Leftist bloggers successfully convinced officials for President Obama’s Inauguration to pressure Pastor Louie Giglio of Passion City Church in Atlanta to withdraw from praying the benediction at the ceremony January 21. The Inaugural Committee had selected Giglio to pray two days ago because of his impressive work battling human trafficking and slavery around the world, and his amazing leadership of the Christ-honoring Passion conferences. Just last week, Giglio spoke to 60,000 students in the Georgia Dome for the Passion 2013 conference.
The leftist ideologues cared nothing for that and scoured the Internet until they found a recording of an old sermon Giglio recorded in the mid-1990s, in which he taught that the Bible defines marriage only as one man and one woman, and therefore, homosexual behavior is sinful. Even though Giglio has rarely preached on this subject and focused on helping the needy in the world, the lefties went bonkers, and demanded his ouster from the inaugural platform. Louie Giglio gracious acquiesed to the officials’ pressure and stepped down. His statement explains what his current work has focused on, and carefully avoids repudiating the Biblical view on marriage. Louie Giglio is seeing the bulk of his life’s work ignored and the totality of his decades-long ministry distorted by those who summarize it by one sermon he preached 15-20 years ago. This is a tragic slander, because Giglio’s Passion City Church is no Westboro Baptist.
Christian college students encounter the same ideological pressures on most campuses. It does not matter whether you devote your time to fight sex trafficking, build shelters for the homeless, or help eradicate disease in Third World nations, if you also hold to the wrong view on marriage and homosexual conduct. But then, is not the reason sex trafficking is wrong is because it violates God’s design for marriage and treats shamefully those, male and female, made in the image of God? The Bible’s doctrine on marriage has many applications.
We must recall Christ’s words that there is an irreducible offense of the Gospel, even among advocates of tolerance and diversity on college campuses. Sometimes, Christians say and do things that invite understandable scorn or criticism from others, but not always. Many times, people who simply oppose the Gospel will irrrationally hate those who believe it. Louie Giglio and every college student derided for believing in Christ can be encouraged by His words (Matthew 5:11-12): “Blessed are you when people insult you and persecute you, and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of Me. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward in heaven is great; for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.”
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