It’s always interesting to see how Christendom reacts when a controversy happens in the church. I say controversy and not scandal, because the latter implies something to do with abuse of power (sex, money etc.), whereas a controversy is something that causes a heated debate and splits opinion.
Controversies in the church is nothing new, in fact it’s been happening right from the outset and we see this in the book of Acts where Paul and Barnabas had a massive row with some Jewish Christians from Judea who insisted that the new Gentile converts couldn’t be saved unless they followed the law of Moses (Acts 15: 1-2).
What was disappointing to see, is that some of us in the church joined them in their hypocrisy concerning free speech
So fast forward into 2017 and Kim Burrell’s sermon on homosexuality is the latest controversy to hit the church. For those of you that have been living under a rock for the past few weeks, a video surfaced of her preaching at the Love & Liberty Fellowship Church, in which she addresses the spirit of homosexuality as “perverted” and having caused a “strain” on the body of Christ. Now if we remove all traces of political correctness from our mind-sets, and cross reference her sermon with the scriptures, you’ll find that she is right because the Bible, from the Old Testament to the New Testament, underpins everything she has said regarding the matter.
This of course didn’t stop all hell from breaking lose and before you could say ‘the Holy Ghost power movin' just like a magnet’, the LGBT lobby and their defenders came out in force to swiftly blacklist her. Her scheduled appearance on The Ellen DeGeneres Show was cancelled (surprise, surprise), and everything else fell like dominoes, sending a clear message that if you are caught tarnishing our lifestyle, even if it’s from your own pulpit, society will deem your persona non grata.
Quite frankly it’s embarrassing when a non-believer accurately reproves us in Christendom using the same scriptures we’re meant to hold fast.
What was disappointing to see, is that some of us in the church joined them in their hypocrisy concerning free speech (I’ll touch upon that later). This kind of hypocrisy within Christendom was something that Paul highlighted when he noticed that Peter himself began to refrain from eating with the Gentile converts when certain friends of James came who were of the circumcision (Law of Moses) group, because he feared their criticism (Galatians 2: 11-13).
Now to sprinkle some embarrassment for good measure, controversial leader of the New Black Panthers, Quanell X, weighed in on the matter on FOX Faceoff, defending her sermon. Not only that, but he also called out other Christians to rally around her in support. What’s surprising is that being a Muslim, Quanell spoke with such accuracyconcerning the Bible’s stance on homosexuality (love the sinner, but hate the sin), that one could be forgiven for thinking he was a born again believer himself! Quite frankly it’s embarrassing when a non-believer accurately reproves us in Christendom using the same scriptures we’re meant to hold fast.
A fundamental difference that Quanell made between Muslims and Christians is that Muslims as a whole aren’t intimidated by what society thinks of their beliefs, which they are prepared to die for; compared to a number of us in Christendom who have or are becoming ‘men-pleasers’. This is something that Paul spoke of in Galatians 1:10, and he goes as far as to say that we are not servants of Christ (Christians in other words) if we are trying to please men (the LGBT community in this case), rather than God.
When it comes to the LGBT community and the stance the western society takes on freedom of speech, their double standards must be highlighted as well. Freedom of speech is something they pride themselves on and according to most general definitions, it is the right for a person or persons to express their opinions without fear of government reprisals, censorship or societal sanctions. When it comes to Christianity, they’re able to tolerate us preaching the gospel as long as it’s a ‘feel good’ message. But when it calls out sinful lifestyles such as homosexuality, it gets automatically labelled as a hate speech and they look to make an example out of us.
As Christians we shouldn’t be swayed by this retaliation, because Christ Himself told us that if the world hates us, it hated him first (John 15:18-27), and that God blesses us when we are persecuted for the sake of righteousness (Matthew 5:10). The word of God isn’t just there to make us feel good, it’s also there to convict us of our sins, like a medicine that tastes bitter at first, but makes us whole afterwards. This is what Kim Burrell did, in line with 2 Timothy 4:2, and she added further clarity when responding to the backlash (Time).
So now more than ever is the time for us as Christians to be on high alert, as we are already experiencing the birth pains that Christ spoke of in Matthew 24; with nations rising against nations (America and Russia), and many within Christendom falling away from the faith and betraying one another. But whether your faith in Christ is big or small, know this: the one who endures to the end will be saved (Matthew 24:13).
Written by Andrew Hamilton Thomas
Andrew is an aspiring political journalist, cartoonist and contributor for the Orator & Croydon Citizen