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“Churches Forced to Confront Transgender Agenda”
by Tom Alago   
September 20th, 2016

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The 'transgender agenda' has evolved and is spreading to the point where it is now a very real threat to Christian believers, churches, and ministries in the United States. It is becoming so woven into law and social fabric that those resisting transgenders or refusing to pander to their value systems now face some very real legal and licensing risks. 
Such would potentially include jail terms for 'non-compliant' church leaders and a shutdown of their churches or other facilities of ministry and worship. 

WND.com previously reported on the issue in Iowa in a report by Bob Unruh. There, a church sued the state in federal court, demanding that officials withdraw their threats of prosecution because of the content of the church's sermons, specifically what is said about homosexuality, same-sex "marriage," transgenderism and other related topics.

Most recently, Unruh  has further reported about orders for public building managers, for colleges and even for public schools to allow a male who says he's female to use locker rooms and restrooms set aside for women. The privacy and feelings of the biological females who are in those facilities are of no account.

Now a second state has decided that churches, too, are bound by the agenda. The Massachusetts Commission against Discrimination this month released a "Gender Identity Guidance" that imposes its demands on society.

"The Massachusetts Commission against Discrimination enforces [state law on discrimination]. The MCAD developed this guidance to educate the public about discrimination based on gender identity, to describe what evidence may be submitted to support a claim of gender identity discrimination, to inform individuals of their rights, and to assist employers, providers of housing, mortgage services, and owners, managers and agents of places of public accommodation in understanding their obligations."

The conflict arises under the instructions for "places of public accommodation."

"Under [the law] places of public accommodation may not discriminate against, or restrict a person from services because of that person's gender identity. For example, a hotel or motel may not refuse to book a room for a person because of the person's gender identity," the state threatens.

It continues, "Even a church could be seen as a place of public accommodation if it holds a secular event, such as a spaghetti supper, that is open to the general public."

The demands far exceed simply serving a meal to such persons, but include having church officials, and even members, use whatever pronouns a person would demand, irrespective of their actual gender.

Unruh further explains that at the Volokh Conspiracy legal blog, a commentary by Eugene Volokh pointed out that "churches hold events 'open to the general public' all the time - it's often how they seek new converts."

Volokh's commentary continued: "My guess is that most churches would not turn someone away from a generally open spaghetti supper. ... But some religious leaders, as well as the church employees and volunteers, may refuse to use pronouns that they believe are inconsistent with God's plan as revealed by anatomy."

"Under Massachusetts law, refusing to use a transgender person's preferred pronoun would be punishable discrimination...Indeed, a church might be liable even for statements by its congregants (and not just its volunteers, who are acting as agents) that are critical of transgender people. Tolerating such remarks is generally seen as allowing a 'hostile environment,' and therefore 'harassment'".

Lawyers for the Alliance Defending Freedom, who are representing the Iowa church, have filed a reply in support of their motion for a preliminary injunction that would protect the church members' constitutional rights while the case plays out.

Without that order, they contend the speech of the Fort Des Moines Church of Christ and its pastors and members is being unconstitutionally limited.

ADF Senior Counsel Steven O'Ban said that the court "should issue an injunction that makes certain that this law won't be enforced against our client while this lawsuit proceeds."

"Neither the commission nor any state law has the constitutional authority to dictate how a church uses its facility or what public statements a church can make concerning human sexuality," he said.

The state commission also claims the state law demands that people be given access to church restrooms and locker rooms according to "gender identity."

It remains to be seen how these attempts to rope churches into accepting transgenderism will eventually pan out, considering that the new pro-transgenderism laws are expected to be implemented in ways that ignore the Biblical and constitutional rights of the churches. It isn't surprising therefore that there have been legal push-backs.

What could easily ensue is a snowballing of these legal challenges by the LGTBQ and their proponents to the point where they become nationally enforced with total disregard for Christians and other opponents of immoral, unnatural and perverted views and practices.

As many predicted, this over-reach is evolving to the extreme, as the moral rot continues to grow.  Bethany Blankley, in a recent piece for charismanews.com, noted that the "gay rights" LGTBQ movement, by destroying the traditional institution of marriage, has made possible the extension of similar "legal rights" for other "lifestyle choices". 

These include zoophilia (bestiality), consanguine-amorous (incestuous) relationships, necrophilia (sex with corpses), pedophilia, polygamy, and every other "fluid" sexual preference or identification--including sologamy (marrying oneself) and trans-polyamorous (generally promiscuous) relationships.  

Efforts to normalize sex with animals as an accepted lifestyle choice resulted in one documentary winning an award this year that idolizes a sexual relationship between a man and his bottlenose dolphin lover.

Blankley also reports that now, incest activists in the consanguinamorous community argue it's their turn to have their sexual preference and lifestyle choice validated socially and legally. Because of a case in New Mexico that's making national headlines, incest activists argue to normalize their perversion using exactly the same arguments employed by homosexuals. 

"I was born this way."

"I can't choose who I love."

"I have a right to be happy just like everyone else."

"We aren't hurting anyone."

"Who is the government to legislate love?"

So much for endless human opinions, reflective of the degenerate 'anything goes' attitude that is so prevalent in today's secular and hedonistic culture. 

But does the Bible have anything specific to say about transgenderism? Kevin DeYoung, a recent contributor to the gospelcoalition.org blog believes so. 

DeYoung says that, in short, the Bible teaches that God made us male and female, and regardless of our 'feelings' or confusion, we should act in accordance with the biological reality of Gods very good design. Transgenderism falls short of the glory of God and is not the way to walk in obedience to Christ.

There are three big Scriptural building blocks that lead one inexorably to this conclusion and are as follows:

1. Gender Binary

The Bible knows no other gender categories besides male and female. Whereas men and women in Scripture may express their masculinity and femininity in a wonderful diversity of ways, Scripture still operates with the binary categories of men and women. You are one or the other...Indeed, when God created the first human pair in His image, He created them male and female (Genesis 1:27). 

2. Gender Identity

Someone with respect for Scripture may say at this point, "I agree that God makes as either male or female. But you are confusing biological sex with gender. I know transgender Christians who desire to embrace God's design for men and women, but they also believe that who God created them to be, does not correspond with the sex assigned to them at birth." 

DeYoung explains that the question is not whether such persons and feelings exist. The question is whether the 'is' of our emotional or mental state equals the 'ought' of God's design...Being "true to ourselves" is always a false choice when it means going against God's Word. We understand that following Christ means dying to ourselves (Matthew 16:24), being renewed in our minds (Romans 12:2), and no longer walking as we once did (Ephesians. 4:17-18).

3. Gender Confusion

The third building block follows naturally from the first two. If the binary of male and female is God's idea, and if we are meant to embrace, by divine design, our biological and creational difference as men and women, then it stands to reason that the confusion of these realities would be displeasing to God. 

And so we see clearly in the Bible that men should not act sexually as women (Leviticus 18:22; Romans 1:18-32; 1 Corinthians 6:9-10), that men should not dress like women (Deuteronomy 22:5), and that when men and women embrace obviously other-gendered expressions of identity it is a disgrace (1 Corinthians 11:14-15). We do not have an inalienable right to do whatever we want with our physical selves. We belong to God and should glorify Him with our bodies (1 Corinthians 6:19-20).

As DeYoung aptly concludes: "... After all, the goal is not to build a wall to keep people out, but that God might build up His church in truth and grace that we can welcome people into, calling His image-bearers to embrace the life that is truly life" (1 Timothy  6:19).

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