To the editors:
Joyous Christian Greetings!
I would like to respond to Reverend Dr. Timm Peterson’s letter (September 4) concerning the Reverend Hybels’s Superchurch. Much as I am dismayed by the slick marketing of the “Superchurches” I am really sick and tired of “politically correct” liberals plastering over Christ’s message with a lot of trendy and faddish reinterpretations of Scripture. A few points come to mind immediately:
I read the article in the Reader closely and I saw no evidence of “racism, sexism, and classism.” Those things just weren’t in the article and this accusation is just the sort of distortion one would expect from a smug liberal who would seek to replace the idea of personal sin with “political correctness.”
“Homophobia,” as used by Parson Peterson, would seem to include embracing the idea that sodomy is a sin. I realize it is conservative and reactionary of me to point this out, but the Bible categorically regards homosexuality as a sin (like sloth or gluttony) not a predetermined disposition (like left-handedness or color blindness). Saint Paul doesn’t mince words about it; he says point-blank that sodomites will not inherit God’s kingdom (1 Corinthians 6:9-10). If the good reverend is indeed a Christian, as he claims to be, then I am sure he will concede that the Bible is the ultimate authority on these matters and keep in mind that Christ’s message was one of repentance and forgiveness. To accept a sinful “life-style” as normal or acceptable is to disregard half of Christ’s teaching.
Christ’s message was not about “liberation, compassion for the poor, and this-worldly ethics” or the so-called “Social Gospel” that has been so popular with liberals, but rather one of personal salvation. Oswald Spengler puts it quite well: “Consider the lilies” means: “Give no heed to riches and poverty, for both fetter the soul to cares of this world.” “Man cannot serve both God and Mammon”–by Mammon is meant the whole of actuality. It is shallow, and it is cowardly, it argue away the grand significance of this demand. (Decline of the West, volume two, p. 217)
The “conservative values” that Dr. Peterson condemns as “un-politically correct” are not a “sham.” The only “sham” that Reverend Hybels perpetuates is the idea that salvation can be found outside of the Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church.