CANCEL CULTURE is the social phenomenon of keeping a permanent record of wrongs and punishment with no option for forgiveness. Consequences usually include never being able to work in your profession ever again, and never being acknowledged by anyone in that profession ever again, no matter how long ago the sin was committed or how much you’ve matured in character since then.
This is the religious zealotry of the radical Left, their weapon of choice to assassinate mostly conservative people who are more effective than others in demolishing terrible ideas. Their unholy inquisitions are not interested with justice as much as they are with eliminating threats to their pursuit of political power.
This is the exact opposite of the Christian values Western nations were once founded upon.
One of the vivid revelations I received in Bible College was the juxtaposition put to me of satan and Jesus, the former as the accuser of the brethren, and the latter as our Advocate. The important question for Believers is, “Who do you agree with?“
I received a letter from a seasoned veteran of Kingdom activism today rebuking me and requesting I not send him any more of my “odious material”, because I refuse to cancel someone whose sins have been made public. I agree with our Advocate.
Permit me just five minutes to unpack this profound theology for you.
In Revelation 12:10, St John records hearing a loud voice saying in heaven, “Now salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of His Christ have come, for the accuser of our brethren, who accused them before our God day and night, has been cast down.” Two verses later the same voice warns that it was the devil who has been cast down to the inhabitants of the earth. The devil, satan, is the accuser of the brethren.
But the intervening verse, verse 11, describes the defeat of the devil in the courts of heaven.
“And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony…“
The devil was defeated by the blood of the Lamb, which is a word picture for the sacrifice Jesus made on Calvary paying the penalty with His own life for the sins of all who confess Him as Lord. Believers are redeemed and reconciled, ours sins remitted, and Christ’s righteousness is imputed to our account.
“For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”
2 Corinthians 5:21
“Even the righteousness of God, through faith in Jesus Christ, to all and on all who believe…”
The language is clearly transactional: redeemed; like a coupon to make something free, reconciled; like a ledger where every cent is accounted for, remittance; like an invoice or debt that has been paid – and Jesus did not make a partial payment for anyone’s sins.
The greatest injustice would be to keep demanding payment for a settled debt. So satan makes his best case before our righteous judge, God, and points out all the sins we’ve ever done, both those published in the newspapers and those done in secret. He plays a video, he presents the evidence, he adds expert testimony and there is absolutely no doubt he’s right: we did those things and there’s no point denying it.
But Believers have Someone on our side in the Courts of Heaven, and there’s no one more committed to Truth and Justice than He is. The book of Romans describes this in chapter 8.
“Who shall bring a charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. Who is he who condemns? It is Christ who died, and furthermore is also risen, who is even at the right hand of God, who also makes intercession for us.”
“But if anyone does sin, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the Righteous One, and he himself is the atoning sacrifice for our sins…”
1 John 2:1-2
So there you have it: the devil/satan is our accuser and Jesus is our Advocate.
SO, back to today’s letter from a now-former subscriber.
John* wrote, verbatim:
“You destroy any credibility you claim to hold as a Christian by standing with and promoting Pat Mesiti. Shame, shame, shame on you. Please do not send me any more of your odious material!“
“Shame, shame, shame on you,” sounds very much like a curse, a pronouncement in stark contrast and opposition to the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Just like God prophetically clothed the shame of Adam & Eve with garments made from animals, Jesus gives repentant believers a robe of righteousness and covers the shame of our sin.
I don’t get many of these letters, but the last I remember was from a Bishop who was responding to an invitation to participate in a regional Church And State Conference before Covid. He wrote slightly less caustically:
“We do not wish to join with the Australian Christian Lobby in its work. Given the sponsorship of this program by ACL we wont be participating or promoting it.“
Praise God we are not dependent on the whims and attitudes of men for approval or support, moral or material!
But isn’t it sad that people like John* feel God’s sons are beyond repentance, forgiveness, redemption and restoration, but should forever hide in the shadows burdened by guilt and shame?
As the accuser of the brethren and our Great Advocate argue our case before God, I am convicted as charged of agreeing with our Great Advocate. It saddens me to observe some incline to agree with the accuser of the brethren, and cancel Christians.
I promise you if all my sins were published you would have reviled me long ago. I suspect it’s the same for the men above, and everyone reading this article. Would you survive your secret sins being published?
The key fact here is that while Christians are righteous in the sight of God, we don’t pretend to be perfect, just on a humble journey of spiritual formation, taking confidence only in Truth discovered. We fall and fail, and hopefully repent and rise to fight again.
Now if a Christian leader was unrepentant and unwilling to be disciplined by the Church for a period before being restored to some perhaps less significant level of ministry, that would be someone to be cast out of fellowship. And that does happen, sadly.
But I should shun a believer who has fallen dramatically and publicly, confessed his sins publicly and not pretended they were justified or excusable, and submitted to discipline and been accountable? Why should I have less to do with him than the unrepentant atheists and unbelievers who I also join in fighting against injustice and deception? Why would I reject anyone’s invitation to bring God’s Truth to their audience? Why would I agree to cancel them as they bravely do what so few people with significant platforms do in speaking Truth to the public square – including these critics?
It’s quite simple, really. Who do you agree with: the accuser of the brethren, or our Advocate?
It’s a choice each of us must make, and while proudly unrepentant sin must be excommunicated from the Church, I choose to agree with our Advocate, and will gladly embrace those who have been forgiven much, and in turn have great love for the Lord Jesus Christ and or Truth.
Cancel culture is the enemy of mercy, grace and forgiveness, and a strategy of the devil in defiance of the Gospel. I won’t have any part of it.
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