Today we're going back to a debate between the late great Bob Enyart and famed Christian apologist and talk show host Greg Koukl of Reasons to Believe. Tragically, Koukl puts on full display his moral relativism, which Bob takes issue with. This debate is the battle of two conservatives, both intellectual powerhouses. Dominic Enyart will also be adding some commentary on today's broadcast classic, then next week on Bob Enyart Live we're going to get to a devastating 2020 update from Koukl where he said, "some same sex couples are fabulous."
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See the original show summary below from October 26th, 2007.
[See below for the written description of this 2007 program.]
* Tragic 2020 Update: Considered a solid Christian leader by many thousands of believers (and in many ways beloved by us here at BEL), the founder and host of Stand to Reason, Greg Koukl has tragically stated, beginning at 9:40 into a podcast, that "some same sex couples are fabulous." Please pray for Greg and for the man who phoned in a question, and for all those Greg is not-so-subtly influencing to become moral relativists. Here's what happened...
A caller asks whether children are better off in foster care or adopted by same sex parents.
"Some same sex couples are fabulous. Some same sex couples are deplorable. And actually, the same is true for heterosexual couples." Greg then offers the softest possible objection to one of the fiercest moral dangers of our day, which is homosexuality. (For, "In the public square, biblical Christianity and homosexuality are mutually exclusive. One or the other will be in the closet.") He followed that by repeatedly obfuscating with moral relativist utilitarian distinctions about which parents give the "advantage" and which is "better".
Koukl draws false equivalencies between homosexuality and heterosexual singleness, cohabitation, and bad parenting. Regarding same sex parenting, "there are other things [aspects of their parenting] that may be really good... there are a number of factors that are involved here. ... All things being equal I think it is better for heterosexual couples to raise children."
"A father brings something different to the relationship than a mother does. Period." Koukl puts much more emphasis on practical distinctions than he does on the far greater matter of the utter perversion and rebellion of homosexuality.
Greg exhibits more fear about how his audience will view him than he does about the child raised in a dystopian world of normalized homosexuality. "Just to show that I'm not unfairly prejudiced here... I don't believe that single people should adopt."
"What we want to do is to make decisions based on the ideal."
"This is why it's hard to make a judgment. Are children in foster care better off [being adopted by] same sex couples or better off staying in foster care. It depends on the individual circumstance. I would rather see a child in a reasonably healthy environment with a same sex couple than in an abusive environment with a heterosexual couple." If that isn't moral relativism, then there is no such thing.
Constantly equivocating on underlying morality and legitimacy, "The big thing is, what's best for the kid... Heterosexual parents are better than same sex parents, on balance."
"However if this child had no parent whatsoever and was living in the squalor in the street somewhere..." Talk about situational ethics. Would Greg rather see a child rescued from a volcanic eruption by a human trafficker, than be burned alive? Oh brother. Come on. (Here's an actual example. In our 2007 debate Greg was defending pro-abort Rudi Guiliani, who got 3% of the pimary vote, and Christian listeners applied his arguments to pro-abort Mitt Romney of course, who got 22% of the vote, with pro-abort McCain winning. Regarding Romney, the presidential candidate four years later who regarding an unborn child who might end up being raised by a crack-addicted mother, would be only too happy to support the premptive killing of that baby. Or, for that matter, he supported killing any unborn child for any reason, for Romney is the father of tax-funded late-term abortion on demand.)
"Heterosexual couples bring something more to the parenting environment than same sex couples bring."
"You've got to start from the standards and work to the circumstances that you're faced with." Which is exactly the opposite of what Greg had just done in yet another text-book case of moral relativism.
* Correction: Bob unintentionally exaggerated Clinton's willingness to support the PBA ban. See the full correction at the end of this show summary.
* Christian Leader Koukl Defends Candidate Giuliani: Stu Epperson moderates the debate between Bob Enyart and STR.org's Greg Koukl on Stu's syndicated TruthTalkLive.com talk show. In the debate, Koukl defends Rudi Giuliani, an aggressively pro-abortion, pro-homosexual, anti-Christian worldview candidate, as acceptable to Christian voters. Koukl denies that Giuliani is a mass murderer and denied the parallel between Koukl's own position and that of the Herodians of the New Testament. To start the debate, Bob asked Greg, "What if Rudi Giuliani is the Republican nominee, should Christians support someone like Rudi Giuliani?" Greg spent the whole show answering that question in the affirmative, stipulating only that his answer applies if two candidates in the running are Rudi and a Democrat candidate like Hillary Clinton. Bob characterized Greg's position as moral relativism.
* Bob's Notes Against Christian Support for Giuliani: Christians should not support mass murderers. Rudi Giuliani is a mass murderer who as a governing official and candidate promotes child killing through public hospitals, tax funding, police enforcement, etc.
Moral relativist Christians would oppose a candidate who was caught embezzling funds (not because it violates God's command, Do not steal, but because it is politically-incorrect). And while they'd not support a Republican caught embezzling, they support Republican candidates who brag of their support for killing children.
The Gospels mention a pragmatic political party, the Herodians, the religious leaders who allied themselves with Herod Antipas, thinking that the Herodian dynasty was the lesser evil (than any alternative allegiance, with a choice between Herod or Christ, they would choose Herod), thinking the Herods were the best the Jewish worshippers could pragmatically expect in their hopes of attaining to their kingdom on Earth. (I have this understanding of the Herodians from my recollection of reading, way back in the 1970s, Alfred Edershiem's Life & Times of Jesus the Messiah, a classic written in the 1800s.)
Like Rudi Giuliani, Herod was personally sexually immoral and murderous. Greg Koukl's moral relativism would defend supporting Herod. But John the Baptist, instead of joining the Herodians, rebuked Herod, and for his courage, this wicked ruler beheaded the man whom Jesus described as the greatest born to women (Mat. 11:11). But how would Jesus describe Koukl? Greg's moral relativism might have led him to campaign for Herod (as he does for Giuliani), and instead of persecution, Herod might have hired Koukl as an apologist for his murderous reign and his hopes for the continued support of Ceasar after Antipas built Tiberias (Koukl: yes, Herod murdered John the Baptist, but I would still campaign for him to rule).
Greg Koukl is imitating the pragmatic religious leaders, the Herodians.
Mat 22:16, 18 ...the Herodians, [said], "Teacher, we know that You are true, and teach the way of God in truth [lip service]... But Jesus perceived their wickedness, and said, "Why do you test Me, you hypocrites?" [also at Mark 12:13]
Mark 3:5-6 [Jesus saw] the hardness of their hearts, [and] the Herodians [plotted] against Him, how they might destroy Him.
"You shall not murder" (Rom. 13:9) "Do not kill the innocent" (Exodus 23:7)
Romans 3:8 mentions "do[ing] evil that good may come of it" (Romans 3:8), Paul considered it slander to be accused of something Christians now embrace, doing evil, that good may come of it.
"we must obey God rather than men" (Acts 5:29)
Giuliani is not only radically pro-abortion, but for years even supported the especially horrific partial-birth abortion. Giuliani is radically pro-homosexual, and would ban all handguns.
New York Daily News, March 8, 2004 Rudy Giuliani came out yesterday against President Bush's call for a ban on gay marriage. ... "I certainly wouldn't support [a ban] at this time," added Giuliani, who lived with a gay Manhattan couple when he moved out of Gracie Mansion during his nasty divorce.
Secular humanists who support Giuliani: Sean Hannity, Hugh Hewitt, Michael Medved, etc.
Publicans: tax collectors, public building contractors, and military suppliers.
The New Testament condemns the publicans, so Christians now sell their souls for the Re-publicans.
The theme of much of the Old Testament, from the books of Moses, through Joshua & Judges, through the prophets, is that God's people did not trust Him, nor obey Him, not with national politics, and instead made alliances with wicked leaders, and so God abandoned them to their own destruction.
* Comments at TruthTalkLive.com:
Carl: where does Koukl draw the line? ... at 100,000,000? What line must be crossed that will turn Christians from supporting wickedness and back to God?
Dave: Koukl thinks that Scalia, Thomas, Roberts and Alito would fight for the Personhood of a child. I guess he did not read the Supreme Court decision of Gonzales v. Carhart.
John quotes Reagan: "Politics I supposed to be the second-oldest profession. I have come to realize that it bears a very close resemblance to the first."
Gus B: Mr. Koukl says Giuliani will appoint justices like Thomas and Scalia. Pastor Enyart points out these two do not believe in personhood... to which Koukl says, "Pro-Life Justices are not relevant to this topic."
Andrew: To support the better of two murderers is relative. ... Webster should post your photograph next to "moral relativist."
* Give your opinion at TruthTalkLive.com.
* Koukl on Foster Care: The socialist foster care system of the government being intimately involved in the funding and raising of children should be abolished. Sadly, in Greg Koukl's ten-minute call beginning at 9:20 about homosexuality and foster care, he never gets around to condemning either and instead makes destructive comments such as, "some same sex couples are fabulous" and misleads on a terrible aspect of socialism by saying at 15:05 that "in the foster care system there are many saints."
Today's Resource: Have you seen the Government Department at our KGOV Store? You can view BOTH of our powerhouse Focus on the Strategy DVDs for only $22.99! Also, we are featuring Bruce Shortt's vitally-important book, The Harsh Truth about Public Schools. And also, check out the classic God's Criminal Justice System seminar, God and the Death Penalty, Bob on Drugs and the Live from Las Vegas DVDs!
* Correction: I need to clarify a comment I made debating Greg Koukl. I unintentionally exaggerated when I stated that Hillary supported the PBA ban. I was taking this position from the years of public position the Clinton administration maintained regarding the PBA ban. When Hillary and Bill came to Colorado in 1999 and spoke as a couple to Columbine parents, Brian Rohrbough told Bill, "Mr. President, when you vetoed the PBA ban, you became responsible for murder far more violent than what happened to our children." Clinton replied, with Hillary at his side, that he would have signed the bill, but it did not have an exception for the life of the mother. To the extent that they were a two-for-one deal in the White House, I had always assumed that was her position also: willing to support the law, as long as it had exceptions (like many "pro-life" Republicans). At any rate, it was wrong to say outright that Hillary supported the ban. I should have clarified, and in the intensity of the debate, I did not realize that I had mistated her position. Also, I kept wanting to talk about Rudy's pro-abortion actions as NYC mayor, but never got that in. And finally on this, since the 1990s, we have had an Errata link on our homepage and on every page at kgov.com (just scroll down to see it) And I've also posted this correction at Stu Epperson's TruthTalkLive blog. Thanks! -Bob Enyart
* Dec. 21, 2015 Update: Bob Enyart posted the following to STR...
Hi STR! Dr. Richard Holland of Liberty University wrote "God, Time and the Incarnation" surveying the leading Christian theologians on this topic and concluded that specifically *with respect to the Incarnation* the church has never openly defended its claim that God is utterly unchangeable. In my debate with theologian Dr. James White I took that insight and five times asked him about whether God the Son took upon Himself a human nature. (There's a 2-min YouTube showing those excerpts.) So far beyond the old/new covenant issue, reaching right into the heart of the Trinity, God the Son became a Man. God is unchanging in His fierce commitment to righteousness (i.e., His holiness), but because He is the Living God, He changes in immeasurable ways, including when the Son became the Son of Man.
* For Bob's Many Other Fun and Educational Debates: See kgov.com/debates for our creation/evolution sparring with Lawrence Krauss, Eugenie Scott, AronRa, Michael Shermer (and spats with Jack Horner, PZ Myers, Phil Plait, & Jerry Coyne), and our exposing the liberal in the conservative with Ann Coulter, Dan Caplis, Greg Koukl (of course), Tom Tancredo, AFA's Bryan Fischer, AUL's Paul Linton, CWA's Robert Knight, National RTL's Board, NRTL's Political Director, Focus on the Family's Washington State Affiliate; and exposing the wickedness in the liberal with Barry Lynn and libertarian candidates; and opposing the national sales tax with Ken Hoagland and Neal Boortz; and debating sexual immorality with homosexual activists Wayne Besen and Gregory Flood; and defending the death penalty on Court TV; and theology with a Seventh Day Adventist, drinking alcohol with a Church of Christ minister; and whether or not God is inexhaustibly and eternally creative with Dr. James White, and King James Onlyism with one of their leading advocates; and finally, abortion with Ilana Goldman, Peggy Loonan, and Boulder, Colorado's infamous late-term abortionist Warren Hern.