News of the Week: Queer Clergy, COVID Origins, and a Life Well Lived

Here are a few items that may interest you.

First, some may have been surprised to see that an openly queer, married clergy-person was recently ordained by a Baptist Church in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Indeed, a few people in my church asked me about it. You can read about the story here. Now, here in Atlantic Canada the largest Baptist denomination is the CBAC, the Canadian Baptists of Atlantic Canada. This is the denominational family my congregation belongs to and it still holds to what I would describe as the biblically orthodox and traditional view of sexuality and marriage. The church in the above article that approved the ordination of a pastor who is in a same-sex relationship (I won’t call it marriage, because it falls outside of the biblical definition of marriage) once did belong to the CBAC. But it left the denomination several years ago over the homosexuality issue. In fact, pastors in our denomination can lose their credentials if they officiate at a same-sex wedding. A number of pastors who once belonged to the CBAC have either turned in or lost their ministerial credentials over these matters.

The truth is, more and more churches and denominations will go in the affirming direction. We see it with some major denominations in the US. We see it happening in the Church of England. Like it or not, issues relating to sexuality and gender are the foreground of the conflict between orthodox, biblical Christian faith and the surrounding culture. The pressure for Christians and churches to affirm any and every form of sexual relationship and gender identity is probably only going to increase. For faithful believers, it is up to us to remain true to biblical teaching on the one hand and to be winsome and loving towards our neighbours on the other.

Second, there has been a development regarding the COVID pandemic. Once the idea that the COVID virus was the result of a lab leak from the Wuhan Institute of Virology was called a conspiracy theory, now the evidence is leaning in that direction. For the last couple of years one of the saner voices on all things COVID has been Dr. John Campbell out of the UK. You can see Dr. John Campbell talk about this subject in the below video:

Lastly, there’s an example of a life well lived. Charles Stanley, popular Bible teacher and pastor, passed away this week at the age of 90. Here is that story. Perhaps it would humble us and do us good to think about what our obituary would say and what someone giving our eulogy would say. Or more importantly, whether we will hear our Lord Jesus say, “Well done, good and faithful servant.”

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