3 - Gay activism moves forward: anti-bullying summit, another threat in Apple app store
I report quite often on The Meeting House radio show about attempts to legitimize and normalize homosexual behavior in our culture. The traditional, Biblical view of marriage and male-female relationships is being challenged on numerous fronts, from court challenges to the definition of marriage concerning Proposition 8 in California and the Federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) to more insidious attempts to silence those who would want to offer a differing view of same-sex marriage and homosexual behavior than these "activists" hold. Under the guise of such adjectives as "homophobic" or "intolerant", Christians who desire to share the negative view of homosexual behavior that is described by the Scriptures and who wish to have their voices heard are increasingly facing attempts to villify their viewpoints.
An example of this trend is seen in the activities of those behind the website, Change.org. These are the people who approached Apple in opposition to its Manhattan Declaration app late last year - an app that had been approved by Apple in October with an excellent 4+ rating, indicating no objectionable material. Now, the "Change" people are at it again, collecting petitions on their website that call for the app for Exodus International to be removed. Exodus International is an organization devoted to helping those who wish to leave the homosexual lifestyle to do so and to minister to people who are struggling with same-sex attraction with truth and compassion. Unfortunately, in some rather high-profile circles, when a church, organization, or individual Christian attempts to point out what the Bible says about homosexual behavior and speaks out about it, that person is branded as being a proponent of "hate" or bigotry. Now, in the aftermath of the appearance of Alan Chambers, head of Exodus International, on the Lisa Ling program, "Pray the Gay Away?", the profile of Exodus has increased, and has attracted the attention of those who would wish to further a false characterization of the organization.Again, it does seems as if those who would merely point out a viewpoint that does not embrace homosexuality as acceptable or normal behavior are being characterized in a negative light, and that is being seen in the increasing emphasis in our society on "bullying". As Christians, we do not believe that anyone should be bullied - based on appearance, class, culture, or even sexual orientation. Christians should work to decrease instances of bullying. However, when the definition of bullying is skewed toward the gay agenda and when information and attitudes related to bullying are used to silence Christians who would want to lovingly offer an alternative to those who embrace homosexuality or struggle with gender identity, then that is an area of concern.
So you have Christian leaders who are expressing such concern about this week's White House Summit on Bullying, which prominiently featured LGBT leaders, students, and other individuals. Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council said:As Christians, we don't believe that a person should be harassed for their sexuality, their physical appearance, their beliefs, or any other reason. But sadly, the Left tends to spin the issue of bullying as a uniquely homosexual problem. They hold up tragic incidents like Tyler Clementi's suicide to push for school-based curriculum and other initiatives that give homosexuals a platform for normalizing their behavior.
Peter LaBarbera of Americans for Truth expressed this:
There is a real danger that ‘anti-bullying’ policies will be used to curtail any speech in schools critical of homosexuality, and create curricula that discriminate against religious students who believe homosexual behavior is morally wrong.You can read Peter's complete description on the furtherance of the homosexual agenda here.
2 - DOMA defense moves to the U.S. HouseAs I reported previously, the Obama Administration and its Department of Justice, under the direction of Attorney General Eric Holder, singlehandedly decided that the Federal Defense of Marriage Act, which was passed by Congress in 1996 and signed by then-President Bill Clinton, defining marriage as one man for one woman, was unconstitutional. This was not unexpected, because some pro-family leaders and legal experts had been critical of the Administration, because its attorneys were apparently not vigorously defending the Act in court.
According to the Constitution, the responsibility now shifts to Congress. And, Speaker of the House John Boehner has apparently taken up the mantle. He summoned the Bi-Partisan Legal Advisory Group (BLAG) to decide whether or not the House would hire its own attorneys to defend DOMA. By a 3-2 vote, the BLAG approved the House mounting the defense for DOMA in pending court cases. Here is the report from Baptist Press.1 - Japanese earthquake provides ministry opportunities
Christians who wish to give to the Japan relief efforts can go to the ECFA (Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability) website and choose from member organizations who have been verified to be responsibile with their financial stewardship. You can learn more by going to www.ecfa.org.Organizations such as World Vision, Baptist Global Response, Samaritan's Purse, and many others are sending teams in to assess the damage and to carry out ministry opportunities, bringing physical supplies and spiritual hope. Prayer for the people of Japan is certainly a priority for us as we ask for God's hand to be very evident in the midst of unspeakable tragedy.