In his serrating satire of Christians’ worldview in the Huffington Post, Professor Domenick Scudera, M.F.A. and Professor of Theater at Ursinus College, constructed a narrative that both questioned and parodied Rick Santorum’s urging of Kim Davis to “follow her conscience.” Scudera used an analogy in his narrative that fictionally showed him as a Christian “following his conscience.” Here is a piece of his work in his article, “Screw the Laws, I am Following My Conscience Instead.”
The transcript is as follows…
I am so inspired by Mr. Santorum that I have decided to convert to this new Kim Davis Conscience Christianity. It is a win-win. I can better serve my Lord and Savior, and He will be pleased with my devotion.
First, I will refuse to follow speed limits and stop signs on my way to church on Sundays. When I travel to church to prove my faithfulness to our Lord, I must not be slowed down or hindered in any way. I want to be able to focus on my God and I will not be forced to adhere to some arbitrary traffic laws.
I listen to Christian music when I drive. This, to me, is a form of prayer. Therefore, I will extend my new driving habits beyond Sundays and ignore traffic signs every day of the week. I want to be able to practice my religion without interruption at all times. Stopping at stop signs is a form of discrimination that we Christians must rise against!
(Here is the link to Mr. Scudera’s full article so that a full context is provided for the sake of fair play—http://www.huffingtonpost.com/domenick-scudera/screw-the-laws-i-am-follo_b_8139382.html)
Since we live in a free society with open minds, I relish the good fortune to give my countering perspective to Mr. Scudera. He is part of the Gay Voices section of the Huffington Post. While I do not represent any major media outlet, I am an ambassador of the Lord Jesus Christ and am under both the ordinances of the Great Commission and the letter of the Spirit. Therefore, it is my job to show my Lord as He really is, and in this case, I feel that He has been misrepresented by Mr. Scudera. What Rick Santorum labels as “conscience Christianity” really is a misnomer for being Spirit-filled, and that’s been around since the Old Testament days. Christians have the Holy Spirit inside of them, for he was promised to us by Jesus Christ and set up shop for all the believers during Pentecost in Acts 1 (the Holy Spirit was quite active during the Old Testament but that’s for another day). The Holy Spirit searches the deep things of God (1 Corinthians 2:10), and that means he gives the Father’s followers pieces of God’s wisdom. We Christians recognize God’s law as higher than any law of man, because it is the supreme scaffolding of our existence whether one follows Him or not. He is your Creator and stemming from that, the reality of Divine Authority.
God set up His laws into existence through the Ten Commandments, the Book of the Law, and later through the New Covenant by the blood of Jesus Christ. If one notices, most of God’s law lines up with our basic laws in America. Now we have come to an age where a major clash has erupted between civil law and God’s law. When the choice is on a platter, we choose to follow God. Why? We pray to God and follow the guidance of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit reflects to us the heart of God, and the Holy Spirit teaches us that obedience is the will of the Father for us.
When we obey, we’re aligning with God’s plan for wholeness. Now, the sin I commit breaks up that wholeness all the time; that’s what Jesus’ blood is for. However, when I sin, the goal is not just to be forgiven but to live a life of repentance. Repentance means not falling into the same patterns of sin as before. On the subject of same-sex marriage and the recognition of its validity, the Holy Spirit and the Bible are clear: it is a sin and is not our Creator’s intentions for marriage (Romans 1:24-32). When Christians like Kim Davis are confronted with carrying out the precepts of civil law that violate their God’s ways, they cannot dishonor their God when the issue is pulsating in front of them. Yes, we understand that there could be legal consequences for disobedience and a clamor of dissent, for it is all but assured (1 Peter 4:12 & 1 John 3:13). Despite that, Christians still cannot follow what the common good says when it blatantly contradicts God.
The Holy Spirit is not a reckless way to live as Mr. Scudera suggests. Following the Holy Spirit will not cause us to flippantly disobey traffic laws as he asserts. I understand he was trying to prove a point, but a Spirit-filled Christian is one who aligns his desires with the Holy Spirit. That means we die to our carnal desires every day and pursue the mind of Christ. And for the record, that does not mean that Christians can suddenly decide to declare that murder, rape, disobeying speed limits, not paying your taxes, and discrimination are lawful because they are following their conscience. If one looks at the heart of God, none of those actions align with His Heart. Homosexuality and the lifestyle of the LGBT community, on the other hand, do not align with His heart. The Holy Spirit and the Bible crisply state that no genetics, feelings, desires, or trauma can stand on its own against the power of God and the blood of Jesus Christ. That’s why there are ex-members of the LGBT community today that have declared that God’s love inside of them was the catalyst for change, and that their former definition of love was not the plan of wholeness that God intended for them.
Scudera is correct when he alludes to the dangers of men abusing religion in the name of God. There’s a long history of abuse, torment, crusades, and “holy wars” that has come about because men have carried out their own evil desires by masking it with the face of religion. Nonetheless, those actions did not align with God and the Holy Spirit’s desires. Once again, apostolic Christians do not disobey man’s law without consulting Scripture, intense prayer, and seeking the heart of God. As a result, we don’t bluntly disregard laws unless we are pushed into the corner. Five justices in the Supreme Court determined the course we would have to take in June of this summer. Religious liberty allows us to disagree, and not only disagree but to participate in shaping laws. Legislated morality is a no-no in society but when immorality is legislated, no one wants to uphold the same argument. Same-sex marriage is immoral and contradicts God’s law, so therefore, we must rest with God.
It appears to be such a clean, clear, and crisp process. Even so, every Christian falls short of the glory of God in heaps and bunches (Romans 3:23). We don’t align our desires with the Holy Spirit enough and as a result of that misalignment, we have hateful, vengeance-stuffed places like the Westboro Baptist Church. Even worse, we have churches that don’t approach the LGBT community with the love that Jesus displayed. Jesus’ love was not only merciful but also provided the only pathway to living in wholeness apart from that specific sin (look at John 8:1-11). Yes, we Christians are intimately familiar with failure, cluttered lives, and secret sins. But thanks be to God that He works with broken tools! That’s why Jesus is always running through our mouths. We espouse him because he can use anyone. He can change you and use your personality to fit the God-given destiny in store for you
Despite a belief to the contrary, the droves of Holy Spirit-driven Christians sincerely love the members of the LGBT community, and we want them in our churches. We want them to see what the redeeming blood of Jesus can do to erase any desire, lust, and disposition. As a matter of fact, myself and every other follower of Jesus Christ have had patterns of sin that are contrary to what the Bible lays out for us, yet repentance and the power of our intercessor Jesus Christ has washed us clean. The difference is, we chose to give our desires to Jesus rather than embrace them. So on behalf of many evangelical Christians out there, I apologize for the pointed fingers of condemnation emanating from the pews. The greatest pursuit of a follower of God is to reflect the love of the Lord. Not only that, we are to show it as love that covers and cleanses.
Condemnation resides in death and sin’s shadow. Jesus’ love allows us to walk according to the Spirit and not the flesh, for there is no condemnation for those that walk according to the Spirit (Romans 8:1). Walking in the flesh is living in sin despite believing in God’s redeeming power. Redemption means walking away from past feelings and mindsets that are contrary to what God lays out. This is what we believe and live through. This is why we follow the Holy Spirit. You have all the answers, Mr. Scudera, but I plead with you to consider the loving authority of God the Father, salvation of Jesus Christ and the guidance of the Holy Spirit. He loves your heart to serve the community and your passion for performance, and He would love to use it for His glory. If you search with an open heart, you may just find some answers that you never thought possible.
Kevin Cochrane is an eighteen year old writer and blogger with the distinct purpose of radically restoring everyone with ears to hear to the original testimony of Jesus Christ. His mission is to live by the words he writes and develop his character along with the prose he pens. For updates on his latest blog posts, you can follow him on Twitter @RunFree_KC or click the follow button at the bottom of the page to receive notifications by email.