by Lori Heine
There has been much debate as to who authored this famous quote: “Tell a lie often enough, and it becomes the truth.” Some say Lenin, others Goebbels, and still others Hitler. Someone not very nice said it—that much I know. I can also plainly see that many other not-so-nice people, up to the very present day, behave as if they believe that repeatedly telling lies makes them magically come true. Or at least that it convinces lots of people to believe them.
Those who believe that telling an untruth often enough makes it magically come true are not in their right minds. And those cynical enough not to care whether people believe lies, as long as that suits their own ends, have gone over to the dark side. They have given way to evil. They have lost faith in God—if they ever had any to begin with. Faith in the truth goes hand-in-hand with faith in God, because regardless of whoever may have authored that aforementioned famous quote, God is the Author of Truth.
I keep hearing, in the corporate and social media, the repeated insistence that “gays can’t be Christians,” that “all gays hate Christianity” and that “all Christians disapprove of homosexuality.” Unless they’re very twisted and dirty-minded people, by “homosexuality,” of course, they mean same-sex love. Those who reduce “homosexuality” to being about nothing more than whatever (very likely imagined) sexual acts they think gay people engage in are so debased in their thinking that it’s a waste of time to worry about what they think. Notice the way they keep repeating their nasty little assertions—over and over and over and over again. One would almost be tempted to suspect that they agreed with Lenin, Goebbels or Hitler about the magical power of lies.
They give little indication, in any case, that they care about the truth. If something is true, we don’t need to repeat it again and again. We need only say it once—and there it stands. It stands entirely on its own, and needs nothing to prop it up. People who feel they must keep repeating something are trying to convince someone: maybe the public in general, and maybe even themselves.
The message that insistently underlies their attempts to program others to believe their lies is “My way or the highway.” They are interested not in the truth, as authored by God, but in their own, alternative reality—authored by themselves. They are determined, and they are ruthless.
Lately I’ve spent a fair amount of my time, as a writer, attempting to expand the conversation on religious freedom. Certainly it is a topic that is not only important, but urgently crucial. Christians are now being led away in handcuffs for attempting to feed the homeless. Churches in cold climates, that have welcomed people off the streets and into their sanctuaries to keep them from freezing to death, are being ordered to kick them out into the snow—or face stiff fines or even jail.
Where are all the culture warriors who bawl so loudly about not being forced to bake cakes or take wedding photos? How come they so seldom (if ever) raise even the slightest objection to the fact that daily, all over this country, Christians are now being persecuted for actually doing what Christ has commanded them to do? When did refusing to serve others become a greater priority for His disciples than insisting on serving them?
We who believe in God, and trust in truth, are by no means powerless against lies. No matter how many times they may be repeated. We want to be in the church—and our so-called “Christian” adversaries want us out of it. But we have the Holy Spirit on our side. If God is for us, as Scripture says, who can be against us?
They’re certainly entitled to their own opinions, but they’re not entitled to their own facts. And the facts are there for everyone with eyes to see. I have come to believe that the current anti-gay crusade supposedly for “religious freedom” is actually about something else. It is motivated, I think, not by any genuine concern for “traditional marriage,” but for keeping the LGBT faithful out of the churches. The problem they face is not only that they war against the Holy Spirit, but that they’re about forty years too late.
An ever-increasing number of congregations and denominations are accepting us now, eventually (if not always immediately) on equal terms with everyone else. That process has gained so much momentum that there’s nothing our adversaries can do, at this point, to stop it. The lies they tell, in accelerating desperation, that “gays can’t be Christian,” that “all gays hate Christians” and that “all Christians disapprove of homosexuality,” aren’t going to come true no matter how often they repeat them. And the number of people who believe them continues to shrink.
New research, and deeper study, is being done on Scripture—not just by liberal scholars, but even by conservatives. More and more conservative churches are changing their hearts and minds about us. As we continue to come out, and to refuse to abandon our faith, our relatives and friends will continue to stand beside us in ever greater numbers. Seminaries can no longer be certain that their students will be anti-gay, or that their minds can be poisoned into rejecting us. The tide is turning—and all the lies in the world are powerless to roll it back.
This is a war that can’t be won in the legislature, or in the courts. It must be won in the churches themselves. No matter what sort of ugly laws our adversaries pass, they’re fighting against the Holy Spirit. And that’s a fight they absolutely cannot win. They aren’t going to get their way, however much they insist on it—and the highway leads not to Hell, but to Heaven.
© 2017 Lori Heine
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