The Transgender (Homosexual) Lifestyle: A Military Chaplain’s Perspective
On June 30, 2016, Defense Secretary Ash Carter announced that transgender service members in the US military can now openly serve their country without fear of retribution. If transgender service members can openly serve without fear of retribution, are military chaplains allowed to “openly” serve with biblical conviction without fear of retribution (see National Defense Authorization Act)? According to the Constitution, yes, but according to opponents of religious liberty for Christians, no!
The transgender, homosexual propaganda that is manifesting itself within society is hostile towards Christians. The Armed Forces ultimately reflect the culture from which they are drawn. Nevertheless, Christians should expect hostility (2 Timothy 3:12). Around the world, proponents of Islam are beheading Christians who will not accept their vile religion, while in the US, Christians who decry sexual immorality (bestiality, fornication, homosexuality, and transgender) as a sinful practice are ostracized and publicly vilified as unloving bigots who are infused with hate. This can be concurred as recently an Army base abruptly cancelled a prayer breakfast that highlighted retired General Jerry Boykin due to complaints that his Christian beliefs were not accepting of a gay lifestyle, while shortly after the US Army published an article about homosexual Army Chaplain Aaron Oliver who was allowed to articulate his gay lifestyle by stating: “I think I’ve always known that I’ve been attracted to members of the same sex.” This is why military chaplains do not need to be silent when Christians are restricted from expressing their beliefs about Scripture, while homosexuals are allowed to boast about their sexuality.
There are several reasons why the transgender, homosexual lifestyle should never be lauded as heroic. First, proponents of the transgender, homosexual lifestyle cannot justify moral absolutes because they have no justification for absolutes of any kind. When the Bible is rejected, the appeal to absolute knowledge is vacated (Proverbs 1:7). Therefore, nothing could be absolutely wrong, which includes: rape, incest, pedophilia, murder, and sexual immorality. Not only does the Bible provide the only source of hope for salvation (repentance & faith) to those who practice a sexually immoral lifestyle, but it also provides the only present intellectual hope as well (Colossians 2:3). The Christian worldview provides the necessary pre-conditions for intelligibility (knowledge, science, logic, and reason). This is why it is impossible to make any claims of knowledge without first borrowing from the Christian worldview.
Second, the transgender, homosexual lifestyle is a transgression of God’s law because it is not pure and contrite, but rather perverse and corrupt. The transgender, homosexual lifestyle adamantly rejects God’s Word about creation (Genesis 1:27) and perverts God’s design for marriage (Genesis 2:24-25): family, and procreation. Living a transgender, homosexual lifestyle is an abomination (Leviticus 20:13), is contrary to sound doctrine (1 Timothy 1:9-10), and those who practice such a lifestyle will not inherit the everlasting inheritance of heaven (1 Corinthians 6:9-10). One of the reasons Sodom was incinerated into smoke and ashes was because of its unrepentant, sexually immoral practices (Genesis 19:5), which is why proponents of the transgender, homosexual lifestyle need to be careful when they believe it is acceptable to abandon God’s laws to determine their own gender, or embrace matrimony with someone of the same sex because it makes them happy. They need to be careful what they wish for, because Romans 1:26-28 tells us what God’s response will be to a wicked culture that disregards His law:
“For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error.
And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them up to a debased mind to do what ought not to be done.”
Third, there are several implications to the transgender, homosexual lifestyle. Transgender theology teaches that “God makes mistakes” which means that God is not sovereign, loving or any other attribute ascribed to Him, and His Word is wrong. Christian chaplains must remain faithful to uphold the sovereignty of God and His Word. Another implication is that the government is adopting an official theological position that nullifies Scripture. Conflict between the new normal and those who agree with God’s Word is inevitable. The rule of law has been replaced by the rule of man which has troubling implications for our whole society, being governed by those who could have reprobate minds.
How should conservative, Bible-believing military chaplains respond to the transgender, homosexual proponents? Respond with love, and with boldness! Christians have the right to exercise their faith convictions. The Constitution is one of the greatest bulwarks of liberty that safeguards the freedom to speak without being deprived or abridged. As a military chaplain that is endorsed by ecclesiastical endorsing agency that affirms the Bible as the only sufficient, certain, and infallible rule of all saving knowledge that constitutes salvation, I stand firm that the transgender lifestyle is not Christian, but corrupt. In addition, I will continue to remain faithful to my ecclesiastical endorsing agency by preaching the whole counsel of Scripture, heralding the Gospel, evangelizing the lost, distributing voluminous Bibles, and loving those who embrace a transgender, homosexual lifestyle, by telling them the truth that there is hope of salvation if they repent and believe in the Gospel:
“And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.” (1 Corinthians 6:11)
Chaplain (Capt) Sonny Hernandez is a US Air Force Reserve Chaplain assigned to Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio. In April 2015, he was selected as the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center Individual Mobilization Augmentee Company Grade Officer of the Year, and in May 2016, he was selected as 445th Airlift Wing CGO of the Quarter, first quarter. Hernandez earned a Doctorate from Tennessee Temple University in Chattanooga, Tennessee.
The opinions expressed here are solely his and do not necessarily represent the views of any government, military, or religious organization. Sonny Hernandez wrote this article as a civilian on his own time on an issue of public interest.