Christian Worldview

The Church’s Role for the Federal Marriage Amendment

Now let me tell you the two reasons why I believe the Church has not been more effective in changing American culture. One, I don’t think either we do not understand the culture around us and the forces arrayed against us, or we do understand them and don’t care. I am on the board of a seminary and I have been battling, fighting this fight for years to get that seminary to start educating seminarians on worldview and apologetics so they will understand the mind of the post-modern culture, and they will know how to engage it. Because if today you stand up in the pulpit and you say those wonderful words, “the Truth will make you free,” today’s post-modern boomer generation doesn’t hear what you just said. When they hear “truth,” they think, “My choice—I like that. It sets me free with the right to do anything I want.” As Christians we know the meaning of the Truth, which is Jesus, ultimate reality in Him. And He lays His life down for us, that is what makes us free. And it means free to do the right thing and the responsible thing. It is not free to do anything you want. But the post-modernist has a completely different definition, therefore you got to understand how to interpret what they are thinking and how to be able, as Paul did at Mars Hill, to reason in the market place and make them understand what we are really saying before we will ever be able to evangelize. So point one: I am afraid too many churches are not looking, too much of the Church is failing, to see what the culture believes and how we have to engage it. Secondly, too many people think that the job of the Church is simply to bring people in and spiritually feed them. Too many people think that Christianity is just about “Jesus and me.” “I am saved; you are saved; we are OK.” It is not just about that! Typical revelation is about all of life. It goes back to the beginning. “In the beginning God.” And He gives us dominion over the earth, and He tells us we are to name the animals, and we are to cultivate and till. We are to be concerned about the majesty of this creation. You read Psalm Eight and you can’t read anything else. The job of the Church is to bring Christian truth to bear in every single walk of life. A lot of people don’t get this because they think that the Great Commission is all that Jesus gave us. I spoke to a group of mega-Church pastors recently, giving a message somewhat like this, and it was really interesting. One of the guys stood up during the question period we had at the end of it and said, “I find myself sympathizing with everything you say, but I do not want to do something that upsets the Great Commission.” I said, “But there are two commissions. There is a cultural commission and there is the Great Commission to evangelize, to make disciples and baptize in Christ’s name and teach all that He has taught. Those are two separate commissions. And when we are redeemed in Christ, we have to come back to the creation and the call that God has put on our lives, back to the cultural commission, the cultural mandate, and bring Christian truth to bear on it. It was like a light bulb going on, the fellow said, “Ah, I get it! Ah!” I though this “Ah Ha,” should resound all across the country. People got to understand this. What is the challenge for our church? Number one: We got to understand the nature of the struggle and engage the culture and bring Christian truth to bear upon society. You got to understand that God has given us a cultural commission, which is a mandate upon us. It is not optional; it is not something that you may choose to do. We got to be very careful we understand because a lot of people get very nervous in the Church about politics. I agree with that; you should be nervous about it. In fact I wrote a 450-page book in 1987 called Kingdoms in Conflict. That was the time that Pat Robertson was running for President. The moral majority was in its hay-day, and I was very concerned that the Christian movement was going to put itself in the hip pocket of one political party. It never did. The main point of the book is we have a prophetic role to play; we should not divide our flocks on partisan basis, but we should be always free to speak to moral issues. That is not politics; that is Biblical truth being lived out in life. Don’t confuse the two issues. Once you confuse them, people say, “Oh I don’t want to get into it, that is giving in to politics.” What is politics? Aristotle said, “The meaning of politics is the way we organize our common life together.” What does the Bible tell us? It tells us how to organize our common life together. Of course, there are political questions, small “p.” Stay out of partisan issues, yes, but we got to be involved in moral questions that determine how people live. How Now Shall We Live, is what I titled my most recent book for that very reason. The question is “How do we live?” What do we do in our families? What is the natural and correct order of society? Wisdom is knowing how God made the world. Wisdom is understanding the way the world works, isn’t it? That is where the worldview is. So how does the world work? How do I fit into it? Those are fundamental moral questions that should be dealt with from the pulpit and should be dealt with throughout the Church. Everybody should address those issues and not be afraid to talk about it. It is tremendously important. Third: It seems to me that the job of the Church is really two-fold. So we got to preach the truth, defend the truth, and we have got to overcome evil with good. Then we have got to be able to take our message to places of influence when we see Biblical righteousness and the moral order of society being challenged. That means going to the Capitol Hill right now into your State legislatures and saying, “No! We draw the line. God made man and woman to procreate the human race, to propagate the human race and to raise children, and that is the natural order that every civilization has followed. You don’t have to take out the Bible, but you can say, “That is the moral order every civilization has followed, and we are going to defend that in American life, and don’t tell us we don’t have the right to do it. Get our people out of our pews, get them out pressuring their congressman and senators and legislators and letting the voice of the Church be heard across this country. That is so vitally important. Let me say, if we lose this Federal Marriage Act, if gay marriage takes hold in America, which is what we got on May 17th in Massachusetts, to me the weight of the culture war shifts. We are now pushed into a tiny minority because the natural order has been fractured in this country. There is a natural order! People don’t like to hear us say that, but there is! There is a way things are made, and they work a certain way, and when you go against that long enough, that moral order simply collapses. People cannot live together. I think this is the issue that ultimately defines whether we can preserve ourselves as a country, whether we even deserve to survive! And so don’t be intimidated, and don’t let people tell you that you are trying to impose your narrow-minded bigoted values on them! There is nothing that is more like chalk running over a blackboard to me, when people say to me “Oh, you religious people, you want to impose your views on us!” You know where that phrase comes from that we get hung around our necks all the time? You think that started with Falwell and the moral majority? You think that started with Pat Robertson and the Christian coalition? That phrase became a catchword in the political campaign of the year 1860 in America when Abraham Lincoln was accused of trying to impose his values on the rest of American life. Thank God he did, even if it took a Civil War and the 13th and the 14th Amendment because he ended that abomination, a scourge on the human race, of slavery. Thank God, Christians were in the vanguard to do it. Don’t be put off. People say to me, “Well, it will hurt our reputation as Christians.” Come on! We have that right, like every good citizen, to defend what we believe in the market place of ideas. That is what free democracy is about. Tolerance isn’t about dumbing discussions down so you can’t say things. Tolerance is about listening respectfully to other people when they got different ideas than you have. I fought for that principle in the Marine Core. I would give my life for that principle. That is the truth expressed in the Declaration of Independence. Are they trying to take that away? Talking about taking away rights, you are taking away the rights that I have to express my deepest convictions in an open, public discourse. Don’t be put off when people tell you are imposing your views. Don’t be put off when people tell you are meddling. Don’t be put off when people tell you, it is politics. It is not politics! It is the fundamental defining moral issue of our day whether we preserve the institution of marriage. Don’t be put off. People say to me, “Well, it will hurt our reputation as Christians.” Come on! We have that right, like every good citizen, to defend what we believe in the market place of ideas. That is what free democracy is about. Tolerance isn’t about dumbing discussions down so you can’t say things. Tolerance is about listening respectfully to other people when they got different ideas than you have. I fought for that principle in the Marine Core. I would give my life for that principle. That is the truth expressed in the Declaration of Independence. Are they trying to take that away? Brothers and sisters, it is a question of justice. I prefer to make this argument on this basis. The prison population has increased since I got out of prison 28 years ago. Then there was 229,000 people in prison. Today it is 2 million. It doesn’t take a rocket science to figure out what the reason is for this increase. The reason is the breakdown of the family. 84 percent of the kids, when they are first arrested for a serious juvenile offense report that they have a parent or a sibling in prison. A survey was done of an inner city district, and they found that in this one inner city precinct that 90 percent of the kids from broken families got in trouble. Of the kids from intact families, 6 percent got into trouble. The principle cause of crime, I am convinced after working in this field with all of my heart and soul for the last 28 years, the principle cause of crime is sin. It is people making wrong moral choices. It is not environment, it is not racism, and all these other things that liberals told us about in the 60’s, so we built all those dormitories, penitentiaries, and reformatories. It was nonsense. It is individual sin. But it is children not being trained and learning character in the home because they come from a broken home that contributes to their committing that sin. And if you want to do something about stopping crime in America tomorrow, you repeal the easy divorce laws, you would make marriage binding, and you would certainly never entertain gay marriage because we know by the evidence that it takes a mother and a father to properly raise those kids. The evidence shows it from Stanley Kurtz’s study of what has happened in Scandinavia. We know it from all over the world. If you want a crime wave in America, give us gay marriage, which doesn’t allow those kids to get the proper mother and father instruction. It is a question of justice! It is also a question of justice in a broader sense. What politics is all about is trying to create a just society. What is a just society? Is it where you cater to the rights of 3 percent of the people who want to express their own sexual desires for one another in a public commitment, or whether you take care of million of kids who are going to be denied a family? Justice is to protect those kids at the expense of the sexual preference of a small minority of people in this country who want to disturb the natural moral order. Brothers and sisters, that is the issue! The issue isn’t us right-winged people wanting to push our narrow minded bigoted agenda. The issue is justice! The issue is the natural moral order, the issue is righteousness, the issue is the propagation of children and the training of those children and the raising of those children to have character and to keep them out of the institutions I work in. That is the issue. God make that issue! Go make that issue, and don’t be afraid to defend the truth. Get your people out of the pews, out of their comfort zones, out where they can do the Gospel, where they can overcome evil with good, where they defend truth, and where they can stand up for righteousness in a wonderful witness to the holy commandments of God. God bless you and your wonderful ministries.


Chuck Colson



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