It's a national debate ... which shows just how far we've declined as a people. The Bible says:
“… male and female, God created them.” Genesis 1:27
Undoubtedly you've seen pictures of the NCAA podium ceremony, where swimmer William "Lia" Thomas stands on platform 1, the newly minted NCAA champion in the women's 500-meter event. Awkwardly to the far right are three other swimmers – who finished 2nd, 3rd, and 4th – huddled together for pictures and celebration. Alone stands William Thomas, who is convinced he is Lia Thomas, a female. The photo – which can be seen here – is the most recent example of our irrational, cowardly, and ultimately uncompassionate society bent on worship of radical autonomy from any authority except "self."
Frankly, it takes years of overthinking (and ignoring one’s conscience) to see this picture as good or progressive … for anyone involved. Compassion for someone is no longer true compassion if it is unanchored from truth.
When a person – like William (Lia) Thomas – wants to be their “authentic self,” he or she has exchanged objective truth (anatomy, chromosomes) for subjective feelings. While feelings may be strong, they are not definitional — no one is the sum of their feelings.
We ought to show concern and pray for William, but certainly not validate his feelings. To sanction feelings as “his truth” is to not really care for him. It’s tantamount to hatred, for it is unanchored from truth. No one can flourish while disregarding truth.
Our cultural moment is a struggle between Facts (objectivity) and Feelings (subjectivity). Which will define us? Feelings currently lead the race. But one day, a child will cut through the sophistication of our age and exclaim, “the emperor isn’t wearing any clothes.” Eyes will reopen, cultural sanity will return, and with it, actual compassion for the hurting and confused.
I hold no ill will here. In fact, I wish flourishing for Will, as I just spent time on my knees for him — to know God’s love both objectively (via the facts of God’s Word) and subjectively, in Jesus Christ.
The Question Du Jour
The question our culture must answer is:
- Are we each our own authority, autonomous to choose and create our own identity, with the assistance of new technologies? or
- Are we bound to an external authority that defines our identity, that is given from without, not postulated from within?
Or put another way, can each of us create our own reality or is reality something we must learn to live within? For centuries, the default setting of humanity has been that some external Authority exists which has created inviolable laws. Even atheists recognize an immutable structure placed upon us ... which many name "science" or "nature." The Christian has always declared that this external Authority is God Himself.
William Thomas' transgenderism is the great-great-great grandchild of mankind's determination to be autonomous, unbeholden to any Other, free to worship self as he or she chooses.
And yet, the Bible has the last word, as I quoted at the top from Genesis 1:27 – "... male and female, God created them." We didn't get to choose.