Church Goes “Woke”

Welcome the Capitulating Clergy Class of 2020

The suburb of which I am a denizen, in a flyover state in the Heartland of America, is a far cry from the urbanized setting seen in the more "woke" metropolitan areas of Minneapolis, Atlanta, Seattle, or even the new sovereign territory of CHAZ (or, is it CHOP?). In Sleepytown, USA, we often leave our cars unlocked, allow our kids to "free-range" in relatively safe neighborhoods, and business owners frequently extend credit to friends with a handshake and a smile. Small community churches dot every corner within this civil society that folks in the seemingly "unwoke" suburbs live.

Ominously, the critical woke doesn't just live in the big cities, however. Like a fungal network that spreads through soil, the wokeness has surfaced in the suburbs.

For those of us in flyover country, we might ask how this movement has assailed our spaces with such ubiquity, with every institution hemmed in. Perhaps for many, we were not even aware of such an extensive network, whose invisible reach knows no boundaries. Around the dinner table, likely many parents for the first time, are finding their kids remarkably conversant in the politically correct speech espoused by the woke religion, and its current reigning pontiff, Black Lives Matter.

Most disturbingly, wokeness has entered churches. It seems the sitting pontiff is advising a clergy class, who are all too happy to set their Bibles aside to be schooled, to graduate with honors and bear the highly prized credentials that only a BLM degree confers.

In my own community, a local mainstream protestant church with large LED video displays has been dutifully educating the public concerning their "white privilege," with training on how to manage their "white guilt." One has to wonder if they have appointed priests in confessionals to absolve the guilty white of their sins. No doubt the holy writ informing their new theology comes from the cloistered monasteries of the Black Lives Matters organization. The church has even been so kind as to provide graduation ceremonies with a call to act in "civil disobedience," kneeling in the middle of a large thoroughfare, blocking rush-hour traffic.

For the capitulating clergy class of 2020, I have to wonder if they are mere lemmings following the latest cultural trend in their search for relevance, or if they really understand what the Black Lives Matter organization is all about. It takes merely a click and scroll to view in its entirety their page, What We Believe, to discover this organization's beliefs. After scrolling through many innocuous statements concerning the virtues of freedom and justice, we discover there are many tenets of faith that have no place in churches seeking to adhere to biblical Christianity.

For one thing, under no uncertain terms, BLM asserts they are transgender-affirming, as we read from their site: "We are self-reflexive and do the work required to dismantle cisgender privilege and uplift Black trans folk, especially Black trans women who continue to be disproportionately impacted by trans-antagonistic violence," adding:

We foster a queer‐affirming network. When we gather, we do so with the intention of freeing ourselves from the tight grip of heteronormative thinking, or rather, the belief that all in the world are heterosexual (unless s/he or they disclose otherwise).

In case the capitulating clergy class of 2020 missed (or dismissed) their Old Testament class, Moses, in Deuteronomy 22:5 remarks: "A woman shall not wear a man's garment, nor shall a man put on a woman's cloak, for whoever does these things is an abomination to the Lord your God." The transgender community goes way beyond merely the practice of cross-dressing, advocating for the growth, removal, and attachment of body parts by medical intervention. Clergyman are derelict in duty to embrace this, not recognizing they in no way align with orthodox biblical doctrine. I'd like to give these clergy the benefit of the doubt and assume perhaps they are not aware of these belief systems.

BLM tells us they seek to "free" themselves from the "tight grip," or "belief that all in the world are heterosexual," unless otherwise stated. In their view, the idea that heterosexuality is normal is wrong and uninformed. Part of their mission is to change that outdated thinking. Need I explain the problem with this?

Finally, the organization takes a position on family that is anything but biblical, stating:

We disrupt the Western-prescribed nuclear family structure requirement by supporting each other as extended families and "villages" that collectively care for one another, especially our children, to the degree that mothers, parents, and children are comfortable.

There is no mention of fathers in that statement. In fact, one would be hard-pressed to see fathers (or heterosexual men) championed in any way on their website. Being self-described "womanists," it appears they are all too eager to undermine environments where men are centered – most principally, familial environments. Fathers, you are not needed, as the organizational village provided by BLM is too happy to replace you (along with a government bureaucracy). This clearly is not the vision God had for a family.

The calls for public action and programs smacking of mid-century Marxism are similarly rampant, but I will limit this discussion on BLM to matters most relevant to clergy, and save the political and economic considerations for another day.

To the graduating clergy class of 2020, it might be worthwhile to examine the cultural institutions you endorse to your flock. God has appointed you as shepherds. You are called to protect and defend as the proverbial gateway to biblical (and cultural) wisdom. The influence of the woke should not find fertile soil in any of our sanctuaries (or worldviews) as God has called all of us to be separate from the world, to not touch unclean things in order to be welcomed by Him.1 If church leaders continue to allow the wokeness to develop in our congregations, they will have apostasy to account for.

1. Holy Bible. 2 Corinthians 6:17, English Standard Version.

graduated summa cum laude from California State University, Fresno, with a BS in molecular biology and a minor in cognitive psychology. As an undergraduate, she conducted research in immunology, microbiology, behavioral and cognitive psychology, scanning tunneling microscopy and genetics - having published research in the Journal of Experimental Psychology, and projects in scanning tunneling microscopy. Having recently completed an M.Ed. from University of Cincinnati and a Certificate in Apologetics with the Talbot School of Theology at Biola University, Emily is currently an instructional designer/content developer for Moody Bible Institute and teaches organic chemistry and physics. As a former Darwinian evolutionist, Emily now regards the intelligent design arguments more credible than those proffered by Darwinists for explaining the origin of life.

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