Ken Ham and Dr. David Menton – Why Is the Scopes Trial Significant?

Christian morality on the whole seems to be rapidly declining in America and the western hemisphere, but did you know there is a connection between this and the 1925 Scopes trial?

In recent years, removing the Ten Commandments from public spaces has been big news. In fact, Christian morality on the whole seems to be rapidly declining in America and the western hemisphere: abortion is on the rise, divorce rates are climbing, gay marriage issues are increasing. But did you know there is a connection between these events and the 1925 Scopes trial?

In 2003, news reports featured many people demonstrating in front of the Alabama court building after the decision to remove the Ten Commandments monument as a public display. Some were lying prostrate on the ground, crying out to the Lord to stop this from happening. But how many of these people really understood the foundational nature of this battle?

If we asked the demonstrators, “Do you believe in millions of years for the age of the earth—and what about the days of creation in Genesis 1?” — well, our long experience in creation ministry indicates that the answer would most likely be something like “What? They’re taking the Ten Commandments out — why are you asking me irrelevant questions?”

To read the rest of Ken Ham and Dr. David Menton’s article, click here.

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Terry Mortenson – Adam, Morality, the Gospel, and the Authority of Scripture


In the preceding chapters several important propositions have been thoroughly established.

1. Genesis 1–11 clearly teaches, and the rest of the Bible confirms, that God supernaturally created Adam from dust and Eve from his rib (not from any pre-existing living creature) on the sixth literal 24-hour day of history a little over 6,000 years ago.

2. All humans are uniquely made in the image of God and all humans who have ever lived are descended from Adam and Eve, regardless of their language, skin color, eye shape, etc. There is only one race — Adam’s race.

3. Until the 20th century, this was the universal belief of Bible-believing Christians about Adam (except for some in the late 19th century who after denying any chronological value to the genealogies of Genesis 5 and 11 pushed back the date of Adam’s creation several tens of thousands of years).

4. The fossil evidence does not support the idea of human evolution, but rather confirms Genesis. Controlled by a naturalistic (i.e., atheistic) worldview, the evolutionists have misinterpreted the evidence. The public has been deceived by imaginative art and relentless dogmatic claims that do not survive careful scrutiny.

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Mitch Stokes – The Problem with Human-Centered Morality

Who’s to Say?

Let’s say moral value is just whatever we say it is. If this were true, we would have to give up the way we normally think about morality.

Say you had a disagreement. Let’s say 50% of the people on the planet thought that lying was OK and 50% thought that lying was wrong. Now which is it? Is lying right or is it wrong?

Well, there’s no fact of the matter in this case; it just depends on what you think. To claim that lying was is wrong would be like saying, “You know what? Vanilla is definitely better than chocolate. And you are wrong to say otherwise.”

That would be the logical ramification of not having an objective morality . . . and we would just have to learn how to deal with that. If there’s no objective morality, we simply can’t go around saying, “No, I am right. You are wrong.”

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Dr. Albert Mohler – No Truth Without Love, No Love Without Truth: The Church’s Great Challenge

The church’s engagement with the culture involves a host of issues, controversies, and decisions–but no issue defines our current cultural crisis as clearly as homosexuality. Some churches and denominations have capitulated to the demands of the homosexual rights movement, and now accept homosexuality as a fully valid lifestyle.

Other denominations are tottering on the brink, and without a massive conservative resistance, they are almost certain to abandon biblical truth and bless what the Bible condemns. Within a few short years, a major dividing line has become evident–with those churches endorsing homosexuality on one side, and those stubbornly resisting the cultural tide on the other.

The homosexual rights movement understands that the evangelical church is one of the last resistance movements committed to a biblical morality. Because of this, the movement has adopted a strategy of isolating Christian opposition, and forcing change by political action and cultural pressure.

Can we count on evangelicals to remain steadfastly biblical on this issue? Not hardly. Scientific surveys and informal observation reveal that we have experienced a significant loss of conviction among youth and young adults. No moral revolution can succeed without shaping and changing the minds of young people and children.

Inevitably, the schools have become crucial battlegrounds for the culture war. The Christian worldview has been undermined by pervasive curricula that teach moral relativism, reduce moral commandments to personal values, and promote homosexuality as a legitimate and attractive lifestyle option.

Our churches must teach the basics of biblical morality to Christians who will otherwise never know that the Bible prescribes a model for sexual relationships. Young people must be told the truth about homosexuality–and taught to esteem marriage as God’s intention for human sexual relatedness.

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Book Review – Crucifying Morality by R. W. Glenns

Pastor and author R. W. Glenn in his latest book Crucifying Morality: The Gospel of the Beatitudes addresses one of the most beloved yet arguably greatly misunderstood periscopes of scripture. Far too many believers have approached the Beatitudes in a formulaic manner, treating them as the biblical “Top 10 countdown” on things to check off in order to be holy. At the very outset of his book, Glenn warns against that approach aptly noting “don’t moralize the Beatitudes, sterilizing the gospel as though it is primarily or even only a rulebook for nicer living. You cannot put the mind-altering, world-shattering nature of the Beatitudes into neat categories. Jesus won’t let you.” It is this typical stovepipe approach to Matthew 5:1-12 that Glenn spends the remainder of his book adroitly discussing, bringing a proper exegetical methodology to bear rather than the typical flippant approach often utilized when engaging this passage.

Crucifying Morality hearkens back to the writing of the great Puritan authors Thomas Watson and Jeremiah Burroughs own works on the Beatitudes, works that specifically engaged and analyzed the application of Jesus’ statements to the Christian walk. These nine earth shattering statements by Jesus are what Glenn rightly describes as a “gospel litmus test. They show you how much (or how little) your faith is in the gospel of grace” within the overall framework of the gospel, which is after all the context in which the Beatitudes resides. This is an important point to stress given the reality that the Beatitudes are far more than a set of rules. Conversely, they encapsulate a message that is focused on the believer seeking Jesus in all they do resulting in the aspects of the Beatitudes becoming what the bride of Christ should exhibit in their behavior and approach to the world.

A very useful aspect of Glenn’s book is the vast number of ways it can be utilized. Each chapter concludes with a series of application questions focused on not just the needs of the individual reader, but also how to apply what has been read in that chapter to a much broader audience to include the local church and surrounding community. This is an excellent approach as it broadens the readers perspective from merely personal application to a perspective more in keeping with the Great Commission, namely that of expanding from mere introspection to engaging Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, and the uttermost parts of the earth. After all, immediately following the Beatitudes in Matthew 5 is the declaration by Jesus that we are salt and light to the world. Part of being salt and light is understanding how to properly understand the Beatitudes within the structure of the gospel. But wait, there’s more!

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Dr. Albert Mohler – Adultery: When Law and Morality (used to) Agree

The Colorado legislature is considering the repeal of laws in the state that criminalize adultery or any act that would “promote sexual immorality.” According to Lynn Bartels of The Denver Post, the process of repeal is now well underway, with the House Judiciary Committee voting 8-3 to take adultery and sexual immorality out of the criminal code in Colorado.

Missing from the legislative debate, at least as reported in the media, is any acknowledgment of how such statutes entered the law books in the first place. Throughout most of human history, morality and law were united and in agreement when it came to the reality of adultery and the larger context of sexual immorality. Laws criminalizing adultery were adopted because the society believed that marriage was central to its own existence and flourishing, and that adultery represented a dagger struck at the heart of the society, as well as the heart of marriage.

Marriage was not considered merely a private arrangement. Every society regulates marriage, and most have adopted clear and punitive sanctions against adultery. But the moral and cultural revolutions of the past several decades have shifted the meaning of marriage from a public institution to a private contract.

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Dr. Albert Mohler – Bracketing Morality: The Marginalization of Moral Argument in the Same-Sex Marriage Debate

“Somewhere along the way, standing up for gay marriage went from nervy to trendy.” This was the assessment offered by Frank Bruni, an influential openly-gay columnist for The New York Times. Bruni’s column, published just as the Supreme Court was poised to hear oral arguments in the two same-sex marriage cases now before it, is a celebration of the fact that, as he sees it, same-sex marriage is soon to be the law of the land, whatever the Court may decide. “The trajectory is undeniable. The trend line is clear. And the choice before the justices is whether to be handmaidens of history, or whether to sit it out.”

Bruni may well be right, given the trajectory and the trend-line he has described. Of course, Bruni, along with his fellow columnists, editors, and reporters for The New York Times will, along with their friends in the larger world of elite media, bear much of the responsibility for this. They are certain that their work is the mission of human liberation from irrational prejudice.

In the most important section of Bruni’s column, he writes: “In an astonishingly brief period of time, this country has experienced a seismic shift in opinion — a profound social and political revolution — when it comes to gay and lesbian people.”


Dr. Albert Mohler – Morally Straight? The Transformation of the Boy Scouts of America

The comprehensive scope of the moral revolution America is currently experiencing is likely to surprise many Americans when they realize that the Boy Scouts are now swept up in the revolutionary tide.

Word came yesterday that the Boy Scouts of America is poised to change its policy preventing the participation of openly homosexual scouts and leaders. According to a spokesman for the Boy Scouts, the group may make the formal decision to end the policy as early as next week.

This announcement comes just six months after the B.S.A. board declared that it would not reconsider the policy. Deron Smith, B.S.A. national spokesman, said last July that a special committee established by the B.S.A. board had unanimously recommended keeping the policy. Smith said that the committee “came to the conclusion that this policy is absolutely the best policy for the Boy Scouts.”

Back in July, B.S.A. chief executive Bob Mazzuca told the press: “The vast majority of the parents of youth we serve value their right to address issues of same-sex orientation within their family, with spiritual advisers and at the appropriate time and in the right setting.” He also said, “We fully understand that no single policy will accommodate the many diverse views among our membership or society.”

Note carefully the language used by B.S.A. leadership just six months ago. The decision to maintain the policy barring openly homosexual members and leaders was “absolutely the best policy” and was supported by “the vast majority of the parents of the youth we serve.” The special committee had been unanimous in their recommendation to keep the policy.

Now, just six months later, the Boy Scouts are ready to announce a complete revocation of that policy. Deron Smith, the very same spokesman for the group, said yesterday that the new policy “would allow the religious, civic, or educational organizations that oversee and deliver Scouting to determine how to address the issue.” He described the new policy with this rather stark language: “The Boy Scouts would not, under any circumstances, dictate a position to units, members, or parents. Under the proposed policy the B.S.A. would not require any chartered organization to act in ways inconsistent with that organization’s mission, principles, or religious beliefs.”

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Dr. Elizabeth Mitchell – BSA and Gay: Phase One

Boy Scouts of America votes to admit openly gay members.

Just thirteen years ago, the United States Supreme Court reaffirmed that fact that the Boy Scouts of America (BSA), as a private membership organization, is free to admit or deny admittance to anyone they choose.1 And now, the BSA has chosen.

Boy Scouts pledge to be “morally straight,” and historically biblical morality has been the standard on which Scout morality was based. Not anymore. Many traveled to Grapevine, Texas, to let Scout leadership voting on the proposal to admit openly gay youths to the Boy Scouts of America know their feelings. But the position represented by this mother and son lost.

After years of controversy about whether or not the BSA should permit homosexual leaders and members, the organization’s leadership council this week voted to allow openly homosexual boys to join and participate. While no vote was taken on the question of allowing homosexual leaders—leaving the ban on openly gay leaders in place for the moment—gay activists are already gearing up for phase two: another push to get gay leaders accepted. Indeed, how can BSA endorse the acceptability of a homosexual lifestyle in its boys and continue to deny it as an acceptable lifestyle in its adult leaders?

Nearly 3 million youth and a million adults participate in the Boy Scouts of America, and since 1911 they have all pledged to be “morally straight.” Just last summer the BSA reaffirmed its 22-year policy of “not granting membership to open or avowed homosexuals.” The Boy Scouts has never been a Christian organization per se, but it has historically held to Christian moral standards as defined in the Bible. In 1991, the BSA established its ban on openly homosexual members and leaders because homosexual behavior is not “morally straight.” More than 70% of the BSA troops are sponsored by religious groups that tend to take a dim view of the homosexual lifestyle. The fact that openly homosexual leaders are still not permitted affirms the fact that biblical morality has been the acknowledged source of the Scouts’ moral code. God’s Word is the only standard for morality. Scripture is clear that homosexual behavior is sinful and immoral (Romans 1:26–27; 1 Corinthians 6:9–11; 1 Timothy 1:8–11).

So how is it that this private organization has opted to redefine the standards of morality that its members promise to uphold? How is it that homosexual activists, excluded from both leadership and membership by longstanding policy, have succeeded in gaining BSA affirmation of their lifestyle?

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Dr. Albert Mohler, Tim Keller & Collin Hansen – What Is Morality Other than Harm?

Ask your neighbors, and whether they know it or not, they probably follow John Stuart Mill as a guiding moral authority. The 19th-century British philosopher taught, “The only purpose for which power can be rightfully exercised over any member of a civilized community, against his will, is to prevent harm to others.” This view has long since captured the popular Western imagination, shaping a whole range of moral debates, especially related to sexuality. Consider this typical argument for gay marriage offered by Chicago Tribune columnist Eric Zorn:

To me, immoral conduct is that which harms others, period. To you or your religious tradition, it may encompass much more, and that’s fine. Advocates aren’t asking you or your officiants to bless gay marriage, celebrate it or even, in your heart, to like it. They’re asking you to recognize the line America tries to maintain between personal morality and the judgment of the law; between what’s your business and what’s none of your business.

This view makes perfect sense if we regard society as a collection of atomized individuals with no higher authority than themselves. But no one actually lives this way, at least consistently. As moral psychologist Jonathan Haidt points out in his recent book The Righteous Mind: Why Good People Are Divided by Politics and Religion, “Some actions are wrong even though they don’t hurt anyone.” Just ask your veteran neighbor what he thinks about burning the American flag. Or ask your pet-loving neighbor, whose dog has been killed by a passing car, if you can eat the meat. Yes, the revulsion you feel suggests that morality encompasses more than harm.

Even so, Christians living in Western cultures face an uphill climb in convincing our neighbors that the common good requires laws that limit personal freedom, especially in the realm of sexuality. So how might we begin to make such a case? I asked Tim Keller and Albert Mohler, so check out this wide-ranging discusion about right and wrong, human flourishing, personal liberation, and the ties that bind our society together.

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