When I was barely sixteen, my English teacher suggested that I read Brave New World. She did not pick that book specifically for me, or me for the book. It was on a list of 50 books college-bound students should read. I was an avid reader of science fiction at the time, and that whole idea was intriguing.
I was less than half through the book when my mother discovered I was reading it. I was lying sprawled on my bed, my favorite way to read, and when my mother saw the title of the book, she snatched it out of my hands. “Let me see that!” she said. “Where did you get this book?” After I caught my breath, I told her about the list.
“We’ll see about that!” she said, and left the room with the book in her hands. I learned from my teacher that Mother had accosted the principal, the school counselor, and my teacher about that book. She was angry that the school promoted such an immoral book. They made the best of things, telling me that I should simply choose something else from the list and not worry about it.
My mother was affronted by Brave New World because it promoted an amoral view of human sexuality. The most imaginative element of the story was the harvesting of eggs from females as they reached adulthood and the subsequent production of human beings under the government’s direction, along with the details of a strategy to produce people who did work commonly described in current political debates as “jobs Americans won’t do.” The element that outraged my mother the most was the “Malthusian drills” for schoolchildren and the game “Find the Zipper” in the brave new world of the book that replace familiar children’s games like “tag” and “ring around the rosy.”
My mother would be completely traumatized, therefore, if she were alive to read the daily news or see television broadcasts today. Today’s schools don’t even mention the fabled Malthus so honored in Brave New World, but they do teach heterosexual and homosexual practices to schoolchildren, and they routinely refer pregnant children (children! As young as 10) for abortions without the knowledge and consent of parents. There is no national standard for harvesting the eggs of all young women, but the horror of calling a couple of homosexual men a “marriage” has already raised the specter of rented wombs and genetic selection of physical traits in unborn babies. I often give thanks to God that my parents died before these issues became the grist of daily conversation.
As a writer, I have long struggled with the tortured language that arose after rabid feminists protested against the word chairman. When I read about that protest, I laughed aloud, because I knew the language, and I knew that the common usage of the suffix –man did not in any way injure or prejudice women, but the depths of my error in judgment soon became evident. The battle moved to the words fireman and policeman, and soon it had progressed to a distaste for calling God our heavenly Father. (Even if I could stomach the protest in general, which I cannot do, I would balk at changing or denying the language Jesus himself gave us for prayer. He said, “Pray this way” and “this way” begins with the words, “Our Father.”)
Today I read another article that records further degradation of the culture’s view of human sexuality. Princeton University has issued “communication guidelines” that “reflect the inclusive culture and policies at Princeton University.” Under those guidelines, students will no longer be called men or women. The correct term will be student, individual, or person. People who used to be called our forefathers, must now be called our ancestors. Work requires person hours not man hours. In order to avoid traumatizing .001% of the student body, the university is traumatizing 100% of the student body – minus .001%.
Someone will dispute my numbers. Someone will point out that every day some new “person” declares self to be gay or to be trans or to be other things for which I do not even know the vocabulary. Therefore, some will say, I must have vastly underestimated the number of people subject to be hurt if we address people according to the gender identified at birth by the simple process of examining the physical traits of the newborn baby. I contend that the vast new numbers of gender-confused and sexual-orientation-confused people is largely attributable to the fact that to be confused is the most popular trait anyone can have right now. People who are confident in their genitalia or their skin color or their nationality are viewed as conceited and arrogant. They are accused of subconscious demand for and expectation of privilege, and they need to be taken down a notch.
The culture today is a morass of confusion on many points where there need be no confusion. It is quite true that human beings have invented privileges for themselves. Hillary Clinton is a very public example of someone who does it daily. Historically every human being wants to be the best or the first or the fastest or the strongest. People naturally want to be superlative by some or by several standards, and that is the common theme behind hateful behavior related to gender or skin color or any other trait.
My mother was right to recognize the moral danger expressed in Brave New World. However, she was wrong to believe that suppressing the reading of that book would suppress the evil it contained. No amount of laws or policies or regulations will ever change human nature. Secular thinkers who flout all the existing laws are the very ones who propose an endless stream of new laws to suppress things they do not like.
The real moral danger of Brave New World was the way it opened the door to an amoral worldview in which humankind became factory products. Chairs and automobiles cannot commit sin, because they are incapable of moral choices. Only human beings have that capability, but human beings produced by an amoral process and spit out into an amoral world can absorb the programming “it is good to be an eta,” and never worry about anything.
Today’s evil is really nothing new in the moral sense. The only difference between today’s amoral activists and Caligula is technology. Christians in the Roman Empire were hated for their moral standards, and Christians today are hated for the same reasons. The news gets out faster and goes viral today in ways not possible in the first century CE.
Today’s agenda is to suppress any moral standard not invented by some human being to make himself feel good. That was the agenda of Caligula, and that is the agenda of the Freedom from Religion Foundation. This agenda is not invented by the people who are promoting it. As Paul pointed out in his letter to the Ephesians, “we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places” (Ephesians 6:12 ESV).
Christians in the first century were asked to look to their government for all guidance. The Emperor thought of himself as a god, and he expected Roman citizens, and all the people Rome had conquered, to worship him as their duty in return for what Roman government did for them, i.e. the emperor. Today, the government makes the same request. The government uses money as its tool of oppression. People who receive money from the government must put the government ahead of all other powers in their lives. The government wants to be the god of the USA. The government wants people who worship any other god to keep their god somewhere out of sight in a box marked “worship space.” There, and only there, may any god other than the federal government be honored. Without a doubt, the people behind this agenda intend those little boxes to go away, too, as they did in the Soviet Union, where churches became at best museums of a defunct sort of cultural phenomenon and at worst, factories or warehouses for instruments of oppression.
The spiritual armor about which Paul wrote, and the spiritual fiber exhorted by the book of Revelation are the means of our warfare. In the case of gender confusion and the associated sexual chaos it creates, Satan’s battle, expressed in the lives of people who deny his existence as firmly as they deny God’s existence, targets the creation of human beings.
That moment is recorded in Genesis 1:27: “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them” (Genesis 1:27 ESV). There is no room for confusion in this statement. Like all the other living things, God gave humans gender and sexuality, precious gifts, gifts that were encoded so deeply into their being that even the very first cell, at the moment of conception, already had gender. The moment of creation is followed by God’s blessing, evidence that God was pleased with human beings.
The first instructions God gave to humans grew out of the blessed power he had given them by creating them male and female. “God blessed them. And God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it, and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth” Genesis 1:28 (ESV). They could not have been fruitful if not for gender and the process of sexual reproduction. That is the only means God has provided for humans to “be fruitful.” The Bible tells us that God is not the author of confusion, a fact that explains where gender confusion and sexual confusion originates; those problems are due to Satanic work in the lives of human beings.
There is a way to deal with gender confusion and warped sexual orientation. The solution to every sin is the work of Christ on the cross, where he defeated Satan. Human beings who succumb to the temptation to be confused and warped need Jesus. The existence of such sin does not justify name calling or any other ungracious behavior toward the people who have been enslaved that way. It was not Christ’s way to call people names and authorize stonings of sinners. Rather, he invited them to find a better way, and people such as the Samaritan woman at the well, Zaccheus the tax collector, the woman caught in adultery, and the man born blind were transformed by his grace. They turned their lives around and became different. They were reconciled with God and with creation, and they were not confused about the source of their moral guidance.
If the human race (the only race I ever acknowledge) loses God-given gender and God-given sexual procreation, it will disappear. That is why I ask the question: Is this the end of humanity as we know it? I don’t actually believe that will happen, because the Bible predicts that there will still be people on earth when Jesus comes back. I do believe that Christians are in for a long period of cruel persecution by Satan’s slaves. The book of Revelation makes it pretty clear that there will be persecution, to a greater or lesser degree, until Jesus returns. That means that even if the fad of confused gender and warped sexuality fades away, Satan has many other ways to assault Christians, always with the goal of separating them from Christ. Whether or not humankind vanishes from the earth, it is good to know that “neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord (Romans 8:38-39 ESV)