Monday, June 29, 2015


(This is the manuscript I had prepared for my sermon yesterday in response to the legalization of same-sex marriage. It is what I would have said if I had an hour to preach. I had 20 minutes--that sermon as delivered should be posted in a day or two--if you prefer that format, and that length! You will get the core of it. God bless!--Pastor Dennis)

Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who put darkness for light, and light for darkness; Who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!  (Isaiah 5:20)
When is a person not a person?  When they are a piece of property.  That is what the Supreme Court ruled in the Dred Scott decision in 1857.  Scott had sued to obtain his freedom.  Chief Justice Roger Taney ruled that because Scott was simply considered the private property of his owners, that he was subject to the Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution, prohibiting the taking of property from its owner "without due process."  Strike one!
When is a baby not a baby?  When it is a fetus.  The Supreme Court in its infamous Roe v. Wade decision in 1973 made abortion legal.  Since then 54.5 million babies have been brutally butchered—their mother’s womb meant to be a sanctuary turned into an execution chamber.  Strike two!
When is a marriage defined as between a man and woman not the only definition of marriage?  When the Supreme Court says it can also be a union of two of the same gender.  That was the irrational, unconstitutional decision rendered by 5 of the 9 justices on this past Friday.  Strike three!
Now in baseball, three strikes and you’re out.  Have we crossed the point of no return for America?  The final judgment will not be rendered by nine men and women robed in black, but by one Judge robed in white who sits on the throne in the Supreme Court of Heaven.  When will He say that America has gone too far?
Here is what I do know.  The inhumanity inflicted on a race of people whose only crime was to be born with darker skin led to their cries of pain reaching God’s ears.  America was plunged into Civil War, where on both North and South, the greatest loss of life occurred in any of our wars—620,000.  Lincoln said this in his second inaugural address, “If we shall suppose that American slavery is one of those offenses which, in the providence of God, must needs come, but which, having continued through His appointed time, He now wills to remove, and that He gives to both North and South this terrible war as the woe due to those by whom the offense came, shall we discern therein any departure from those divine attributes which the believers in a living God always ascribe to Him? Fondly do we hope, fervently do we pray, that this mighty scourge of war may speedily pass away. Yet, if God wills that it continue until all the wealth piled by the bondsman's two hundred and fifty years of unrequited toil shall be sunk, and until every drop of blood drawn with the lash shall be paid by another drawn with the sword, as was said three thousand years ago, so still it must be said ‘the judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether.’”
Now since 1973, the blood of the little ones torn to pieces, burned to death with chemicals, their brains sucked out with vacuum hoses, and when sometimes still surviving the abortion procedure, only to be suffocated, having their spinal cord snipped with scissors, tossed into a toilet, discarded to whimper alone in a closet until they die.  Millions of little voices, crying out to God for vengeance!  The Creator who takes notice of a little sparrow fluttering to the ground and dying, surely knows each one of these babies made in His image and weeps for them.  Meanwhile His anger builds—How long, O Lord?
Then this Friday—legalizing perversion—shaking our fist in the face of God—that which grieves a Holy God is now celebrated.  The rainbow colors illumine the White House.  “A great victory for the United States,” the President exults.  Those rejoicing should read the story of Belshazzar’s party in Babylon documented in Daniel 5 to see how such pompous parties may end.  When Justice Anthony Kennedy and four others affixed their names to the majority opinion legalizing same sex marriage in the U.S. they may have signed America’s death certificate.  Listen to Isaiah’s warning, “Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who put darkness for light, and light for darkness; Who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!”  (Isaiah 5:20)
The world is upside down.
How are we to respond?
1.  PRAYER FOR SPIRITUAL AWAKENING.  The  ills of America cannot be cured with elections, legislation or court decisions—that crowd is a contributor to the mess!  Someone correctly said that neither a donkey nor an elephant can save us—it takes a Lamb—the Lord Jesus is our only hope!  Unless there is a mighty move of God, America is going to fall.  2 Chronicles 7:14 is our Biblical imperative.  The great need is not in the culture, but in the church.  Sinners do what sinners do.  The world can only impact the culture as light and salt when we are distinctively different.  Instead the world has impacted the church.  Scripture warns, “For the time has come for judgment to begin at the house of God; and if it begins with us first, what will be the end of those who do not obey the gospel of God?” (1 Pet.4:17)  Revival or wrath—which one will descend from heaven?   Our problems are spiritual and require spiritual solutions.  If a spiritual awakening comes to America then a government transformation can come.  Without that there is no political answer.  What if spiritual awakening should sweep across America?  Before you scoff at that don’t forget nothing is too hard for the Lord!  Following I describe a political framework to build on the spiritual foundation.

2.  PARTICIPATE IN REAL CHANGE.  Christians are citizens of two kingdoms.  Too often we think that if we just elect the right President or a different senator or congressman that everything will change.  It has not and will not.  The faces of leadership change—the pendulum swings from one party to the next—but most go up to D.C. and sell their soul; they settle into the same old progressive nonsense.  Both parties propose government solutions—the Democrats want to micromanage every part of our lives, as well as tax and spend us into oblivion and the Republicans say different but then do the same thing, just slower.  The Supreme Court—not only on Friday, but two other outlandish decisions on Thursday—usurped authority and made laws contrary to their Constitutional role.  The Founders knew the federal government might one day become drunk with the abuses of power. The most important check to this power is Article V. Article V gives states the power to call a convention for the purpose of proposing amendments to the Constitution.  By calling a convention of the states, we can stop the federal spending and debt spree, the power grabs of the federal courts, and other misuses of federal power. The current situation is precisely what the Founders feared, and they gave us a solution we have a duty to use.” (   An informed citizenry with a moral backbone could rebuild this one nation under God.  

What if neither occur?  What if there is no spiritual revival and no political reform?
3.  LET THE CHURCH BE THE CHURCH ANYWAY.  Whatever society does, we must do what Christ has commanded us to do—to preach the Gospel, calling sinners to repentance and offering forgiveness and salvation. Should America turn back to God, it would only be a reprieve from judgment.  According to Scripture the day of reckoning is coming.  Imagine that this world is the Titanic.  It has hit the iceberg called sin (that happened in Gen.3).  It is sinking and nothing can stop that.  Our task is to man the lifeboats and get as many on as we can.  It will not be an easy job.  People will hate us for telling the truth.  But we must never respond with hate.  The good folks in the Mother Emanuel A.M.E. Church in Charleston, S.C. showed us that—and love is a powerful.  Love does win!  God’s kid of love, that is. It is increasingly likely that persecution will come to the church.  Four of the Supreme Court justices spoke to the grave danger to religious liberty.  We will stand and speak the truth in love as long as we are able.
Here is what God has in mind:
See that you do not refuse Him who speaks. For if they did not escape who refused Him who spoke on earth, much more shall we not escape if we turn away from Him who speaks from heaven, whose voice then shook the earth; but now He has promised, saying, “Yet once more I shake not only the earth, but also heaven.”  Now this, “Yet once more,” indicates the removal of those things that are being shaken, as of things that are made, that the things which cannot be shaken may remain.  Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom which cannot be shaken, let us have grace, by which we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear.  For our God is a consuming fire.  (Hebrews 12:25-29)
When the shaking comes, Your life must be founded on the solid rock—personal faith in Christ.
Only that will enable you to stand in the storm of God’s judgment.
This shaking will sift out the wheat from the chaff.  The church is filled with people who profess faith, but may not possess faith.  Easy-believism and cultural Christianity wither under the fire of persecution.
Because the world is upside down, genuine Christians will be described like this, “These who have turned the world upside down…” (Acts 17:6).  In reality the world is standing on its head and saying we are upside down!  Our desire is to put things right-side up!

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