Answering Islam - A Christian-Muslim dialog

A closer look at the rainbow

Roland Clarke

Most politicians in North America including educators, judiciary, media, as well as many businesses have bowed to pressure tactics from the LGBTQ lobby as noted in my article, What does the rainbow signify? Such capitulation is indicated by public displays of Pride logos and flags. More recently, however, there has been a growing push-back especially from Muslims and conservative Christians objecting to pro-LGBTQ inclusive sex education in schools which basically indoctrinates children, covertly or overtly. Shannon Douglas writes from a secular perspective for Woke Watch Canada on the Canadian Gender Wars. He reports on “the many … parent protests across the country.... Thousands and thousands of them awakened to woke, keeping kids home from Pride Events.”

Another secular journalist, Rex Murphy wrote a piece for the National Post sharply criticizing the teaching of LGBTQ ideology in schools. He begins, “Parents are reviled as 'hateful' if they voice concerns about woke activism in the classroom.” Then, after quoting Justin Trudeau's fiery allegation implying 'hate speech' at an LGBTQ fundraiser event, Murphy exclaims, “This is unbelievable. It’s mad. Are parents, fired by concern issuing from the love they hold for their children, ... ‘trying to outdo themselves … with (what) cruelty and isolation they can inflict’ on their offspring? Can he [Trudeau] mean any of this? Could he be saying that parents should not be tolerated?”

Perhaps what we are witnessing is a groundswell of resistance against LGBTQ ideology being foisted upon students and the wider public. Shannon Douglas writes in Gender Wars, “normal parents don’t want kids in grade nine being exposed to materials teaching about autofelation and felching by external 'Planned Parenthood' consultants as happened in a Saskatchewan school this week, in a type of incident that’s coming to light more and more frequently and involving kids of younger and younger ages.”

A powerful example of push-back from the wider public has recently been highlighted in the news. The producer of Bud Light beer suffered stunning losses, in the double-digit billions. Indeed, they suffered so much for pushing the 'rainbow' that their Global Chief Marketing Officer, Marcel Marcondes, humbly apologized, “In times like this, when things get divisive ... I think it's an important wake-up call to all of us marketers first of all to be very humble.”

This raises an important question, “Why does LGBTQ pose as a Pride movement, knowing full well that pride is an attitude condemned in the Bible?”

God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble. (James 4:6, ESV)

Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall. (Proverbs 16:18, ESV)

Everyone who is arrogant in heart is an abomination to the Lord; be assured, he will not go unpunished. (Proverbs 16:5, ESV)

The Qur'an also condemns pride in the strongest terms, “surely those who are too proud for My service shall soon enter hell abased.” (Surah 40:60). Again in Surah 39:72 we read, It shall be said: Enter the gates of hell to abide therein; so evil is the abode of the proud”.

Not so long ago homosexuality was regarded in the west as deviant, immoral and shameful, but now it is characterized by arrogance and demands public celebration! Indeed, according to Ahadith sources and the Law of Moses, homosexuality was regarded so seriously as to be punishable by death.

Recently I visited a Muslim friend and shared a fitting exhortation from the Bible instructing us to, “shine like stars in a world full of crooked and perverse people.” (Philippians 2:15) These words came to mind as we discussed increasing signs of sexual deviance in our society (Canada) as witnessed in public Pride celebrations including flying the rainbow flag in schools. My friend didn't hesitate to voice his strong objection while affirming that our respective faiths recognize only two God-given genders. He also brought up the story of Lot and alluded to the divine judgment that wiped out Sodom and Gomorrah.

It is noteworthy how Jesus Christ (Al Masihu Isa) warned that when he returns to earth in the last days immorality will pervade the world similar to the evil days of Noah and Lot. (as quoted earlier in 'What does the rainbow signify?' see Luke 17:26-30) God's Word warns us that tragically most people will ignore the peril of pending divine judgment, indeed, Peter explains that people will ridicule the very idea of a holy Deity being provoked to wrath by evil and punishing a rebellious world. (2 Peter 3:3-10)

My earlier article notes how Noah's story highlights devastating flood waters, however, Lot's story calls to mind an even more terrifying type of worldwide judgment – by fire!

Interestingly, the Bible explains that at dawn when the angelic messengers urged Lot to immediately flee the pending fiery judgment, he hesitated. Undoubtedly he was still reeling from the shocking events of the previous night, having been surrounded by “all the men of Sodom, young and old, from all over the city” who were intent on forcibly gang-raping his guests. (Genesis 19:4-5) In fact, 'righteous' Lot felt so threatened that he was virtually pushed to do the unthinkable. In desperation, he offered them his virgin daughters, hoping this would, perhaps, appease them and provide a way out of an ugly situation! Mercifully, the Divine messengers intervened and struck the would-be gangsters with blindness.

Charles Ryrie comments, “Lot's offering his daughters is explained (though not justified) by the demands of hospitality, which obligated a host to protect his guests at all cost.” (Footnote to Genesis 19:8, Ryrie Study Bible, copyright 2012, The Moody Bible Institute of Chicago) In his commentary on Genesis, Bruce Waltke sheds further light on Lot's act of offering his two daughter's to rapists, “In Mosaic law, the violator of a betrothed woman's sanctity was subject to death by stoning. (Deuteronomy 22:23-27) Most important, as bearers of God's image, their persons are sacrosanct. … by handing his daughters over to be violated, Lot would implicate himself in the crime." (p. 277)

Eventually, the angelic guests managed to lead Lot to a place of safety away from Sodom, taking him at daybreak by the hand (along with his daughters and wife.) Sadly his wife looked back and was turned into a pillar of salt. When Lot finally arrived at the outlying town of Zoar, he again failed to fully obey the messengers. Instead of heeding their instruction to go to the mountains, he pleaded with them to let him stay in Zoar, to which they conceded.

Could we say that Lot was rescued by the skin of his teeth? (somewhat like 1 Corinthians 3:15, ESV, “he himself will be saved, but only as through fire. ” The NLT says that the builder, “will be saved, but like someone barely escaping through a wall of flames.” I wonder how you and I will feel at some future time as we look back at our own response to the critical days of our times? What can we learn from Lot's example?

Charles Vogan wrestles with this at the end of his book, Lot: The vindication of a righteous man. (p. 83)

The story of Lot is our story. This is the same situation that we find ourselves in. What we need to do when reading the story, is not to find fault with Lot, but to eagerly find out what God will do for any of his people who are in the same predicament. Out of all the characters in the Bible, Lot is one of the best models for the twentieth century man, who lives in a place much bigger than Sodom, perhaps filled with much more wickedness, and finds it increasingly difficult to live a consistent Christian testimony. We need the same God, the same mercy, the same answers, the same deliverance before we get caught up in the coming disaster. Peter got a lot of encouragement from reading the story of Lot, and we show that we understand the point of God's Word when we find hope in it too.

A friend named Don recounted a recent experience at his work place reminding me of the Scripture which says Lot was greatly distressed at seeing gross sensuality all around him; “God rescued righteous Lot, greatly distressed by the sensual conduct of the wicked (for as that righteous man lived among them day after day, he was tormenting his righteous soul1 over their lawless deeds that he saw and heard)” (2 Peter 2:7-8, ESV, bold font added)

A righteous soul tormented

Don works for a Crown Corporation of Canada. As Pride month began he saw numerous placards posted on the premises where he works celebrating the LGBTQ+ community. So he approached his supervisor and voiced his concern. Although he relates with tolerance and respect towards gay/trans people on a personal level, he objects to the government putting up posters proudly endorsing the gay lifestyle. On an earlier occasion he had raised objections to the government putting up posters endorsing Islamic practices like Ramadan. Indeed, the poster even affirmed Muhammad as a noble, praiseworthy person. Don explained that when he encounters Muslims (or gays for that matter) wearing their distinctive clothing or emblems at work, he doesn't harbor prejudice against them. However, Don believes that government and its corporations should show neutrality towards diverse religions or ideologies like Islam and LGBTQ+. Instead, such ideologies are actively being promoted and even, in the case of the gay lifestyle endorsed for a whole month!

The supervisor defended these policies, arguing that government is simply affirming marginalized groups so that they'll feel included and safe after suffering much mistreatment.

The supervisor continued by politely inviting Don to give any examples of how the Corporation had not portrayed his religion (Christianity) in posters or how his faith has been disrespected. Don explained a number of points, including a much earlier incident involving an official who used the name Jesus Christ in a derogatory manner. That official refused to apologize for these hurtful/offensive words. This prompted Don to ask, “What do you think would have happened if that official had ridiculed a famous leader of the gay/lesbian movement?” The penny dropped!

Don's anguish and anger over hearing Christ's name defamed calls to mind a Bible story which the Qur'an also alludes to – the epic battle between young David and Goliath. We read in 1 Samuel 17 that David's soul was deeply troubled by the daily taunts and mockery Goliath was heaping on the one true Lord Almighty, the God of Israel. Don was similarly troubled at hearing the Lord's name ridiculed and used as a swear word. So he voiced his grievance to a local union official. Nothing seemed to come out of this so he decided there was no point in pursuing the matter further. Many months later he learned that the official had no intention of apologizing and it was about this same time that more senior officials in the Corporation arranged a special meeting providing Don an open hearing to explain his grievances. God answered his prayers and vindicated him for taking a courageous stand in honoring his Lord. In fact, God used his objection to the name of Christ being misused to clinch the argument!

Inevitably, the government's efforts to treat all minority groups 'equitably', puts them in a complicated and untenable situation. Don cited an example as reported in several mainstream newspapers in early June (2023). The National Post reported on an incident at an Alberta school involving a,

“particularly stark illustration of what appears to be a growing rift between Muslim communities and the Canadian public school system, (where) a teacher was allegedly caught on tape lambasting Muslim students for eschewing in-school Pride celebrations.”

“You are out to lunch if you think it’s acceptable to not show up because … there’s Pride activities going on at school,” says the ... School teacher in the two-minute recording.

By affirming and supporting one minority group (LGBTQ) the government has undermined (even offended) another group! Don went on to explain to these high officials that he has a number of Muslim friends at work who have told him they agree with the stance he's taken but they don't have the courage to speak out.

To illustrate his good relationship with Muslims on a personal level Don shared with me an interesting story from Lent season when he was fasting. It so happened, his friend 'Ismail' was also performing their Ramadan fast. The conversation soon led to mentioning the festivities at the end of Lent and Ramadan. Ismail was curious to know, “What exactly does Easter mean?” This opened a door for Don to share how Christ died in fulfillment of prophecy and he explained the mystery of how this seemingly tragic day is called Good Friday. Christ died as foretold by the earlier prophets. He was the perfect 'Lamb' who died in our place to take away our sin. Upon hearing Don's explanation Ismail exclaimed, “Now this makes sense! I've been working here all these years but no one ever explained this to me!”

Who could imagine that God would open such an opportunity to share the good news triggered by Ismail's simple question, “What does Easter mean?” What a fitting conclusion to Don's faithful witness as a humble servant.

Don's example of confronting falsehood in a gracious manner reminds me of a newsletter I recently received by Joe Carter at The Gospel Coalition. He tells the story of “missionary Boniface, who lived from 675-754 A.D. He successfully converted the Saxons by confronting their idolatry directly. The Saxons had been mixing elements of Christianity with their traditional pagan practices, most notably the worship of Thor, represented by a mighty oak tree. Boniface exposed the impotence of Thor by cutting down this oak tree and using its timber to build a church. This act, combined with Boniface’s evident love and concern for the Saxons, convinced the people to convert to Christianity.” Carter also points to a two page piece by Brandon Cooper examining his book, The Boniface Option. Applying this story to our own time, which sadly, is so fixated on sexual gratification, Cooper asks, “what gods must we confront and expose? ... Our culture teaches that sexuality is the core of being and identity. Not worshiping this god is seen as denying one’s truest self. The prevailing view is that if there’s consent, do whatever feels good.”

Seeing these courageous examples of Don and Boniface, many of us shrink back like Gideon who underestimated what God could do by his Spirit.

“But Lord,” Gideon replied, “how can I rescue Israel? My clan is the weakest in the whole tribe of Manasseh, and I am the least in my entire family!” The LORD said to him, “I will be with you.” (Judges 6:15-16)

I encourage you to see yet another example, this time of a pastor (Dan Phillips) who wrote2 a letter on his blog to help parents at Copperfield Bible Church respond to our “children's questions about lifestyle choices.” Phillips observes that our society has taken “the whole month of June to pretend together that all these wrong and harmful things are good, and they call June 'Pride' month.” And then of course, his comments on a google platform were immediately censored and “'scrubbed' from Wayback Machine and others, as well as Google Search.”

What does God say about swapping evil for good?

What sorrow for those who say
    that evil is good and good is evil,
that dark is light and light is dark,
    that bitter is sweet and sweet is bitter.

What sorrow for those who are wise in their own eyes
and think themselves so clever. (Isaiah 5:20-21)

All Bible quotations are taken from the NLT unless otherwise indicated.

If you wish to correspond with me or ask questions please don't hesitate to write me here.

Endnote: Practical steps in response to the detestable sins being openly celebrated all around us.

  1. Don't buy products marketed by organizations that blatantly promote LGBTQ ideology.

  2. Write a letter to such organizations (or political bodies, officials) voicing your grievance and disagreement. A friend of mine with a child in school wrote a letter to the teacher during Pride month objecting to how the school endorses and teaches LGBTQ values.

  3. Sign a petition expressing your protest/disagreement.

  4. Perhaps you have a job like the one where Don works. Why not voice your disapproval/grievance to your supervisor. Remember God is with you. Pray earnestly, asking the Lord to give you courage and wisdom.

Endnote: What does the future hold? … And what about being 'full of grace & truth'?

Let me start by quoting from footnote #3 in my article, What does the rainbow signify?

How does a godly conscience enable Christians to respectfully disagree with gay/trans morality while also refraining from making demeaning or insulting remarks about those who practice illicit sex whether homosexuality or fornication or adultery? Our supreme example, of course, in such matters is Jesus Christ who taught the golden rule; “Do to others as you would have them do to you.” (Luke 6:31) Christ modeled wisdom and integrity in John chapters 4 & 8, with two different immoral women. In both cases Jesus was full of grace and truth. On the one hand, he didn't hastily condemn these ladies, but instead, respectfully and gently pointed them to the right path.

… It is one thing to emulate Christ's gentleness in John 4 & 8 with ordinary, everyday sinners who've been caught in the Devil's snare, however, it is a very different matter how one responds to politicians, activists, lawyers and CEOs who deliberately and cunningly push the LGBTQ agenda/teaching in schools and the wider public sphere. Jesus sharply refuted and rebuked such people holding positions of authority who wielded greater influence. (Matthew 23) An example of this kind of rebuke is a recent article in the National Post by seasoned journalist Rex Murphy, titled, “For schools and apparently the Prime Minister, parents are the new 'deplorables'”, subtitled, Parents are reviled as 'hateful' if they voice concerns about woke activism in the classroom... [which is quoted at length near the beginning of this article]

A recent article titled, ‘Pride’ is no longer a month. It’s a season, and it’s mandatory, by Jonathan Van Maren, quotes at length from the Canadian government website. This statement explains why the Prime Minister can make such shocking, if not inflammatory, remarks as cited above, by Rex Murphy.

Pride Season is a term that refers to the wide range of Pride events that take place over the summer (June to September) when 2SLGBTQI+ communities and allies come together to spotlight the resilience, celebrate the talent, and recognize the contributions of 2SLGBTQI+ communities. Although special attention is put on the Pride events during the summer months, they happen throughout the year in many communities.

Historically, Pride gatherings emerged from the first large-scale protests for 2SLGBTQI+ rights. In Canada, the first demonstrations took place in Ottawa and Vancouver in 1971. By 1973, Pride events were held in several Canadian cities, including Montréal, Ottawa, Saskatoon, Toronto, Vancouver and Winnipeg. Toronto’s Pride weekend in June is now among the largest Pride events in North America. Happy Pride Season!

Knowing what happened to Sodom and Gomorrah, these statements from the Canadian government shamelessly defending gross sin should make godfearing Canadians tremble, “It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.” (Hebrews 10:31) As of July 2023 Canada is one of 14 nations which endorse June as Pride month, and current discussions at the United Nations seem bent on defending the LGBTQ life style. On June 21/2023 Victor Madrigal-Borliz, the UN Independent Expert delivered a report on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity which concluded by saying, “Unless all religions endorse pro-LGBT ideas, individuals who identify as such will be alienated and excluded, causing them pain, mental health issues, and potentially leading them to suicide, and ultimately violating their human rights”. (bold font added)

Is this trend another sign that we're 'Nearing the end?'

Other relevant resources


1 Lot's 'tormented soul' calls to mind another story involving great distress as recorded in Ezekiel 9:1-10. The Lord revealed to Ezekiel, in a vision, the profound wickedness pervading the city of Jerusalem. Verse 4 describes a man in white linen who was instructed to “put a mark on the foreheads of all who weep and sigh because of the detestable sins being committed in their city.” (bold font added) As in the stories of Noah and Lot, so too in Ezekiel's vision, only a few people survived God's fierce judgment. These remarkable stories correspond with Divine rescue in the midst of catastrophic judgments as recorded in the book of Revelation.

2 Note that Pastor Dan Phillips was careful to clarify, “The letter I wrote specifically forbade hatred and specifically enjoined love, prayers and willingness to help. If a simple statement of the old-as-the-Bible Gospel of Christ – that sin kills, that we are sinners, and that Christ saves repentant sinners – is 'hate speech' requiring censorship, the[n] Christianity must be censored.”

Articles by Roland Clarke
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