framework.

    The tyranny may be that of a dictator, or that of the majority, but it is still tyranny to force someone whose moral framework is perfectly legitimate to operate under a different framework.

    The very fact that many societies have functioned down through the centuries with moral frameworks which are almost unanimously mutually agreed is a pretty compelling evidence that there are some moral absolutes. And that is problematic for your view, because an evolutionary viewpoint must reject moral absolutes.

  23. Pete says:

    Nick,

    The value of [insert religion here] I am not disputing! I believe that religion is useful and helpful – to a lot of people. Usefulness and helpfulness have nothing to do with truth though – which is what I am interested in.

    I’m glad that you agree that there is no need to bring up moral absolutes to explain anything – most here I suspect would not agree!

    As for the comprehension argument – if we’re talking about truth and we don’t know something we shouldn’t just guess – we should suspend judgement and say we simply don’t know.

    I don’t agree that religion is in “stark contrast to human nature”. I see how religion has benefited people at a personal level – and institutions, rulers, etc. Why would it be so doubtful that religion would exist as it does today if the world were a result of pure nature?

    @Andrew,

    I am talking about biological evolution. I agree that our actions are based on all of the things you mentioned – and many more.

    @Jon,

    Okay fair point – when I said murder I actually just meant killing in the more general sense.

    I am not advocating anything! I am just saying what I think is true. I’m sure you know, some people choose to believe in Christianity not because they think it is true – but because they prefer it to be.

    Chaos – no. Because we are social animals, natural selection will favour better social behaviour, leading to the opposite of chaos. Tyranny, maybe. Aren’t most voting systems a little tyrannous? Our intelligence plays a big part as well – we can see the advantages of cooperation. We also fear the consequences of our actions from the societies we live in.

  24. Nick says:

    Pete,
    You seem to have completely misunderstood my argument. This is clear to me in two of your statements: you seem to think that I was saying that religion was valid because it is useful to people, and you also state that you don’t agree that religion is in stark contrast to human nature.
    On the first point: when I talk about religion or Christianity, I’m not talking about religion that people use to validate themselves, which is what I would guess that 99 percent of people who claim to be “religious” or “Christian” are really doing. I’m not talking about religion that people believe in because it gave them hope during a tough time. I’m not talking about religion that gives people a sense of purpose and belonging. That religion can be beneficial to people or societies is completely irrelevant. Because, again, in all of those cases, the individual still only really cares about himself. And again, that’s not the religion I’m talking about.
    What I’m talking about are true humility and selflessness. And yes, I do believe that this is in stark contrast to human nature. Yes, altruism can certainly be explained through sociological or evolutionary mechanisms, or whatever else you come up with. And again, that’s not the altruism that I’m talking about. I’m not talking about someone who gives to the poor because his conscience tells him to. I’m not talking about someone who sacrifices his life in order to save his son. I’m not talking about someone who is honest because he’s afraid of the repercussions from getting caught. I’m not talking about people who are “moral” because they “fear the consequences of our actions from the societies we live in.” Because, again, in all of those cases, the individual still only really cares about himself, or is allowing his own biological impulses to drive him.
    That’s why I brought up the bit about someone who turns cheek when his aggressor slaps him. And again, not because he thinks he’s morally superior, or because he wants to get into Heaven, but because he is a humble person. You really don’t think this is in stark contrast to human nature? You like to bring up evolution, so let’s talk about it: why on earth, from an evolutionary perspective, would a person ever do such a thing? How could that possibly further his reproductive fitness? You still don’t think it’s in stark contrast to human nature? What would ninety-nine percent of human beings do in such a situation? What would even ninety-nine percent of so-called “Christians” seriously do in such a situation? Hit back, or call the police; that’s what they would do.
    I spent about half-my previous post trying to get that across, but it seems that I failed. When I say that everything that anyone ever does is for themselves, that’s what I was talking about.
    You talk about how morality does not require absolutes, and you explain your morality as the product of social forces. And I agreed that yes, morality can be explained in that way.
    But that was the point: that Christianity offers the only real alternative to that way of life of only living for oneself, of only thinking for oneself, by, very simply, recognizing all of those behaviors that we’ve been discussing, realizing how it is all motivated by the your inherent selfishness, and choosing to try and stop being driven by those impulses. And this kind of morality cannot be explained by any of the mechanisms that you correctly claim explain secular morality. It goes against human survival. After all, who finishes last in life? Nice guys. And what does it mean to be a truly nice guy? It means you are a selfless person. And this kind of morality is the only way that you can ever achieve the kind of person who would turn cheek in humility if someone slapped him in the face. If a person doesn’t value himself or his survival or this world, then he would have no reason to hit back.
    Again, the morality you describe in your posts is simply not the morality I’m talking about.
    That brings me to the next point: you also didn’t really address my point about comprehension. You say you are looking for truth, but what you’re really looking for is truth that you can comprehend. Again, what makes you think that exists in this reality?
    When we are trying to figure something out, or when we want proof of something, we assign value to pieces of evidence. Isn’t that what proof is? Even when you witness your neighbor stealing Oreos from 7-11, you put value in your sight, and in your mental faculties that what you think you saw really meant that your neighbor did indeed steal those Oreos. When we haven’t witnessed a certain event, but we seek proof for it, then we put value in the witnesses who have seen the event, or the camera that recorded the event, or the fingerprints that are found on the wrapper that is thrown into the trash. That’s why I was talking about the difference between Christians and atheists: Christians look at the body of Christianity, the story of Jesus Christ and His life, and we see value in that, in how it offers the only real alternative to living for oneself, and, again, how it is in stark contrast to how 99% of people live their lives. We see how simple and yet how different it is from this materialistic individual-centric world that everyone else puts value in, and we put great value in it. And again, we put so much value in it that we put our faith in Christianity. Atheists see the same thing, but they don’t put any value in it; they don’t see the value of a different kind of moral framework, a different way of life, that is different from everything else. They continue to put value in the way of life that comes most naturally to us: a life that is all about ourselves. And that’s what I meant when I said that for Christians, the religion itself is the proof.

    ———————–

    And just to elaborate on that last paragraph since I’m not sure my point comes across clearly, let me summarize briefly:
    1.) Any religion is basically a worldview that makes a statement about the very nature of reality.
    2.) Christianity offers an alternative way of thinking and living in stark contrast in this reality to what it means to be human beings, who in their natural state (whether you think it’s from Original Sin or evolution) are driven by one’s own selfishness and impulses (what many would call sin) in this reality, even when they think they are being “moral,” as secular morality is really just another facet of the same selfishness and natural behavior of human beings, since as you say, it only results from sociological forces or fears about getting caught, etc.
    3.) Because of this, we see value in the philosophy and teachings of Christianity as evidence for its statements about the nature of reality.

  25. Hi, Pete. Thanks for the response. Natural selection doesn’t seem to be working too well in some places.

    Interestingly enough, every orderly society in the world today has one of two characteristics. It is either strongly tyrannical or has been strongly influenced by Christian ethics and values. When neither is present, you have chaos. The further you get from Christian ethics, the more you tend towards chaos, unless tyranny intervenes.

    ***
    Sort of a side point here. Democracy is very tyrannical. That is why America’s founding fathers created a republlic with a written constitution, to protect against the tyranny of the majority. That’s why America didn’t originally have directly elected senators, and why senators have longer terms — to protect against sudden shifts in majority sentiment. They did a lot to restrict the majority, because they didn’t want a democracy.
    ***
    If you believe in evolution and natural selection, it’s interesting that natural selection has produced so many Christians. :) Maybe there’s something to this Christianity stuff after all. It’s clear that Christianity helps a society function well, so obviously belief in Christianity is a higher stage of evolution, the result of natural selection. Maybe you’d better get on board. There’s a place right here beside me, and I’ll throw you a rope. :)

  26. Pete says:

    Jon,

    Christian societies may function well, so may atheist societies, but the reason they function well may have nothing to do with that.

    Estonia and the Czech Republic function well as societies don’t they? They have the highest rate of non-believers.

    I think what makes societies function well has far more to do with education than anything else.

    If you understand biological evolution and natural selection then it is not difficult to understand why there are Christians, Muslims, Atheists, members of the Flat Earth Society, good people, bad people, homosexual people, black people, etc.

    As for a state of higher evolution – there is no such thing – we are all at the same level of evolution. It is the same as saying, if evolution is true, why are there still apes… (face palm).

    Thank you for the offer though – I will continue my search for the truth via evidence and logic, rather than faith.

    Pete

  27. Rev Limiter says:

    Pete wrote:
    ” I will continue my search for the truth via evidence and logic, rather than faith.”

    Hi Pete:
    Just a couple things for you to think on as you travel the road toward “everlasting life.”
    I the arena of evidence may I offer you Romans 1:19-20; “For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.” God has laid before all of us proof of His handiwork! And I mean no offence when I say, check your conscience! Is it seared beyond recognition of His glory that’s been put on display? Isn’t it absurd to conclude that all this happened by accident!

    And looking at logic, Christianity is a religion of “thinking” or of using ones “mind” or intellect! Romans 12:1-2 and Ephesians 4:23 are great examples of this although there are many more. Truth is never found in the form of mysticism or experience as these are always in flux. We need a reference point, something tangible such as scripture! You spoke of your “search for truth” and in another comment you wrote:
    “Usefulness and helpfulness have nothing to do with truth though – which is what I am interested in.”
    Jesus said that His word was truth; ultimately it will be found in no other place! His is the only truth that pertains to life and godliness. (2 Peter 1:3)
    We all are guaranteed everlasting life somewhere! Where will it be for you?
    I’ve tried to keep this simple, and sometimes less is more! Hopefully in this case – it is!
    Blessings, R-

  28. Pete says:

    Thanks for your reply Rev Limiter.

    But how do I know the bible wasn’t made up? Any prophecies that were not ambiguous and clearly happened may have been written after the fact.

    Conscience can easily be explained with biological evolution, of which there is a mountain of evidence. When you have many different lines of evidence pointing towards the same thing, surely the absurdity is to deny the conclusion?

    Think of it from my point of view for a moment. With many small changes accumulating over hundreds of millions of years, with direction from natural selection – it seems obvious to me that things as complex as ourselves, our emotions, every bit of living nature can and has evolved. So my question is this: With this explanation why should I start to believe in something without physical evidence? Reasons other than fear, hope / wishful thinking, and ignorance please.

    We have 2 options here, 1 with physical evidence, 1 with faith. Now I know most of you would say you reject the evidence.

    If you reject the evidence for evolution do you reject micro-evolution too? Because there is concrete proof of that? If so why if small changes are accepted, should the changes stop accumulating at some point?

  29. Rev Limiter says:

    Thought I answered most of your questions in my previous comment?
    Here’s the bottom line! Since the Holy Spirit has come, He is convicting the world of sin! Are you receptive to His conviction? If not, hopefully at another time! Repentance is key to salvation and only the Spirit can bring you to that place; it’s my prayer that He will!

  30. Nick says:

    “If you understand biological evolution and natural selection then it is not difficult to understand why there are Christians, Muslims, Atheists, members of the Flat Earth Society, good people, bad people, homosexual people, black people, etc.”
    Pete, biological evolution does not explain true Christianity and true selflessness; just because people espouse to be of a religion, does not mean they truly are. It explains the kind of religion that you like to describe, and the kind of morality that you like to describe, but this is different than Christian morality, which cannot be explained in this way.
    And again, if you are only going to take into account physical evidence for your supposed search for “truth” then you make the rather arrogant assumption that the human mind is capable of comprehending this “truth.”
    “How do I know the Bible wasn’t made up?”
    Again, the Bible offers an alternative way of living and thinking that is in stark contrast to human nature, different from the way that 99.9% of people live and think. We therefore put value in it as evidence for its claims about the nature of reality.

    Also, I realize my last post was rather long, and I apologize for that, but I am still curious as to how you think that sociological factors/or biology account for true selfless and true humility, the kind that is described in the Bible, and not motivated by any fears about getting caught or any other fears related to the individual self, and which cannot possibly benefit that individual in any way on this earth?

    And sorry, I just had to ask, you can really explain religion through evolutionary mechanisms? I’m extremely familiar with biology in general including evolutionary biology, and I’ve never heard of such a mechanism, or come across it in any of the peer-reviewed literature. Can you explain it to me? I would think that religion, in which human beings no longer value this world and rather value the idea of a reality beyond this one, would be bad from an evolutionary standpoint. After all, someone who rejects the value of himself and this world would hardly improve his reproductive fitness. But maybe I’m missing something?

    “Repentance is key to salvation”
    Rev Limiter, I agree that that really is the bottom line.
    Atheists refuse to do that; they refuse to recognize that individuals are inherently selfish creatures, or when they do, they refuse to turn away from it, continuing to put value into themselves and this world, adhering to the kind of religion and morality that only really ends up serving themselves.
    And yet when a person does do this; recognizes the evil within himself and chooses to turn away from it, he becomes a fundamentally different person, completely contrary to his very nature; since how can it possibly benefit the individual to decide that the very drives that allow him to succeed in life and get ahead and prosper in the material world are wrong? It is what Christians mean when they say they are “born-again” though using that term is a turn-off to many secularists. It is a very simple idea, yet a very powerful one, and it is a decision that anyone can make, though most are unwilling to embrace because of the sacrifice involved.

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