It’s becoming an all-too-predictable cycle: A notable person in business, education, government, the arts or entertainment makes a public comment, in line with Scripture, on some hot-button issue like abortion, the environment, Islam—or same-sex marriage. Within hours Facebook, Twitter, the blogosphere, radio shows, and trash-talk TV are filled with experts, spokespersons, commentators and others with enraged opinions—all trying to dismiss and destroy this individual for comments that, in the past, would have been accepted as reasonable.
The most recent example of this phenomenon is Dan Cathy, president and chief operating officer of the popular fast-food chain Chick-fil-A. Cathy is being maligned for highlighting the Christian and pro-family values that are the foundations for his company’s success, and for warning that the normalization of homosexuality is placing America in danger of God’s judgment.
Of course, it would have been easier for Mr. Cathy to have kept his mouth shut. He certainly knew that standing up for what’s right would make him and his company a target of “gay” activist wrath, as it has in the past. But I for one am thankful that he took the stand he did, because in doing so he is setting an example that other Christians are going to be called upon to follow in the days ahead.
As Christians, we have to get used to the fact that, in the case of same-sex marriage, militant homosexuals and their fellow travelers will not tolerate anyone who suggests that their sinful lifestyle is anything but normal and worthy of celebration. If we stand up and declare that homosexuality is sinful—and make no mistake: We Must!—we are going to be despised and targeted.
I understand well the cost of taking a public stand. As a person who lived a homosexual lifestyle for 14 years before being set free by the blood of Jesus, I know the process by which these activists will try to destroy and defame anyone who opposes their agenda. The very fact that I boldly declare a person can be set free from this bondage makes me a special target of their rage.
Plain and simple, the homosexual activist community will not tolerate any opinion that challenges their lifestyle, that opposes same-sex marriage and that invites those enchained in same-sex attraction to step into freedom and deliverance through Christ.
There is no common ground between darkness and light, and—like Dan Cathy has demonstrated—the church must be willing to stand and declare the truth with clarity and compassion, and be prepared for the resulting backlash.
On a personal level, I have received hundreds of threats and insults from those who would like to silence me. But I know what it means to be free from the bondage of homosexuality and I will not keep quiet.
Nor should you be quiet. Every one of us has a responsibility to actively stand for the truth—and that includes standing for the sanctity of marriage between a man and a woman.
The good news is that we can do this with boldness, knowing that we have the Spirit and grace of God on our side. God has not given us the spirit of fear, but of power, love and a sound mind (2 Tim. 1:7), and while the forces of darkness will try to intimidate us into submission, we know that the true fight is not against flesh and blood, but against the principalities and powers of darkness (Eph. 6:12). This is a spiritual battle and that is how we must fight it.
I am thankful for all the godly people like Dan Cathy and others who speak up for righteousness in the public square. But rank-and-file Christians must join this fight too, on a spiritual level, through prayer and the Word of God.
In the days ahead I want to encourage you to thank Dan Cathy for his stand—and his godly example—by dining at your local Chick-Fil-A restaurant. And on a deeper level, take time to pray fervently for those of us who have a platform to speak publicly on the issue of homosexuality, so that we will do so with grace and love. God is still on the throne, and He is still in the business of setting people free.
Janet Boynes, author of Called Out: A Former Lesbian’s Discovery of Freedom (Creation House), ministers around the world in churches and conferences, helping others find freedom in Christ. For more about her ministry, visit janetboynesministries.com.