There’s a piece of legislation that’s been circulating through congress for some time now, the contents of which should gravely concern every Christian who treasures the Biblical, creedal, and historic confession of the Church. It has been deceptively titled “The Equality Act.” Such titling is false advertising in the highest degree, right up there with pornography’s marketing as being for “mature” audiences.
If it becomes law (and powerful politicians and presidential contenders have endorsed it and prioritized it) it will result in what Dr. Robert Gagnon, esteemed scholar and author of The Bible and Homosexual Practice, calls, “the greatest loss of free speech and free exercise of religion and the greatest promotion of sexual immorality in history of the country” (full interview at issuesetc.org). Process the enormity of that statement! Brian Brown, president of the National Organization for Marriage has called it, “a nuclear bomb on faith communities and any communities or individuals who have a traditional understanding of marriage and sexuality” (full interview at issuesetc.org).
Some in the Church are quick to insist that Church and state are to remain separate, but where does Scripture teach that the Church has nothing to say to the state? Yes, Scripture exhorts us to honor governing authorities by esteeming their God-given roles (see Romans 13; Titus 3:1;1 Peter 2:13). Further, the Church must never turn the pulpit into a political podium or sacrifice the gospel of Jesus Christ for political rhetoric, but this does not require us to be silent on salient issues that would infringe upon our ability to confess Christ and/or threaten what God has called good and, thereby, threaten human flourishing.
In fact, the Church has a creational mandate to extol what God calls good and to advocate for the defense and protection (through wise legislation, for instance) of that good. This is what’s at the heart of the biblical understanding of justice – that which aligns with God’s good.
The Church has a creational mandate to extol what God calls good and to advocate for the defense and protection (through wise legislation, for instance) of that good.
Further, the U.S. Constitution guarantees our right to exercise our religion in the public square, not merely to worship within the walls of our church buildings. The First Amendment states:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof...
The amendment is clearly aimed at limiting congress, not the Church. Further, consider the very nature of laws. Laws are not neutral; they are moral statements. Laws declare what a given people considers valuable and worthy of protection.
If the Church doesn’t speak on the morality of our nation’s laws, who will? If we remain silent, we will simply turn our laws over to people who do not fear God or His law and who reject what God has called good in creation. So while the Church must never lose its Gospel proclamation, it must also never be silent in defending and extoling what God has called good.
While the Church must never lose its Gospel proclamation, it must also never be silent in defending and extoling what God has called good.
As such, we must expose the aforementioned Equality Act as a direct attack on what God has revealed to be good in His creation and we must discourage Christians from giving it (or the politicians who endorse it) their support. With that in mind, we turn to the substance of the Act. We will be as brief and concise as possible, but the Act is sweeping in its reach and comprehensive in its aims.
The Equality Act
- Establishes sexual orientation and gender identity as civil rights categories with included protections and punishments on anyone who thinks differently.
- Eliminates The Religious Freedom Restoration Act as a means by which to challenge it.
- Removes any religious exemptions from any public entity or private, non-religious entity.
- Allows men who identify as women in any restroom, dressing room, locker room of their choice. Further, it allows men who identity as women in female shelters, prisons, and sports.
- Requires teachers to undergo mandatory indoctrination in LGBTQIA+ doctrine.
- Prohibits parents from opting out of any such content being taught in the school (at any age) and does not require any parental notification of such subject matter.
- Establishes speech laws that punish (whether through steep fines or firing) employers/employees and every business and public accommodation, including schools, health care facilities, and day care centers for “misgendering” someone (i.e. failing to use a person’s preferred pronouns/gender specific name).
- Forces small business owners to wed their craft (cake decorating, flower arranging, T-shirt making, photographing) to something that is contrary to their conscience.
- Gives the federal government the right to withhold funds from states that don’t rigorously promote the LGBTQIA+ agenda.
- Allows accreditation, federal funding, research grants, student loans, to be removed from religious schools and colleges.
- Massively funds federal agencies in charge of promoting this agenda with schools, corporations, and businesses.
- Expands Title VII (law to protect employees from discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, and religion) to include sexual orientation and gender identity.
- Prohibits any foster care agency receiving federal funds from giving preference in placement to homes with a married father and mother.
- Allows federal identification documents to be marked according to a person’s preferred identity or by an X if the person is “non-binary.”
- Mandates health insurance cover treatment related to sex transitioning, including sex reassignment surgery.
- Ties overseas aid to the recipient nation’s endorsement of the LGBTQIA+ agenda.
Space prevents further detail, but this has been enough to give a flavor of the Act’s sweeping reach and comprehensive nature. No area of life, whether we’re considering the family, employment, school, or the Church, is left unaffected. It is clearly aimed at giving full support to the LGBTQIA+ agenda and punishing and silencing dissent, all under the guise of equality.
Loving a person does not mean affirming his desires or his beliefs about reality; it means loving God, desiring His good, and affirming the reality He has created.
Some will ask, doesn’t love require us to affirm people who identify as LGBTQIA+? No. Loving a person does not mean affirming his desires or his beliefs about reality; it means loving God, desiring His good, and affirming the reality He has created as we encourage and help people live in line with it. The Creator precedes the creature. This must be understood. Further, we believe God is good and we believe that what He has called good (in creation) is both good in and of itself and good for us (and we want people to experience the good of God!). We love in line with what God has called good.
What isn’t good is us. Our desires, as Scripture reveals and reality bears out, are bent. They are turned against God and His good. They war against God’s good creation. They must never, therefore, be given free reign. They must never be endorsed and affirmed in law. We must be called to repentance or we will pursue our twisted desires to our own demise, even to our own damnation. This goes for Every. Last. One. Of. Us.
Scripture is emphatically blunt:
None is righteous, no, not one;
no one understands;
no one seeks for God.
All have turned aside; together they have become worthless;
no one does good,
not even one (Romans 3:10-12).
The problem with establishing laws that affirm deviant sexual behavior (or any sinful behavior or creation-rejecting belief) is that it prevents people from hearing the call to repentance, receiving forgiveness in Christ, and embracing God’s goods
. We can see this with abortion. Its legality often clouds its immorality. The reality of an unborn child being killed is obfuscated beneath a law that ensures a woman’s “right to choose.” Here, too, immoral behavior is being praised in law under the lie of “equality.”
Laws, as mentioned above, always reflect moral beliefs. The Equality Act is no different. The problem is that The Equality Act reflects false moral beliefs. Specifically, it echoes the lie that people are defined by their desires (and their inner sense) rather than by their creation as male or female, rather than by what God has said. It rejects what God has called good in favor of what man has called good.
As the Church, we recognize that affirming God’s good will put us out of line with current cultural trends and politically out of favor, perhaps even on the wrong side of the law. It may result in ridicule, rejection, or worse. These are prices we are willing to pay in order to honor our Creator and to celebrate what He has called good, a good that we fully believe is good for us. Further, they are prices we are willing to pay to call sinners to repentance and forgiveness in Christ.
Equality, therefore, is not found in forcing people to affirm behaviors and beliefs that are contrary to what God has called good. It is found in acknowledging our equality as male and female in God’s creation, our equal fallenness and need for a Savior, and our equal opportunity to receive God’s merciful forgiveness in Jesus.
– Pastor Conner
 At root, the LGBTQIA+ rebellion against God is a rejection of what He has called good in creation, whether in a rejection of God’s definition of marriage and the sexual ethics connected to it or in God’s definition of the human person as male or female.