Apples of Gold
Radio Script for October 29, 2009
“Rights vs. Righteousness”
Hello, I’m Doug Apple…with Apples of Gold.
Last night, Tallahassee City Commissioners voted unanimously to extend employee benefits to all domestic partners, not just married couples.
Why did they do that, especially when the city is under tremendous financial pressure? We have underpaid police officers, and many city positions have been cut out entirely. But now they have agreed to pay benefits to a new group of people – people who aren’t married but are living together.
Well as far as I can tell, the main reason is that they don’t want to discriminate against gay couples. After all, don’t they have the same rights as straight couples?
And if you are going to pay benefits to gay couples who aren’t married (because, so far at least, the law doesn’t allow them to be married), then you can’t really deny benefits to straight couples who aren’t married, can you?
So city commissioners are simply trying to do what seems logical and gives the same rights to everyone. Isn’t that the American way?
Well, yes, that is the American way. We are all about people and their rights.
But there is a higher calling, and that is righteousness.
Yes, that means there is a dividing line, some things are righteous and some things aren’t.
It is unrighteous to steal from your neighbor, or to kill him or to attack him. Those actions are unrighteous, and they are also illegal.
It is also unrighteous to cheat on your spouse, have an abortion and carry out homosexual behavior – but those actions are currently legal because, after all, everyone has their rights.
And looking ahead I can easily see laws changing to make more unrighteousness legal – prostitution, drugs, gambling – after all, if you want to sell your body or take drugs or gamble, it’s your right . . .right? And I can see them lowering the age of consent. I mean, if 14 year olds want to, you know…
Well anyway, why were these things ever made illegal in the first place?
Because of the standard of righteousness. Here is the line, righteousness on one side and unrighteousness on the other. And in the past certain leaders decided that the righteousness line was also the legal line.
Prostitution is unrighteous, so it should be illegal. Sex outside of marriage is unrighteous. Gay sex is unrighteous.
“Whoa! Where on earth do you get off saying something so hateful as that???”
I’m just telling you how they passed those laws in the first place. It wasn’t because they were all a bunch of homophobes. They simply said, “Here is the standard of righteousness, and we will pass laws that fit that standard.”
There are laws against adultery still on the books all across the country, though I can’t remember the last time someone stood trial for committing adultery.
Now you might be thinking that I’m proposing some sort of Gestapo state, which I am not.
And keep in mind, we are passing more and more laws about things like cigarette smoking and seat belt wearing. We are forced to buy car insurance, and it looks like we might be forced to buy health insurance.
And yesterday President Obama signed a new hate-crimes law, and what’s a hate crime but a thought crime? The crime is already illegal, but what were you thinking when you did it?
To me, thought crimes sound more Gestapo-like than passing laws based on righteousness.
And listen, I am in no way advocating hate crimes. I am advocating no crimes. What I am advocating is a nation built on the solid foundation of righteousness.
When it comes to rights vs. righteousness, I think righteousness should prevail, and here’s why.
Proverbs 14:34 says, “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a disgrace to any people.”
If you want your nation to be exalted, than promote righteousness.
How does that play out in real life? Picture this, even though in today’s climate it seems unimaginable. Picture a Tallahassee City Commissioner saying, “I am voting against extending marriage benefits to gay couples and couples who aren’t married, because those are unrighteous lifestyles. In our nation they are free to live that lifestyle, but it is unrighteous and therefore the city will not use taxpayer funds to support that lifestyle.”
Sounds unthinkable, doesn’t it? Why? Because some protestors would go nuts. The media would go nuts. That commissioner would be tarred and feathered.
Well, it certainly wouldn’t be the first time someone was persecuted for righteousness, but here’s some good news. Jesus said in the Sermon on the Mount, “Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness…”
Isaiah 32:17 says, “The fruit of righteousness will be peace; the effect of righteousness will be quietness…”
Psalm 85:10 says, “…righteousness and peace kiss each other.”
Proverbs 16:12 says, “…a throne is established through righteousness.”
Peace in a nation is a fruit of righteousness. The more we can steer our nation toward righteousness, the more peace we will have.
But when we put rights ahead of righteousness, even if it seems like the most logical and even nice thing to do at the moment, it still leads our nation away from peace and towards disgrace, for yes, “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a disgrace to any people.”
E-mail me: firstname.lastname@example.org.
May God bless you today! With Apples of Gold…I’m Doug Apple.
© 2009 The Arrow’s Tip
To subscribe to your own daily “Apples of Gold” e-mail, write email@example.com.
If you want to be removed from this e-mail list, simply click reply and type UNSUBSCRIBE on the subject line.
If you want to catch “Apples of Gold” in its original audio format, go to www.wave94.com
To search through the large archive of past articles, go here: http://www.wave94.com/modules.php?name=Stories_Archive
If you have trouble reaching me at my main e-mail address, try this one: firstname.lastname@example.org
(Proverbs 25:11 – “A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver.”)
Why “The Arrow’s Tip”? Each morning, after diligently seeking the Lord, I write Apples of Gold. Then before I release it to the public I pray one final prayer, “Lord, send forth your arrows.” I envision Apples of Gold as arrows, tips dipped in the river of the water of life that flows from the throne of God (Rev. 22:1), sailing toward the hearts and minds of men and women around the world.
General Manager - Wave 94
Christian Radio for Tallahassee
PO Box 4105
Tallahassee, FL 32315