Wednesday, October 28, 2015

the new gospel

Dear Abigail, Benjamin, and Elizabeth,

The reason Jane Eyre is such a good book is because she didn't compromise her faith for her feelings. 
We were watching a show that I checked out from the library the other day..a Masterpiece Mystery to be exact.
(Side-note: I love how the beginning of BBC Masterpiece Mystery has remained the same over the years. That creepy Gothic animation makes me think of my Grandma and how much she loved a good mystery.)
I've noticed that the Brits love a good mystery too, especially a mystery involving the clergy.
The scene is set...
the tranquil English countryside, a sleepy little hamlet, the narrow cobble stoned streets, the stone church, the gossipy congregation, the subdued Vicar, and (gasp) what's this?
Oh yes..."murder most foul".
And who, pray tell, finds himself up to his white clerical collar in the blood of the innocent victims? None other than our unassuming man of God.
It's our hero, the humble priest, who cracks the case and finds some sort of spiritual application for the Sunday sermon while he's at it as well.
Wholesome suspense at it's finest... until now.
Enter the newest BBC Masterpiece Mystery called, Granchester.
I will begin by saying that I love the idea and premise behind this series.
The main character, a handsome World War II Scots Guard veteran turned priest, Sydney Chambers, finds himself drinking pints and solving mysteries with Geordie Keating, the chain smoking gruff detective with a knack for backgammon.
Throw in an adorable English black lab puppy known as Dickens and you have a show with some promise...
And here it is again...
an insecure curate, Leonard Finch, who just came on to the Granchester scene is portrayed as the male effeminate trying to suppress his sexual desire for the same sex because, according to what he has interpreted from the Word of God and the church, "God hates homosexuals" and "homosexuals go straight to hell"... and what better way to run away from (in his own words) "debase" tendencies than devote himself to the church?
This show was good until it offended me.
Granchester offended me in the attempt to serve up lumps of immorality poured into a pretty little English tea cup of the Christian faith...
"you can have your cake and eat it too" kind of faith.
Yes, two men making out offends me (how can I be so narrow-minded!?),
but what offends me even more is the way that this series portrays the church and homosexuals.
The Bible says that homosexuality is a sin,
just one of the many sins that nailed Christ our Savior to the cross.
So all of us who have put our trust in the redemption of the cross of Christ are sinners saved by grace through faith.
All of us.
Because we have been saved we turn away from our old desires that once ruled us. 
We now live to serve Christ.
To present a message that potentially portrays a practicing homosexual ministering in the body of Christ and believing that his or her life lived out as a homosexual is glorifying God and fulfilling His ultimate purpose for their life goes contrary to the Gospel message.
This new gospel message draws a line right down the body of Christ and divides us into separate camps;
The gracious Christians who except homosexuality as a union blessed by God,
and The ungracious Christians who oppose homosexuality as a union blessed by God.
Something deep down inside of me revolts when I begin to understand the agenda behind this new message.
I'm not naive enough to believe that offending a Christian really matters to anyone anymore, but...
Granchester has wrapped up homosexuality in a pseudo evangelical package in hopes to convince the Christian viewer, like me, that his or her ideals are not only ignorant but un-biblical.
It appears to me that the goal of media today is the desensitizing of any morals contrary to mainstream ideals.
This agenda is everywhere, the impetus being a generalized evolution of sorts towards a society that can embrace all forms of sexual orientation.
A couple of weeks ago Aaron and I were able to go to a Jennifer Knapp concert.
Jennifer Knapp is an incredibly gifted artist.
The concert was one of the best I've ever been to.
Aaron and I have been to Jennifer Knapp concerts in the past.
But this one was different.
Many years ago Jennifer was signed with a Christian label.
She only played at Christian concerts.
Concerts with masses of people.
Those concerts were not my favorite.
But she was.
Then Jennifer kind of dropped off the music scene for a while.
And the rumors spread like wildfire.
My own Christian brothers and sisters were slandering her,
shaking their fists at her,
stones in hand.
Because Jennifer Knapp "came out" as a lesbian.
So she stopped singing for people.
She stopped sharing her gift for years.
The concert we attended the other night was in a small bar.
Aaron and I went because we wanted to hear Jennifer share her gift.
We wanted to hear her story.
In her own words.
Her struggle to reconcile the gospel she still believes in alongside her lesbian lifestyle is apparent.
She wants both.
Her message is about living as a follower of Christ who also embraces the homosexual lifestyle.
I'm so grateful we went to hear her.
She is still my favorite.
But I disagree with her message. 
And my heart is grieved with this new gospel that is being presented everywhere.
After watching Granchester and listening to Jennifer Knapp the message is clear..
God accepts me and loves me just the way I am.
But thankfully the truth of the Gospel message does not stop there.
God loves us and receives us just the way we are,
but then He does something only God can do. 
He gives us a brand new life.
The promise of eternity with Him.
And fully glorifying to Him.
We are accepted by the Father, 
not as we WERE, 
but as we now ARE. 
In Christ. 

I know, I know...this is my third post on the subject. (And I've edited it about three times already!)
I just pray that you kids are reading this one day and understand just how much our unchangeable God loves you and that the beautiful purpose He has designed you for is way above and beyond anything that you could imagine. Trust Him.

Love forever,

Jennifer Knapp sandwiched between two Kookies