By David Hegg
Only those playing with a closed mind and a closed history book have trouble understanding why Americans are sharply divided over moral issues. At the risk of offending some on both sides of the aisle, I will put forth a defense for why those of us who follow a biblical worldview are opposed to social issues such as same-sex marriage, abortion, and the continuing advancement of the dogma that gender is not binary.
First, let’s talk about equality. After all, those championing the aforementioned issues contend that they are pursuing the foundational American belief that “all are created equal” and that all have the right to “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”
But they have been selective in their quoting of the Declaration of Independence. The truth is that American society has, from its beginning, been solidly in the current of human history that believed that all people had those rights because those rights were “endowed by their Creator” and further, that those rights were “self-evident.” That is, they were the self-evident societal norms that arise from natural law. Nature itself teaches them. Given this, no government could be allowed to abridge those rights.
Yet, it has also been true that those who break the law relinquish some of their equality. That is, they may relinquish some of their resources, time and even their freedom. Why? Because breaking the law is bad for society. Thus, those who break the law no should no longer enjoy the personal liberty that comes with being part of humanity.
Second, those of us who follow the biblical worldview also believe that the basic morality of our worldview mirrors natural law. Further, when we see natural law being set aside in favor of personal desire and convenience, we consider it not only wrong but also harmful to society. So, we disagree, and voice our disagreement persistently.
Let me explain with some examples. We all recognize that natural law says when a baby is born that the child is either male or female. Even today in a world that is topsy turvy on this issue, upon hearing that a child was born we naturally ask, “Was it a boy or girl?” That’s what aligns with what we all know of nature simply because gender has always been, and always will be, determined by genetic material, not human desire or political goals. So, when those who claim loudly to “follow the science” instead break the law of nature in their declarations, we disagree, and voice our disagreement persistently.
The same is true of marriage. The biblical worldview shouts that marriage is between one man and one woman. And only those who disregard the entirety of human history have the audacity to say human history was always on the wrong side of the marriage issue. So, when the courts break with the precedent of history and declare natural law to have been in error, we assert that the court has broken natural law and we disagree, and do so persistently.
Lastly, since the beginning of human history the intentional taking of a life in the normal course of human relationships has been deemed to be against natural law. Today, our culture has decided this belief no longer pertains to a situation where a conceived human child is not wanted. Faced with the absurdity that a society can long endure with such a cavalier attitude toward life, we disagree, and protest, and will continue doing so persistently.
But all this is already known. The sides are drawn between those who believe equality has no obligation to natural law, and those who believe the breaking of natural law should not be allowed. So, why am I writing this? Simply for this reason: While there has always been disagreement in societies where such discussion is freely allowed, we have now entered a time in America where disagreement is considered dangerous. Let me say that again: For the first time in my life, my persistent disagreement with those championing same-sex marriage, abortion, and non-binary gender options on the basis of their total disregard for natural law, is being labeled as hate speech, and even worse, determined to be exceedingly dangerous and worthy of annihilation.
Recently, as Amy Comey Barrett was being examined for a seat on the Supreme Court, many opponents of her worldview suggested she was a dangerous threat to our nation. Dangerous threat? For believing in marriage, gender, and life as defined for thousands of years by natural law?
This is why we disagree. Those of us who believe in natural law consider that those who are throwing it aside in favor of personal desires, political goals and convenience are a threat to the moral stability of our nation. We are up for dialogue, to make our case in the marketplace of ideas. Sadly, our opponents don’t want to talk. They only want to rant and ridicule, slander and insinuate, and mostly, annihilate those who dare oppose them.
But we’re here to stay, and we will continue to disagree, hopefully agreeably, and do so persistently in hopes that our opponents will abandon the paths that lead to destruction and join us on the path of life.
Local resident David Hegg is senior pastor of Grace Baptist Church. “Ethically Speaking” appears Sundays.