Again, the recent statement by the Primate of All Nigeria, The Most Revd. Henry Ndukuba; asking the Anglican Church in North America to declare its position on the homosexual lifestyle; has brought to the fore the debate on the issue and the stealthy way the Body of Christ is being stripped of its apostolic tradition of piety.
The Primate who was piqued by the Pastoral Statement of toleration of same-sex persons within its fold had asked ACNA to make a categorical statement on the issue rather than hiding behind one finger.
In the well-crafted statement titled, Church of Nigeria’s position on recent development in ACNA, Ndukuba said the College of Bishops of the Anglican Church of North America had noted “that the struggle with human identity is real and painful for Christians who experience same-sex attraction” and reject the use of language that identify such people for who they are- Gays; preferring that they be addressed as “Christians who experience same-sex attraction”.
He had also observed that some units within the ANCA had given an open invitation to priests who confess to be gays and who are being stifled to come to its fold noting that the decisions by ACNA bishops “tantamount to a subtle capitulation to recognize and promote same-sex relations among its members, exactly the same route of argument adopted by The Episcopal Church (TEC) some years ago.
Those who follow the trajectory of the homosexual issue within the Anglican Church will recall that the church had long been polarized along the line of pro-gay priests and anti-gay priests. That was what gave rise to the Global Future Conference (GAFCON) and ACNA while The Episcopal Church was left to wallow in its error.
But the tragedy of the recent development is that the ACNA which severed links with TEC some years ago because it would not want to identify with a body that supports gay lifestyle is now promoting gay rights and giving them an open invitation.
For some in the Body of Christ, this may just be an Anglican battle. But for those who are discerning enough, the issue goes beyond the Anglican Church. It is a subtle attempt to erode the very foundation of the universal Church and replace it with a lie. It is a gradual ploy to dig a hole in the long-held tradition of chastity in the church and demonise it.
Unfortunately, the generality of the Church is sleeping and allowing the Anglican Church to fight this battle alone. Unknown to many, what we are grappling with is a behemoth targeted at the core value of the Church.
Lesbian-gay: The present danger
This is made clear by the strange mindset of some professed Christians in the western world. It has got to the point that pro-gay people are now trying to make those who kick against the vice look like demons that should be exorcised.
Many of the commentaries on an Anglican Facebook platform are odd and pitiable.
One commentator, while reacting to Primate Ndukuba’s stance, says, “Condemning the ACNA for considering accepting a person who accepts the ACNA’s sexual statement on homosexuality just for having same-sex attraction (which is what we call gay, so the Anglican Primate is just wrong to differentiate), yet not condemning the systemic violence against gay people in Nigeria says quite a lot about the priorities of the Primate. Even if The Church of Nigeria continues to classify homosexuality as a sin, the treatment of gays as a disease or more apt “lepers” from the community is precisely anti-Christian. Precisely opposing the teachings of Christ”
Pray, what teaching of Christ is the commentator suggesting? Is he trying to say Christ would have set a table before promoters of gay and embraced them with his two hands? While Christ would not have thrown away gay rights activists, he would have chided them the way he chided the Pharisees and Sadducees who did not live according to the message they preached. Jesus used hard words on the Pharisees. John the Baptist described them as brood of vipers
Suffice it to say that the commentary shared earlier is just one of the many pro-gay comments on the platform. One then begins to wonder; what is the Church turning to. Though this odious lifestyle is being tolerated largely by the West it has penetrated Africa with many people now coming out to identify themselves as gay.
The scary statistics
Recently, The Christian Post, an American-based news medium had reported the sudden rise in the number of gay adherents in the US. The report which quotes a research finding reads:
“One in six Gen Z adults identify as LGBT — the highest percentage of any generation in history — and that number is likely to continue to increase, according to survey data released by Gallup.
Gallup’s latest survey data, based on more than 15,000 interviews conducted throughout 2020 with Americans age 18 and older, found that 5.6% of U.S. adults identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender, up from 4.5% in Gallup’s findings based on 2017 data.
One in six adults in Generation Z, people born between 1997 and 2002, identify as LGBT compared to 9.1% of millennials, 3.8% of Generation X, 2% of Baby Boomers, and 1.3% of Traditionalists.
It is also disturbing that anybody who makes anti-LGBT comment is now being victimized. Recently, a student in a New York University was suspended for criticizing transgender ideology. It has got to the point that voicing out against an odious lifestyle is now a crime.
In Nigeria, gay activists are growing wings. They hold open campaigns and had lobbied the national assembly to make a law that would accommodate their lifestyle. In 2019 about four bishops were dismissed in the Church of Nigeria when an investigation showed they were homosexuals. There is the House of Rainbow Church in Nigeria which accommodates those who adhere to the gay lifestyle. But then, many are under the cover waiting for the appropriate time to come out publicly.
Gay rights: Why the obsession?
It seems amusing that the seeming rights of the gay are the headache of the US, the world’s greatest nation. This country feels compelled to threaten other nations of the world that are not impressed by the latitude it has given to homosexuals.
But then, before we get it twisted, nobody is saying homosexuals have not been in Africa from time immemorial. It’s like saying pedophiles are not in Africa. These are vices that are as old as the human race.
Though it is a known crime in Africa it’s hard to see a man who has been to jail because of homosexual practices. What we have seen in the past is that those who are homosexuals have been too ashamed to make a public claim to it. They would rather fight the beast in them quietly and seek redemption. Some of them had only come out to share their experiences after they had repented.
The revival of the pro-gay campaign
But the case in the US is different. Those who have been captured by this lifestyle rather than bury their faces in shame and repent are seeking converts and trying to impress on the world that their lifestyle is natural.
Former US president, Barrack Obama was at the forefront of the campaign for the canonisation of the gay lifestyle. He gave impetus to folks in Africa who have all along been quiet about it. The Obama-led US government had also at that time sought to compel other African countries into buying into the evil and had threatened to withdraw aids to countries where the rights of the gays are not upheld.
The truth as noted earlier is that gay life is as old as humans. As a matter of fact, the vice is called Sodomy. It is named after Sodom and Gomorrah, the first nation according to Biblical account where it was freely practiced.
God, from Bible records, destroyed that ancient city with fire and brimstone. So, homosexuality though is as old as man has been a crime albinitio. There is no time in history where it was embraced and practitioners celebrated. It falls in the league of other human aberration like pedophilia, fornication, adultery, and all known sexual abuses.
That people gravitate towards these sexual misuses does not mean they should be celebrated. If that be the case the whole world will be in utter chaos.
Ironically, the US which feels impressed by LGBT has not legalized polygamy. If their forefathers were wise enough to criminalize polygamy, one begins to wonder where the US generation of a few decades ago got emboldened to make gay rights their obsession.
But then, the US question may not be the trouble for us as the country is free to do what it likes and make legal what it feels should be made legal. What should be the worry is the attempt by the US to foist their obsession on other countries of the world through subtle blackmail and threat.
Africa, not ready for the American nightmare
Many evangelicals who rooted for Donald Trump did so because they could not imagine a repeat of an Obama era during which activities of homosexuals took a disturbing turn. Trump however lost his second term bid to Biden.
Today, the US is tactically back to a continuation of the Obama era. Little wonder, Joe Biden’s first set of executive orders gave LGTB rights a priority. He had threatened to impose financial and visa sanctions on countries that do not give homosexuals their rights.
In case you are wondering about the rights of the LGBT community, what they are asking for is for the world to agree that it is normal for them to parade such sexual orientation. By implication, there is no difference between the male and female. Public toilet has to be built to accommodate this orientation. It became so ridiculous when democrats ended the opening prayer for the 117th Congress by saying, “Amen and Awomen”
Bishop Theologian, Prof. Dapo Asaju said at a forum that the signing of the executive order on LGBT rights by Biden is an act of rebellion against God urging both the clergy and laity to stand up against all ungodly laws.
Asaju said God is not moved by any form of philosophical argument recalling that God had always dealt with sin right from time immemorial.
“When man over ambitiously wanted to reach Him through the Tower of Babel, God came down and confused our language. God had in the past dealt with homosexuality by destroying Sodom and Gomorrah. In Egypt God brought ten plagues and killed the firstborn of Egyptians because of their sin against his people, he also destroyed even his covenant people who sinned against him in the wilderness,” Asaju stated
He traced the origin of the evil in the world to Satan’s wiles starting from the Garden of Eden when Satan questioned the instruction God gave Adam and Eve. He also traced it to fallen angels situated in all parts of the world who have been influencing man to misbehave and do abominable things.
He believes every believer should take up the gauntlet and fight this insidious monster that is quietly ravaging the Church.
Rev Ladi Thompson, founder of Macedonia Initiative. also spoke against the evil. He said in a broadcast that the African nation is not ready to embrace the American nightmare even when it is open to the American dream. He said it will be pretty discourteous for the US to force on Africa policies that are alien to Africa stressing that there must be a difference between the pursuit of happiness and pursuit of personal pleasure.
He reasoned that personal pleasure can’t override the communal good. He believes the community should be kept safe for the African child. He also believes there is an occult dimension to same-sex marriage which Africans have grown to know suggesting that the US should be open to debate on the matter.
Critical thought in the words of Thompson, “should make us understand that it is demeaning for the US to presume that the Africans lack the sophistication of thought on such issue” He stressed that it is discourteous for Joe Biden to make gay rights issue the flagship of his government.
In another statement, Thompson said, “The Bible talks about the strategic havoc that Satan often creates using time-release capsules or seeds once he catches the church napping.
“The LGBTQI+ issue is a very sensitive topic in African nations and all the attempts by the western world to foist its standards upon our people concerning gender and sexuality issues have been met with stiff resistance.
“African nations have won many battles already but we have to be prepared for a marathon race instead of adopting the mentality that this contention is a 100-meter dash. The force that is promoting the gay-lesbian argument has already proven itself to be as resilient and cunning as the Boko haram.”
He said, “except the Nigerian Church really wakes up to take the bull by the horns it is certain that this deviant culture will eventually spread and triumph over the nations of Africa and its religious institutes.”
Thompson who is also the Overseer of Living Waters Unlimited said further that the way to resist and beat the lesbian-gay agenda is for the Nigerian church to first learn from the errors of the Western Church who were battered into submission by the skills, resilience, subterfuge, and extremely well-funded giant slayers.
“The Nigerian church has to activate the Mind of Christ if it were to beat the brilliance of the global gay lobby. Then, again, this is not a war that a fragmented Church can win. Once we cannot create the synergy required, we might as well not bother to resist at all.”
Just the starting point
Thompson and Prof Asaju’s well-articulated responses to Joe Biden on the gay issue should just be the starting point for people who are concerned about values.
The Church should stretch this argument further and join the campaign train of Primate Ndukuba to raise a concerted voice against this subtle evil in the corridors of the church and indeed in the world. Like Prof Asaju suggested, let every available medium be used to drum to the ears of those who care to listen that LGBT is anti-God, Anti-Bible, Anti-humanity
God did not allow it to fester in Sodom and Gomorrah, it will not fester now. Gays are humans and they should be shown the love of Christ just the way any other human beings are shown love. We should welcome their person but not accommodate their ideas. Never should that lifestyle be canonized. May the Lord shame the devil in his enterprise.
By Gbenga Osinaike