Sunday, April 30, 2017

2017: The Year Baptists Went Transgender

You know things are getting completely out of control in our world when there are transgender pastors in Baptist churches. Daniel Robinson, who now goes by the name Allyson Robinson, is our nation’s first transgender Baptist preacher. A recent article revealed that during a Baptist gathering in April, Robinson detailed how a supposed angel of the Lord named “Reason” convinced him to pursue being a transgender minister of the gospel.

He said that one day in his early seminary days he contemplated suicide, but an “angel of the Lord” that he called “reason” stopped him. “What if God hasn’t fixed you because you’re not broken?” Robinson said he heard inside of himself. “That can’t be true,” he thought. “The Bible says I’m broken.” “WHAT IF THE BIBLE IS WRONG?” THE VOICE SAID. “WHAT IF YOU’VE BEEN READING IT WRONG?” Robinson told those gathered that in that moment he “sacrificed his certainty” and hoped that God would count it as “righteousness.”

There is so much to break down, but let’s begin with this word righteous. Something that has been declared righteous has been approved by God. Conversely, something that has been declared unrighteous has been divinely disapproved. Paul gives a list of several of these unrighteous actions in his first letter to the Corinthians.  

Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God (1 Corinthians 6:9-10).

Perhaps you read that list and thought, “Wait, Paul didn’t say anything about transgender people!” Well, this is one of the many cases when the early Christians provide a tremendous amount of historical clarity to the modern reader.

The word effeminate is seldom used in our society, but the early Christians wrote a decent amount about those who could be described by that adjective. Here’s an example:

Men play the part of women, and women that of men, contrary to nature; … no passage is closed against libidinousness; and their promiscuous lechery is a public institution. … Such was predicted of old, and the result is notorious: the whole earth has now become full of fornication and wickedness. I admire the ancient legislators of the Romans: these detested effeminacy of conduct; and the giving of the body to feminine purposes, contrary to the law of nature. … What reason is there in the law’s prohibiting a man from “wearing woman’s clothing“? Is it not that it would have us to be manly, and not to be effeminate neither in person and actions, nor in thought and word? … The apostle very firmly assails them. “Be not deceived; neither adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers,” and whatever else he adds to these, “shall inherit the kingdom of God.” – Clement of Alexandria 195CE, ANF Vol. 2, p. 444, 469, 600 [CD-ROM]

Clement of Alexandria could have used several modern terms to describe the unrighteous behaviors he witnessed. Transgender, transvestite, gay, bi-sexual and several other descriptors could apply. However, to Clement, they all could fall under the word effeminate, which leads to the next point.

Notice that this “angel of reason” encouraged Robinson to indulge his effeminate urges. One could use the post-modern rationale that God made me this way, and it feels good, so it must be good and true for me.

But when dealing with these vital issues of morality, we shouldn’t disrespect ourselves and others by wallowing in the mire of post-modern subjective relativism. We need concrete, objective truth that remains unaffected by time and culture. We need the Scriptures.

We already witnessed God declare effeminacy unrighteous, but just incase there was any question about the reasoning used by Robinson’s “angel”, Paul made this inspired prophecy in his second letter to Timothy:

But realize this, that in the last days difficult times will come. For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, unloving, irreconcilable, malicious gossips, without self-control, brutal, haters of good, treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, holding to a form of godliness, although they have denied its power; avoid such men as these (2 Timothy 3:1-5).

Lovers of self. Arrogant. Unholy. Without self-control. Lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God. Holding to a form of godliness, but denying God’s power.

Consider all of those descriptors, and think about what this “angel of reason” encouraged Robinson to do. The “angel” encouraged Robinson to indulge the fleshly, sinful desires with the attitude that God can’t change people to be in line with the Scriptures. That spiritual being convinced Robinson to deny the regenerative power of the gospel, which is a truth we all need to believe with all our hearts and minds.

Finally, when looking at Robinson’s story, I was reminded of Paul’s warning to Christians in Galatians 1:8, “But even if we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to what we have preached to you, he is to be accursed!”    

According to Muslims, an angel named Gabriel strangled Muhammad during his sleep, and then commanded him to recite the words of scripture given to him from Allah.

Joseph Smith has convinced countless Mormons that in 1820 he was visited by God the Father and Jesus who informed him that all churches were deceived.  He then claimed that in 1823 he received a visit from an angel named Moroni, and was told about golden plates which were supposedly written in Reformed Egyptian. Smith boasted to have been blessed with the supernatural ability to translate the plates, and eventually produced the Book of Mormon.

Look, let’s not make the same mistake America’s rationalistic forefathers did in downplaying or outright dismissing the supernatural. There are lying spirits that are actively seeking to convince Christians to apostatize. They are seeking to ravage the Church.

As Paul and Tertullian advise us, may we take our thoughts captive and make them obedient to Christ. May we love Him far, far more than ourselves and demonstrate that love by crucifying our fleshly lusts and following after Him.

Who are the ravening wolves but those deceitful senses and spirits which are lurking within to waste the flock of Christ? … Who are the false apostles but the preachers of a spurious gospel? Who also are the Antichrists, both now and evermore, but the men who rebel against Christ? … We, however, are not permitted to cherish any object after our own will, nor to make choice of that which another has introduced of his private fancy. In the Lord’s apostles we possess our authority; for they did not choose to introduce anything themselves, but faithfully delivered to the nations (of mankind) the doctrine which they had received from Christ. If, therefore, even “an angel from heaven should preach any other gospel” (than theirs), he would be called accursed by us. – Tertullian 198CE, ANF Volume 3, p. 387, 389 [CD-ROM]

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