Welcome back to Defender’s Voice. This is Dr.Paul. Thank you for joining us today. Defenders Voice is about defending the truth against the falsehoods of our culture. Please visit us at www.doctorpaul.org.This week Kristi Noem and Jack Phillips are in the news. Kristi Noem and Jack Phillips both claim to be Christians and both were given the same challenge. How did they respond? I would like to discuss this news today because it gives us an opportunity to understand the nature of Christian ethics. Kristi Noem is the Republican governor of South Dakota.
Like many others across America, the conservatives in South Dakota recently wrote a bill which prevents trans women and girls from participating in sports reserved for biological females. It’s straightforward message is ‘Boys should play in boys sports, girls should play in girls sports’.
First, what does the Bible say about gender? So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.
God created man in his own image; He created them as male and female. Both men and women are image bearers of God. They are equal, different and distinctive. They are not interchangeable. The image of God means God gave us a soul which is the moral, intellectual, emotional, eternal, volitional component of our being. The secular crowd doesn’t believe in the image of God. They don’t believe in souls. They only believe in matter.
Why can’t we change matter? Let us give lots of hormones and let us perform lots of surgeries to change men into women and vice versa. It is not going to work because in the original creation God created them distinctly as male and female both in their souls and in their biology. There are no hormones to change a man’s soul into a woman’s soul. It is not going to work.
If we bring that abstract theology into real life, men don’t belong in women’s restrooms no matter how they feel; men don’t belong in women’s sports no matter how they feel.
Just a few days ago we heard that a trans female aka biological male assaulted a biological female in a female prison. You should not put biological males in female prisons as inmates. That is foolish. Whatever happened to common sense and logic? Women will suffer. It will only get worse as this issue becomes international. The Chinese government is already insulting us: if you want to compete with us, come to us with real men and real women.
South Dakota lawmakers wrote a bill to bar trans women in women only sports. But Kristi Noem, Governor of South Dakota vetoed the Bill. Her excuse was, ‘We can’t win in the courts against powerful organizations like NCAA.?’ Some observers said that she caved in to pressure by big businesses and big tech.
Then we have Jack Phillips from Colorado.
He is a Christian baker. First he refused to bake a cake for a same sex wedding because it is against his convictions. They dragged him through the courts, all the way to the Supreme Court. Now he is back in court because he refused to bake a cake for gender transition celebration. He lost half of his employees. He lost lots of revenue in profits. But he is still fighting for his convictions.
They don’t do this to any other religion. They don’t force a Jewish baker to make bread with pork chops. They don’t force a Muslim baker to make a cake with alcohol.
They don’t force a Hindu baker to make naan bread with cow meat. Pork meat is not kosher for a Jew. Alcohol is not halal for a Muslim. Cow is holy to a Hindu. They cannot go against their convictions. But if a Christian stands by his or her convictions, he or she is labeled a bigot or a homophobe or a transphobe by this culture.
It is also not about a cake. If you want a cake for your gender transition, you will find lots of places to make your cake where the baker would not bat an eyelid to take your request. This is about forcing, shaming, endangering and bankrupting Christians who take their convictions seriously. You might ask, it is ethical to refuse to make a cake for a gender transition party?
When we talk about ethics, there are two kinds:
Utilitarian ethics &
Utilitarian ethics are built on a pragmatic approach. It says this achieves great results, so this is good. This makes most people happy, so this is good. For example, after his conversion, apostle Peter did not mingle with the Gentiles. He came from an orthodox Jewish background and became a Christian. He has to deal with Gentile Christians who were pagans before their conversion. When Peter met them he did not feel comfortable to be in full fellowship with them. His Jewish friends would not be happy to see him mingling with non-Jews. There was a strict segregation between Christianized Jews and Christianized Gentiles. So, Peter, a Christianized Jew was keeping his distance from Christianized Gentiles.
Apostle Paul saw that and confronted Peter and said, ‘Peter, this is not right, brother. In Christ, there is no separation between the Jews and the Gentiles’. Peter was following utilitarian ethics. I will do this because my Jewish brethren would love to see me doing this.’ He was not thinking about God’s Word. Utilitarianism looks at the polls, surveys and public opinions. I will see what people want and I will go by that. President Joe Biden is a good example. All his life he stood by what is popular at different stages of his life. Many Christian politicians are following utilitarian ethics.
On the other hand, Deontological ethics do not depend on results. They do not depend on the consequences of your actions. You do them no matter what. For example, take the three Hebrew young men in Babylon. The King gave them a commandment: You must worship the golden image I constructed.
If you do not, I have a sweet punishment for you: you will be thrown alive into a burning furnace. The three Hebrew young men did not struggle much to make a decision. They knew the Ten Commandments by heart. Thou shalt have no other gods before me. They said, ‘Dear King, we are not going to do it. We worship only God of our forefathers Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. If you want to throw us in the furnace, we don’t recommend that. But if you want to throw us in fire, go ahead. Our God is a mighty God, He is able to save us. Even if he does not, that is fine with us. We will not worship your golden image under any circumstances. Period.’
The actions of these three Hebrew young men would not depend on the actions of the king, or even of God. Even if God does not show up to save me, still I will not disobey God’s commandments’. They were following Deontological ethics. These ethics do not depend even on the actions of God. God wants us to follow Deontological ethics. You should follow my Word no matter what. Whether people like you or not, it does not matter. Whether Big Tech likes you or not, it does not matter. Whether social media bans you or not, it does not matter. Whether you win or lose in the court, it does not matter. Apostle Paul followed deontological ethics.
We read in the Book of Acts. The Jewish leaders charged him with many crimes. He was dragged to the court in Cesarea. Paul said, ‘I will take this to Rome and defend myself in the presence of Cesar’. During those days, Cesar’s court was the supreme court.
Paul was taking a stand for his convictions. Nero was the Roman emperor who hated Christians. Christianity’s most successful apostle was coming to his court. Why would he let him go? Apostle Paul knew that would be his end but he took a stand for truth.
Kristi Noem says, ‘If I support this bill, my life and your life will become hard in our courts’. Jack Phillips is back in court now because he took a stand for truth. He is like those three Hebrew young men taking a stand for his convictions. He is like Apostle Paul taking a stand for his convictions.
No matter what I will stand for Christian ideals. Kristi Noem is following utilitarian ethics while Jack Phillips is following deontological ethics.
Sadly most Christians in our time following Utilitarian ethics based on good old American pragmatism. I am taking this position because this is in line with the public opinion, this is what my donors like, this is what Big Tech loves, this will further my political ambitions.
This approach does not like suffering for Christ. Lord Jesus was heading to Jerusalem to be crucified. Peter said, ‘Lord, the cross is not meant for you’. Jesus rebuked him, ‘Get behind me, Satan’. Peter was making decisions based on what looks good in his own eyes. He did not bother about God’s will.
Many politicians who claim to be Christians don’t like the cross or any suffering for Christ. During the last presidential elections, she gave sleepless nights to Mike Pence because she was forcing Trump to make her his running mate. She is in a hurry. She would like to look good to her big tech donors. Messing with them will ruin her political ambitions. So, she gave up on her principles.
Apostle Paul said, Godliness with contentment is a great gain. When you stand before God and say, ‘Lord, my life revolved around a bakery. I took a stand for your truth’. God says, ‘Well done, my faithful servant’.
If you say, ‘Lord, I made it to the White House. I became the President of the United States. But I vetoed many bills which support your truth.’ God will say to you, ‘You achieved nothing for the kingdom of God. I am not impressed’.
So, please pray for Jack Phillips so that he can stay courageous during this whole ordeal.
Let us try to be more like Jack Phillips, and less like Kristi Noem. That’s all for today. Please don’t forget to subscribe to our channel, like this video and share your comment. Thank you, God bless.