Anybody that knows me knows that I’m an avid basketball fan, so I am never too far away from what is happening in the NBA. The recent scandal involving Los Angeles Clipper’s owner Donald Sterling and the racist comments he made about not wanting his “mistress” to be associated or seen in public with black people has caused a firestorm in the NBA. Sterling’s racist rant received universal condemnation all around the league and all around the sports world for that matter; even President Obama while abroad in Malaysia interrupted one of his press conferences to comment on the matter. This of course is a good thing. Racism of any kind should never be tolerated. The problem with this story however does not have to do with race but with the new tolerance squad and the confusion over what precisely is civil rights.
The reason this story is relevant to the Christian Church is because of the postmodern rhetoric dealing with homosexual rights. I believe the day is coming when comments about homosexuality that are deemed inappropriate for example that homosexuality is a sin and that it is unnatural will be met with the same condemnation. In one sense of course this mentality is already here as is evidenced by Mozilla Fox CEO Brendan Eich recently being forced to resign for having supported Proposition 8 in the past. But the minute that our culture adopts a view that equivocates between
race and sexuality and sexual orientation we will have a whole new level of hostility against the Christian Church on our hands. You have heard of the slogan “never waste a good crisis”, well this recent national controversy will surely not go to waste among aggressive liberals and homosexual agenda who will surely exploit this recent racial discrimination on behalf of one professional sports team owner for their own sinister purpose.
This is why we cannot confuse true civil rights true human rights ethnic rights and sexual orientation because the minute that we do anyone who speaks against a certain lifestyle will be condemned as a bigot and narrow minded racist.
So far, in listening to countless pundits and sports announcers on this issue, I have heard the repeated insistence that society has moved beyond that type of [bigoted] thinking. This is precisely what the culture is now trying to do with the homosexual issue claiming that we have moved beyond discrimination on this level as well. Of course the fallacy in this type of thinking is that the two are not the same in any way shape or form. That is not to say that someone cannot be wrongly treated as a homosexual person but that being a homosexual is not like being black. Being an African American person is not something that you decide to come out of the closet with its not a lifestyle that you test out it’s not an experiment, in fact, it is not optional at all. Homosexuality is a lifestyle choice something that a person of race simply cannot even conceive of. Unlike homosexuality, ethnicity brings glory to God, in fact it is part of the great gospel story that God will redeem people from every tribe tongue and nation and make a new humanity in Christ (Gal. 3.28; Rev. 5.9-11). But homosexuality speaks directly against God’s purpose and God’s design for mankind because it does not display the relationship that God has with the church it actually distorts that redemptive portrait (Eph. 5.22ff.).
While I am in full agreement in condemning Sterling’s recent unfortunate comments, I am also gravely suspicious that such comments and condemnation will continue to be applied improperly concerning gay rights and homosexual “marriage” further removing this culture from the biblical worldview which is always a concern and always carries dire consequences for any people.
Soli Deo Gloria
Emilio Ramos is the preaching pastor of Heritage Grace Community Church. Pastor Emilio is committed to the expository and exegetical teaching of the Word of God. Emilio is also the author of Convert, From Adam to Christ and the founder of redgracemedia.com- a media ministry devoted to the glory of God’s redemptive grace through Jesus Christ. He and his wife Trisha live in Dallas, TX.