Ken Connor

Pooh-bahs in The Episcopal Church resort to all kinds of gymnastics to justify their endorsement of the gay lifestyle: the prohibitions against homosexuality are culturally bound and don't apply to today; the translation into English from the original language of Scripture is not a faithful application of the meaning; Christ's teachings of love and forgiveness and his acceptance of sinners negates the prohibitions set forth in the texts; etc., etc. etc. The real problem, however, is not one of interpretation. It is one of authority. Leaders in The Episcopal Church who give their blessing and approval to the homosexual lifestyle simply refuse to submit to the authority of Scripture. But, rather than owning up to their rebellion against that authority, they invent all kinds of excuses to justify their actions.

In rebelling against God's authority pronounced in his Word, TEC leaders are following in the footsteps of their forebears, Adam and Eve. The First Couple's fall and expulsion from the Garden of Eden was also marked by rebellion against God and vain attempts at self justification. Scripture has a name for this kind of behavior. It is called "sin."

Make no mistake about it, however: neither Adam nor Eve nor the potentates of The Episcopal Church are alone in their dalliance with sin. All mankind is infected by sin. This writer is no exception. The Scriptures tell us, "If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us." (1 John 1:8 NIV) However, Scripture also identifies a remedy for our sin problem: "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness." (1 John 1:9 NIV) This process is called "repentance," but there seems to be little appetite for it among TEC leaders who revel in their liberal embrace of the homosexual lifestyle.

In concluding that homosexuality and Christianity are compatible, liberal church leaders are traveling the same route that liberal judges have trod. Today, activist judges twist and distort the plain meaning of the laws and Constitution to achieve their desired ends. Constitutional limitations disappear when they read their own meaning into the texts. Between the lines and in the penumbras of the Constitution, liberal judges have discovered expansive new meanings that do not align with the original intent of the drafters.

Leaders of the TEC approach the Scriptures in this very same way. First, they empty the words of Scripture of their objective, propositional meaning. Then they infuse them with a new meaning that comports with their own whims and desires. They treat the Scriptures like wax, molding them to conform to their politically correct agendas.

This process is not new. In Through the Looking Glass, Humpty Dumpty told Alice, "When I use a word it means just what I choose it to mean—neither more nor less." Alice responded, "The question is whether you can make words mean so many different things," to which Humpty Dumpty replied, "The question is which is to be master—that's all."

Which is to be master, indeed? The Episcopal Church has decided that the decree of its clerics is to be master. God had been dethroned; his Word has been emasculated. Humpty Dumpty theology reigns supreme.

So, is there hope for the Anglican Communion? That remains to be seen. The heterodoxy of the TEC is a cancer that threatens the Communion's very survival. The options are limited. The Communion can root out the TEC and begin to repair itself by reclaiming the authority of Scripture. It can require that the TEC repent of its embrace of culture over Scripture as a condition of continued participation in the Communion. Or it can ignore the transgressions of the TEC and refuse to take a stand.

Whatever its course, the Anglican Communion should not fail to remember, that any church which forsakes biblical truth will cease to have impact. Without its sure foundation, the church will collapse. The Anglican Church should return to the source of its worldwide communion.

Ken Connor

Ken Connor is Chairman of the Center for a Just Society in Washington, DC.