A response to former deputy managing editor of the Bee, Bill Endicott:
In his special to the Bee, Viewpoints: Message from pulpit should be of love, tolerance, Endicott ends with these words, “But there will always be those, as a friend once said, who believe the snake really did talk to Eve. “
Yes the snake did talk to Eve. It wasn’t actually a snake but Satan using the snake. Satan does that in this world, he deceives people. Oh not with an audible voice but deception enters their heart and soul, their very being. That is why we have wars, rape, abused children, broken lives, etc., because humanity, in the midst of deception, believes they are wise enough to be the arbitrators of morality instead of God.
P.D. James, one of the great English mystery writers, wrote about that kind of arbitration in her mystery Original Sin. Someone decides they know who killed who, long ago—except they have the wrong person in mind. They have read the wrong book, heard the wrong whispers in their heart. But God knows all and reveals what we should know both in the written word and the living Word.
And yes, although the entire Bible is the words of Jesus Christ—he is after all the third member of the Trinity, God’s eternal Son, still in his words in the New Testament he did have something to say about homosexuality. It was this:
“Have you not read that he who created them from the beginning made them male and female, and said, ‘For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife and the two shall become one flesh’? “So they are no longer two, but one flesh” (Matthew 19:4-5)So it is the Session of Fremont Presbyterian Church and the pastors who have made their decision along with a majority of the congregation that they no longer want to be joined to a denomination that is disobedient to the word of God. And it isn’t just about homosexuality, in fact, homosexuality is the least problem. The PC (U.S.A.)’s new Book of Order is pushing universalism. That is the idea that one need not come to Christ to be saved. And it also down plays the authority of the word of God.
Back to the snake—Satan tells a great lie to Eve, “You surely will not die! For God knows that in that day you eat from it [the tree of the knowledge of good and evil] and your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good from evil.” That was a double edged lie.
First of all they would die. The spiritual death occurred at once, the physical death would follow. Pain, evil, brokenness and death entered the primeval world because of disobedience to God. Second, humanity now knew of good and evil. They know it as God knows, but unlike God whose very being is goodness, they do not have the power to overcome evil. That is why in grace God said to Satan, “And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her seed; He shall bruise you on the head, and you shall bruise him on the heel.”
Jesus Christ, the One who stomped the death stomp to Satan’s head by his death and resurrection is worth a thousand buildings and the entire world’s wealth. May God keep those Fremonters, who have chosen to go to another denomination, for the sake of obedience to Christ, secure in their building. But if God chooses not to leave them there, may he be glorified in their suffering loss of property and may they quickly expand and grow in His good kingdom where ever he chooses to place them. May this be so for all of those faithful Presbyterians suffering loss in this faithless age.