Just as surely as the Yellow Brick Road in the Wizard of Oz leads to the Emerald City, the Primrose Path of liberalism leads to destruction.
In case you are not familiar with the phrase “primrose path,” let me enlighten you with a worthy definition. A primrose path equates to a life of ease and pleasure, or to a course of action that seems easy and appropriate, but can actually end in calamity.
Theological liberalism appears to be loving, kind, and gracious. The buzzwords of theological liberalism are “tolerance, inclusivity, diversity, progressive, contextual, equality. These are good words. After all, the person who is not characterized by these words could be considered an intolerant, exclusive, backward, narrow-minded bigot.
The introduction of liberalism into the church enters in the most subtle and clandestine fashion. Do you remember what happened in the book of Job when the sons of God gathered together? The Bible says, “Again there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan came also among them to present himself before the Lord” (Job 2:1)? Please take notice who showed up when God’s people gathered together – the Devil.
The Devil will invariably attempt to make his presence known when God’s people gather. And when the Gospel is proclaimed, Lucifer will often ask the same question he asked Eve in the Garden of Eden in Genesis 3:1: “Hath God said?”
The liberals will plant seeds of doubt about God’s creative genius and the “theory” of evolution emerges. When evolution is made to look like a somewhat plausible explanation for the origin of the species, a man like Hitler comes along with his belief that the laws of evolution should confer upon favored races the right to dominate others.
The liberals will plant seeds of doubt about when life begins. Then, through cleverly-devised propaganda convince folks a baby in the womb is really nothing more than an indiscriminate mass of protoplasm and use their false premise to legalize abortion. And while we may justly decry the genocide of 800,000 people in Rwanda in the course of ten days and genocide in North Korea, Darfur, Iran, and Cambodia, none of those rogue regimes have killed as many people as the doctors in America who abort babies.
Liberals like Joseph Fletcher wrote books on “Situational Ethics” from which grew a social movement known as “free love” that accepted all forms of love. This movement sought to separate the state and even the church from sexual matters such as marriage, birth control, adultery, and fornication. The result was the epidemic of the HIV virus and AIDS.
University and seminary professors teach modern liberal theology, which has its roots in the deception of the Devil. Aspiring ministerial students get captivated by its seductive spirit of philosophy and are deceived. Professors never help the students, who are poisoned by the serpent of liberalism, sort out the truth from the lies. The students came to school with a sense of divine calling, full of passion and a sense of purpose, but leave with doubts and flounder in a sea of confusion. They were seductively led down that primrose path to a place of confusion and destruction.
Some students graduate from school with a spurious theology and are called to a church as pastor. Their sermons are based on the faulty theology they learned in school and because the people love their pastor, they embrace his theology. Ultimately, the church falters, because no ministry can stand up under a theology that is errant.
Thankfully, we do not have Georgia Baptist schools of higher education or Southern Baptist seminaries that teach questionable theology. However, David P. Gushee, the Distinguished University Professor of Christian Ethics and Director of the Center for Theology and Public Life at Mercer University, has written a book that has attracted a lot of attention.
Gushee’s book is titled Changing Our Mind and in it he invites readers to join him on “his journey as he changes his mind about gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender inclusion in the Church.” Once he wrote notable commentaries in which he denounced homosexuality as a sin. However, this book indicates that he has changed his mind.
Gushee’s admonitions to love and exercise compassion are well taken, but he offers no significant biblical support or Christian ethic for “changing our mind” on God’s plan for human sexuality and marriage.
The Mercer professor has stated that his love for Jesus and sense of moral and intellectual integrity has forced him to exit Southern Baptist and evangelical contexts after almost 40 years.
Radio talk show host Erick Erickson wrote a commentary on Gushee’s book, stating, “I have to take issue with one thing Gushee writes. He claims he is leaving evangelicalism. I must disagree. Gushee is actually leaving Christianity itself, despite trying to claim otherwise with a book titled Still Christian.
“In fact, I think Gushee will eventually be as honest about leaving the faith as he is about leaving evangelicalism. First, he accepted that homosexuality was a sin. Then he evolved on that position and tried to find common ground. Now he has decided there is no common ground and he is no longer an evangelical. The next step will be to formally acknowledge he is not a Christian. It may take time, but I have no doubt it will happen.
“The reason it will happen is because to accept marriage is between more than one man and one woman and to embrace homosexuality, is to reject the teachings of Jesus himself and of his apostles. Gushee and those who hold his position are on the opposite side of 2000 years of Christendom. At some point I strongly believe they will give up the farce and decide instead of trying to convince people that 2,000 years of orthodoxy is wrong and their novel interpretations of scripture are right, they’ll just declare themselves Episcopalian and call it a day.”
I don’t always agree with Erickson, but he may just have this one right. It certainly does illustrate theological liberalism’s primrose path to destruction.