Idolatry and Sexual Impurity - The Trophies of Defeating Creationism
The Creation vs Evolution debate is well understood by most people, and the position of each side is easily found with even the least competent Internet search. There is no need to rehash it here. When the subject comes up, I believe in a Creator God. I believe the Divine name literally means “The one who causes to be,” or “The Creator.” (For those more educated than I, HWH is the root form of "to be" and reads "he is." The Y prefix identifies it as a Hiphil (expressing cause) and can be understood as "the one who causes to be" or simply, the Creator.)
I can understand that not everyone believes as I do: we are all different. But I do question why the battleground is advertised as “Science versus the Bible.” For Science is the systematic knowledge of the physical or material world gained through observation and experimentation. The studies of the earth's origins is not strictly science, for it was neither observed nor reproduced through experimentation. And many people interpret the Bible using human wisdom for support. So I get confused why the issue is called Science (It is really theorizing and speculating philosophies) versus the Bible (It is often man’s revision of what God actually revealed about Himself).
But my biggest concern is why the Creation/Evolution debate is so passionate. If someone does not believe in prayer, he may find my habit of prayer to be pointless. But he will not likely seek a means to shut down my prayer life. And I can say the same thing about communion or baptism. Nobody objects when a Catholic Priest administers Last Rites. What makes a Christian’s mere belief in the creation account of Genesis an offense to one who does not believe?
It seems to me that for all that the world and the church are at odds, the preferred behavior of both is approximately the same. With two glaring exceptions: the object of our worship and the canons of sexual purity.
To be sure, there is no agreement on where the boundaries lie. We agree that lying is wrong. But we disagree on the boundaries such as white lies, sarcasm, or when the lie has solid justification in the eye of the liar. We even agree that adultery is wrong, though the world would like not to. Despite the removal of sexual stigmata over the decades, most people on either side still tend to agree that adultery is to be disapproved: the creation side wants to preserve the holiness of God; and the evolution side wants to protect the children from a broken home. But nobody I know is pro-adultery.
So it makes sense when Paul talks about God giving up on certain people (Romans 1:18-32), he specifically addresses the object of worship and one of the canons of sexual purity. Revelation 17:4 introduces the golden cup of abominations and filthiness of fornication. The golden cup is introduced in Jeremiah 50:7. But its contents are disclosed in Revelation. With the Revelation passage, I must somehow equate idolatry and abominations. But Isaiah 41:24 and Isaiah 44:19 support that nicely, though it falls short of a proof.
This golden cup is what fuels the passion behind the creation/evolution debate yet allows the world to agree to disagree on the issues of our baptism services, or our belief that Jesus will return. The issues that pit the world passionately against the church are either sexually related (abortion, a key component of free sex; homosexuality, and eventually bestiality), object of worship (public display of the ten commandments; various other Bible readings on public lands), and creation stands alone as the one doctrine that infuriates the world without any sense of what drives their passion against it. No other church doctrine infuriates the world at first mention, except the Church be imposing our worship or depriving them of open sex. Could it be so simple that when the world rebukes creation, they are merely confessing that the existence of a Creator would force them to recognize sexual boundaries? People will always refuse belief. But is the venal hatred all about sex?
If there is a Creator – if there is a God in whose image we are created, then all humanity becomes accountable to that Creator. The only way to remove that accountability is to excise the office of the Creator. But with exceptions only for object of worship and canons of sexual purity, the world would not see the existence of a Creator as a threat.
I believe that this is a large reason why various local Churches that practice Church discipline according to the model of Matthew 18:15-20 find that most (say, 90% though that estimate is hand-picked) of the cases that reach the final stage of Matthew's model in one way or another involve sexual misconduct. Those who practice idolatry either never joined a Church to begin with, or left because they couldn't bear the sound of the Gospel. Those who are caught in offenses that their own community frowns upon (lying, stealing) tend to repent in the early stages of Matthew's model, and they are never publicized. Those that leak through are involved in (say) cohabitation, and are more likely to dig in their heels than a Church member caught in (say) shoplifting. This is neither an endorsement of local Church discipline (though I do believe in it), nor a condemnation of the cohabitors (though I do believe that it dishonors God). Rather it is a blueprint regarding why it appears that the Church is so compulsive about sexual conducts.
Creation v Evolution has turned into a mighty bloody battlefield as society tries to wrest itself from the accountability to God, largely to advance just two purposes: to marginalize God-worship and to embrace sexual liberties.