Iniquity has been accepted by our culture and one of the ways that is demonstrated is through the way certain concepts are now spoken of. So we start to hear and read about “his husband” and “her wife”, and as those terms start to get used regularly we can tend to get used to them and accept. But, wait-on everybody; this is an outrage! Marriage is between a man and a woman. So you can’t have “his husband” and “her wife”. Fellow believers in the Lord we need to be continually outraged about these developments and never accept them as the “norm”.
Another way in which the pollution of our culture is exhibited is in referring to a so-called trans-gendered man as a woman. We start to accept these things. James is now Julie and “he” is a “she”. But wait-on he is still a biological “he” no matter how much tampering has gone on with the genitalia.
Oh what a time we live in. And there is much pressure upon us to conform. Amidst these pressures there are no doubt many intricacies. But I feel, as much as lies within us, we should not bow to the prevailing culture, but rather should seek to honour the Lord by refusing to adopt these new ways of speaking.
There is a growing number of teenagers who are experiencing mental health problems. Here is one article on the matter. This may, to a degree, be because we are more aware of the issue now. It may also be because youngsters are more willing to talk about these things now. However, I want to present two key issues which are generating increased mental turmoil for youngsters:
1. Seeking Identity.
In previous times we used to have to work out our identity within quite fixed boundaries. Our sex was defined, our sexuality was defined and our virginity was maintained until marriage. So children could grow up with that framework and find their identity therein. There were cases where this caused distress, but this was quite limited. Now all three of these are up for grabs. You have to decide when and with whom you will lose you virginity and you have to pick and choose about your sexuality and sex. It is moral mayhem and it is leaving many casualties in its wake.
2. Social Media.
The whole matter of mental trauma is intensified by the fact that youngsters are living their lives in an online culture. They are not even allowed to explore their identity in their own private space. Everything is now out there on social media and the exploration of identity is done in front of others. So all know whether or not I am having sex, and all know about my struggles in gender defining and sexual orientation.
No wonder our youngsters feel confused. As parents we need to respond wisely to all this. Obviously we create and implement a biblical frame for these things. And we need to help them handle social media. I don’t begin to be able to give definitive advice on the social media issue. But I do know that it is a whole lot easier when a biblical frame for sexuality and identity is in place.
Well it is the men’s 10m platform competition in the diving at the Olympics starting today, so prepare yourself for another bout of Tom Daley Fever. What is it that seems to send the media circus into something of a swoon when it comes to Tom Daley?
He won the bronze in the 10m synchronized platform competition on 9th August with Dan Goodfellow. Whereupon certain parts of the press just produced photos of Mr Daley on his own as commented upon here. And remember he had not won! He had only finished third and yet it seemed that we were all being cajoled into believing this was a magnificent achievement. Well, of course it must be because Tom Daley did it. If he belly-flopped into the pool I reckon it would be portrayed as a triumph for British ingenuity.
So why is it that he is treated as such a hero? I reckon it is the longing to find role-models for the brave new world where everything has changed and is changing in respect of sexuality and gender. This is where Tom fits the bill. The news has it that Tom is due to be marrying his fiance Dustin Lance Black after the Olympics. And in so many ways it seems that Tom is your perfect role model to persuade us that such activity is normal. After all he:
- is young
- is good-looking
- is photogenic
- is courteous
- has a residual prominence as a result of starting his career so young
- is successful; having reached teh upper echelons of his chosen profession
- has suffered and overcome tragedy with the loss of his father
- has a mother who approves of his relationship.
- gives the impression that everything is great as regards to him being with Dustin
And so he is lauded and fawned upon. So there it is Tom is the hero to be emulated. Tom may be a fine man, his achievements are significant and I do not want to underestimate the suffering he had with the loss of his father. However, there is something distasteful about all this. I fear he is being used by the media to persuade us that all is well in this brave new world. Alas I believe it is all a lie and the harvest from overturning God’s order will be grievous to behold in our society.
When the road forked off from the highway of biblically-informed principle onto the road marked “preference” then nobody knew where it would take us. This has been the case concerning what is permissible regarding sexual relations. No matter what protestations there were that “same-sex marriage” was the terminus, it could never prove to be so. This is because sexual preferences are not limited to the homoseexual realm. Once abiding principles were ditched we were set on a road to we know not where.
So it is interesting to read here a response to an academic who posits that paedophilia is justifiable.
Here is part of Mr Cameron’s resignation speech from last Friday.
I believe we’ve made great steps, with more people in work than ever before in our history, with reforms to welfare and education, increasing people’s life chances, building a bigger and stronger society, keeping our promises to the poorest people in the world and enabling those who love each other to get married whatever their sexuality, but above all restoring Britain’s economic strength.
So Mr Cameron, one of the great steps made under your premiership is “enabling those who love each other to get married whatever their sexuality.” This reminds me of the fourth woe upon those who abuse the Lord’s vineyard. The LORD Almighty says in Isaiah 5:20
Woe to those who call evil good
and good evil,
who put darkness for light
and light for darkness,
who put bitter for sweet
and sweet for bitter.
Alas Mr Cameron’s perspective would be shared by so many. Oh Lord have mercy.
So Tom sees the goldfish swimming happily in its goldfish bowl in the corner of the room, and he thinks it’s not free; that poor goldfish it’s constrained by the bowl in that water. If only it could get out of the bowl and do what it wants then that goldfish would be truly happy because it would be free. So Tom takes the goldfish out of the bowl and places it on the floor. Whereupon it hastily degenerates into a miserable death. And all because Tom gave it “freedom”.
What went wrong here? Essentially Tom imposed his views of freedom on the goldfish. And as a result the goldfish perished. Freedom actually was enjoying the appropriate environment for the fish. Freedom was within the bowl surrounded by the water. That is what the fish was made for.
So it is with humanity and issues of morality. Modern man comes along with certain views of freedom, but they are actually deathly to the individual. So freedom is promised, in the sexual realm and the gender realm, for example. But actually this is bondage. It is not freedom at all. Freedom comes when we operate in the morals ordained by God for us. Sex within heterosexual marriage and being male and female are the water in the bowl for humanity. When we choose a morality outside of that we move towards a painful death.