Since thousands of Americans went to Chick-fil-A to show their support last Wednesday, several Christian commentators have come out and condemned the move as supposedly “unloving” and driving a further wedge between the church and the gay community. Even though many of the customers weren’t Christians (many were even gay, turning out in support of free speech rather than agreement with the CEO’s statements), and even though the restaurant has been targeted with threats, vandalism and legal hassles for nothing more than speaking an opinion, these Christians seek to pin the blame on the church.
Matthew Paul Turner writes on his blog:
Yesterday’s campaign, while I don’t think it should be considered or called “hate,” neither can it be called love. Christians all over America ignored the second greatest commandment: to love our neighbors
[…] People felt hate and we ignored that. At the end of the day, regardless of whether or not your Christian understanding of scripture harbors hate or not, a large group of people felt hated. Again, we can debate this point all day long, but that does not change the fact that people felt hatred because of what happened yesterday. Whether or not hate actually existed is not the point, people felt hated. And rather than acknowledging those feelings or trying to understand or engage them in any way, Christians everywhere marched off to their local CFA like it was a cross to bear, a necessity, a battle cry of some sort, the waffle fry’s last stand.
If you saw a kid being beat up on the playground by a bunch of bullies, wouldn’t the loving thing to do be to step in and defend him? What if the bullies told you, “He deserved it! He has religious beliefs that are ‘intolerant’! He has no right to speak them publicly!” Would you consider it “loving” to step back and let them continue beating him to a pulp so as to prove that you don’t “hate” bullies? Of course not! Dan Cathy, CEO of Chick-fil-A, was being bullied on a national stage for daring to share his religious beliefs with an obscure religious newspaper. The loving thing to do was not to simply abandon him to the wolves.
Unfortunately, many people in the gay community have been seduced by the propaganda to believe that “love” means absolute and total agreement with their lifestyle and agenda (something, of course, that Bible-believing Christians simply cannot do). Anything less than that is defined as “hate,” even though it is not. We have allowed them to steal and redefine these terms, so now we are left with trying to explain to them how love doesn’t always mean getting your way. That’s how God loves us, after all. He loves us too much to always give us our way, especially if what we want will lead us to destruction. God’s love doesn’t mean caving to his children’s demands every time they yell “you hate me!” for not getting their way. We are called to love as God does, not as the world wants to redefine it.
Yesterday’s hoopla surrounding CFA did nothing to prove that Christians don’t hate gay people. Oh I know that most Christians will say, “I don’t hate gay people!!”
But did supporting CFA Appreciation Day prove that?
To say that Christians are responsible for proving that they don’t “hate” is to accept the Left’s false premise that we HAVE been guilty of hate, and therefore the onus is on us to prove otherwise. Nonsense! That’s like saying all rich people are responsible for proving that they’re honest and generous because the unjust smear campaign against them has convinced people that rich people are automatically guilty of dishonesty and greed.
Saul Alinsky, an anti-Christian activist who dedicated his book to Lucifer, taught his followers several key strategies for attacking churches, Christians, and anyone else opposed to leftist agendas:
“Whenever possible, go outside the expertise of the enemy.” Because Christians don’t engage in targeted smear campaigns, it usually doesn’t occur to us that this is what we are facing. This tactic is intended to create insecurity, anxiety and second-guessing of oneself. Blind-siding an organization with ridiculous accusations (such as “hate”) that they are suddenly forced to defend themselves against is a favorite tactic for accomplishing this. Worn down with attacks, a good-hearted person or organization is not above telling themselves in self-doubt, “Maybe they’re right. Maybe I’m a ‘hater’ and ‘bigot’ for not giving them what they want.” That’s exactly what the strategy is intended to do.
Alinsky also said, “Make the enemy live up to its own book of rules.” Christians are painfully aware of what sinners we are, how much we need a Savior, and how far we fall short of the God’s righteousness. Alinsky taught his followers how to use the voice of the Accuser against us. Not only do they seek to exploit and shame us with how far we fall short of our own beliefs, but they demand that we live up to our values as THEY define them. In other words, in order to be considered “loving,” we must meet THEIR definition of “love,” which means bowing to all their demands. Otherwise, they will smear us as “haters” and “hypocrites.” Alinsky said of this tactic: “You can kill them with this because no one can possibly obey all of their own rules. (This is a serious rule. The besieged entity’s very credibility and reputation is at stake, because if activists catch it lying or not living up to its commitments, they can continue to chip away at the damage.)”
When a group has become the victim of a sinister smear campaign designed to intimidate and silence them (as the false accusations of “hate” are designed to do), we don’t blame the target. We expose the attackers and their lies, and counter it with the truth. If the public doesn’t understand that these false accusations of “hate” are part of a coordinated smear campaign, it’s because Christians haven’t been successful in exposing it. The solution is to wake up and expose it for what it is, not tacitly admit guilt to a charge that isn’t true.
Turner further states on his blog:
By rallying behind CFA, Christians put an issue above people. And it’s impossible to follow Jesus when issues trump people.
Does defending the free speech rights of ALL people (including gay people) mean Christians who support the 1st Amendment are putting an issue over people? No! It’s BECAUSE an innocent man was being attacked and his rights trampled that we knew we had to stand up and tell the bullies “you don’t have to agree with what he says, but this kind of bullying is NOT OK.” We know if the bullies go unchallenged, they’ll be even more emboldened and merciless with their next victim.
The church didn’t look for this fight. The Left did. This hoopla actually started back in Feb 2011, when Chick-fil-A dared to donate food to a marriage conference. Don’t businessmen have a right to donate to any cause they want? The Left was looking to isolate groups like Focus on the Family and anybody who dared to support them (like Chick-fil-A), and they created this stink to make an example out of them (and also create a distraction in an election year). It’s a typical Alinskyite tactic, and one that even private citizens can be the victim of (as several of Romney’s donors have discovered).
Here are a few more “Rules For Radicals” that Alinsky taught that are being used against Christians:
“Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.” Whenever anybody dares to speak out or stand up to them, their immediate goal is to cut that person or group off from their support and from public sympathy. They want you to become so radioactive that even your best friend is ashamed to admit knowing you. Alinsky elaborates: “Go after people and not institutions; people hurt faster than institutions. (This is cruel, but very effective. Direct, personalized criticism and ridicule works.)”
“Power is not only what you have, but what the enemy thinks you have.” How is it that a group which comprises less than 2% of the population can hold such incredible political clout? Why is that even churches seem so eager to appease them and accommodate their every demand? Simply put, through their allies in the media, they’ve succeed in convincing Americans that they are the majority, and that only a tiny, bigoted minority is all that stands in the way of “progress.” Don’t buy the lie and lose heart.
“If you push a negative hard enough, it will push through and become a positive.” The attackers want the public to perceive them as the underdog, and perceive their victims as the aggressors. This is why radical gay activists portray themselves as victims of bigotry, and anyone who disagrees with them as “haters.” For those without the discernment to see through the charade, this deceptive marketing campaign is very effective.
Do you see now why they went after Dan Cathy so vicously, and smeared his business as selling “hate”?
Do you see now why Democrat mayors felt so confident in public opinion being on their side, that they thought they could tell a private company that they’re not allowed to open a business in their city simply because of the owner’s religious beliefs?
Do you see now why it was necessary for Christians to stand up to these tactics, expose them for the evil that they are, speak the truth, and not be naive and intimidated by what we’re up against?
Jesus told us:
“Be as cunning as snakes but as innocent as doves.” ~ Matthew 10:16
I gotta tell you, it really irks me when Christians are so worried about being doves (or being perceived as doves) that they forget that we are also commanded to be as cunning as serpents.
Whether we realize it or not, war has been declared against us by radical, anti-Christian groups in our own land. We can roll over, bow to their tactics and hope they’ll go away and leave in peace, or we can take a stand for what’s right.
Now, I believe in turning the other cheek when it comes to personal attacks. I believe in loving your enemy. There is no question that we are called to do these things. We can reach out in love on one side, while still holding our ground and protecting the innocent on the other. The two are not mutually exclusive.
However, if a rampaging army was descending on your home and family, turning the other cheek would not only be suicidal – it would be wrong. We are called to defend the defenseless, to stand for righteousness, and to speak the truth.
Simply surrendering our culture to those who wish to destroy it is NOT the loving thing to do, or how we follow Christ’s commandment to disciple the nations by “teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you.” (Matthew 28:20)
I have so many Christian friends right now who are afraid to speak their opinions. Afraid of being called “hateful”, when they’re not. Afraid of people misunderstanding them, because they speak the Truth in love. Afraid that if they say anything that sounds like it comes from their moral beliefs, it’s automatically invalidated. “Christians need to stay out of politics”, they hear, and wonder if it’s true. Even Christian friends will tell them to stay quiet because they think that taking a stand on moral issues will make people less receptive to hearing the Gospel.
I’ve got news for you, anytime a Christian stands up for ANY moral issue, they will be called “hateful” and “bigoted”, even when they’re respectful, tactful, and loving about telling the Truth. Darkness hates the light, and will always spew venom when it’s shined in their eyes.
What if we were to lay down on moral issues and let them have their way. Would that make them “like” us more? No! They’ll still always see anyone who believes in God as ignorant, narrow-minded, and an obstacle to “progress”. Appeasement only makes the aggressor more aggressive.
Remember that the TRUE aggressor here is not people, but the spirit of this world: the Enemy who has been battling for the hearts and minds of Americans (and winning ever since the Sexual Revolution). If we don’t stop the tide of moral decay, our nation will be destroyed from the inside out, just like Rome and great societies of the past.
The Enemy wants us to believe that the only way to be truly loving and not threaten our ability to share God’s love is to be silent. It’s a lie. Watching people throw themselves over a cliff, while insisting that the rest of society go with them, is not love!
The Gospel is offensive and foolish to people who don’t understand it. The idea that there is a loving God who made the universe and has a paternal right to tell us what we should and should not do is offensive. The idea that we will all someday answer to Him for our actions is offensive. The idea that there is a moral standard apart from our own invention is offensive. You can say it in the sweetest way possible, and it will offend. That’s the price we pay for telling the Truth.
People say that the Church should not be involved in politics. That’s a lie, too. Every citizen has the right to vote their conscience, whether that conscience has been formed by the Bible or their favorite Humanist college professor. Christians have just as much right to express their views, engage in the debate and influence the direction of our country as any other group.
Don’t let people intimidate you by saying, “this is why the world hates Christians”. They hated Jesus, no matter how loving He was, because He told the Truth.
I’m not saying we have permission to be obnoxious and rude, start pointless debates or force our opinions where they aren’t wanted (if we do, we deserve to be hated!), but we must never be fooled into silence for the false promise of the world somehow “liking” us more or being more open to the Gospel.
“Our fight is not against people on earth but against the rulers and authorities and the powers of this world’s darkness, against the spiritual powers of evil in the heavenly world. That is why you need to put on God’s full armor. Then on the day of evil you will be able to stand strong. And when you have finished the whole fight, you will still be standing.” ~ Ephesians 6:12-13
A pastor wrote a tender letter that I thought communicated this beautifully:
Dear Homosexual Friend,
I’m writing you this note because I just ate Chic-Fil-A. Some of my Christian friends around the country also just finished eating Chic-Fil-A. Some of my other Christian friends got mad at those of us who ate Chic-Fil-A because they said that you, my homosexual friend and neighbor, may view us as intolerant, hateful bigots.
I wrote you to personally inform you that my friends who ate chicken today did so not because they hate you but because they hate bullies.
I know that you understand all too well how it feels to be bullied. Sometimes you just have to stand up to the bully by eating a chicken sandwich! All kidding aside, this is a 1st Amendment issue, not an attack on homosexuals. Let me explain.
No one likes to be bullied. It’s not a good look, for anyone. Basically because a Christian man shared his religious views some people with governmental control decided they would intimidate and harass this man’s business by using the power of the government. That’s bullying. Bullying is bad. The 1st Amendment protects personal speech from government punishment. These Mayors weren’t playing nice so a lot of Christians wanted to tell the government to back off. People in government like to count votes and they understand the power of the purse. So a bunch of people ate Chic-Fil-A today.
I’m sure at times you feel that people who claim the name of Christ are bullies. I’m sure you’ve seen that inbred group of people known as Westboro Baptist Church on TV. They are not Baptist and they aren’t a church. They’re bullies. It seems that the 8 of those people have multiplied like zombies because every time a media source wants to show how intolerant, hateful and bigoted my chicken-eating friends are, they show the same 8 people from different angles. They’re always sure to show you the same 8 signs too. Actually they show you file footage as well to make it appear that there are about 200 signs being carried by these 8 people.
Can I let you in on a secret?
I was actually picketed by those hateful people once. My crime? Attending a worship service at Dr. Jerry Falwell’s Thomas Road Baptist Church. You read that right… Those 8 fruit cakes that the media keeps showing you protested AGAINST another guy the media made out to be a hateful bigot. He wasn’t. I promise. I got to see him up close when I was in college. You would have liked him if you knew him personally. Larry Flint did. Al Sharpton did.
Larry and Al disagreed with Dr. Falwell on social issues but they liked him personally. That is possible. Anyway, do you know what Dr. Falwell had done to deserve getting picketed by the bullies of Westboro? He invited gay leader and president of Soul Force, Mel White, and about 300 homosexual activists to Thomas Road and Liberty University for a discussion. Dr. Falwell fed them and set up civil conversations on the campus. I was there. It was peaceful. Isn’t that crazy? Gasp! Shock! My guess is that you didn’t even know that happened. Funny how that works huh?
Anyway, I wanted to let you know that I did eat chicken today. I didn’t do it to be hateful or mean. You know that. You’ve been around me enough to know that I’m aware of your position and you’re aware of mine. We’ve had great discussions and we treat each other with civility.
And that’s how we can show love and stand up for what’s right at the same time.
Antoine Dodson: ‘The gay community…went from being bullied to becoming bullies’
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Intolerant Gay Activists Target Chick-Fil-A With Massive Intimidation Campaign
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Canada Offers Sobering Warning Of What Happens To Religious Liberty When Gay Marriage Is Legalized
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The Gay Playbook, And How It’s ‘Overhauling’ America
The Marketing of Evil: How corruption is packaged, perfumed, gift-wrapped and sold to us