Month Archives: May 2021

Beijing’s War on the Bible

by Arielle Del Turco

May 5, 2021

The Great Firewall allows the Chinese government to censor any content it feels does not suit its purpose. Their latest target is the Bible. Bible apps have been removed from the App Store in China. It now requires the use of a virtual private network (VPN) to download Bible apps in China.

Popular Christian accounts on the Chinese app WeChat were also recently removed. Users who tried to access the social media pages saw a message that the pages had violated “internet user public account information services management provisions.” Others report that Bible apps have been entirely removed from the platforms of Chinese tech companies Huawei and Xiaomi.

Physical Bibles are also unavailable for purchase on Chinese websites. In March 2018, China’s largest online stores, including Taobao, Jingdong, Amazon.cn, and others, suddenly stopped showing results for searches for the Bible.

In December 2020, four Chinese Christian businessmen from Shenzhen were tried in court for selling audio versions of the Bible online. The businessmen were arrested as part of a campaign to “eradicate pornography and illegal publications.”

Earlier that same month, Christian businessman Lai Jinqiang was tried in Shenzhen on charges of “unlawful business operation” for his business which sold audio Bible players. His company, the “Cedar Tree Company,” reported the highest sales of audio Bible players in China, distributing around 40,000 units per month.

Instead of allowing people to choose what they will read and how they will access their religious texts, China requires that all Bible sales be funneled through official channels only. Bibles can be purchased at state-approved church bookstores regulated by the government.

Even worse than suppressing the Bible is the Chinese government’s attempt to change the Bible. As a part of its five-year plan to sinicize religion and make it more acceptable for the goals of the government, one strategy is “reinterpreting the Bible and writing annotations for it” from a socialist viewpoint.

Though the full text has yet to be revealed, the Chinese government’s previous manipulation of the Bible has been bizarre. In one textbook at the government-run University of Electronic Science and Technology, John 8 was shamefully distorted.

In the biblical version, an adulterous woman is brought to Jesus, and her accusers ask if she should be killed by stoning for her sins. Jesus disperses the angry crowd with his response, “Let him who is without sin among you be the first to throw a stone at her” (ESV).

The Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) version states that the crowd leaves, yet Jesus tells the woman, “I too am a sinner. But if the law could only be executed by men without blemish, the law would be dead,” before stoning her himself. This retelling of a famous biblical passage proves what should be obvious—communists can not be trusted to re-translate the Bible.

Former communist countries have a long history of hindering access to the Bible. Missionaries like Brother Andrew famously served persecuted believers living under communist repression in the Soviet Union. Now, the CCP continues the legacy of communist crackdowns on the Bible.

As its attacks on the Bible continue to mount, the Chinese government should know they will never succeed. No earthly forces can crush the power of the gospel and the hope it has brought to millions of Chinese believers. As the Chinese government continues in its futile and oppressive efforts, American leaders should be bold in articulating that it is unacceptable for any government to control, suppress, or manipulate its people’s access to the Bible.

Thinking Biblically About Communication

by Joseph Backholm

May 5, 2021

On “Worldview Wednesday,” we feature an article that addresses a pressing cultural, political, or theological issue. The goal of this blog series is to help Christians think about these issues from a biblical worldview. Read our previous posts on Unity, Safety“Christian Nationalism”LoveCourageForgivenessthe Resurrection and the Social GospelLoyaltyIdentity, and Religious Freedom.

Sadly, the polarization of the country seems to be polarizing the church as well. While factions are nothing new within the Christian church, new fault lines appear to be forming based on a host of tertiary issues including immigration, critical race theory, and Donald Trump. Unfortunately, those differences seem to be affecting the way we treat each other and speak to each other.

Even within the Family Research Council community, evidence of these divisions have appeared in the comment sections of our social media pages as people who claim to love Jesus speak to each other in ways that are clearly unloving.

Caring deeply about issues is a good. Ideas matter to God, which is why Paul instructs us to “take every thought captive to the obedience of Christ” (2 Corinthians 10:5). As Abraham Kuyper described it, “There is not a square inch in the whole domain of our human existence over which Christ, who is Sovereign over all, does not cry, Mine!” While it is appropriate to have opinions about immigration, critical race theory, and Donald Trump, it is even more important to make sure that our thoughts are motivated by the Spirit and not the flesh.

Ideas matter because ideas can be lethal. As James explains, “But each one is tempted when he is carried away and enticed by his own lust. Then when lust has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and when sin is accomplished, it brings forth death” (James 1:14-15). Death is often the result of a malignant idea that has had the time to mature.

Nevertheless, the seriousness with which we should take the battle of ideas should not blind us to the fact that there are rules of engagement God expects us to honor. After all, “life and death are in the power of the tongue” (Proverbs 18:21). Our words have the power to give life: “Gracious words are like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and health to the body” (Proverbs 16:24). In the same way, harsh words spoken in anger can leave wounds that never fully heal.

The power of the tongue is one of the reasons our ability to control our tongues is foundational to a surrendered life. As James explains, “If anyone thinks he is religious and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart, this person’s religion is worthless” (James 1:26). Solomon tells us in Proverbs that “the tongue of the wise brings healing” (Proverbs12:18).

An important question for every Christians to ask is this: do my words bring healing? 

Fortunately, there is no shortage of instruction in Scripture on this point: “Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person” (Colossians 4:6). Also, “Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear” (Ecclesiastes 4:29).

These reminders do not mean that God forbids direct communication or saying things that will bother people. Jesus referred to the Pharisees as a brood of vipers (Matthew 12:34) and “whitewashed tombs which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of the bones of the dead and everything unclean” (Matthew 23:27-28). He also told them that their father was the devil (John 8:44).

While these are hard truths, they were spoken for the benefit, not the harm, of the hearers. Jesus was not speaking out of anger, pride, or frustration over who they voted for but out of a desire to help them see their situation as it really was so they could repent.

In contrast, though we may speak truth, we do not always speak truth in love. Instead, we are often motivated by a desire to win the argument, exact a rhetorical pound of flesh, or silence someone who has become bothersome. But as Proverbs 29:11 reminds us, “A fool always loses his temper, but a wise man holds it back.”

This is the difference between us and Jesus.

The call to speak truth in love (Ephesians 4:15) is challenging because it is impossible to fake love. What we feel about someone will inevitably reveal itself in our interactions with them. As Jesus reminds us, “Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks” (Luke 6:45).

Whether we are speaking to other Christians with a different perspective or people who are hostile to the gospel, the key to speaking truth in love is to actually love the people we engage with—even if we disagree with them about everything. In many cases, this requires us to change the way we see the people we engage with.  

If we see someone primarily as a heretic or political enemy, we will inevitably treat them that way. If we see someone as a threat to our children and our way of life, we will treat them as if they are a threat. However, if we see them first and foremost as people made in God’s image—whether they are deceived or not—we will see them as loved by God and therefore deserving of love from us. From this perspective, we will see people who may disagree with us not as a roadblock to our goal but as the goal itself. After all, Jesus came to “seek and save the lost” (Luke 19:10).

If we win the argument but lose the person, have we really won anything?    

In addition, showing grace and kindness to those we disagree with makes it easier to admit our mistakes when it turns out we were the one in the wrong. If we act pridefully, it’s much more difficult to admit mistakes.

But even when we are right, our highest goal should not be to prove it. The reason we care about ideas is because we care about the impact that ideas have on people. That means people are the priority. The way we treat people, online or otherwise, should always reflect this truth.

Biden’s 100 Days of Failing Women

by Mary Beth Waddell, J.D.

May 4, 2021

Last week, during his address to a joint session of Congress and the nation, President Joe Biden acknowledged the historic nature of a female vice president and speaker of the House of Representatives sitting on the dais, and said, “we need to ensure greater equity and opportunity for women.” Unfortunately, he has done exactly the opposite in his first 100 days in office by making good on his promise to push gender identity ideology—which seeks to erase the vitally important genetic and physiological differences between men and women.

Last June, in Bostock v. Clayton County, the U.S. Supreme Court radically re-wrote Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 by holding that sexual orientation and gender identity are included in the statute’s prohibition of sex discrimination in matters of employment. Sex non-discrimination laws are meant to protect biological women, and the Court’s insertion of gender identity ideology flips the law’s intent on its head. On his first day in office, President Biden signed an executive order requiring that the Bostock re-definition be adopted across the federal government.

In this order, President Biden specifically mentioned Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, which provides equality for women in sports. He also signed another executive order that effectively undid the previous administration’s good work in the education space, further entrenching the LGBT agenda into schools and obliterating women’s sports and private spaces.

The previous administration had responded to Bostock by issuing a memo that affirmed biology and equality in regard to Title IX—the Department of Education (ED) under Biden has since archived that memo. The Department of Justice issued a memo on Bostock’s application to Title IX, indicating that it did apply. Further, ED has withdrawn the previous administration’s letter of findings against the Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference and its member schools regarding its violation of Title IX for allowing biological boys to compete in sports designated for biological girls.

Additionally, President Biden has used the phrase “all genders” in various memoranda and proclamations. One of the most egregious references is contained in the proclamation for American Heart Month. The president said that heart disease affects “all genders” and merely acknowledged that “the symptoms of a heart attack can be different for men and women.” He didn’t acknowledge the importance and need for further sex-specific study. The world-renowned Johns Hopkins Hospital notes that it has only been in recent non-male-focused studies that this differential has become more known. Johns Hopkins has its own Women’s Cardiovascular Health Center that provides education, comprehensive treatment, and diagnostic services to prevent and manage heart disease in women. A National Institute of Health listed study from 2010 entitled “Gender differences in coronary heart disease” concluded that, “A greater awareness of the differences in presentation […] between men and women, with gender-based interpretation of diagnostic tests, is mandatory […] to improve therapeutic strategies and outcomes in women.”

This necessity extends across the medical field. Medicine must be based in science and the patient’s physiological makeup, yet President Biden’s actions have made it clear that he disagrees. He nominated Xavier Becerra as secretary of Health and Human Services despite his having no relevant experience. His only credentials are being radically anti-life and anti-faith and advocating for radical sexuality ideology. For assistant secretary of Health and Human Services, Biden nominated Rachel Levin, who severely failed to properly handle the COVID-19 pandemic while serving as Pennsylvania’s secretary of health. Levine has an alarming record of prioritizing the radical sexuality agenda over public health and advocates gender transition for children, which is extremely harmful. Sadly, young girls are a particular target of this agenda.

Furthermore, legislation that the president has supported in both official statements and his joint session speech are detrimental to women. He called on Congress to pass the Equality Act, a massive bill that would overhaul our federal civil rights framework to, among other things, mandate acceptance of gender identity ideology, leaving women and others to suffer the consequences. If enacted, the bill would go much further than allowing biological males to compete in women’s sports, thereby unfairly penalizing female athletes. It would also obliterate women’s private spaces like bathrooms, locker rooms, and battered women’s shelters. This would be especially devastating for battered women who need a safe and private space to heal because biological men would be allowed to enter their shelters.

President Biden also called for the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) and made official statements praising H.R. 1620, the Violence Against Women Act Reauthorization of 2021. VAWA was indeed enacted in 1994 to improve the criminal justice response to domestic violence, sexual assault, and stalking and increase the availability of victim services. Unfortunately, the 2021 reauthorization bill would undermine VAWA’s purpose by further traumatizing battered women by allowing biological men into shelters designated for women. It would also reduce resources for battered women, given its mandated acceptance of gender identity ideology, which creates onerous burdens and litigation. The 2021 reauthorization would also allow organizations known to cover up abuse and sex trafficking to access VAWA grant funds. Lastly, it would put incarcerated women at risk of abuse by allowing biological males, sex offenders included, into women’s prisons if they say they identify as a woman.

While all of this looks bleak for women’s rights, privacy, and safety, fortunately, there is hope. Little traction exists for the Equality Act, and there is both federal and state legislation to protect women in various areas like sports, shelters, and medicine to hopefully stop the administration’s harmful agenda. This fight is just beginning. We will have to see how it plays out over the next four years.

Religious Freedom is a Matter of Human Dignity

by Arielle Del Turco , Mary Szoch

May 4, 2021

A new report by Aid to the Church in Need found that religious freedom was not respected in 32 percent of the world’s countries. Furthermore, approximately 5.2 billion people live in countries that experience serious violations of religious freedom, including populous countries such as China, India, and Pakistan. Christians in all three countries face a certain amount of risk for simply living out their faith in the public square. 

Such concerning numbers warrant attention. Yet, we can tend to take concepts like “religious freedom” for granted and fail to grasp the full significance of this fundamental human right.

At its core, religious freedom is the freedom to choose and change one’s religion and to live in agreement with those beliefs. Attacks on religious freedom target one’s conscience—the very core of their being, making it uniquely important that religious freedom be protected.

Protecting religious freedom is essential not only because it is a fundamental human right but also because it is a vital component of respecting human dignity.

Humans are inherently drawn to seek out answers to life’s biggest questions and to find meaning beyond this temporal existence. As a being with an innate sense of right and wrong, man is led to continuously search for truth. Seeking truth is an expression of freedom, which is what makes man unique.     

While man cannot be forced to contemplate truth, humans are unique precisely because no other creature has the ability to do so. Though some may choose not to embark on the quest to find truth—all men have a right to do so. Allowing a person to live according to his pursuit of truth is fundamental to acknowledging that person’s participation in the human species—respecting the search for truth is foundational to respecting a man’s dignity. To do otherwise would be to treat man as less than human.        

Man’s determinations regarding truth lead to both interior and exterior expressions of deeply held beliefs. While the path to discovering truth is certainly, at times, a personal journey—it is not exclusively so. The connection with others who are also pursing truth is a natural and necessary component of this journey. Thus, the answer to the question, “what is truth?” is often found through religion.

For Christians, the concept of Imago Dei, taken from Genesis 1:27, refers to the fact that every human person is created in the image of God—who is Truth. Because we are created in the image of Truth, we long to find truth.  

While only Christians identify this search for truth as a component of being made in the image of God, this reality extends to people of all faiths as well as those of no faith. All people, because they are made in the image of God, possess inherent worth and deserve to be treated as such.  

For a government to fully affirm the dignity of the human person, it must allow individuals to live out their faith in the public square according to their conscience without government restrictions or social harassment. As James Madison expressed, man’s duty to search for truth, man’s duty to God, comes before man’s duty to government; thus, the government has the duty to respect man’s pursuit of truth.

Christians should advocate for religious freedom for all people because any effort to coerce individuals to believe or abandon any faith violates the conscience of a precious person created in God’s image who is deserving of respect.

In the United States, we are fortunate to have robust constitutional protections on religious freedom and founding documents that affirm basic rights. The Declaration of Independence recognizes the God-given equality of each and every human person, and the “unalienable rights” that flow from that. Let’s pray that human dignity is advanced through the expansion of religious freedom to people of all faiths in all countries of the world.

To Counter the Transgender Lie, We Must Speak Truth

by Lisa

May 3, 2021

This is the final part of a 3-part series. Read part 1 and part 2.

To beat the billionaire boys’ club at their game we must first reject their end goal of disembodiment. They seek to eliminate human physical limitations in favor of a new hybrid form of humanity. They are simply beginning this march toward madness using the construct of gender. (For much more on this topic, look up the work of Jennifer Bilek.)

Money’s ideas on “gender identity” should be rejected, not lauded. They should be exposed for what they are: a bag of linguistic tricks used by a man who needed to be covert in his attempt to sexualize young children. Rothblatt and Pritzker must also be called out for what they are: two men who decided to create an intricate legal framework to take their sexual proclivities mainstream while adding billions to their bottom lines.       

We must remember that those who control the language control the narrative. This is why the idea of “preferred pronouns” was introduced. The outlandish concept, while clearly a bastardization of the English language, is the ideal way to get an unsuspecting public to willingly utter outright lies that serve the goals of the trans medical industrial complex. 

The media conglomerates are already slaves to these goals. That’s how we end up with a Time magazine cover featuring the actress Ellen Page as a supposed man who goes by the name Elliot. Time must lie like this to appease the medical/pharmaceutical industry and the billionaires in charge of it. You, on the other hand, do not have to lie like Time.    

We lose the battle for humanity and sanity every time we help Pritzker, Rothblatt & Co. advance their cause by using their made-up language. If we don’t stand up and stop playing their game now, it will soon be too late.    

Trans advocates are calling for prison for those who “misgender” or “deadname” someone (two other made-up words in the ever-evolving trans lexicon). People in the UK have been sent to jail (see here and here) for violating hate speech laws that require people to use “preferred pronouns” on social media. A Canadian man went to jail in March for using the pronoun “she” in reference to his daughter (his ex-wife claims the girl is actually a “he”).

Some trans advocates claim the concept of a gender reveal party actually “promotes violence” because it involves parents imposing their ideas of gender onto a helpless unborn baby. More and more trans activists are calling for puberty blockers to be mandated for all children worldwide so each can pick their gender of choice on a timeline they decide. (Tumblr currently offers its users 121 genders to pick from. Go check them out to see what the billionaires have in store for our future.)

If you’re bold enough to refuse to cave on the pronoun posse, you will be immediately attacked by all those who’ve been indoctrinated by trans ideology. They will usually pick a fight with you by throwing down what I call “the story card.” This involves telling a personal story about a friend or a friend of a friend who was supposedly so unhappy until the day he/she/they realized that he/she/they is actually transgender. This friend eventually transitioned and now he/she/they is the happiest he/she/they has ever been.

In response to a story like this, all one need say is: It ain’t over until the well-proportioned individual who may or may not still identify as a lady sings.

Many people who identify as trans who first claim to be thrilled with their transition end up living to regret it. A profound sadness often sets in after the hormone honeymoon wears off. (People who go on cross-sex hormones typically feel an immediate boost in mood. This is, in part, why so many depressed teenage girls are seeking them out.)

Every day, more and more people who once bought the lies perpetuated by Money (and money) are now de-transitioning back to their God-given sex. People like Elle Palmer, Charlotte Evans, Walt Heyer, Keira Bell, and Linda Seiler are just a few of the many vocal de-transitioners now dedicated to speaking the truth about the trans-medical industry and its insatiable need for victims (and victims’ money). Websites like DetransVoices.org and SexChangeRegret.com are gaining in popularity even as they’re suppressed or outright banned by Google and its subsidiaries. Videos and books featuring the personal stories of de-transitioners abound, although Americans are currently forbidden from viewing many of these people’s videos on YouTube or buying their books on Amazon.      

The issue of how transitioning has ruined the lives of millions will surely reach a fever pitch in years to come. So the next time someone throws down a trans “story card” then follows it up by explaining how “trans people need the support of their cisgender peers,” stop them right there. First, tell them you will not dignify the use of the term “cisgender.” This is yet another made-up word brought to us by all the usual suspects. Cisgender supposedly means a person who identifies as the gender related to his or her biological sex. In other words, it’s everyone who isn’t trans. Using this word gives those of us who have not succumbed to Money’s lies our own brand of pathology related to gender identity.

The billionaire boys’ club desperately needs everyone to use their nonsense words (like cisgender) because it tricks the public into thinking their grift has gravitas.  

A 2011 U.S. study found that 41 percent of transgender participants reported attempting suicide in comparison to 1.6 percent of the general population. Is this because people aren’t accepting of them or because they have mental health problems the rest of the population does not? The Centre for Suicide Prevention says on its website that transgender people experience mental illness at a much higher rate than the general population. While 6.7 percent of the U.S. general population suffers from depression and 18 percent grapple with some form of anxiety, nearly half of all people who identify as transgender experience one or both of these issues. Telling these people that they should try to change every single part of their physical bodies in order to feel better is abhorrent. Their problem is not in the body, it’s in the mind.  

If we instead begin celebrating people who break traditional gender stereotypes (instead of telling them to get a series of surgeries), we would start to make progress where mental health is concerned. We should applaud any boy who has personality traits or interests typically considered feminine. We should encourage any girl who demonstrates more traditionally masculine qualities or an interest in boys’ sports or hobbies. But of course the trans medical complex doesn’t want us celebrating these individuals because the moment we do, they can no longer herd them into their gender clinics.   

If my 8-year-old told me she felt like she might be a mermaid, I wouldn’t take her to a doctor and ask him to amputate her legs and replace them with a tail. Yet our new Assistant Secretary of Health believes that minors should be able to determine their own gender without parental consent. There are currently many trans activists advancing the idea that a child should be taken away from his or her parents if the parents refuse to let him or her transition.    

All it takes is a confused teenage girl stopping by her school counselor’s office and mentioning that she doesn’t feel totally at ease in her body (what teen girl does?) to get a reference to a gender identity specialist who can then send her directly to Planned Parenthood for cross-sex hormones. She can change her name and pronouns and “come out” to friends and family as transgender the very next day. And all this can happen without parental consent.

For the sake of our children, we can no longer be silent. We must collectively commit to never use the words that pedophile advocate John Money and the billionaire boys’ club came up with. We must start referring to people by the pronouns associated with their biological sex. We must not care about what names we get called or what relationships we lose in the process. We must stop perpetuating the idea that calling people by their “preferred pronouns” is somehow virtuous. Taking care not to offend through speech is not a virtue. Telling the truth is. 

We must tell others about the origins of the gender identity movement (before Google memory holes everything having to do with John Money).   

We must tell others about the billionaires who decided to take their fetishes mainstream in order to make bank.

We must advocate for people who identify as transgender so they can get help for their very real mental health issues instead of getting more surgeries that usher them deeper into their delusions.

We must explain to everyone that transgenderism is but a temporary stop on the road to transhumanism.  

By speaking these truths, we have a chance at saving our culture from the lie that is transgenderism.

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