I’m gonna probably set off all sorts of “trigger warnings” with the pearl clutchers, but so be it.
During the last couple of weeks, it has been revealed that Hillsong Church, NYC, has a festering community of sodomites actively participating in their congregation.
While church officials state that no homosexuals serve or have served on their pastoral staff, the two men at the center of the Hillsong controversy claim to have an active “ministry” at the church including opening their apartment to host Connect groups, which I take to mean the Hillsong version of home Bible studies or small fellowship groups.
A day or so after I had tweeted a few stories about those revelations, I got into a bit of a back and forth with a fellow who says he attends Hillsong NYC. He had responded to something I had tweeted affirming that no homosexuals held any leadership positions at the church. I responded by asking him for clarification
I then asked him specifically about homosexuals actively participating at the church, and his responses I thought were rather troubling, especially when he mentions Hillsong’s view of church membership and salvation in general:
I shouldn’t really be surprised with his responses. They demonstrate how a diseased theology has infected the Christian church in America to the degree that would allow outrageous perversion like sodomy and same-sex marriage to be considered a “journey” and Christians willing to tolerate it for the sake of loving others.
As I was pondering that whole twitter exchange, I thought of at least three major problem areas that would lead believers to tolerating faith journeying sodomites actively involving themselves in a local church.
First is what really amounts to a default Arminianism that has saturated red-state Evangelical churches. Jesus died for ALL men without exception, what would be the idea of the grace of God already paying for their sins past, present, and future. That autosoteriology bubbles about in nearly every church across the land and permeates what really amounts to our pseudo-evangelistic efforts. Jesus has died for everyone and it is left up for the person to appropriate Christ’s death. Hence, churches should be welcoming to sinful individuals of all shapes and sizes and vices because they need to hear about Jesus.
Everyone is a sinner, so pushing away any visiting sinners from churches because Christians are all smugly self-righteous and don’t want filthy sinners around blocks their opportunity to encounter the Gospel.
It is an extremely man-centered, atheological philosophy.
Secondly is the mush-minded belief that mass popularity, bustling activity, and big crowds means there is a move of God afoot. Activity and big crowds never equates spiritual things. Those characteristics equate a championship football game, not an awesome church service. Churches should seek godly holiness among the members. Not large, writhing crowds of youth undulating to sappy pop rock music and blinding light shows.
A side effect to that mindset is an unquestioned, ready acceptance of any new person who begins attending the church and showing interest in “helping out.” A person who is hardly known is allowed to lead worship, host Bible studies, direct small discipleship groups. Church leadership could not be any more foolish.
Thirdly is what would be a mere Christianity apologetics that attempts to skin down the Christian faith to the bare bones of some heart warming mental assent regarding Jesus of Nazareth. It is a technique designed to be absolutely unoffensive to sinners so as to at least win them over to hearing your life story about what Jesus means to you. In order to be unoffensive, awkward topics like a person’s sinful habits and wrong-head life choices and God-treasonous, self-destructive worldview are often avoided at all costs lest the sinner shuts down and turns off.
Though it is true that not all apologetic-minded believers go as far as Hillsong with allowing open homosexuals free reign to participate in church activities, taking a mere Christianity approach to defending the faith and evangelism more times that naught leaves sinners in a worse state than when the began attending church. They are now under the impression their sin is not that big a deal with God and there is no hurry to make any attempt to change. If no one around them at church seems the least bit alarmed, why should they be?
Now Hillsong NYC insists they affirm the biblical teaching of marriage and do not in any way affirm same-sex marriage. At the same time, however, the gay couple at the center of all this controversy state rather emphatically, at this point anyways, that they plan to stay at HNYC and fight those backward, fingerwaggers who are attempting to wreck their faith journeying experience.
But I’m actually of the opinion that a more insidious plan may be at play here. I think the underground gay culture at HNYC have it in their minds to change the church for the better. Into a so-called “conservative” but gay-affirming church. That could very well happen because all three of those factors I noted above are present: low view of man’s sin, excitement equals God’s spirit, and the tolerant, mere Christianity evangelism. The homosexuals will exploit those factors to eventually pull that church away from God and into apostasy, and Hillsong’s misguided toleration seems content to let them.