Podcast warns of tragic consequences without Church engagement on trans issues

Roberto Machado Noa/Getty Images
Roberto Machado Noa/Getty Images

The Church must be on the frontlines addressing transgender ideology — “the epitome of self-idolatry, the ultimate attempt to become one’s own god" — and failure to do so will lead to tragic consequences, a podcast has warned.  

In the finale of the "Generation Indoctrination" podcast, “How Should the Church Respond to Gender Ideology?” host Brandon Showalter examined how churches and ministry leaders might navigate the challenges of engaging with the trans community. 

The conversation pivoted around a fundamental belief: human beings, created in God's image, hold a sacred status distinct from the rest of Creation. 

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“We're told in Psalm 139 that God knits us together in our mother's womb, and all of our parts are written in God's book before any of them came to be,” Richard Land, former president of the Southern Baptist Convention's Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission and executive editor of The Christian Post, said at the beginning of the podcast, underscoring the hopeful Christian perspective on human significance.

“So, we have, as Christians, a very hopeful understanding of humanity, as opposed to the existential angst that comes from believing that there is no purpose, there is no meaning. That we literally are specks of dust, blown on the wind of fate, and that life is a storm full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.”

Jeff Meyers, president of Summit Ministries in Colorado, and co-author with Showalter of the e-bookExposing the Gender Lie, emphasized the importance of understanding the cultural dogma surrounding trans ideology. 

Meyers identified two prevailing worldviews — Gnosticism and Monism — that pose significant threats to the Christian Gospel by diminishing the inherent value of the body and, by extension, the human soul.

Gnosticism, as Meyers described, dismisses the body's relevance, promoting a belief that physical actions have no spiritual consequences. This ancient heresy, revived in contemporary progressive Christian circles, advocates for a detachment from the physical in pursuit of spiritual transcendence. Monism, on the other hand, simplifies existence to a single entity — either material or spiritual — denying the complex interplay between body and soul that is central to Christian theology.

“There are two false worldviews that have set themselves as the gospel in our time. If they succeed, they will squelch any opportunity for the Gospel to go forward,” he warned.

Addressing how to engage with these ideologies, Katie McCoy, director of Women's Ministry at Texas Baptists and author of To Be a Woman, stressed the need for churches to become informed advocates, thoroughly versed in the multifaceted issues facing today's youth.

McCoy highlighted the human aspect of these discussions, reminding listeners that behind every debate are individuals grappling with pain and confusion. She advocates for a comprehensive care approach that addresses the spiritual, psychological and emotional needs of those affected by gender dysphoria.

“This issue represents people who are trying to deal with pain in a way that is against God's good design for their lives,” she said. “And haven't we all done that? Don't we all do that? And yet, what makes this issue different is that the treatments and the technologies are having such devastating and lasting, in most cases, permanent effects on some of the most vulnerable people among us who need care. They need spiritual, psychological and emotional, whole person care.”

Echoing historical precedents, McCoy pointed to examples of gender confusion dating back to the Roman Empire, underscoring that the Church has faced similar challenges throughout history. She argued for a robust theological foundation that reaffirms humanity's created purpose and sexual differentiation as revealed in the Genesis Creation narrative. 

According to McCoy, understanding gender identity through the lens of biblical sex differentiation provides a framework for addressing contemporary gender confusion.

The discussion concluded with a sobering reflection on the stakes involved if the Church fails to adequately address trans ideology. McCoy underscored the importance of speaking truth in love, navigating the delicate balance between adhering to theological convictions and extending compassion to those wrestling with their identity.

“What's at stake here, ultimately, is the Christian witness that we have in our culture, in our era,” she said. “Every generation of the Church has faced something. This one is ours. And we must step up, and we must be counted. We must be willing to say what is culturally uncomfortable, what is inconvenient to us personally. Because someday, 10 to 15 years from now, there's going to be a generation of detransitioners looking around, saying, ‘Who told me what I didn't want to hear? Who told me what was inconvenient but true?’ And God help us if it's just a particular partisan group of our political sphere. God help us and God forgive us if it is only people in social activism.”

McCoy stressed that Christians must be politically engaged, but not “necessarily taking on the labels and the categories that the world would try to put us in from a partisan perspective."

“The love and compassion and truth and Good News and freedom of the Gospel does not fit a political party. At the same time, we have to be very mindful of policies that are either helping or harming the public good, specifically, and especially, the vulnerability of children. How do we do both? I think this requires the full Body of Christ,” she said.

Trent Langhofer, a licensed professional counselor and faculty member at Colorado Christian University, added that today’s society is increasingly governed by subjective feelings, which, in his view, undermine the resilience and stability necessary for healthy psychological development.

"In a world that is sort of governed by feelings, anything that makes me feel bad is not just wrong, but oppressing me and a force to be overcome," Langhofer said. “I think that that's unfortunate. I think that sets us up for failure and dissatisfaction. But that's the precipice on which we are standing.”

Langhofer emphasized the importance of addressing underlying emotional pain before tackling gender identity issues in therapy and championed therapeutic strategies focused on building resilience, self-regulation and healing from past traumas.

Myers called for the reintegration of spiritual understanding into psychological practice, stressing that a recognition of the soul's existence and the healing power of the Gospel are crucial for effective therapy.

"The enemy of our souls wants to distort everything under the sun, including the sex of the human body," Myers asserted. He warned against the secularization of psychological practice and advocated for a therapeutic approach that acknowledges the reality of spiritual warfare and the transformative power of faith. 

Christianity, Land agreed, is the only antidote to the trans chaos. 

“There are demonic presences and angelic presences and they're struggling over your soul,” he said. “Whether you believe that or not, I'm telling you, it’s a fact, it’s true. And you decide who wins. You decide who wins, which is pretty frightening. And the devil will make you think, ‘Well, you can do it your way or you can do it God's way.’ No, no, that's one of the devil's great lies. You don't do it your way; you do it the devil's way. Every year you break your New Year's resolution. You are unable to be the person you want to be on your own. You don't do it your own way. You're going to fall. You contend with the devil by yourself and you will lose. But in Christ, you win.”

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