Free Republic
Browse · Search
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Dan Cathy And The Silence Of Many Churches ^ | 8/5/12 | Bob Russell

Posted on 08/15/2012 5:06:00 AM PDT by rhema

Chick-fil-A reported record sales last Wednesday as thousands showed support for owner Dan Cathy and his stance on Biblical marriage. However, while individual believers stood in long lines to publicly endorse God’s plan for the family and vent their frustration at the media’s criticism of Dan Cathy’s Biblical stance, a number of churches seemed to opt out of the conflict.

While the mayors of three large cities and a few University administrators were publicly threatening to ban Chick-fil-A, and while the discussion was the hot news topic of the week, there were many ministers who said little or nothing at all. Church members from across the country are puzzled as to why. When a Christian brother is beaten up by the world and left wounded on the side of the road why would church leaders just pass by on the other side and not get involved?

Some are fearful of criticism. No one likes to get nasty emails or hear derogatory comments about their church. If you stand for Biblical marriage you are sure to be accused of being bigoted, hateful, or intolerant. Dan Cathy is a prime example. Jesus said, “Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me”. (Matthew 5:11) But it doesn’t feel blessed when it happens, and it seems many Christian leaders do everything they can to avoid persecution. Perhaps they love the praise of men more than the praise of God.

Some leaders think it’s wise to stay out of the fray in order to better evangelize the lost. Ministers know one of the primary reasons people are turned off to the church today is because of its stance on homosexuality. They fear that if their church gets a reputation as being homophobic then an increasing number of people – both gay and straight -will refuse to visit. They think a bad public image makes it more difficult to evangelize. After all, it doesn’t make good sense to alienate the very people they’re trying to win. So these church leaders continue to keep silent in hopes that Dan Cathy and those who believe as he does will survive the attacks. They pass by on the other side of the road because they don’t want to be found guilty by association.

Another contributing factor for their silence is a sensitivity for hurting church members. Many of us have relatives or close friends who are involved in the LGBT lifestyle. We love them and we’re praying they come to know the Lord and obey His Word. They may even be attending church and we don’t want the preacher saying anything that will alienate them or confirm their erroneous suspicions that they’re not welcome.

As a result, when the preacher takes a stand that could be interpreted as anti-gay he gets criticism from family members who are disappointed at his lack of sensitivity for their situation. The preacher doesn’t want to hurt already wounded souls, so he keeps quiet.

Perhaps the primary reason not much is said in church anymore is the cultural war is passé. The younger generation of Christian leaders is tired of the cultural war. In their minds it was fought (and lost) by the previous generation. They feel it’s time to acknowledge it doesn’t do any good to get involved in social and political issues so let’s focus on repenting of our own sins and deepening our Christian walk. After all, there are so many other issues that the rest of us struggle with every day; gossip, greed, indifference, hypocrisy. Why single out one sin and focus so much time on it?

Not long ago a young Christian blogger in North Carolina wrote an article entitled “How to Win a Culture War and Lose a Generation.” She was upset that the controversial initiative to ban gay marriage in North Carolina had alienated so many. It was painfully polarizing. She pleaded for “less waging war and more washing feet.” The cultural war made her feel “awkward” in her circle of friends.

Really? You’re “tired”? Afraid to feel “awkward”? Tell that to John the Baptist who lost his life speaking out against the sexual sins of the king. Or what about Stephen or James or Peter or Dietrich Bonhoeffer or Jim Elliot or Nate Saint or scores of other martyrs who have lost their lives standing for Christ and His Word. Did Jesus condemn John the Baptist for speaking out against a politician? No. Jesus said “Among those born of women there has not risen anyone greater than John the Baptist“ (Matthew 11:11) We are commanded to be faithful unto death. Jesus said, “If anyone is ashamed of me, AND MY WORDS,… the Son of Man will be ashamed of him when he comes in His father’s glory.” (Mark 8:38)

So while the world wages war against Biblical marriage, many Church leaders hunker down in foxholes of silence hoping the fighting will subside and church-life will get back to normal. But like it or not, we are involved in an intense spiritual battle. Martin Luther once said, “If I be valiant all along the battle line except at the point where Satan is pressing his attack, I am not valiant for Christ.”

Here are four reasons why church leaders need to speak up consistently and courageously:

Our silence is not saving homosexuals. Sin separates us from God and leads to death. The church is required to call people to acknowledge their sin and repent. And, yes, churches want to be known for what they’re for, not for what they’re against. We want a reputation for loving people, not condemning them. But failing to call people away from a sinful lifestyle is neither loving nor caring. The proper response to a driver going the wrong way up an exit ramp is to blow the horn. To fail to sound a warning would be unconsionable even though initially the wayward driver doesn’t want to hear it. The church must provide acceptance for repentant sinners and provide encouragement away from sinful lifestyles. And there are scores of Christians who were once involved in the LGBT lifestyle who have found their new identity in Christ because Christian leaders were not afraid to speak the truth.

Better now than later. Church leaders will soon have to take a stand one way or the other. The longer you wait to mow the grass or establish order in a classroom the more difficult it becomes. The longer you wait to let your congregation and community know where your church stands, the more flak and fallout you will experience. Churches cannot feign neutrality much longer.

Our silence is contributing to the loss of our children to the church. While we stay mum so we don’t alienate the world, our own children and grandchildren are being swept away by the constant pro-gay propaganda coming from the media and the entertainment world. We assume they believe the same way we do, but when they hear little or nothing from God’s Word on this issue they get swept away by the spirit of this age.

We are commissioned to preach the whole counsel of God regardless of consequences or we will be held accountable. We were not called into ministry to put our finger in the air and see which way the cultural winds are blowing and adjust. We were called to preach the word “in season and out of season” and not just “say what itching ears want to hear.” (2 Timothy 4:1-5) And the Bible clearly warns us about our failure to do so: “When I say to the wicked, ‘You wicked person, you will surely die,’ and you do not speak out to dissuade them from their ways, that wicked person will die for their sin, and I will hold you accountable for their blood.” (Ezekiel 33:8)

John Calvin said “A dog barks when his master is attacked. I would be a coward if I saw the truth of God attacked and yet would remain silent.” In the end, we will be judged not by the favorable impression we have in the world but by our faithfulness in proclaiming God’s truth. That takes boldness … and constant vigilance. But we are following in the footsteps of forefathers who, “loved not their lives even unto death”. For “Silence in the face of evil is itself evil. God will not hold us guiltless. Not to speak is to speak. Not to act is to act.” – Dietrich Bonhoeffer

TOPICS: Culture/Society; Editorial; Extended News; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: cathy; chickfila; culturewar; culturewars; homosexualagenda; moralabsolutes; pastors; stand; thechurch
Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first previous 1-2021-33 last
To: rhema
For the blogger/author...

Who are you to judge another man's servant?

Every pastor I know was passionately engaged with their own flock with these issues and events; cooperating with colleagues across denominational lines, and encouraging the CFA Support Day at every turn.

Several local ministers who know Dan Cathy personally called him and prayed with him... and continued to pray after the phone conversation.

Priests, rectors, and ministers serve God in the pulpits and lead prayer groups; they do not stage press conferences--that is not their calling, and the press will not inquire.

These leaders fight this very spiritual war on their knees--according to the Word, and with many tears and pleadings.... in a place where only God sees...

You should reconsider your criticism.

21 posted on 08/15/2012 7:01:11 AM PDT by Wings-n-Wind (The main things are the plain things!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Responsibility2nd
Because young Christians are ready for peace. We are ready to lay down our arms. We are ready to stop waging war and start washing feet.

Jesus provides the example of how best to engage sinners. He stopped the Pharisees from unjust, brutal treatment of the woman caught in the act of adultery, and then He told her, "Neither do I condemn you. Go and sin no more."

22 posted on 08/15/2012 7:02:43 AM PDT by rhema ("Break the conventions; keep the commandments." -- G. K. Chesterton)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 16 | View Replies]

To: Wings-n-Wind
There were clearly many pastors on the side of righteousness. The vast turnout of supporters was due in large part to the assistance and exhortations of many pastors, to be sure.

And there are many pastors who should read and heed Bob Russell's blog because they are running from the battle; many are also in churches (ELCA, Episcopalian, et al.) that have capitulated to the world.

23 posted on 08/15/2012 7:07:45 AM PDT by rhema ("Break the conventions; keep the commandments." -- G. K. Chesterton)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 21 | View Replies]

To: rhema

Actually many churches brought buses full of people to CFA on Aug. 1.

Sadly my own Catholic Church did choose to remain in a neutral corner.

24 posted on 08/15/2012 7:11:40 AM PDT by Buckeye McFrog
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Responsibility2nd
The author speaks of the culture wars as if they are merely an exercise in rhetoric, just many blustering words signifying nothing. They are not. They are the visible manifestation of the conflict between good and evil, between the Church and Satan. It should not be a surprise that many will be alienated by them. But the alternative to engaging in them is not a return to peacefully washing the feet of siners. It is being forced to kiss the tyrant's ring.

If for the sake of their itching ears this generation must go, then let them go. But the church must remain true to her calling.

25 posted on 08/15/2012 7:22:02 AM PDT by jboot (This isn't your father's America. Stay safe and keep your powder dry.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 16 | View Replies]

To: rhema
While the mayors of three large cities and a few University administrators were publicly threatening to ban Chick-fil-A, and while the discussion was the hot news topic of the week, there were many ministers who said little or nothing at all.

Liberal ministers have 'grown'.

Grown past God. Grown past the Bible. THEY are the new standard - THEY have replaced God's wisdom with THEIR wisdom.

Liberalism is the new religion... What is God compared to THEM? God calls for marriage to be between one man and one woman. Liberal minister laugh - God's such an idiot. Marriage should be between ANY and all groups that want their union sanction - Two women? sure. Six men and one woman? Why not? One woman and 500 potential 'immigrants'... hey, if it works for them... The only thing thing the 'Church of Liberal Elites' preaches is that we must accept all things liberal...

26 posted on 08/15/2012 7:25:48 AM PDT by GOPJ (Freeper Neveronmywatch's convinced: Put a compass in the hands of a liberal it'll point south.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Maringa

“But to set the record straight, we like to focus our righteous indignation towards the gay community, when within the churchs ourselves, we are sick. We become intolerant towards them, while qe tolerate that many other sins that we continue to pursue.”

That doesn’t describe any church I’ve been in. Homosexuality is a sin. In most churches I’ve been part of, it is almost never mentioned because there is no debate about it.Same with adultery - everyone in the church already knows it is wrong, so why bother preaching on it?

However, I don’t have adulterers claiming their behavior is admirable. I don’t have thieves boasting of their thefts and claiming I should respect them for it. But I DO have homosexuals running around DEMANDING my admiration - and they are NOT going to get it.

For 5000 years, “homosexual marriage” was unimaginable. Suddenly, the homosexuals are out of the closet and assaulting Christians in the streets and workplace, demanding we admire their perversion or else. THAT is why there is a fight about it. When a cop can be disciplined for eating a Chick-Fil-A sandwich in front of a couple of lesbian officers, our society has gone insane.

27 posted on 08/15/2012 7:39:39 AM PDT by Mr Rogers (Liberalism: "Ex faslo quodlibet" - from falseness, anything follows)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 13 | View Replies]

To: Responsibility2nd

“59 percent of young adults with a Christian background have left the church is because they perceive the church to be too exclusive, particularly regarding their LGBT friends. Eight million twenty-somethings have left the church, and this is one reason why.”

The “Christians” you mention are not Christians. They are tolerating and accepting what God has condemned. The church is not weakened when it loses members who defy God’s revelation.

“You are the earth’s salt. But if the salt should become tasteless, what can make it salt again? It is completely useless and can only be thrown out of doors and stamped under foot.” - Jesus

28 posted on 08/15/2012 7:49:20 AM PDT by Mr Rogers (Liberalism: "Ex faslo quodlibet" - from falseness, anything follows)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 16 | View Replies]

To: Responsibility2nd
A Constitutional Amendment whether at the National or State level is a preemptive strike on the wave of militant homosexual activism sweeping the land. The Church has a responsibility first and foremost to preach and teach the Word of God, unafraid and anapologetically. In doing so, they will impact culture. IMPACT by its very name is indicates a clash of opposing forces. We have a responsibility that we must act on, to love God and to love our neighbor. I do NOT believe that you will find it scripturally correct to fellowship with the unrepentant sinners, because this type of fellowship gives not only an endorsement to this behavior, but pollutes the church. We love them by living out what we believe and by sharing with them the hope that we have....this will offend just as Jesus said it would.
29 posted on 08/15/2012 8:00:33 AM PDT by TheGunny
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 16 | View Replies]

To: hoagy62

What awaits for many of them is not a pretty picture. There is a reason they are so supportive of health care, because they need it to mitigate the negative health effects.

How do you wake the person up out of all the denial that they have been building up for years and years and years and years saying its ok for it to be like this?

30 posted on 08/15/2012 8:09:31 AM PDT by JCBreckenridge (Texas, Texas, Whisky)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 15 | View Replies]

To: rhema

I am happy to say our pastor in central Florida mentioned the assault on the constitution and freedom the week of the CFA thing. Then at the end of the sermon he said “every one of you should be at the chick Fil-A Wednesday night.” We were already planning to go and we did.

31 posted on 08/15/2012 2:14:21 PM PDT by subterfuge (BUILD MORE NUCLEAR POWER PLANTS NOW!!!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Responsibility2nd
Because young Christians are ready for peace.

We are ready to lay down our arms.

We are ready to stop waging war and start washing feet.

And if we cannot find that sort of peace within the Church, I fear we will look for it elsewhere.

You want to quote washing feet? You want to be liked in this world? Jesus said the world hates me and they will hate you for following me. Why should a disciple expect anything less. Jesus said I came not to bring peace to the world but to divide. Do you love others enough to tell them the truth to repent and change? They won't like you, I don't care if you give them a pedicure.
32 posted on 08/15/2012 2:48:16 PM PDT by PeterPrinciple ( (Lord, save me from some conservatives, they don't understand history any better than liberals.))
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 16 | View Replies]

To: rhema

The purpose of hate crimes is to silence Christian and other opposition to Leftist ideas. They serve no other purpose.

33 posted on 08/18/2012 4:24:38 AM PDT by 1010RD (First, Do No Harm)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first previous 1-2021-33 last

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794 is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson