A Hill to Die On

By Erick Erickson

Meditate with me, if you will, on these words. “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” (Gen 1:1 ESV)

Now, consider it in the Hebrew where the symbolism and the language flow more freely than in English. Substack, this platform, has some display limitations for text like Hebrew, so I am putting it in as a graphic. Remember, it is read right to left.

I put the red box around the center. Just look at this. There are seven Hebrew words that lead up to seven days at the beginning of creation. The center word around which I have placed a box is, in translation, “et.” It has no direct English equivalent but represents the direct objects of the verb, which is created. In other words, it emphasizes that God created all things, the heavens and the earth.

Additionally, the word בָּרָ֣א is bara, a verb that only applies to the divine. God created in a divine way. When bara is used in scripture, it applies exclusively to creation by Yahweh.

In that one seven-word sentence that hints at the sabbath rest through its composition, we learn that God, in a way no human could create, made all things. It is not up for debate in any way, shape, or form.

God did this. We cannot duplicate it.

When we get to anthropology, how did God create man? He made them male and female. He created them, in Hebrew the word bara is used, divinely such that we, a part of creation, cannot create mankind in a different way.

Today, increasingly, we are being asked to assume we can do what scripture clearly delineates only God himself can do. We are asked to create of our own choice — men can become women and women can become men.

Increasingly, anyone who contradicts this is considered to be engaged in hate speech. We are ordered to self-censor or the mob will come for us.

Transgenderism is not just an issue of science, but of theology. The very words of Holy Scripture make clear that Christianity cannot embrace transgenderism because humans are incapable of using the verb בָּרָ֣א to create. Only God can בָּרָ֣א, or bara, and when he did he made us male and female. We do not get to do otherwise.

Now some would argue, creatively, that if God made someone male and that person very clearly thinks they are female that God must have either made a mistake or God made it so that person would desire to become the other sex.

This is flawed thinking. First, God does not make mistakes. Second, God made things perfect in the garden and our sin is what polluted things. Both same-sex sexual orientation and transgenderism are products of sin, not God’s plan for creation.

We are essentially at a sexual tower of Babel. God created us male and female and we have chosen to recreate ourselves as what is fully described as LGBTQQIAAP, which stands for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, intersex, asexual, ally, and pansexual. To be sure, there are those who are born with both male and female anatomy and no one is talking about them in this situation, though the transgender community would prefer we use them as a cast for every one of these situations.

We’re at a sexual Tower of Babel and the world is demanding we either speak up on behalf of deviations from God’s design or shut up. Not only do they insist we shut up, but if we do not shut up, they demand we be silent.

If we refuse to accept a man is now a woman, we are haters engaged in hate speech. But scripture tells us that the world hates the things of God. Godly truth is hateful to the world. We must stand up for Godly truth and this must be a hill to die on for Christians.

Some might argue that the only hill to die on is Christ is King. But if Christ is King then God’s truth must reign supreme and that includes the truth of creation and Biblical sexual ethics as part of the design reflected in God’s truth.

This does not mean we should be boorish. We should be mindful of real mental health issues involved in transgenderism and the psychological frailty and mental instability within that community, part of which lashes out with outlandish claims against those who refuse to accommodate their views.

We must be gentle even when they are not. But we must not cede this ground. It is ground premised in the first seven words of Genesis through a creator who created all things in a way we cannot.

Christians must stand up for the truth even as the world screams at us. Christians get so wrapped up in what is the “mark of the beast” and even now some peddle conspiracy theories about microchips, Bill Gates, and vaccines. If the mark is a symbol with which each generation of the church must deal as the culture around it puts on demands for cultural accommodation, Christians should be wary of all that falls under the rainbow flag because that flag is increasingly, in the name of tolerance, the very symbol that festers growing intolerance of the church in the west. It is no coincidence in protests around the country that we are seeing that symbol flown in conjunction with that other symbol of secular hostility to the things of God, the hammer and sickle.

We have to stand for Biblical sexual orthodoxy because we stand for Christ, which means we must stand for truth even if there are consequences to so doing. The world is demanding otherwise, which is why we must be bold in our faith now. Be humble, but don’t be afraid to stand for what is right. Do not let your silence be affirmation of something that upends both science and the theological order of creation.

Read More
%d bloggers like this: