Biblical Sexuality Sunday 2023
A call to faithfully preach God’s good design for marriage and sexuality
A brave, new, 1984 world
On December 8th, 2021, the Canadian Federal Government gave Royal Assent to Bill C-4: “An Act to amend the Criminal Code (conversion therapy).” One month later, on January 8th, 2022, the Bill became law in Canada. The Bill defines “conversion therapy” as:
a practice, treatment or service designed to
(a) change a person’s sexual orientation to heterosexual;
(b) change a person’s gender identity to cisgender;
(c) change a person’s gender expression so that it conforms to the sex assigned to the person at birth;
(d) repress or reduce non-heterosexual attraction or sexual behaviour;
(e) repress a person’s non-cisgender gender identity; or
(f) repress or reduce a person’s gender expression that does not conform to the sex assigned to the person at birth.
The Preamble of the bill states that the belief that, “heterosexuality, cisgender gender identity, and gender expression that conforms to the sex assigned to a person at birth are to be preferred over other sexual orientations, gender identities and gender expressions” is based on “myths and stereotypes.” Meaning, the historic, Biblical belief that God has created humans as male and female, existing in a sexual binary, and that the only good and right sexual expression is to be heterosexual and monogamous marriage, is now defined as myth and stereotype in Canadian law.
What are the legal consequences of breaking this law? “Everyone who knowingly causes another person to undergo conversion therapy — including by providing conversion therapy to that other person — is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term of not more than five years… Everyone who knowingly promotes or advertises conversion therapy is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term of not more than two years.”
The church’s response
Several pastors in Canada, working together with Liberty Coalition Canada, determined that the best way to respond to this legislation was through the ministry of preaching and teaching. On the Sunday immediately after which Bill C-4 became law, January 16th, pastors across Canada preached on God’s good design for marriage and sexuality, directly challenging the spirit of the new law. They were joined by many pastors in the United States as well, in unity and solidarity with their Canadian brothers in Christ. This included Pastor Tom Ascol, Pastor Josh Boice, Pastor Tom Buck, Pastor John MacArthur, Pastor James White, Pastor Doug Wilson, and many others.
When asked about the importance of Biblical Sexuality Sunday, Aaron Rock, Lead Pastor at Harvest Bible Church in Windsor, Ontario said, “In a society that inundates us with lies about human sexuality, and which has passed a law declaring biblical sexuality a myth, our desire is to confront the lies and present our people with a positive biblical vision of human sexuality.” Aaron was the first pastor in Canada to receive fines for opening his church during the COVID-19 lockdowns, so he is no stranger to paying a cost for honouring the Lord, and he has not been shy about declaring God’s design and purposes in marriage (listen to Aaron’s podcast here).
Riley Toews, Preaching Pastor at Grace Covenant Church in Altona, Manitoba, said, “This initiative is important because of our cultural moment. Sexual sins of all stripes are being celebrated as if they were a moral good. This is the one of the avenues through which Christianity is currently under greatest attack. There is a pressing need for pastors to speak with boldness and clarity on these issues to equip their people to remain steadfast in the face of the pressures that are likely to come. The church must engage this issue, to shine light into the darkness of sexual sin, so that those who are living in it may find life in Christ.”
Paul Dirks, Lead Pastor at New West Community Church in New Westminster, British Columbia, who has spoken out against the SOGI initiative in his province (see an interview with Paul here), said, “This initiative is desperately needed in Canada as we are at the forefront globally of totalitarian policies connected to LGBT ideology. If the Church does not provide pushback here, the entire world will follow course along this trajectory. What many churches fail to understand is that the bold preaching of God's word on gender and sexuality not only benefits those inside the church, but it serves the unbeliever and the general culture.”
Among state-side ministers who joined the initiative was Pastor Doug Wilson, Senior Minister at Christ Church in Moscow, Idaho, who said, “A number of our churches here in Moscow are going to be marking Biblical Sexuality Sunday, and the reason for that is simple. This is where the battle is, and our people need to be equipped for it. What I hope to see is a greater awareness on the part of all Christians what is actually happening.” Doug has written and spoken prolifically on the topic of Biblical sexuality, and you can find a presentation he gave at the University of Idaho titles, “Sexual by Design” here: Part 1, part 2, and the Q&A.
Amazingly, the Biblical Sexuality Sunday initiative now spans the Atlantic, reaching Western Europe. Tobias Riemenschneider, Pastor of Evangelical-Reformed Baptist Church of Frankfurt, Germany, has signed on for January 15th. Tobias affirmed, “It is now high time for the Church to rise up and go through the bold and clear proclamation of the Word of God. This is why Biblical Sexuality Sunday is important: as a joint declaration of the Bride of Christ, consisting of many faithful churches around the world, that we will not back down, but will fight against the lies of the deceiver with the weapon that has been given to us by our Lord: His mighty Word.”
A call to action
This year’s Biblical Sexuality Sunday fast approaches, falling on January 15th, 2023. The theme of this year is centered around Matthew 19:4, that God has created humans as male and female from the very beginning. Pastors in Canada, the United States, and around the world are already committed to joining this and every year, ready to proclaim the authority of Christ and His Word, and the power of God to transform lives.
For those who ask why a pastor should decide to directly challenge the moral implications of criminal law, one must recognize that as the State seeks to canonize the sexual revolution, it falls to the church to tear down every lofty idea raised against the knowledge of Christ. According to Pastor Matt Rowan, Lead Pastor at Christ The King Fellowship in Gibsons Landing, British Columbia, the point is to stand firm upon preaching of the Word of God. “This is an important initiative. As the state moves deeper and deeper into the moral and religious realm it is the responsibility of the church and her ministers to preach the word of God to these issues appealing to the conscience of the nation. The people in our churches are constantly bombarded with lies about sexuality and gender,” Matt said.
Matt preached on Biblical sexuality on January 16th 2022. In his church, unbeknownst to him, was a young girl who had been undergoing hormone treatments and various surgeries in an effort to live as a man, which she believed herself to be. Upon hearing the sermon, she was convicted and broken, wept with her parents, repented of her lifestyle, and turned to obedience in Christ. The Lord restored her and her family, and we marvel at the grace of God. According to Matt, “When we joined this initiative last year we had no idea one individual in our church was in a deep struggle and had been entangled by lies for years, the Holy Spirit and the word of God cut through the deception. The fruit has been so encouraging to watch a life transformed.” You can see an interview with Matt and the family here.
If you are a pastor/elder in your church, or if you want to know more about Biblical Sexuality Sunday as a churchgoer, you can find more about the initiative at libertycoalitioncanada.com/biblical-sexuality-sunday. If you have any questions, please email email@example.com.
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