What if your stance on Biblical truth jeopardized your livelihood? Would you stay silent?
Should we speak freely regarding all Biblical truth? Is it ok to shy away from certain issues to avoid suffering and loss?
These are questions that we need to take really seriously right now. There are many Christians who are being scared into silence. Is this an acceptable practice for believers? I don’t think so. Persecution is par for the course. We need to take up our cross and bear it.
For whoever is ashamed of Me and MY WORDS, of him the Son of Man will be ashamed when He comes… – Jesus (Luke 9:26)
There are a lot of things in the Bible that are not very controversial. For example, the idea of Jesus dying on the cross for our sins is not too controversial for most people. Most people who don’t believe will simply allow you to believe that with no problem. They might not believe, but it doesn’t bother them that you believe. There are many such things like this in the Bible. If you stick with these things, the world doesn’t much care what you believe. However, as soon as you step over into the subjects that matter to them, then emerges the beast.
I know this from experience.
If you know me at all, you’ll know that I’ve put out blogs and videos about what the Bible says about spanking your children. I’ve received a lot of hatred for it. In the past 6000 years up until about 50 years ago, this was not a controversial subject. This was something that just about every parent did. In those 6000 years, there certainly were people who went too far and abused their children. But humanity didn’t throw out the baby with the bathwater. They were smart enough to understand that abuse and moderate spanking are two different things.
Times have changed.
Times have changed so much, in fact, that, in western countries, spanking has not just become taboo, but, in some places, outlawed.
Now I want you to think about this for a moment. The Bible says some clear things about spanking like, “Do not withhold correction from a child,” and “He who spares his rod, hates his son.” In many countries, it is illegal to follow these truths. It isn’t illegal in America yet, thank God. But it is taboo enough to scare Christians into silence. Let me prove it to you:
My Trip to LA
I just got back from California where I was part of a discussion that was filmed for a YouTube video. The company who filmed us produces videos that often receive millions of views. The topic was parenting. When the subject of spanking came up, two of the six participants chose to completely refrain from, not only commenting, but even being in the scene at all. (The other participants, besides me, were against spanking and one was unsure.) During the shoot, I didn’t have much time to wonder why those who refrained from speaking did so, but I learned more afterward.
One of the women who refrained, who is a Christian, approached me when the shoot was finished. She told me that she generally agreed with me and spanked her own children. However, she said that she refrained from speaking because she is a business owner. She told me that she feared that speaking on the issue would be detrimental to her business.
I want to consider if what this woman did was acceptable or not. Not that I want to condemn her. She is a sweet lady. But was it acceptable in the eyes of God for her to refrain from speaking on this subject to a potential audience of millions of people? I understand that speaking on this subject (like speaking against LGBT dogma) can result in stigmatization and financial distress. The lady has eight children, is working on expanding her business, and is generally being a blessing to society. Is it wrong for her to want to avoid such pain? I mean, she’s not a full-time minister. Nor is she a parenting coach or social worker. This certainly isn’t her field of professional expertise. Doesn’t she have a right, an obligation even, to protect her own family and business? And if we, ourselves, are asked about a hot-button subject, is it OK for us to refrain from answering if we know we have a Biblical answer?
I don’t think it is.
Remember, Jesus said, “whoever is ashamed of Me and My words, of him the Son of Man will be ashamed…” We must remember that Jesus’ words are not limited to those which are red, but every jot and tittle in the Old Testament and New.* Every word in the Bible is the Word of God. And to shy away from declaring any of them because of fear is what it means to be ‘ashamed.’ Can we really say to Jesus, “Jesus, I faithfully spoke most of your words to those who would listen, however, not the words that jeopardized my own well-being, or the well-being of my business or family. I’m sure you understand.” Are those words you’ll be proud to speak on Judgment Day? Now don’t get me wrong, I know there are some people who are still learning and are unsure. That’s a different issue. The issue is those who know and yet stay silent.
“Let’s focus on the important things.”
Some people may think that it is better that we stay away from the issues that aren’t so important and stick with the more important issues of salvation and such. I disagree with this idea categorically. This very much is an important issue. I am thoroughly convinced that young lives are literally destroyed because their parents do not spank them. By not spanking children, we are permitting some to grow into monsters. In Sweden, where spanking was outlawed in 1979, violent crime increased among youth by 600% within 15 years.** Yet in Singapore (and in many Asian countries), where spanking is common, violent crime is practically non-existent.***
By outlawing spanking or shaming those who spank, we are literally destroying society. This is a topic that should be among the most important of our time. This is no time to be ashamed of Jesus’ words on this topic or any subject that God thought worthy enough to include in His divine revelation to us.
“But I’m not called to that subject.”
“This isn’t my calling. I’m sticking with what God called me to.” First of all, if you are a pastor, you are called to every subject in the Bible, and especially so the ones that the world and devil are fighting so hard against. Pastors who shy away from important issues like this will be judged.
But I know that most people reading this are not pastors. So what about you? The answer is that you should be able and willing to share the truth when the opportunity presents itself. You don’t have to be an expert in any of the subjects the Bible speaks on to repeat what it says. If you know what the Bible says about a subject, you have an obligation by God to speak it, especially when you are asked. And if you don’t know what the Bible says on important issues of the day, go learn them. This is your obligation, as well.
Count the Cost
Remember that Jesus told His disciples to count the cost (Luke 14:25-33). Doesn’t a man count the expenses up before he begins to build a tower? Doesn’t a king consider whether or not his 10,000 can defeat an army of 20,000? And have you considered that you must hate father, mother, wife, children, and even your own life if you wish to be a disciple of Christ? Jesus emphatically stated that we must forsake ALL to follow Him. This is the only offer on the table. Will you take it?
I pray that this blog is not a source of condemnation for anyone, but a call to repentance. I’ve fallen short in this area as many have. But the Bible says that God is faithful to forgive our sins when we repent.
Many Christians have lost much more than their business in their fidelity to Biblical truth. Let’s not let the devil take our nation and our children without a fight. The way we fight is the same way Jesus fought, with the sword of His mouth. We are meant to be the salt of the earth, a city set on a hill. The word of God is light, but if we don’t shine it, it will stay under a bushel, right where the world wants it to be. Remember the words of Jesus, who said, “You will be hated by all men for my name’s sake, but he who endures to the end shall be saved.” (Mark 13:13). Don’t make a practice of shying away on any biblical issue. It’s a slippery slope that will lead to ever more darkness, as we see has already happened in so many churches today.
* Some might argue that spanking was for the Old Testament but not for the New. If that’s your argument than you need to explain why it was ok in for people in the Old Testament, but not now. Why was it ok for Jesus’ parents to spank their kids, but not us? Did God mess and need to change it? Nor can it be said that it was a command specifically to the people of Israel, or just for a certain period of time, for the same problem arises.
**https://humansciences.okstate.edu/hdfs/directory/images/larzelere-kuhn-2005.pdf – page 3