Last week I wrote to you about the recent media assault on Gordon College due to their Biblical stance on human sexuality and marriage.  I am happy to tell you that they are standing firm in defense of both their sincerely held beliefs as an institution and the rights of all faith-based organizations for religious freedom.  They have done this in the face of incredible pressure, including, at one point, reports that the school’s accreditation would be threatened.  Fortunately, cooler heads appear to have prevailed, and a letter was released Tuesday from the New England Association of Schools and Colleges reassuring Gordon that its status was not in jeopardy.  While this is good news, it is very disturbing that such a severe threat would even be discussed.  One reporter, whose thoughts were echoed across social media, even demanded that Gordon’s tax exempt status be revoked because of their faith-based policies on sexual conduct.  All people of faith need to vigorously oppose such outlandish threats, as such a policy would cripple not only Christian schools like Gordon, but destroy the finances of our churches as well.  What would happen to your church’s budget for ministry and evangelism if all of your tithes were suddenly subject to a 30-40% corporate income tax, and you had to pay property taxes on your sanctuary?  Unfortunately, we are seeing that there are those who would use the tax code to punish people of faith if we will not embrace the new state-sanctioned orthodoxy.

The Book of Daniel is instructive in light of these challenges.  In it we see men of faith who could not in good conscience follow both the dictates of a pagan ruler and the commandments of their God.  Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah, petitioned the governing authority for an exemption from a policy they believed would violate their faith, not unlike Gordon’s President Lindsay.  Fortunately, their request to not eat of the king’s food was granted.  We continue to pray this will be the case for Gordon.  Later on, Daniel’s three friends are refused an exemption from a policy that would require worshipping an idol, but God miraculously saves them from the fiery furnace.  Their obedience and God’s deliverance then served as a powerful witness to the king.  Although these two examples end well for Daniel and his friends, they were aware that there was a third possibility: that they would be faithful and God would not intervene.  “…the God we serve is able to deliver us… But even if he does not… we will not serve your gods…” Daniel 3:17-18, NIV.   These men were acting with integrity by integrating their faith and their conduct.  The letter signed by President Lindsay merely attempted the same thing.  This is about integrity, not intolerance.
 In fact, if there were to be an open and honest discussion about “intolerance” and “discrimination,” the conclusion might surprise you.  Salem Mayor Kim Driscoll, who garnered national attention last week for abruptly cancelling the city’s contract with Gordon because of its alleged ‘discrimination’, may actually be in violation of local and state anti-discrimination laws herself.  I have spoken with multiple attorneys who believe that Driscoll’s stated reasons for cancelling the contract constitute unlawful religious discrimination against Gordon.   Richard Mast, Litigation Attorney with Liberty Counsel told me, “It is unlawful for the mayor of Salem to favor sexual orientation over religion when the city’s own ordinance makes them both protected classes.”  In addition, MA state law has the same religious exemptions to hiring and admission requirements that Gordon is seeking to preserve in the new federal regulations.  The bottom line is that Gordon is fully within its legal and Constitutional rights to issue and enforce its life and conduct policy, regardless of the wild accusations of those who disagree with it.

Please continue to show your support to President Lindsay and the college.  Click here to show your support on Facebook, or send President Lindsay an email of support hereThey certainly didn’t ask to be the salient rock upon which the current wave of anti-Christian hostility is crashing, but they are holding up admirably.  In so doing, they are shielding all of our schools and churches, and we should stand with them.

For our Families,

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