People can no longer straddle both sides of the chasm. It’s getting very wide. They will have to finally decide which side they are on! And if those who are on God’s side stand their ground on His Word without compromise, then they may face persecution in various forms.
But who will be strong enough to stand with the Lord? Who will be prepared to do what Martin Luther did when he is reported to have said, “Here I stand [on Scripture]. I can do no other. God help me.” Luther knew that such a stand could result in imprisonment and even death. If we were in such a position today, would we be willing to risk our freedom or even our life for the sake of God’s Word?
Could it come to that in this nation? I suggest this country is moving closer to that terrible time. Increasingly, orthodox Christians are being looked on as the enemy in America. We are being called “child abusers,” “intolerant,” and “judgmental.”
Arizona State University professor and well-known atheist Lawrence Krauss recently went on a crusade of sorts in the USA and Australia. As other secularists have often done, he is accusing Christian parents who teach their children about creation or hell of committing “child abuse.”
Furthermore, Krauss has strongly implied that homeschooled children of such Christian parents should be taken away from home. This belief is becoming prevalent.
Could the U.S. government ever take children away from their parents if authorities deem parents to be unfit because they are homeschooling their children and teaching about creation or hell?
Well, consider the case of a family from Germany (another democracy) who sought asylum in America. They were homeschooling their children in Germany, but homeschooling is illegal in that country. They could lose custody of their children for their home education, so they fled to the USA and asked for asylum.
At first, an immigration judge granted their request. The Obama administration, however, appealed to the Board of Immigration Appeals. The BIA overturned the judge’s decision, and the case is now before the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals.
The Home School Legal Defense Association is now defending the family against the Obama administration. The chairman and founder of the HSLDA, Michael Farris, stated the following:
When the United States government says that homeschooling is a mutable choice—they are saying that it is a characteristic that a government can legitimately coerce you to change. In other words, you have no protected right to choose the education for your children. Our nation could remove your ability to homeschool and your choice would be mutable—since the government has the authority to force you to implement their wishes.1
By the way, since the family’s appeal is being heard in nearby Cincinnati, we will host this German family here at the Creation Museum while they are in town.
Yes, the chasm between secular and Christian is widening. And as it widens, we are seeing that the minority who are prepared to stand their ground for God’s infallible Word are increasingly being attacked or marginalized in the culture.
For instance, the football star Tim Tebow recently cancelled an April speaking engagement at First Baptist Church in Dallas. Apparently he bowed to political and other pressures and dropped out because the church’s pastor takes a bold stand on the gospel and biblical marriage: a male and female, one man and one woman.
In the days before the cancellation, many in the secular press attacked the pastor (as can often happen with AiG) and twisted the pastor’s statements. They persecuted the pastor and his church, and Tebow pulled out of an agreed engagement with them.
Dr. Al Mohler, president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary (Louisville, Kentucky), responded to the cancellation. In a column in Christianity Today he wrote the following:
Now, take out Tebow's name and insert your own. The massive moral shift taking shape around us is fast eliminating any neutral ground on this issue. Those celebrating the moral normalization of homosexuality will demand an answer from us all. Giglio [who was originally scheduled to pray at the president’s inauguration] and Tebow withdrew from controversial appearances, but they will not evade the demand to answer the fundamental question, and any Christian who will not join the moral revolution will be marginalized as a moral outlier in the larger society.
Evangelical Christians are now called upon to think strategically about what it means to speak truthfully and lovingly to a society that increasingly sees us as the moral outlaws. Clearly, we must watch our speech carefully, measuring every word for truth and tone and avoiding incendiary sound bites.
We must also guard our hearts toward the persistent temptation towards self-righteousness. But, at the same time, even the most humble statement of biblical truth can now be turned into a sound bite described as hate speech and a refusal to affirm the normalization of homosexuality is turned into repulsive intolerance.
We now face no shortage of arguments for capitulation, but abandoning the truth of God's Word is not an option. We deny the gospel if we deny the sinfulness of sin. That sin. Every sin. Our sin.
AiG’s theme for the next two years is “Standing Our Ground, Rescuing Our Kids” (Galatians 1:4). Our emphasis is that we need to boldly stand on God’s Word and help rescue our children from this evil generation.
My challenge to all of us is this: are we all prepared to stand our ground on God’s Word, regardless of how the culture may mock and attack us?
As you know, for nineteen years AiG has stood out in society as we have boldly and unashamedly stood our biblical ground … beginning in Genesis. Because of this stand, we often get attacked by secularists—and even by many who call themselves Christians.
Recently, an atheist wrote a scathing article about AiG and me personally. It was full of misinformation, untruths, and mocking. This article was predicting (actually hoping for) the demise of AiG, the Creation Museum, and the coming Ark Encounter. The misinformation and prediction of our supposed downfall were reposted by several secular blogs—and even got into news sources in my homeland of Australia! One secularist reprinted most of the article with the headline “The Rise and Fall of the Ken Ham Empire.”
Sadly, I’m sure many people (including Bible-compromising Christians who would love to see AiG fail) believed the false information. I did write some blogs to point out the blatant errors and misrepresentations in this particularly savage item. Of course, we can’t counter every error or we would do little else! The tide of false information is enormous. Yes, the Enemy tries to marginalize Bible-upholding, evangelistic ministries like AiG.
It would be easy to become despondent at the state of this nation and the untruths that are promulgated about AiG—as well as the attacks we receive from compromising Christian leaders and academics. But then I quickly realize that we are so much better off than the apostle Paul. I can’t imagine what Paul felt as he wrote,
Alexander the coppersmith did me much harm. May the Lord repay him according to his works. You also must beware of him, for he has greatly resisted our words. At my first defense no one stood with me, but all forsook me. May it not be charged against them. But the Lord stood with me and strengthened me, so that the message might be preached fully through me, and that all the Gentiles might hear. Also I was delivered out of the mouth of the lion. And the Lord will deliver me from every evil work and preserve me for His heavenly kingdom. To Him be glory forever and ever. Amen! (2 Timothy 4:14–18)
God has a remnant in this nation of people who are prepared to stand their ground. And that remnant includes our friends who support what we unashamedly stand for at AiG—and who are willing to stand on God’s Word for marriage, the sanctity of life, and so on.
To those who are faithfully standing with Answers in Genesis, thank you for your encouragement. Thank you for supporting us prayerfully and financially. And thank you most of all for standing your ground on God’s Word from the very first verse. We need to remain bold! We need the world to see we are not going to shrink from their mocking and be afraid of forms of persecution. And we need compromising church leaders and academics see that we will not bow to the pressure to compromise.
As we stand and proclaim the truth of God’s Word, and defend the Christian faith against secular and Christian attacks, we pray the Lord will use our witness to save many for the kingdom—and to rescue many children from this evil age (Galatians 1:4).