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Thursday, July 12, 2012

Out of the Closet

I read recently (I don't recall where) about one of Bruce Willis's daughter's "coming out" party. We know what "coming out" means, right? So apparently his daughter was identifying herself as a homosexual. As it turned out, they were using the older concept of "coming out", that of being presented to society, the "debutante" concept. No, she wasn't telling the world she was a lesbian. She was just turning 16.

Anderson Cooper, on the other hand, announced to the world that he was indeed a homosexual. Hollywood, of course, was in an uproar. If you are "like that", you keep it quiet, you keep it on the down-low. Don't tell anyone. The studios will keep it off the public radar. They'll pay off people and keep the press away and ... oh, wait ... that didn't happen, did it? No, as it turns out, Cooper is being praised for his "coming out". CNN is not threatening to dismiss him. The world is not shocked. No one is particularly disturbed at all.

How would that work in reverse? How about, say, a Tim Tebow who comes out and says, "I'm a Bible-believing, convinced-and-living-it, evangelical Christian"? How does the world take that? Well, of course they applaud and appreciate it! After all, look at what genuine Christians have done in our world. They are, as a group, the most generous and giving people. They formed the basis for the strongest nation on this planet. It was their morality and selflessness and their puritan work ethic that made this country what it is. Their residual effect is still echoing through the halls of Congress and on the streets in the form of hospitals they founded and homeless shelters they built and food for the poor that they've distributed. Why wouldn't the world ... oh, wait ... that didn't happen either, did it? While it's okay to be a "Christian" like Katy Perry or Amy Grant (who was once quoted as saying, "I'm a musician first and then a Christian."), by no means are you allowed to be a Bible-believing Evangelical Christian. That's just crazy! Look, if you're one of those, keep it quiet, you know? We'll try to keep the press off you and you stay silent about that stuff and we'll just keep it on the down-low. It'll be alright.

There have a been a very few that have gotten away with coming out of the Christian closet. Kurt Warner has remained consistent and outspoken, but he's retired. Stephen Baldwin was still acting up until a couple of years ago. Chuck Norris is still honored as a tough guy even though he's an outspoken Christian with several Christian books under his belt. (He wrote an interesting piece about the "Chuck Norris mania" on the Internet that you might enjoy here.) And he's pretty much retired, too. Yes, it's very few.

When Kirk Cameron said that he believed that homosexual behavior was a sin, they coined a new term. Now when you "come out" as a Christian in public, you'll be "Kirk Cameroned". That is, if you stand up for genuine Christianity, for biblical Christianity, for Christian virtue and Christian values, you can expect to be sidelined, scorned, ridiculed, and eliminated. Sarah Palin's biggest sin was not that she was a woman, but that she was a Christian. While Al Gore and even Obama made the same claim, Palin seemed to mean it and that meant she was out of the race. Tim Tebow has been ridiculed and mocked openly and loudly for his position. We can expect that those in the public eye who "come out of the closet" as Christians will likely receive the same treatment today that homosexual stars would have expected to receive in former times.

If you've ever wondered what it means to "do a 180", this is it. Our nation and our culture have done it. What was "sin" is now commendable and what was "good" is now evil (Isa 5:20). So, "Christian" is the new "gay"? Has it come to this in a "Christian nation"? Times, they are a-changin'.

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