VIDEO Google Vs. God’s Word

We have now learned more about Google’s decision last year to ban my ministry from advertising our video “Can You Be Gay and Christian?” on YouTube. According to a new report:

“Google banned a video explaining Christian teaching on same-sex marriage from advertising on YouTube after backlash from upset employees, according to internal Google communications reviewed by The Daily Caller News Foundation.”

So, enough employees got upset about our video – the dreaded “microaggressions”! – that the complaints made their way to Google VP Vishal Sharma, who agreed that YouTube had no business accepting advertising for a video like this.

But before I share Sharma’s actual words with you, please do a little experiment.

Take 6 minutes to watch the video and ask yourself several questions.

First, do I make any major points that are not explicitly biblical? In other words, am I making stuff up as I go along or am I citing Scripture, fairly and in context?

Second, do I express hatred against any group on the video? Is there anything in the video that could be called homophobic?

Third, do I state clearly that Jesus died for all, loves all, and offers redemption and transformation to all? Have I excluded any individual or group from God’s redeeming love?

Fourth, is there a single statement in the entire Bible affirming homosexual practice or homosexual relationships? (It’s notable that on different debates on the subject, my opponents were not able to produce a single scripture to support their views. See here and here.)

Why, then, did Sharma end up agreeing with his offended workers?

In response to those employees who brought our video to his attention he wrote:

“It means a lot to me personally and those of us working on this across the Ads and YouTube teams. YouTube is an open platform and we support the free expression of creators with a wide range of views.”

Except that this “open platform” with “free expression” for “a wide range of views” only goes so far. One dare not transgress LGBTQ sensitivities. One dare not present biblical truth in love when that truth is deemed offensive.

Better to try and muzzle the Scriptures – which, in the end, cannot be muzzled – than allow a video which violates no guidelines to be advertised.

Sharma continued:

“But we don’t allow advertising that disparages people based on who they are – including their sexual orientation – and we remove ads that violate this basic principle.”

And herein lies the rub. I did not disparage anyone on the video. Not once. I simply stated what God’s Word says, simply and clearly and directly.

Sharma might say in response:

“What are you talking about? You said that you cannot be a true follower of Jesus and practice homosexuality at the same time. That’s disparaging people based on who they are – based on their sexual orientation.”

To the contrary, I simply repeated what God’s Words says and what the Synagogue and Church have believed for millennia. Not only so, but in the video I made clear that no one is condemned for having feelings or attractions. The issue is whether we act on those feelings or attractions. And that, in fact, is our choice.

I also repeated what God’s Word said in terms of change, namely, that some Christians used to practice homosexuality but no longer do (1 Corinthians 6:9-11). This was true in Paul’s day, and it is true today.

So, Google’s battle is with the Bible, meaning that, if I simply produced a video reading relevant Bible verses on the subject, that video would not be suitable for advertising either. (Maybe I’ll try that as an experiment!)

It would be one thing if Google said:

“Let’s be sure this video is only advertised on conservative Christian channels.”

That would have been perfectly fine, and we would have fully respected that. Our goal was to equip believers with truth, not provoke LGBT viewers on their own channels.

But that was not to be.

Sharma concluded that:

“After careful and multiple reviews over the course of a few days, our teams decided to remove the ad in question here as it violates our policy. We’ve communicated this to the advertiser and have been in touch with creators who have been actively engaged on this issue.”

In short then, biblical content about homosexual practice, spoken accurately and with love, violates Google’s policy.

Forget any semblance of Google trying to be even-handed. Forget any idea that Google actually make a serious effort to recognize the diversity of views on socially divisive subjects.

Not a chance. The biblical worldview must be blocked. It cannot be promoted on YouTube.

We had learned last week that Google employees felt our video was “very counter to [their] mission.”

Now, we’ve learned a little more about Google’s internal workings, and what we learned confirmed our worst concerns.

Equality and diversity do not exist in Google.

Fairness and tolerance are nothing better than codewords for unfairness and intolerance.

Certain groups cannot and must not be offended, even with biblical truth.

A line in the cyber-sand has been drawn, and those who cross that line will be punished.

But there’s more that needs to be said, so allow me to be totally candid.

I truly feel bad for Google, as powerful as it is.

In God’s sight, like the greatest human empires, it will be here today and gone tomorrow.

In stark contrast, God’s Word will stand forever (see Isaiah 40:7-8; Matthew 24:35), long after Google is a forgotten thing of the past.

In that light, I truly hope Google will right its ship and allow for the promotion of Bible-based videos like ours.

If not, ultimately, it will be their loss, not mine.

For the moment, please share our video with your social networks and give it a thumbs up on YouTube.

And if you feel discouraged at any point, remember Paul’s simple words:

“For we can do nothing against the truth, but only for the truth” (2 Corinthians 13:8).

Truth will always triumph in the end.

by Dr Michael Brown

https://barbwire.com/google-vs-gods-word/

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How Much I Could Have Done If….

And this they did, not as we hoped, but first gave their own selves to the Lord, and unto us by the will of God.

—2 Corinthians 8:5

Before the judgment seat of Christ my service will be judged not by how much I have done but by how much I could have done. In God’s sight my giving is measured not by how much I have given but by how much I could have given and how much I had left after I made my gift. The needs of the world and my total ability to minister to those needs decide the worth of my service.

Not by its size is my gift judged, but by how much of me there is in it. No man gives at all until he has given all. No man gives anything acceptable to God until he has first given himself in love and sacrifice….

In the work of the church the amount one man must do to accomplish a given task is determined by how much or how little the rest of the company is willing to do. It is a rare church whose members all put their shoulder to the wheel. The typical church is composed of the few whose shoulders are bruised by their faithful labors and the many who are unwilling to raise a blister in the service of God and their fellowmen. There may be a bit of wry humor in all this, but it is quite certain that there will be no laughter when each of us gives account to God of the deeds done in the body.   TIC105

Help me to give of myself completely today, Lord. I hold nothing back, even if at the end of the day I’m the only one with a bruised shoulder. Amen.

 

Obscured by Clouds

We fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. 2 Corinthians 4:18

A rare supermoon appeared in November 2016—the moon in its orbit reached its closest point to the earth in over sixty years and so appeared bigger and brighter than at other times. But for me that day the skies were shrouded in gray. Although I saw photos of this wonder from friends in other places, as I gazed upward I had to trust that the supermoon was lurking behind the clouds.

The apostle Paul faced many hardships but believed that what is unseen will last forever. He said how his “momentary troubles” achieve “an eternal glory” (2 Corinthians 4:17). Thus he could fix his eyes “not on what is seen, but on what is unseen,” because what is unseen is eternal (v. 18). Paul yearned that the Corinthians and our faith would grow, and although we suffer, that we too would trust in God. We might not be able to see Him, but we can believe He is renewing us day by day (v. 16).

I thought about how God is unseen but eternal when I gazed at the clouds that day, knowing that the supermoon was hidden but there. And I hoped the next time I was tempted to believe that God was far from me, I would fix my eyes on what is unseen.

By Amy Boucher Pye

Today’s Reflection

What does it mean for you to fix your eyes on what is unseen? How does your hope in Jesus help you face the difficulties of life?

How the Bible Is Structured

Psalm 119:89-96

One of the reasons we sometimes fail to understand the Bible is because we skip around as we read it. The Bible has an organized structure, and all the parts fit together as a whole. By reading through it systematically, we’ll see God’s plan of redemption clearly revealed in an orderly fashion.

The Plan. In Genesis 1 and 2, the Lord created the heavens and earth and all that fills them, but His plan of redemption through the death of His Son was already in place before creation (1 Peter 1:18-21).

The Need. In Genesis 3, sin entered the world, but God sacrificed an animal to cover the sinners’ shame and promised to send a Redeemer.

Preparation. God eventually chose the nation Israel, through whom He proclaimed Himself as the one true God and brought the Messiah into the world.

Redemption. The Gospels document how Jesus came as the Messiah, died as God’s sacrifice for man’s sin, was resurrected, and ascended to heaven.

Proclamation. The book of Acts tells of the growth of the church through the spread of the gospel.

Explanation. God inspired the apostles to write letters to the churches regarding the faith and instructions for spiritual growth.

Completion. The book of Revelation reveals Christ’s future kingdom, in which His followers join Him eternally in a new heaven and a new earth.

Even though God’s Word is organized in sections, do not forget that it functions as a whole. Once you understand the Bible’s outline, you can see how all the diverse elements connect to make one story of redemption.

Yes, Worship and Praise

“I will worship toward thy holy temple, and praise thy name for thy lovingkindness and for thy truth: for thou hast magnified thy word above all thy name.” (Psalm 138:2)

Praise and worship are widely taught in Scripture but are seldom used to describe the same actions. “Worship” describes an attitude of obeisance and reverence (usually by bowing or prostrating) during a formal act of sacrifice or some other structured observance. “Praise,” especially this word used in Psalm 138, emphasizes joyous thanksgiving, recognizing God’s specific blessing or God’s worthiness in character, power, deed, or authority.

There are only two events recorded in Scripture where the people of God both “worshipped” and “praised” at the same time. The first was at the dedication of the great temple of Solomon. When the prayer of dedication was finished, the fire of God’s glory descended on the temple and entered the Holy of Holies. That awesome event drove everyone to their knees “with their faces to the ground upon the pavement, and [they] worshipped, and praised the LORD” (2 Chronicles 7:3).

The other occurred right after Ezra led a remnant back from Babylon. As the people heard the Word read to them for the first time in many decades, they became so convicted of their disobedience that they began to cry and confess their sin. They stood for about three hours and “confessed [same word as ‘praise’], and worshipped the LORD their God” (Nehemiah 9:3).

In neither case did the people jump up and down, clap, or otherwise demonstrate exuberance. They were so overwhelmed at the presence of God that they fell down on their faces! Then they poured out their heart in intimate worship and praise for His lovingkindness, His truth, His name, His being, and His attributes, because God has magnified His Word above all His Name. HMM III

When He hath put forth all His own

He calleth His own sheep by name, and leadeth them out. When He hath put forth all His own, He goeth before them, and the sheep follow Him, for they know His voice.—John 10:3,4 (R. V.).

 

He only asks thee to yield thyself to Him, that He may work in thee to will and to do by His own mighty power. Thy part is to yield thyself, His part is to work; and never, never will He give thee any command, which is not accompanied by ample power to obey it. Take no thought for the morrow in this matter; but abandon thyself with a generous trust to thy loving Lord, who has promised never to call His own sheep out into any path without Himself going before them to make the way easy and safe. Take each little step as He makes it plain to thee. Bring all thy life in each of its details to Him to regulate and guide. Follow gladly and quickly the sweet suggestions of His Spirit in thy soul. And day by day thou wilt find Him bringing thee more and more into conformity with His will in all things; molding thee and fashioning thee, as thou art able to bear it, into a vessel unto His honor, sanctified and meet for His use, and fitted to every good work.

Hannah Whitall Smith.

 

Sure Guide

“I will bring the blind by a way that they knew not.” Isa. 42:16

Think of the infinitely glorious Jehovah acting as a Guide to the blind! What boundless condescension does this imply! A blind man cannot find a way which he does not know. Even when he knows the road, it is hard for him to traverse it; but a road which he has not known is quite out of the question for his unguided feet. Now, we are by nature blind as to the way of salvation, and yet the Lord leads us into it, and brings us to Himself, and then opens our eyes. As to the future, we are all of us blind, and cannot see an hour before us; but the Lord Jesus will lead us even to our journey’s end. Blessed be His name!

We cannot guess in which way deliverance can possibly come to us, but the Lord knows, and He will lead us till we shall have escaped every danger. Happy are those who place their hand in that of the great Guide, and leave their way and themselves entirely with Him. He will bring them all the way; and when He has brought them home to glory and has opened their eyes to see the way by which He has led them, what a song of gratitude will they sing unto their great Benefactor! Lord, lead thy poor blind child this day, for I know not my way!