The Equality Act (H.R.5), which attaches sexual orientation and gender identity to civil rights laws, would be devastating if implemented. Not necessarily for the church, for despite the threat to religious liberty it poses, the church will press on. The Lord has always built His church in the face of man’s opposition. But the Act will codify, and therefore deepen, our cultural confusion, and encourage many who are distressed concerning their sexual identity to walk down a dark and irreversible path. Questions concerning bathroom choice or sports are only the tip of the iceberg. In the name of freedom and equality, the Equality Act is oppression of the first order.
As the church has recognized from of old, Jesus is “very God and very man.” As “very God,” He bears the perfect image of God. If we want to know who God is, we look at Christ. The presence of God among us posed a question: What do we think of God? The crucifixion of Jesus answers it: Since Eden, man has sought to evade God. And the best way to evade God is to seek to do away with Him. To mock and twist Him into our own image. To paraphrase the Gospel of John, the light came into the darkness, and the darkness tried to extinguish Him.
Jesus is also “very man.” He bears the perfect image of man, and is therefore who man was created to be. If we want to know who man is, we look at Christ. The presence of this man among us likewise posed a question: What do we think of man? The crucifixion of Jesus answers it: We mock, we disfigure, and we seek to extinguish Him. The crucifixion of Jesus is therefore not just a rejection of God, but a rejection of man. Of course, these always go hand in hand, for man is the image of God. To embrace one is to embrace the other, and to forsake one is to forsake the other. We reject not just God, but also man when we seek to determine who we will be, rather than to discover who God created us to be.
The Equality Act attacks the heart of who man is, reinforcing a culture that bears false witness to who we are, a culture which insists that ultimately there is no male and female and that we can decide who we want to be apart from who God created us to be. The transgender movement encourages those in personal distress to disfigure themselves permanently, whether by hormones or scalpel. It mocks and disfigures man, and then tells us that we are as we should be.
None of this is to say that everyone who supports the Equality Act means to destroy man. Gender confusion is weighty, painful, and not easily addressed. Yet the Equality Act and other laws and/or programs that support and encourage sexual disfigurement don’t address the problem. They deepen it, promoting “solutions” that may seem compassionate on the surface, but are destructive and often irreversible. It is the codification of a doctrine that always leads to ruin—“everyone did what was right in his own eyes.” As the mother of a dear friend of mine said as she mourned the loss of her troubled daughter, “suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary crisis.” So also here. We know not what we do.
Jesus was crucified precisely because all of us—without exception—have decided who we will be apart from who God has created us to be. Sin—and the confusion that always accompanies our turning away from God—is not someone else’s problem. It’s mine. Yet, looking down upon we who had mocked him and sought to extinguish him, Jesus prayed “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.”
God is good. That’s the message of the Cross. Furthermore, not only does God forgive us our sin, He will raise us in our full humanity, restored to who He created us to be. That’s the message of the Resurrection.