Jim Denison | Denison Forum on Truth and Culture | Tuesday, April 19, 2016
God is doing amazing things today. Genuine spiritual awakening is sweeping many nations in the world. More people are coming to Christ than ever before. Our Father is the King of the universe, and he is still on his throne.
Please remember these facts as you read what follows.
Quartz is generating attention with this headline: "For many of us, monogamy is not an emotionally healthy pursuit." The writer calls for us to leave behind the "fairy tale" that monogamy is vital to an "emotionally fulfilled life."
The article assumes that there are no objective moral reasons for marital fidelity apart from concern for the children. So a "suitable alternative" is for couples to remain faithful until children leave the home, then embrace an "open relationship."
Quartz has also published a fascinating article protesting the "commodification" of women's bodies on social media as girls use selfies and other pictures to get attention. The author complains that this trend is "at odds with the goals of feminism." She's right, but she doesn't go nearly far enough.
The availability of birth control and the legalization of abortion have "commodified" women's bodies for decades. Since sexual relations can now avoid the consequence of pregnancy or children, men and women more often settle for, or are pressured into, casual sexual relationships. Biblical morality is considered outdated and irrelevant to this issue, of course.
I've saved the most disturbing story for last: a documentary called Dolphin Lover has gone viral since being released on YouTube last week. It describes a relationship between a man named Malcolm Brenner and a dolphin. The story is so disturbing that I will not say more about it in this Cultural Commentary. Rather, I have addressed the larger issue in a website article you can read here.
It may be hard to believe, but I'm not writing today to shock or discourage you but to encourage you. Consider two facts.
One: The Word of God is the only answer to the human condition. In Psalm 107, the writer rejoiced that God "satisfies the longing soul" (v. 9). Here's how: "He sent out his word and healed them, and delivered them from their destruction" (v. 20).
Wherever people are turning to biblical authority and morality, they are experiencing moral and spiritual awakening. You and I have the antidote to the disease of sin. When we believe and speak God's word, God's Spirit moves and God's Kingdom advances. This was true in the pagan, hedonistic cultures of Canaan and Rome, and it is true today.
Two: Our relationship with God is not dependent on our fallen culture. Anne Graham Lotz is right: "We will never be separated from God, because Jesus was." Discouragement is a tool of the enemy, but hope is a fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22).
God calls us to live as "children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, holding fast to the word of life" (Philippians 2:15–16). If no one else will, will you?
Publication date: April 19, 2016
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