More than 3,000 evangelical Christians and organizations have joined well-known theologian and pastor, John MacArthur, in endorsing a statement on social justice and the purported dangers the concept poses to the Gospel. The statement comes in the wake of MacArthur’s recent controversial series that brands social justice as a real threat to the Gospel. “Clarity on these issues will fortify believers and churches to withstand an onslaught of dangerous and false teachings that threaten the gospel, misrepresent Scripture, and lead people away from the grace of God in Jesus Christ,” the statement explains in an introduction.
“Specifically, we are deeply concerned that values borrowed from secular culture are currently undermining Scripture in the areas of race and ethnicity, manhood and womanhood, and human sexuality. The Bible’s teaching on each of these subjects is being challenged under the broad and somewhat nebulous rubric of concern for ‘social justice,'” it continued. “If the doctrines of God’s Word are not uncompromisingly reasserted and defended at these points, there is every reason to anticipate that these dangerous ideas and corrupted moral values will spread their influence into other realms of biblical doctrines and principles.”
And with that introduction, the statement then goes on to address points of contention in the Gospel the signers agree need to be clarified, including what constitutes justice. Pastor John MacArthur announced during the Shepherd’s Conference that next year’s conference will include a summit on biblical inerrancy. “We deny that true justice can be culturally defined or that standards of justice that are merely socially constructed can be imposed with the same authority as those that are derived from Scripture. We further deny that Christians can live justly in the world under any principles other than the biblical standard of righteousness,” the statement says.
“Relativism, socially-constructed standards of truth or morality, and notions of virtue and vice that are constantly in flux cannot result in authentic justice.” And even though it isn’t specifically mentioned, the statement also challenges the notion of concepts such as “white guilt.” It argues that except for the ties to original sin through Adam, people should not be blamed for the sins of their ancestors.
Addressing issues of human sexuality, the statement also firmly supports biblical marriage while dismissing the concept of “gay Christian.” The statement went on “We deny that human sexuality is a socially constructed concept. We also deny that one’s sex can be fluid. We reject ‘gay Christian’ as a legitimate biblical category. We further deny that any kind of partnership or union can properly be called marriage other than one man and one woman in lifelong covenant together.” “We further deny that people should be identified as ‘sexual minorities’, which serves as a cultural classification rather than one that honours the image-bearing character of human sexuality as created by God,” it adds. The statement also came out strong against racial segregation and systemic racism as unbiblical.
“We deny that systemic racism is in any way compatible with the core principles of historic evangelical convictions. We deny that the Bible can be legitimately used to foster or justify partiality, prejudice, or contempt toward other ethnicities. We deny that the contemporary evangelical movement has any deliberate agenda to elevate one ethnic group and subjugate another. And we emphatically deny that lectures and activism on social issues are as vital to the life and health of the church as the preaching of the gospel,” the statement notes. “Historically, such things tend to become distractions that inevitably lead to departures from the gospel.”
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