Opinion: World Vision policy change contradictory to biblical teachings

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File Photo

Last week, World Vision made a policy change which allowed the organization to hire employees who are in a legal homosexual marriage. Even though they later reversed this policy change, the original decision was one that should shake our confidence in the organization, because it is inconsistent with the Bible.

World Vision states, “Our faith in Jesus is central to who we are and we follow his example in working alongside the poor and oppressed,” but their affirmation of homosexual marriage shows the opposite. No matter how brief, a policy change which validates people living in open rebellion against God does not show the love that Jesus exemplified.

I understand that, in his incredible mercy, Jesus offers endless forgiveness of any sin and I do not mean to diminish this love. However, the forgiveness Jesus offers is always in conjunction with repentance of sin (Luke 17:3, 24:47, Acts 3:18-19, 2 Cor. 7:9-10). And after gracefully forgiving sin, Jesus commands sinners to “go and sin no more” (John 8:11). He in no way sheds his grace on those living in continual, open rebellion against him (Rom. 2:5, Rev. 2:5, 3:3).

Those engaged in a legal homosexual marriage are not repentant and are making no effort to “go and sin no more.” Yet these people embracing sin are exactly the people World Vision has chosen to affirm. Not only does the Bible clearly say that this sin will lead to separation from God forever, but endorsement of those living in unrepentant sin is also a characteristic of those God has given over to sinful nature (Rom. 1:32, Psa. 50:18, Prov. 28:4).

Because World Vision is one of the most well-known Christian organizations in the United States, their decision to take a step away from the authority of the Bible by changing their policy could have dangerous consequences. Therefore, I have decided to stop my donations to World Vision and send them to other organizations that offer both physical and spiritual nourishment. There are many good organizations available to do this. Christians need not accept the either/or fallacy offered by World Vision. The choice is not between feeding orphans or not feeding them. The choice is between feeding them physically and spiritually or just feeding them physically. I prefer the choice that has both a temporary and eternal impact.

This was a heart-breaking decision for the sake of Maria, the little girl in Romania I have sponsored for three years. However, Jesus set a clear example for Christians to always offer spiritual nourishment along with physical nourishment. I cannot justify meeting only temporary needs when eternal needs are infinitely more important. If World Vision is open to embracing sinful behavior that leads to eternal damnation, I cannot trust them to present Christ to Maria.

Jesus himself defined marriage when he said that “for this cause a man shall leave his father and mother and cling to his wife and the two shall become one flesh.” This is not a gray area of Scripture. That World Vision sees it as such casts doubt on the spiritual maturity and decision-making abilities of the leaders of World Vision.

Even with the reversal of the policy, World Vision has unnecessarily made this an issue at the expense of children in poverty. I wish their leaders had taken this into consideration before changing their policy to openly endorse homosexual marriage.

As college students, we have to think carefully about where we give our money. I will continue to support those in need, but I will only do it through organizations that I trust will uphold the authority of the Scripture and offer spiritual nourishment.

In order to love the way Christ loved we cannot condone homosexual behavior. When followers of Jesus Christ communicate their acceptance of homosexual behavior, they may delay or even prevent the repentance that is necessary for salvation. Instead, to follow Christ’s example, we must love by making people aware of the eternal consequences of sin (Isa. 59:2, Rom. 3:23, Gal. 5:21).

This is an opinion piece and does not necessarily represent the views of Calvin Chimes, the Religion section of Calvin Chimes, Calvin College or the Christian Reformed Church. 

 

Read differing view: Opinion: Giving should depend on an organization’s works, not its values

About the Author

Bekah Coggin

Bekah Coggin is the Chimes religion co-editor for the 2013-14 school year.

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