It's No Longer OK to Be Broken?? Part 2

Posted by Worldview Warriors On Saturday, May 19, 2018 0 comments

by Nathan Buck

If you didn't read last week's blog post, please click here to do so before continuing.

When I went to the doctor a few years ago and complained of abdominal pain and spasms, the doctor checked my bowels, my muscles, and my lower digestive organs to see if there might be issues with any of them. Because I am male, these were the standard things to check. If I had been female, my doctor would have considered my symptoms differently and checked my reproductive organs as well as asked me about any abnormalities in my cycle. The same complaint from a male or female prompts different responses regarding diagnosis and treatment, because each is different and distinct. In fact, over 6000 genes in our bodies express themselves directly related to our sex. Biologically, sex is not fluid. Classically, sex has been equated with gender as one in the same. This is why psychology has maintained for a very long time that those who believe they are male when their sex is clearly female, or vice versa, had gender dysphoria. Simply stated, it’s a psychological confusion about their gender.

Modern psychological trends are attempting to re-write the definitions and standards around this topic to separate the idea of gender from sex - making "gender" a perceptual norm and "sex" a physical norm. By doing so, there can be support to set aside the classic diagnosis of gender dysphoria. Why? Because it presents this disconnect as abnormal (broken) and indicates that treatment to helps realign perception with biological reality should follow. In the new methodology, gender dysphoric separation in psychological perception is validated as normal (not broken). Counsel given under this method supports changing physical reality to match perception through gender reassignment.

I explain all of this not to engage in debate about the topic specifically, but to point out the shift in assumptions regarding what is broken or not broken, and what is helpful or not helpful. With the rise of relativist morality, the self-centered determination of reality has been promoted as normal and good. In other words, if it feels good, do it; if it's right for you, do it. The problem is there is no objective standard to settle conflict in this way of thinking. Even "social contracts" fail, whenever it is more beneficial to an individual to no longer honor the contract than to keep it. Everything becomes based on our perception of what is real, rather than any evidence, fact, commitment, etc.

Here's another way of seeing this. The expression cogito ergo sum ("I think therefore I am"), was originally meant to express consciousness. It was an expression of what we can be certain of, even in the midst of doubt. Descartes coined the phrase while trying to explain that in the face of uncertainty, our ability to doubt and think about our doubt is an expression of the certainty that we really exist. Ok, I know that is deep stuff. But look at this subtle shift I can make to that quote.

What if I said, "I think therefore I am," was a statement to support that I control my own reality? What if I said, "my thinking determined that I am," or "my thinking creates my reality"? I would be taking Descartes’ proof of existence and twisting it into a justification for bending my physical reality to how I think, which would be a very different focus and result for his statement. I would be borrowing the credibility of Descartes’ legitimate proof and turning it into a statement of my assumption. My assumption has glaring holes that Descartes would never agree with, the first and most obvious being that I have no real control over my reality - thinking a thing to be true or factual doesn't make it so. This is what is happening constantly in our culture right now. Elements of fact or truth are loaded into political statements, pop science, media stories, etc., and are then layered with perceptions and beliefs that people desperately want to be real. Many of these statements attempt to validate exceptions as normal and make what is accepted as normal to be evil or oppressive by nature just because it's the most prevalent. The ultimate goal behind all of this is power and control, and it stems from the thinking that we can force reality to become what we think it should be. This is the heart of vanity and the foundation of all human conflict.

Here is the counter story. Humanity was created to live fully in the design God gave us, in His image and with gifts and abilities that display His character and nature. We decided to take our lives into our own hands and go our own way. The consequence of our decision was separation from God and an inability to live up to the design and image we had been given, as well as an inability to control the consequences for our shortcomings (Genesis 1-3). Our design had been made to function in relationship with the one whose image we reflected. Apart from that relationship, from our own desires, our existence and example became counterfeit. Humanity, apart from God, is broken and sick. Our sickness is our desires to satisfy ourselves, and it continues our brokenness, just like a virus that keeps evading our immune system. If we do not acknowledge that brokenness and seek correction, healing, redemption, and/or rescue, we will become more sick. Or worse, we will recover from this sickness and be vulnerable to an even greater sickness that follows.

I encourage you to read what James had to say in the very first chapter of his letter to the early believers in Jesus. Reflect on each verse and write down your first thoughts as you read through the verses. Then go back and consider how you respond to verses 22-25. Do you adjust your thinking to the reality and the standards God has given, or do you try to adjust God to your thinking? Have you accepted the world's perceptions of what is or is not broken, or are you willing to see your own brokenness honestly and seek God's help?

His promises to Israel are still true: I will rescue you, I will free you, I will redeem you, and I will take you in and protect you as my family. What started with God's promise to Israel and a hope from Israel for the world, Jesus Christ made true and available for anyone who will trust Him with their life.

Will you?

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