Will the Equality Act actually achieve equality?

Will Rogers once said that, “America is safest when Congress is in recess.” Well, right now Congress is not in recess but they are up to no good. Let’s talk.

A new bill has just been submitted in the House of Representatives. It’s HR 5. It’s known as the Equality Act of 2021. It is a movement to turn mainstream traditional beliefs about marriage, the biological facts of sex differences and many other sincerely held beliefs of Americans, to turn those into punishable offenses under the force of law. Under this new bill, if passed by the House and eventually by the Senate, will almost certainly be signed by this President. Government will now mandate acceptable beliefs and make unapproved beliefs subject to life threatening financial and criminal penalties. Now I want to be sure you heard what I said. It will penalize beliefs. Not your actions. You won’t have to prove discrimination by something you’ve done. It will be enough for you to go to jail for something you said or thought out loud.

The Equality Act makes discrimination the new law of the land. It weaponizes civil rights laws in order to punish what the government deems to be incorrect belief. President Biden and the mainstream media will trumpet this legislation as providing full equality and protection for the LGBTQ community.

Well, let me tell you what the Equality Act really does. First of all, it creates a state sanctioned discrimination on the basis of ideas. It attempts to force conformity of belief, particularly on sexual and gender issues for every American or they will be treated as an outlaw. It threatens our Constitutional freedoms by gutting the Religious Freedom Restoration Act and by eliminating the conscience protections of the Civil Rights Act.

It expands the definition of the phrase “public accommodation” in order to broaden the net and make more businesses and service providers subject to these rules and liable to discrimination claims including doctors who will no longer have a conscience protection if they wish to not participate in abortion procedures.

This new legislation eliminates the ability of doctors and hospitals to refuse to participate in medical practices that go against their conscience. It destroys women’s sports by opening Title IX to full participation of biological men in women’s competitions, in women’s locker rooms and in public restrooms.

This Equality Act paves the way for government requirement of sexual orientation and gender identity curricula in elementary schools with no recourse for parents to withdraw students from mandatory participation. It prevents foster care and adoption agencies from giving preference in parent selection to traditional male/female couples.

You may think that I’m making this up. It sounds like I’m sort of just losing my mind over impossibilities. Read the text of the bill that has been submitted to the House of Representatives. All of this is there.

In short, the so-called Equality Act of 2021 is a progressive wish list of radical societal changes now implemented with the force of law and the threat of punishment at the Federal level.

Well, what’s our response? Let me read you a story that comes from Acts 16. Because we always try and find from the Word of God direction on how we respond. And the Bible is remarkably relevant to every situation in which we find ourselves. In Acts 16, we find a story that is relevant to our situation today. The Apostle Paul was traveling across the Roman Empire planting churches on a missionary tour. He comes to a city where he leads a young woman to the Lord, and in the process, there is a negative economic impact to the owners of this slave girl. They decide that Paul needs to brought up on charges. So, in Acts 16 beginning in verse 20 it says, “Bringing them” meaning Paul and Silas his partner,

Bringing them before the chief magistrates, they said, “These men are seriously disturbing our city. They are Jews and are promoting customs that are not legal for us as Romans to adopt or practice.” The crowd joined in the attack against them, and the chief magistrates stripped off their clothes and ordered them to be beaten with rods. After they had severely flogged them, they threw them in jail, ordering the jailer to guard them carefully. Receiving such an order, he put them into the inner prison and secured their feet in the stocks.

Paul didn’t commit a crime but because he was out of step with the main stream of society, he was put in prison. His feet were locked in stocks after he was severely beaten physically, arrested on no charges.

Now, the rest of this chapter tells a remarkable story about how God at midnight came and released Paul and Silas. And the jailer himself finds his way to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ. But they come back to the prison the next day after spending the night in the home of the jailer. And as the politicians, as the rulers come to bring them out, it says, (35,36)

When daylight came, the chief magistrates sent the police to say, “Release those men.”
The jailer reported these words to Paul: “The magistrates have sent orders for you to be released. So come out now and go in peace.”

Get this (37,38)

But Paul said to them, “They beat us in public without a trial, although we are Roman citizens, and threw us in jail. And now are they going to send us away secretly? I don’t think so! On the contrary, let them come themselves and escort us out.” The police reported these words to the magistrates who were afraid when they heard that Paul and Silas were Roman citizens. So they came to appease them, and escorting them from prison, they urged them to leave town.

Let me tell you what this story teaches us. It teaches us a couple of things. First of all, it teaches us that as Christians we need to be sure that we are doing the right thing, that we are not hiding evil behavior under the cloak of Christianity. But in fact, we are living by truth. We are walking in a way that is admirable and that brings honor to God. That’s what Paul was doing.

Now, when his admirable behavior ran afoul of society’s expectations, he had to suffer for it. He was beaten and he was put in prison. We need to live a life that honors Jesus. But we need to be prepared when opposition comes. When legislation like this that we’ve been hearing about for years and now it’s here. When legislation is put into place that makes what we believe now against the law, we need to make a decision that we’re going to live right because we serve Christ above all others. But we need to be prepared in that opposition and pray to have strength to face the troubles that are going to come our way.

Now, at the same time we’re not helpless. Paul used his standing as a Roman citizen to deal with this unfair situation. We need to practice citizen involvement by contacting our legislators and expressing our opposition to the Equality Act of 2021, HR 5. We need to press our legislators to vote against this shameful proposal. We need to use every legal means available to us to fight this in the legislators, at the Federal level, at the State level and in our court rooms.

But, at the end of the day, we need to be willing to take our stand regardless of what society says is true. We need to live by what God says is true. And we need to search for opportunities to speak truth in every conversation.

Let’s review Paul’s story. He led a woman to Christ, to salvation. As a result, he was punished. He was punished for speech that went against cultural standards. He was beaten unjustly, imprisoned improperly and look what happened. God used that moment in time to lead a jailer and his entire family into the kingdom. Don’t think that because we begin to face opposition in our very own nation that God is not still up to something. In fact, it’s in the face of opposition that God may be putting some of us in positions to accomplish supernatural things that we could never had done otherwise.

Paul used his Roman citizenship to fight back. For right now, at least for the time being, we still have constitutional rights as American citizens. Don’t sit back and wait for this to unfold as an observer. Step into the fray. Fight the fight.

Listen, here’s the bottom line about progressive politics. Progressive ideology will eventually collapse under the weight of its own unreality. The problem is, progressive ideology can survive long enough to destroy a nation. That’s the battle in front of us.

You say, “Well Pastor I thought we were living for eternity, that we don’t live for this life?” No, you’re right. We are strangers and aliens in this world. But while we’re in this world we fight the fights that are presented to us. And right now, the nation that has the opportunity to take the Gospel to the rest of the world in our generation, that nation is under assault by the enemies of truth. We fight the fights that are given to us.

The Equality Act of 2021, HR 5, this is the next fight in front of us. May God give us courage for perseverance and make us warriors for truth.

This is TruthCurrents.
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