Truth and Love vs. Truth or Love
Last week, the ACLU, an organization typically not friendly to Christian ideals, got one right (albeit unintentionally) when the organization tweeted out, “Trans children are perfect exactly as they are.”
Their attempt to affirm our culture’s newest progressive doctrines actually communicated the opposite. After all, trans-activists insist that children, or anyone, who struggle with gender dysphoria are “trapped in the wrong bodies” and given the wrong names. The only way, in fact, for them to “be their true selves” is by altering their bodies, blocking their natural development through puberty-blockers, and sterilizing them with medication and surgery.
In other words, what the ACLU really thinks is that trans children are not perfect the way they are. Then, just a few days after confusing the meaning of the word perfect, the ACLU issued another tweet with even more wrongly defined words, “Trans Youth are Loved. Trans Youth are cherished. Trans Youth belong.” How is telling kids that their bodies are a mistake by God or nature a way of cherishing them? How is telling them that they’re wrong as is, not just in their feelings but in their very being, helping them “to belong?” How is any of this love?
Still, it’s one thing for the ACLU to get this issue so wrong; it’s another thing altogether for the Church to get it wrong. Just as bad is the Church embracing one of the great lies of our culture, that telling the truth is unloving and that loving someone requires affirming their choices.
Truth matters, ideas have consequences, and bad ideas have victims. This is why we cannot love someone without speaking the truth. It is not necessarily cruel to say what is true. It can be, of course, if the truth is said in the wrong way or for the wrong reasons. At the same time, affirming someone’s choices can be not only not telling the truth, but it can be an incredibly cruel thing to do, even when done from good intentions. In fact, the cruelest thing you can tell someone who’s not ok is that they are.
Even simply raising the issue of truth today, especially in certain contexts, can end a relationship. For example, over the past few years, I’ve heard from many, many parents and grandparents of grown children, struggling to make sense of a generational gap that seems insurmountable. Generation gaps are, of course, nothing new, but, in our culture, certain issues are driving these relationships to a breaking point.
A new, four-week, online course, beginning tomorrow April 6, will address this need. “How to Speak Truth and Love Both Inside and Outside the Church” takes place four consecutive Tuesday evenings, led by four outstanding and practical speakers who will help us hold together truth and love in our interactions with four different groups of people.
Greg Stier from Dare2Share will get things started tomorrow night as he discusses how we can speak truth and love to unbelievers who need to know Jesus. The following Tuesday, Colson Fellows National Director Michael Craven will help us communicate with Christians who don’t know what (or how) to think about the issues in our culture (or maybe who don’t seem to care very much). The third session, led by apologist and author Sean McDowell, will focus on communicating truth in love to progressive Christians who have abandoned important Christian truths. And finally, Jonathan Morrow from the Impact 360 Institute, will help us understand members of Gen Z, and help communicate to these people who often struggle to know who to trust.
Register for this course at BreakPoint.org. Each week features a 90-minute session that includes a time for question and answer with the instructor. Everyone who signs up also receives a link to the recording of every week’s session, that way you can review the information or you can catch it in case of a scheduling conflict.
Truth and love are inseparable. Jesus Christ is the source and the very embodiment of both Truth and Love. We need not choose between them. We must not choose between them.
Again, come to BreakPoint.org to register for tomorrow night’s Short Course, “How to Speak Truth and Love.”
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