The Story: “Christian bakery closes after LGBT threats, protests” by Todd Starnes posted on September 3, 2013 at FoxNews.com.
The Lead: “’Everybody is entitled to their own beliefs, but that doesn’t mean that folks have the right to discriminate,’ he told the newspaper. ‘The goal is to rehabilitate. For those who do violate the law, we want them to learn from that experience and have a good, successful business in Oregon.’
“In other words, Christians who live and work in Oregon must follow man’s law instead of God’s law. But in a show of benevolence, the state is willing to rehabilitate and reeducate Christian business owners like the Kleins.”
Why it Matters: If you read parts one, two, and three of Greg Scott’s excellent series “Compelled to Compromise,” you already understand why this story matters. But, rather than a series of courts pronouncing Christians guilty of discrimination for merely abiding by their religious convictions, here they have been met by protests and death threats. What is more, the “he” quoted above is Brad Avakian, commissioner with the Oregon Bureau of Labor. Think about what he has now been quoted – as an official of the state. “The goal is to rehabilitate.”
Rehabilitate? Rehabilitation implies defect. That defect in need of rehabilitation, in this case, is the Gospel and a Biblical understanding of gender, sexual ethics, and marriage. One wonders what such rehabilitation programs might look like. What we can be certain of is this: in order to enter the public marketplace (and, soon enough, the public at all), Christians will be asked to remove the defect of their Gospel.
Christian, this is the world God has placed you in today. Abandon fear. Gear up and stand firm.
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