Back to the Garden: He Created Them Male and Female

We are living in strange times. With COVID-19, political unrest, racial tensions, big tech overreach, and mass globalization, there is always something in the news to garner our attention. Here I want to turn away from some of those things for a moment and focus on an issue that was at the forefront of our minds not that long ago: how we view gender as a society.

We know where the secular world stands on this issue. Gender, we are told, is a social construct. It is not an objective reality that we are born with, but rather an identity marker we choose for ourselves. The transgender phenomenon in particular has advanced this line of thinking into the mainstream of society, so much so that new president Joe Biden recently signed an executive order that would allow transgender athletes to participate in competitive sports with the gender of their choosing. He also lifted the ban on transgender people serving in the US military.

Perhaps even more strikingly, the New England Journal of Medicine, a highly respected medical publication, recently argued that it is time to stop assigning gender to newborn babies on birth certificates, stating that “Sex designations on birth certificates offer no clinical utility, and they can be harmful for intersex and transgender people.”

Functionally, we have the mainstream culture, politics, and medicine moving together in the direction of a genderless society, all of it flying under the banner of “equality” and stopping “discrimination” and “hate speech”.

How should Christian believers respond to all of this?

A comprehensive overview of biblical sexuality is outside of the scope of this post. Nevertheless, there are some important things we should be doing as those who follow Christ.

The first thing we should do is love other people, including those who promote or embrace views of gender that we don’t agree with. It is important that we remember to love our neighbour and show them dignity and respect as image-bearers of God. The world may still slap us with the label of “hate”, but at least we should force them to do so in error, rather than rightly applying that designation because we truly do harbour hate in our hearts.

Does this mean that we should embrace or endorse a lifestyle that goes contrary to Scripture? Certainly not. One of the fundamental errors our modern culture makes it to equate love with affirmation. However, these two are not the same. It is entirely possible to love someone while not affirming something that they believe in. In fact, we do this with every single person we are in relationship with. There are things about them we don’t agree with, but love them anyways. Real love is greater than affirmation. We need not reject this principle.

Another thing we can do is express the biblical alternative to genderless confusion. Scripture is not silent on the issue of God’s design for human beings in regard to their gender. Genesis 1:27 states plainly, “So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.” Our design includes distinction. Men are not women, women are not men, and gender is not on a spectrum. We know that there are chromosomal abnormalities and birth defects that cause a small number of people to have some confusion regarding their gender, but this is what they are: abnormalities and birth defects. Such individuals require extra love and grace for their difficult circumstances. But this is far different than the modern argument that gender is purely a social construct. Biblically, it is not a social construct. Gender is innate. It is not something we choose or discover. It is a reality we acknowledge.

One of the most powerful things we can do as followers of Jesus is live out our own gender reality to show the beauty of God’s good design. When God made man and woman, he did so because it was “not good that the man should be alone”. Thus, he created a complementary partner so that the two could enjoy unity in their diversity. The distinctions between men and women are not meant to drive each other apart, but rather to bring each other together in harmony. To be sure, this is not a simple task, given that we are sinners who naturally gravitate to conflict with others. Yet the wisdom of God is displayed in his gendered humanity and our relationships to one another. As Christians, the way we live out this reality may be the most winsome thing we can do.

I’m not convinced we will turn the culture around on this issue. I’m not sure we are even called to do so. But as we live as citizens of God’s kingdom on earth, we can show the world a better way forward. Let our men be men, our women be women, and let us express the joy of living an identity that is gifted us by God, rather than one of our own creation.

I believe that to some extent the Church has abdicated its responsibility in this regard. I’m not talking about progressive churches who embrace and affirm the LGBT lifestyle. I’m talking about generally faithful believers who have gone soft on gender distinctions. Over the last 40 years or so, the Christian church has tried to push back on biblical gender roles and the distinctions between men and women in order to embrace a more egalitarian view of gender. Most of these believers, as I can tell, have tried to remain faithful to Scripture on issues like gay marriage or gender reassignment surgery. Yet they unintentionally undermine their own argument by flattening the genders as much as possible in every other scenario. On the one hand, they argue that there are no gender distinctions in Christ, but on the other they wish to hold to gender distinctions in real-world circumstances. I do not think this position is either faithful to Scripture or sustainable in the long haul. Egalitarian believers must be willing to say that men and women are not interchangeable because God created them distinct and different. This, fundamentally, would force them out of a true egalitarian position. Let it be so.

The Church must offer a unique voice in these conversations. We may be rejected, and that is fine. But we must accept the risk that the world will wrongly label us as haters for simply affirming the truth. Affirming the truth, after all, is the greatest act of love. Jesus himself, the most loving person who ever lived, came to “bear witness to the truth” (John 18:37). He came “full of grace and truth” (John 1:14). These are not opposites. We are not graceful sometimes and truthful other times. We are show grace and truth simultaneously at all times. The only way we can do that is by being compassionate to people and committed to truth. And, just like Jesus, we will be rejected for it.

The culture is leaving less and less room for cowardly Christians. The hostility towards what we believe and whom we follow is increasing, which means we have only two options: either we remain faithful in spite of persecution, or we compromise and deny the Lord who bought us. It’s time to make a choice. We need not be those who shove our views in people’s faces, but we do need to be those who will not accept the lies our culture tells us and instead show them the love and wisdom of our Creator in action.

Interview With Corey Miller of Ratio Christi

Today I had the pleasure of sitting down with Corey Miller, CEO of Ratio Christi. Ratio Christi is an international apologetics organization that specializes in outreach on school campuses.

In this interview, we discuss the unique nature of Ratio Christi, the need for intellectual and thoughtful evangelism, the challenges of reaching the next generation, and the rise of a social justice worldview among young people.

Visit for more.

Book You Should Buy: Confronting Injustice Without Compromising Truth

I don’t make a lot of book recommendations but I would like to recommend this one for your consideration. Confronting Injustice Without Compromising Truth: 12 Questions Christians Should Ask About Social Justice by Professor Thaddeus Williams is a sound critique of the popular social justice movements from a biblical perspective. He distinguished between what he calls Social Justice A, which is a view of justice founded on Scriptural principles, and Social Justice B, which is founded on secular philosophies. Social Justice B is not only a phenomenon of secular culture, but it is increasingly being adopted by professing believers.

In my estimation, Williams is right that our diagnosis of social problems and our ability to address them rests first on assessing what is true. If we make false assumptions about the nature of truth, justice, inequality, sin, human nature, and the role of the church, then what we call “justice” will inevitably lead to actual injustice. In short, our pursuit of justice (an important biblical mandate) needs to be informed, shaped, and guided by the truth of God’s Word. Otherwise, we go off-course. I thought this book took a well-balanced approach to discussing these distinctions.

One aspect that makes this work unique is the inclusion of personal stories from twelve other contributors. Each one shares their experience of having a warped view of social justice originally to embracing a healthy and healing version that is shaped by the gospel. These stories add a personal element to the work that helps drive home the point that issues of social justice aren’t theoretical. They affect real people in the real world in real ways, for better or worse.

Here are some teaser quotes from the book. Consider purchasing a copy and digging in for yourself.

The problem is not with the quest for social justice. The problem is what happens when that quest is undertaken from a framework that is not compatible with the Bible. Today many Christians accept conclusions that are generated from [worldviews] with very different presuppositions about reality than those we find in Scripture. We shirk God’s commands and hurt his image-bearers when we unwittingly allow unbiblical worldview assumptions to shape our approach to justice.

The doctrine of human depravity swings like a wrecking ball, leveling any ideology that says, “My gender group, my ethnic group, my economic group makes me good, and their group is evil.”

Paul told the truth that being “in Christ Jesus” is a new identity that transcends other group identities.

Here are some clues that we may have been taken in by an anti-Spirit ideology: Instead of being love-filled, we’re easily offended, ever suspicious, and preoccupied with our own feelings. Instead of being filled with joy, we’re filled with rage and resentment, unable to forgive. Instead of striving for peace, we’re quarrelsome—dividing people into oppressed or oppressor groups instead of appreciating the image-bearer before us. Instead of having patience, we’re quickly triggered and slow to honestly weigh our opponents’ perspectives. Instead of being kind, we’re quick to trash others, assuming the worst of their motives. Instead of showing gentleness, we use condemning rhetoric and redefined words to intimidate others into our perspective. Instead of showing self-control, we blame our issues exclusively on others and their systems, not warring daily against the evil in our own hearts.

When we automatically assume damning explanations for unequal outcomes, we not only lock ourselves in a prison of never-ending rage but also dull our senses to the point that we will be useless for the sacred task of recognizing and resisting the real racism, real sexism, and other real vicious isms around us.

…if we don’t bother to distinguish between inequalities that come from sin and those that don’t, then we are well on our way not to a fictional dystopia but to repeating the bloodiest mistakes of modern history.

How would Christians ever show the tribalized world what real unity looks like if they got swept up in such a never-ending game of grievances—treating one another as exemplars of their ethnic groups rather than their shared identity in Christ?

The Tribes mindset trashes not only any meaningful relationship with that person but also any hope of meaningfully thinking about that person’s perspective. In short, it makes us both closed-hearted and closed-minded.

If we care about ending actual sexism, then we should welcome the question of how much of the gender pay gap can be laid at the feet of actual sexism. Otherwise, we aren’t fighting the real problem, but shadowboxing our own ideological projections. The extent to which we shadowbox our ideological projections of the problem is the extent to which we trivialize the victims of real sexism and racism. By diverting our finite injustice-fighting energies in every direction all at once, Tribes thinking unintentionally marginalizes the already marginalized.

…caring about justice requires a commitment to truth. We can no more separate truth from justice than we can subtract one side from a triangle and still consider it a triangle. The extent to which Tribes thinking predetermines answers to hard questions is the extent to which it obscures truth and unintentionally leaves more people broken.

Given the political polarization of our day, seeing our side as caring about others and the other side as cruel is easy and self-serving. But it is not so black-and-white. Often the left and right simply have different “others.” If we are shaped by Scripture instead of the culture wars, then we will not become the priests and Levites galloping past bodies on the side of the road. Christians should be known less as culture warriors and more as Good Samaritans who stop for battered neighbors, whether they are black, white, brown, male, female, gay, straight, rich, poor, old, young, Muslim, Christian, Jewish, atheist, capitalist, socialist, Republican, Democrat, near, far, tall, short, or smaller than a peanut.

There is often a big difference between feelings and facts, between lived experience and objective reality. That difference matters, and we should take both seriously if we want our quest for justice to lead to real justice.

Do arguments magically become true or false by putting them in someone else’s mouth? No. Writing off someone’s viewpoint because of their melanin levels makes us actual racists. Dismissing someone’s argument because of their gender makes us actual sexists. Silencing someone’s ideas because of their sexuality, their economic status, or any other quality of their lives rather than the quality of their ideas does not make us a voice of justice for the marginalized; it makes us actual bigots.

By downplaying the depth of human corruption, socialism becomes a counterfeit gospel. It relies on corrupt human authorities with no room for God’s heart-regenerating grace. Socialism seeks Christ’s kingdom, minus the Christ, and becomes a destructive parody of God’s shalom. The harder it tries to create heaven on earth, the more hell it unleashes, particularly on the poor whom Scripture commands us to love.

Gender distinctions are a gift from God to be celebrated, not obliterated. Men can’t simply replace women, or women replace men, without something exceedingly beautiful being lost. When we get swept up in Social Justice B, our understanding of sexuality comes less and less from Scripture and more and more from the ideological architects and ancestors of the sexual revolution.

Notice that “the gospel” is “of first importance.” And what is that gospel? It is the good news of free salvation by trusting in the sin-atoning death and bodily resurrection of Jesus. It shouldn’t surprise us that Paul understands the gospel this way, since he received it directly from Jesus. Unlike toppling social and economic systems through social activism, this good news of salvation by grace through faith in Christ is what Jesus proclaims to poor in the red letters. It is what the earliest missionaries declare with astonishing saving results throughout the book of Acts. It is the same good news declared throughout the New Testament epistles.

On Censorship

It is no secret that social media platforms have taken serious steps in recent days to censor certain individuals. Then-president Donald Trump was the most obvious example, but since many others have complained of their accounts being deleted or warned by Facebook, Twitter, and others, for going against “community guidelines”. Of course, there is usually little or no explanation concerning what guidelines were broken specifically. In response, hundreds of thousands began to transition over to self-proclaimed free-speech app Parler, only to have both Google and Apple block it from their app stores, as well as Amazon remove it from their hosting servers, effectively scrubbing Parler from the internet.

Think long and hard about what this means. Many have claimed “these are private companies, so they can do whatever they want”. This is only partly true. Even private companies have some limitation for what they can choose to do under American law. But even if they are not breaking the law in these actions, it should be very concerning to people that a handful of companies effectively have the power to completely remove certain voices from the internet. Effectively, if Google, Apple, Amazon, and Twitter decide they want to shut down a particular viewpoint, they can do so in less than one day. That is a freakish amount of global power for only a few individuals to yield.

Again, many push back. “We’re talking about Trump here,” they proclaim, “and he tried to pull off a coup at the Capitol!” While this claim is debatable in and of itself, that is entirely to miss the point. Even if you feel social media should censor people for legitimate reasons…what happens when they begin to do so for illegitimate reasons? What is to stop them?

I myself have been temporarily banned from Facebook and Instagram for sharing blogs from the website you are currently reading. No reason was ever given as to why. I protested, asking for a reason, without ever getting a reply. Suddenly, and without explanation, I was reinstated a few weeks later. To this day I have no idea what I said that supposedly violated “community guidelines”, but I can assure you it had nothing to do with Qanon, election stealing, or any other currently acceptable reason.

I know many Christians who applauded the censoring of Trump and his followers. I can understand why, but I also would want to give them a grave warning: don’t cheer too loudly, because you will be next. Think about it. Satan, the god of this world, wants more than anything to silence the truth, censor the gospel, and control public conversation away from Scriptural ideals. The enemy is not social media giants themselves, but they can and will be used as tools for the enemy in spiritual warfare. This effort will not succeed in the long run, of course. We know God wins in the end. But it absolutely will be effective in the short-term, and make life more difficult for believers in the public square.

The Canadian government is currently doing its own social media crackdown. Trudeau has promised to clamp down on “offensive content and hate speech”, which includes “racist, anti-Semitic, Islamophobic, misogynist and homophobic views”. This may sound good—who would want those ideas promoted?—but keep in mind that the government does not understand Christian doctrine. Many biblical ideas can easily be construed to fit any one of those categories; indeed, the secular world claims that they do already. It is really not that hard to see that in the very near future churches will have their online services blocked, Christians removed from social media, and perhaps even Bible apps taken down under the guise of “hate speech”. None of this spells the end for the Church, but it will create a climate where following Jesus may go from being merely culturally odd to potentially inviting serious legal issues.

Free speech is an important value. It is not only important from a legal perspective, but also from a biblical one as well. Consider a few examples:

  • Proverbs 18:17 “The one who states his case first seems right, until the other comes and examines him.” Part of discovering the truth comes from the free exchange of ideas. If we only hear one side of things and the other is censored, it is easier to be deceived.
  • Proverbs 27:17 “Iron sharpens iron, and one man sharpens another.” Similarly, our understanding and growth becomes “sharpened” in part by being challenged by others. This includes their ideas.
  • Matthew 7:12 “So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets.” The Christian Golden Rule also applies to speech. If you do not wish to be censored, then you should not be keen to censor others.
  • Acts 17:16-34 In this passage, Paul had the freedom to proclaim the gospel in public because the culture of Athens welcomed the sharing of new ideas.

None of this is to argue that censorship is wrong in every circumstance. Things like explicit calls to violence or communication for illegal activity, such as human trafficking, are examples that come to mind where censorship is commended. But what we are seeing is more than that. We are seeing the squelching of ideas that don’t align with the status quo. As Christians, we ought to know that our ideas of truth fit that category. The Bible itself says that the gospel is offensive to the unbelieving world (Galatians 5:11). Christian doctrines like the existence of a Creator, moral standards for sexuality, distinction between men and women, damnation, and salvation through Christ alone are more than ancient relics of the past. They are unacceptable hinderances to an increasingly secular humanist future. Censorship is inevitable.

Our strategy for Christian ministry will need to adapt. In Ontario, where I live, lockdowns because of the coronavirus have forced churches to go online with their ministries. This works for the time being. But perhaps the online world will not be so welcoming for long. I seriously wonder if the typical North American style of church is a sustainable model for the future. My guess is that believers here will have to increasingly find other methods of effective Christian ministry. While Satan may mean this for evil, God means it for good. Perhaps this is the way our Lord is purging our churches of lukewarm faith, dulled desire for evangelism, and apathetic worship.

Jesus reminds us that anyone who desires to follow him must first count the cost. For many of us, that cost has been relatively minimal. Maybe that will change in the future. Only God knows for sure. Either way, it is a good reminder for us to get our hearts right before the Lord, re-establish ourselves as citizens of heaven free from the love of this world, and be prepared to meet any trials that may come with joy (James 1:2-4).

The Sin Beneath the Sin

I recently watched an interesting debate between two pastors on the topic of homosexuality and how Christianity views it. I didn’t really want to comment much on it here; I’d encourage you to go watch the 2-part series for yourself if you’re interested. But there was one line in particular that really caught my attention that I’d like to discuss briefly.

The pastor who was arguing that homosexuality is compatible with Christianity and the Bible said, around the 20:35 minute mark of part 1, that “In some way I can totally sign off on God designing sexuality, if I’m allowed to have my ways of thinking about it.” This one sentence, to me, was the most important sentence of the entire debate. Allow me to explain.

Christians have historically made a big deal out of certain sins, homosexuality being one of them, seemingly to the exclusion of other sins. I think this is one of the ways believers have erred in their faith. The problem is not calling sin what it is, but elevating certain sins over others. In doing so, it makes it appear that some people are really sinners while others are just kinda sinners. Naturally, we tend to be those who label ourselves only kinda sinners…how convenient!

However, I don’t think Scripture affords us this option. God’s Word declares that “there is none righteous; no, not one” (Romans 3:10), and “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). In this way, all people are in the same category: sinners who fall short of God’s moral standards for our lives. It is wrong to emphasize one person’s “falling short” over your own. We are all helpless sinners who need God’s forgiveness.

Moreover, Christians should seek that forgiveness with a sense of humility, not pride. Consider the parable Jesus tells in Luke 18:9-14, where one man boasts that he is better than others and yet is rejected by God, while another man throws himself at the feet of the Lord and humbly begs for mercy and receives it. It is a powerful reminder that our own sin has rendered us unacceptable in God’s sight and only his grace can change that fact. None of us are better than anyone else in the eyes of God.

It is a mistake, then, on the part of a believer to believe that *our* sin only separates us from God a little while *your* sin separates you from God a lot. The truth is that ALL sin separates us from God. This is because sin always has two layers. There is the expression of it, and there is the root of it. The expression of our sinfulness shows up in many ways, but the root of it is always the same: we want to be our own god.

When we sin, we are effectively saying to God, “I’m not going to live under your rule. I’m not going to let you call the shots. I’m going to do things my way, because I think my way is better than yours”. Back to the video debate, consider the subject of homosexuality. The issue isn’t really about homosexuality or any other sexual activity. The issue really is, “I want to define my own life, my own identity, and my own morality. I want to be my own god”. Or, to put it in the exact words one debater used, “I can totally sign off on God designing sexuality, if I’m allowed to have my ways of thinking about it.”

That last phrase is crucial. It is essentially declaring that we will submit to God so long as he agrees with us. God must affirm our way of thinking, and then we will follow him. Yet this is the polar opposite of how our relationship with God works. God is God; he calls the shots. He is the Creator, Designer, and Sustainer of life, and we fall into line with his way of ordering things, not the other way around. We are created in the image of God, but the root of sin is that we want to create a god in our own image.

Christianity does not really begin by discussing homosexuality or any other issue. It begins by knowing that we resist the rulership of God in our lives, and unless we are willing to submit to his authority, we are in sin. This resistance leads to two significant problems. The first is that it entrenches us in pride. We will forge our own way, determine our own life course, and operate according to our own personal ideals. The second problem is that it causes us to live outside of our created design. It would not be an issue for us to rebel against God if he were some tyrannical dictator who cared little about us. But it is an issue because he is a loving God and knows what is best for us. His designs are good and his ways are wise. Thus, to rebel against God and become our own god, we are alienating ourselves from the fullness of life that we were created to experience.

Don’t get too caught up in the details. The problem is always the same, and the solution is always the same. The problem is that we want to dethrone God and take his place. This is the essence of being a sinner. The solution is that we humbly seek his forgiveness, repent of our arrogant ways, and surrender our life to him. This is the essence of being redeemed. The gospel, the good news of Christianity, is that God never rejects anyone who comes to him in this way. His grace is a free gift to all who ask for it. Yet we must first be willing to lay aside our pride and give God his rightful place in our lives.

It does not matter what specific sins you commit personally. What matters is that underneath our sin is a hard heart that is resistant to God. That is our fundamental identity. But that reality can be changed by the grace of God, when we repent and believe in Jesus for salvation. Our sins are forgiven and our relationship to God is restored. We become a “new creation in Christ” and begin a new life with a new identity, no longer as sinners but as beloved children of God and members of his family. I pray that each person reading this would come to know that salvation.

What We Learned in 2020

It has been one crazy year.

Looking back, it’s hard to believe all that has taken place in just the last twelve months. We’ve had volatile elections, riots, murder hornets, celebrity scandals, big-tech censorship, and of course the Coronavirus pandemic and the subsequent challenges it has brought: lockdowns, mass distrust of media, government ineptitude, recession, and controversial vaccines.

One can’t help but wonder, what in the world is God doing?

In some ways, 2020 has been like every other year before it, only this time it was hooked up to a globe-sized bullhorn. The same dangers that mankind faced in 2020 were present in 2019 and the year before, and the year before, stretching back to the book of Genesis. As Scripture reminds us, there is nothing new under the sun. Humanity has always been stricken with illness, both of our body and our soul. We teeter on the fine line between life and death every moment of every day, long before COVID was even heard of. We are crushed under the weight of government corruption, burdened by racial unrest, and generally struggle to get along in a fallen world that is full of selfish sinners. In that sense, it is business as usual.

If I were to sum up what God has impressed upon me this year in one sentence, I would simply let Jesus speak for me:

“My kingdom is not of this world” – John 18:36

The challenges of this year have been a painful but helpful reminder that God’s kingdom is not yet arrived. Earth is not heaven, and never will be, until it’s triumphant King returns. Until then, we struggle on amidst worldly kingdoms with evil rulers, broken systems, and dreams that will never be realized on this side of eternity. Though I yearn for more, for a world at peace, well-organized, and united, it will never happen, because these yearnings find their origin in the kingdom of God. It is currently a heavenly reality, and a spiritual one, but not yet an earthly one. One day that will change.

Perhaps one of the great lessons we are to learn this year is the futility of placing our hope in the things of this world. We place our hope in rulers, in medicine, in policy, in money, in safety, in each other and in ourselves. None of these things can deliver on the expectations we place upon them. Yet we try nonetheless, only to be frustrated and angered when things don’t work out the way we demanded. Such is the reality of false hope: it is sure to disappoint.

As Christians, we know that our hope is in the Lord. But that does not mean we are immune to falling prey to worldly thinking. Often what we know to be true theologically is not realized in our own hearts. We know that God is our hope, but we like to keep a little spare bedroom in our hearts where other idols remain as invited guests. It is certain that one thing God is doing in 2020 is attempting to smash the idols we still cling to so that our hope lies fully in him. We would do well to stop resisting this important work of sanctification.

Fellow believers, we are not of this world. Our King is not of this world. Earth is not our home. We are strangers and aliens, exiles who are simply passing through. We live not for this life but for the life to come. Let the world crumble and fall as its foundation is being shaken. But may we, the Church, stand firm. We have nothing to lose, and everything to gain. God desires for that reality to take hold of you in a new way this year. Let it be so!

As we head into the new year, we know not how long our Lord will tarry. It seems apparent to me that human history is quickly marching towards the appointed end. Things will not remain as they are forever. The kingdoms of this world will be stripped away and the kingdom of heaven ushered in. If you find the circumstances of your life leading you to think “it shouldn’t be this way”, let that move you to saying with all your heart, “Come Lord Jesus!”

What is Critical Race Theory?

Critical Race Theory (CRT) has hit mainstream awareness ever since President Trump issued an executive order against teaching CRT through government-funded means. Until that point, CRT was mainly known only to those who have taken college and university courses in social studies. (Side note: I guarantee one of the first actions Joe Biden will likely take when sworn in is to overturn this order.) Nevertheless, CRT is a very specific thought-process that Christians need to be aware of not only because of the influence it is having in the culture (especially since the death of George Floyd and through Black Lives Matter) but also because it is being embraced by the Church. If you don’t know what CRT is yet, you will soon, and you likely have encountered it dozens of times already, especially if you use social media.

I had an exchange recently with someone who absolutely insisted that I did not really know what Critical Race Theory was. He was adamant that I was mischaracterizing CRT and that was because I was unfamiliar with the origins of CRT in the 1980’s by legal scholars. This is somewhat true. I am only vaguely familiar with the content of CRT from the 80’s. Yet I don’t really care, because we live in 2020, not 1980. CRT may have began one way but, as all ideas do, it has morphed over time. Though I’m not familiar with the legal end of things pre-2000, I am familiar with CRT in its mainstream modern form.

In this article, I want to define CRT for believers and lay out the basic tenets of this ideology. This is to help us understand and evaluate it in light of Scripture. As I will demonstrate, CRT is riddled with truth-claims that are alien to God’s Word. But before the analysis, first the definition.


This is how I define Critical Race Theory: It is an adapted-Marxist line of thought designed to critique racial dominance in culture and correct it by bringing about greater equity between races.

Sound confusing? Don’t worry, it is more understandable than you might think. Let me break it down by highlighting 8 core principles of Critical Race Theory.

1. People are divided into groups based on their racial identity.

A fundamental question of life is, Who am I? Critical Race Theory answers this question by placing great emphasis on your race. Such a great emphasis, in fact, that your race is more important than your uniqueness as an individual. This is extremely important to understand, because everything else flows from it. CRT is about broad-brush characterizations of entire races without consideration for personal differences between members of the same race.

2. One race is considered to be dominant in a culture, while the others are oppressed

Since our Western culture was founded by white people and remains predominantly white, CRT teaches that white people are oppressive, while other racial groups are oppressed. You may believe this line of thinking is far too simplistic, but CRT doesn’t budge. Regardless of other factors, including personal integrity, whites are oppressive and all other races are oppressed—end of story.

3. The dominant race retains its dominance through cultural systems and structures

While most people think of racism as words or actions done by individual people, CRT sees racism as systemic. The systems and structures of society are tools used to keep the dominant group in power. This is why there is so much emphasis today on the tearing down of Western culture; it simply follows logically if the premise is that the entire culture structurally imposes racist ideals.

4. Reality is best defined by the experience of the oppressed

Since white people are systematically advantaged in society, they become blind to their own privilege. From a CRT perspective, of course white people don’t think society is racist—because it isn’t racist towards them! Minority races, on the other hand, see more clearly the systemic racism that exists because they face it everyday. As a result, people of colour are considered to have a more authoritative take on these issues than whites do.

There is one exception to this rule, however. What happens if a person of colour rejects the idea that society is systemically racist towards them? Are they still considered to be an authority on this issue? Critical Race Theory has a convenient response. That person has either “internalized” their oppression, meaning they have simply made peace with it, or, worse, they are intentionally speaking that way in order to gain favour with whites. Either way, minority people are supposed to agree that culture is racist towards them.

It is also worth noting that CRT is very narrative-based. Many CRT advocates don’t like to discuss facts, statistics, or other objective measures of society—unless they support the idea of systemic oppression. Otherwise, those who raise objections against CRT using objective data are considered to be using tools of oppression to conveniently dismiss the lived experience of the oppressed.

5. Double-standards are applied to the dominant group vs. the oppressed groups

Moral demands are different depending on your group identity. If you are in the dominant group (white), you should “check your privilege”, take the posture of a listener on these issues, and work to undo your internalized bias. If you are in an oppressed group (people of colour), you should assert yourself and fight for “your people”. It is also generally assumed that people of colour have freedom to “bend the rules” if needed, since, after all, the rules were created by white people, for white people. How can you play the game fairly if it has already been rigged against you?

6. Racial discrimination intersects and compounds with other forms of cultural oppression

Critical Race Theory is actually a branch of a wider ideology known as Critical Theory. Critical Theory brings together cultural oppression from many different areas of life, not just race. Thus, although all racial minorities are oppressed, that oppression is worsened if one is a woman (oppressed by men), homosexual (oppressed by heterosexuals), transgender (oppressed by cisgender), poor (oppressed by the rich), disabled (oppressed by able-bodied people), or any religion other than Christian. These layers of discrimination sometimes compound the suffering of oppressed groups. Thus, all discrimination must be fought against simultaneously.

7. Disparities between races are understood to be caused by discrimination

The proof that discrimination is real in society is the existence of disparities between racial groups. CRT implies that if discrimination in society were non-existent, all races would end up at the same place, having exactly the same degree of cultural influence, power, and resources. Thus, equity is the desired goal. “Equity” here means “equal outcomes”. Often, CRT proponents use the term “equality” instead of “equity”, but almost always they still mean “equal outcomes”.

8. Oppressors must be actively anti-racist and work with the oppressed for the common cause

The first six points define the problem. The seventh defines the end goal. This final point calls for action to go from one to the other. Undoing systemic racism is everyone’s responsibility, and thus the call to social justice is for all: both oppressors and the oppressed. This work will never be finished as long as racial disparities of any kind still exist in society.

What are we to make of this?

My original plan in this post was to go through point-by-point the various claims of Critical Race Theory and compare them against Scripture. There is a good place for that kind of thorough analysis. One would have to point out some of the following flaws:

  • Broad racial stereotyping is itself discriminatory and therefore sinful (James 2:2-4, Acts 10:34-35)
  • Claiming that all whites are oppressive is, at least in many cases, bearing false witness against your neighbour (Exodus 20:16)
  • Claiming that disparities prove discrimination lacks proper nuance, as there are many reasons for unequal outcomes for people, many of which do not constitute injustice (Proverbs 10:4, 12:11)
  • Race itself is not a biblical category; God considers mankind to be one race (Acts 17:26)
  • People are not morally responsible for the sinful actions of others that they had nothing to do with (Romans 2:6)
  • God considers double-standards to be sinful (Leviticus 19:15)
  • All people have inherent bias, including racial minorities; this sin is not unique to any group of people in particular (Romans 3:23)
  • Truth is not determined by one’s perceived experiences (John 17:17)
  • Racial harmony does not come through activism, but through unity in Christ (Galatians 3:26-29, Ephesians 2:14)

Among so many other things that could be mentioned, this last point is significant. Believers, in particular, need to reject Critical Race Theory because it presents a false path to racial unity. Racial unity does not come through racial stereotyping, dividing people in racial groups, casting around accusations, and demanding equity of outcome. Racial unity comes from our connection as family in Christ. Through Christ, we are individually redeemed of our sin and brought together as brothers and sisters under the care of our heavenly Father. Thus, through the gospel, we are reconciled—past tense. We may still need to learn to walk out our unity as a collection of people who differ from one another (in many more ways than just racially), yet our bond is already there, sealed by the blood of Christ. When we highlight racial division, especially in the Church, we are implying that the gospel is insufficient for this sin-caused problem. Such an attack on the power of the gospel is dangerous and need be denounced.

To illustrate the contrast between Critical Race Theory and unity in Christ: as I was writing this very article, one of our church members stopped by the church office to visit. This church member happens to be black. He came into my office and we chatted for several minutes. We talked about what is going on in each other’s lives, about work, about some of the struggles we each had been dealing with recently. We laughed at some of the stupid things I sometimes say on our church podcasts. Then we prayed together and he went on his way.

After he left, I returned to writing this article. I was struck by the contrast between how beautiful the harmony and brotherhood in Christ is verses the divisive, exhausting, and toxic culture placed between people of different races through Critical Race Theory. It was just so obvious to me how useless and nonsensical CRT is when people have such common ground as faith in Christ. He was not looking at me as someone who has hidden racial biases under the surface. I was not looking at him as someone I needed to confess my privilege to. We were just brothers, enjoying one another’s company and supporting and encouraging each other in the Lord.

Robin DiAngelo, who’s work perfectly exemplifies modern Critical Race Theory, says “Racism is always present in every cross-racial interaction. The question is not, ‘Is there racism?” but rather ‘How did racism manifest itself?'” Can you now see the kind of divisive poison CRT is, both in the Church and in society? Racism is real, but CRT elevates racism to a level where it infects every area of life. The Christian Church needs to reject this evil doctrine and instead elevate unity in Christ. Imagine how different the interaction between my friend and I would have been if we had allowed CRT to shape our thinking and our relationship. I am calling on my fellow brothers and sisters in the Lord to stand up against CRT and refuse to allow it into the Church. There is already a battle being fought within many churches, denominations, and seminaries along these same lines. I hope and pray that the power of the gospel would not be cheapened or replaced by this disgusting alternative that has no place among the people of God.

War of Words: Christians Are Becoming Secularized Because of Shifting Definitions

“Language is the road map of a culture. It tells you where its people come from and where they are going” – Rita Mae Brown

“But if thought corrupts language, language can also corrupt thought.” – George Orwell

“Language is power, in ways more literal than most people think. When we speak, we exercise the power of language to transform reality. Why don’t more of us realize the connection between language and power?” – Julia Penelope

I don’t like to waste words, so let me get straight to the point: Christianity is becoming more and more unstable every day, and it is because the foundation that it sits on is rapidly eroding. That foundation is truth. Truth is under assault in our culture, and even within the walls of the Church. Truth, as should be made obvious, is expressed in ideas, which are then expressed in words. All good writers in history understood and appreciated that there is great power in words to define and shape reality. Consequently, words can be used to re-define and distort reality. Christianity has long been quite resistant to this kind of assault, because our faith rests upon the unchanging Word of God. God has spoken to us in words, which have been faithfully recorded and preserved for millennia. This is not insignificant. Indeed, it is one of the reasons Christianity has been able to endure all that is has throughout the centuries.

But times are changing. Our culture is currently undergoing one of the greatest re-shapings in history, and the battle has become a battle of words. I very briefly touched in my previous post that the Church as been absorbing secular philosophy through shared words with different meanings. More pointedly, I said “social justice as the world defines it is very different than helping the oppressed from a Scriptural perspective.” Here I want to outline some of what I’m talking about.

As an illustration, consider that Mirriam-Webster literally changed the definition of “sexual preference” the very day after Senator Mazie Hirono challenged then-supreme-court-candidate Amy Coney Barrett that her use of the phrase was inappropriate. (See one write up about it here.) Overnight, the term was deemed “offensive” by Mirriam-Webster despite no one really seeming to care. Anyone familiar with how tyranny quietly imposes power knows that changing the meaning of words is one way to control how people think. This kind of thing is truly alarming.

The very same thing has happened under the noses of Christians. Those who advocate for social justice movements use phrases and terms that are well-known to believers but infuse them with very different meanings. Consider a few examples.

The very term “social justice” is riddled with baggage. When many Christians hear the term, they immediately think of Scriptures like Micah 6:8, which says “He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?” Most believers then simply think to themselves, “God requires us to pursue justice, therefore I am going to support social justice movements. It is what God would want me to do”. This sounds rational but is mistaken because Scripture and culture define justice differently. A simple google search for “define social justice” will draw the following:

Notice that the qualifier “social” in “social justice” changes the meaning of the phrase. Social justice speaks to systems in culture that result in disparities between people groups. These disparities are then corrected through “social justice”, or the redistribution of resources from those who have to those who have not. This, however, is not at all what the Bible speaks of when it refers to justice. Consider Leviticus 19:15, where the law of God says “You shall do no injustice in court. You shall not be partial to the poor or defer to the great, but in righteousness shall you judge your neighbour.” This definition of justice is actually the opposite of the secular one. In God’s economy, true justice is about equal treatment under the law: neither the rich nor the poor get preferential treatment. But in modern social justice terms, justice is intentional preferential treatment in order to create equal outcomes among people groups. Though both the secular culture and Scriptures speak of “justice”, they mean completely different things.

Consider also the definition of racism. In the secular world, racism has changed meanings over the last several decades. Racism used to mean being prejudiced against someone because of their ethnicity or skin colour. This is the simple, straightforward definition that has existed, as far as I can tell, from the first notion of the concept. Modern culture, however, is consistently moving towards using the term “systemic racism” as virtually synonymous with “racism”. While old-fashioned racism is on the individual level, systemic racism is societal. Yet in the minds of modern social justice proponents, the two are the same. Consider a few quotations to illustrate:

“…many critical race theorists and social scientists hold that racism is pervasive, systemic, and deeply ingrained. If we take this perspective, then no white member of society seems quite so innocent.” – Critical Race Theory by Richard Delgado and Jean Stefancic

“Racism presupposes the ability to control a significant section of the population economically, politically, and socially by imposing law, covenant, and restriction on their lives. Black people ain’t have no capacity to do that. Can we be bigoted? Yes. Can we be prejudiced? Yes. Racist? No.” – Eric Dyson (video)

“White’s see their friendship with blacks as proof that they are on the non-racist side of the good-bad binary. Yet cross-racial friendships do not block out the dynamics of racism in the society at large, and these dynamics continue unabated. Racism invariably manifests itself within cross-racial friendships as well. Racism cannot be absent from your friendship. No cross-racial relationship is free from the dynamics of racism in the society.” – White Fragility by Robin DiAngelo

“Racism is any prejudice against someone because of their race when those views are reinforced by systems of power.” – So You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo

“And if you are white in a white supremacist society, you are racist.” – So You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo

The point is clear. While racism used to mean prejudice, it now means prejudice plus power. In North America, since white people are seen as those with social advantage, and since white people are socially conditioned to affirm white culture as the norm, all white people are racist AND it is impossible for people of colour to be racist. I would simply want to ask, is this the definition of racism you hold to as a believer? Is it supported by Scripture? Or even common sense?

Consider also the word “equality”. The word seems straightforward enough, yet it can have many different uses. When people speak about equality, what do they really mean? Are they saying we are equal in value because we are made in the image of God? Do they mean that everyone should have equal opportunities? Or do they mean that everyone should have equal outcomes? All three of these uses have vastly different meanings and implications. Again, I see many Christians using the term without realizing that what it means to the secular world is very different from what they mean by it Scripturally.

This kind of word shape-shifting is happening all over the place. In fact, it is happening at such an alarming rate that it is impossible to keep up with for the average person not deeply entrenched in this ideology. The result is that many well-meaning Christians start to adopt and promote these ideas without fully knowing what they are getting in to. Still other self-proclaiming Christians knowingly adopt these views and try to integrate them into biblical theology with more nefarious intentions. Either way, the purity of Christian truth becomes corrupted by these worldly philosophies.

Let’s just call it what it is. This is Marxist-Communist thinking. Read again the definition of “social justice” and see that it parallels Neo-Marxist ideas perfectly. Neo-Marxism is defined by identifying social disparities as the result of systemic oppression that must be corrected by force if necessary. The vast majority of what flies under the banner of “social justice” fits this very description. Christians may or may not know it, but they are blending an anti-Christian worldview with their faith that will sooner or later devour them too.

Words matter. Definitions matter. Ideas matter. I wonder if Christians are being swept up into the social justice movements of our day under the faulty notion that it is somehow loving to do so. Are we not to love our neighbour? Of course we are. But we are not called to abandon truth in the pursuit of love. In fact, doing so is quite unloving. The Bible would not put such emphasis on the truth and the need to be discerning if it were going to be so simple. Having a robust Christian worldview that is shaped by the Scriptures is absolutely paramount to obeying the command to love your neighbour. Thus, I am not advocating for some kind of overly sophisticated and Pharisaical approach to living out our faith in the world. Rather, I am warning against the pull to be “taken captive by philosophy and empty deceit, which depends on human tradition and the elemental spiritual forces of this world rather than on Christ” (Colossians 2:8).

The Christian Church needs to better recognize what is happening before our very eyes. Though in some ways I think is kind of corruption is inevitable, those who protect the flock have a duty before God to lead with righteousness and truth, even though this will cause them to become targets for hate not only from the culture at large, but sometimes even those claiming the name of Christ. My desire is to see the Church honour God and love others as God would have us do, not according to worldly definitions. People need to care about this. People need to become sticklers when it comes to definitions and clarity of communication. Doing so will help the sheep steer clear of wolves who intend only to deceive and devour them.

Social Justice Is a Secular Religion

I have been hammering on this theme for a while now, and there is good reason for that. I remember listening to some sermons and podcasts over 10 years ago where some Christian leaders were trying to point out the problems with the social justice movements happening in North America, in particular how they affect and infect the Church. At the time, I remember thinking to myself, “there definitely is something off about all this, but I don’t really see what the big deal is”. There were then—and are now—other Christian leaders who fully embraced the social justice movement and, even more the point, argued that it was demanded of us as believers to do so. To be honest, it felt like a lot of this went right over my head and I ended up not really doing much about it.

All of that changed for me when George Floyd died. The subsequent Black Lives Matter movement absolutely forced me to no longer stay on the fringe of these issues, so I finally dived in full force. I read and listened to absolutely everything I could get my hands on from a variety of different perspectives. But, most importantly, I started investigating text books and primary source literature about social justice. This is when the light bulb finally went on for me. The reason I had trouble making sense of social justice movements was simply because I never took any sociology classes in college or university. These places are the training grounds for social justice activists, where they gain a certain understanding of the world and everything wrong with it. Once I was finally able to bring clarity to various terms and concepts, everything fell into place.

Therefore, I have a lot of sympathy for those who either reject my arguments or are suspicious of them. I was in their shoes not long ago. It took me a long time to make sense of it all, and it helped hearing it from a variety of different angles. That’s why I keep harping on this issue. I’m certain there are those out there who, like me, will take some time to be able to wrap their heads around this subject.

Here I am again shooting at the same target from a different angle. I’m arguing that social justice, as it is being lived out in real-time, functions exactly like a religion. It is not a fringe activity that can be tacked on to the life you are already living. It actually demands to be at the centre of your life, because embracing social justice demands embracing a certain view of the world, yourself, and those around you. I have created the following chart to help show the ways social justice parallels Christianity. The point is to demonstrate that the more you embrace social justice ideology, the more your Christian faith will be forced out of your life. Put simply: they are competing worldviews. To the degree that you accept one, you must reject the other.

This is not to say that Christians don’t care about justice or compassion. Don’t misunderstand me. Scripture calls us to love our neighbours and seek the well-being of others. Yet this is not the same as secular social justice. Social justice as the world defines it is very different than helping the oppressed from a Scriptural perspective. I will elaborate in a future post more about this difference, but just know that here I am arguing against social justice the way the world defines it, not the way well-meaning Christians use the term.

Born into a sinful natureOriginal Sin: What is the main problem?Born into a dominant group
Individual made in God’s imageIdentity: Who am I?Member of a group
God’s WordTruth: What determines reality?Personal experience
The BibleScripture: What writing is authoritative?Critical Theory literature
10 CommandmentsEthics: What moral code should I follow?Political Correctness
The ChurchCommunity: Who are “my people”?Members of my group identity
RebukeDiscipline: How does the community respond to unacceptable behaviour?Cancelled
Confession to God and offended partyRepentance: How do I restore myself?Public apology and work on yourself
Born againConversion: How do I label my change?Woke
GraceSalvation: What overcomes my failures?Works
Baptism & CommunionSacraments: How do I acknowledge my beliefs publicly?Virtue signalling
Glorify GodLife Purpose: What is my mission in life?End oppression
With Christ in paradiseHeaven: What is the best possible outcome?Social equity
Apart from Christ foreverHell: What is the worst possible outcome?Social disparities
God / Final judgmentJudgment: Who/what assesses my life?The court of public opinion
Love God, love othersGreat Commandment: What is the highest good?“Do better”
Share gospel & make disciplesGreat Commission: How do I evangelize?Education & activism
ChristSaviour: Who do we put our hope in?Humanity

Since unfolding the details of this chart would take a book-length explanation, I’ll chip away at it over time. Drop your comments, questions, or critiques by leaving a comment below, and I’ll do my best to respond to them. Stay tuned for more info coming.

What Does It Mean to “Think Biblically”?

God cares about how we think. It is no mistake that we are created with cognitive faculties that allow us to learn, ponder, and assess things in ways that other creatures cannot. The Bible tells us to “love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and all your strength” (Mark 12:30). Along these lines, Christians often talk about “thinking biblically” about the issues of life and culture that we often face. What does this somewhat-ambiguous phrase really mean?

The first thing we need to understand is that everyone has a worldview. I define a worldview as “a system and beliefs and values that help us understand and interact with the world around us”. How we think about various issues is directly linked to our particular worldview. A robust worldview answers some of the most fundamental questions of life, such as:

  • Identity: Who am I?
  • Purpose: What am I here for?
  • Community: How do I relate to others?
  • Truth: What defines reality?
  • Origin: Where do I come from?
  • Destination: Where am I going?
  • Morality: What is right and wrong?
  • Transcendence: Am I a part of something bigger than me?

Christianity answers these questions in Scripture. The Bible is the place Christians look to shape our worldview. Thus, when we talk about “thinking Biblically” we are referring to a process of developing a worldview that is shaped by Scripture that then interprets the world around us. As I stated earlier, a worldview is a collection of “beliefs and values”. Since the world we live in offers us differing ideas of what beliefs and values we should hold, some of those are going to “pass the test” of aligning with what Scripture teaches while others do not.

This is what Romans 12:2 is getting at when it states “Do not be conformed to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect”. Consider of a few points from this passage. Notice first that this world has a “pattern”, aka a worldview. The “world” (referred to here as collective mankind without acknowledgment of God) has beliefs and values that it holds to because of our sinful nature as human beings. These are predictable “patterns” that are contrary to God. Next, notice that humans can be “conformed” to this pattern. This means that people’s beliefs and values are moldable. They can change via influence. They are not fixed realities in ourselves, but can be adapted. Third, notice that the way we change is linked to our “mind”. How we think is what shapes who we are. Fourth, our mind has a pre-determined condition that requires “renewing”. This implies that our default pattern is worldly and requires a “breaking-the-mold” approach to free ourselves from our sinful selves. Fifth, our mind renewal comes from intentional focus on the will of God. In this way, Scripture teaches us that God’s will contrasts with the patterns of this world. What God believes and values is different from what we believe and value. Sixth, God’s beliefs and values are called good, acceptable, and perfect. They are better and superior to our worldly ways of thinking. Seventh, in order for us to be renewed we must “discern” the difference between worldly thinking and Godly thinking. When people talking about “thinking Biblically”, this is exactly the process they have in mind.

Therefore, thinking biblically means identifying the beliefs and values that are being promoted by the world and assessing wether or not they conform to God’s will as revealed in the Bible. If they do, we accept them. If they don’t, we reject them. This is a crucial part of growing as a disciple of Christ and maturing as a Christian believer.

It pains me to say, but I often see many Christians failing to “think biblically” about issues in their lives or the world around us. It seems that many have a compartmentalized relationship with God, where they accept the need for God’s forgiveness but don’t allow for a full renewing of their mind to change their future thoughts and behaviour. Put differently, they accept salvation but not sanctification. They call themselves a Christian but don’t engage in the hard work of change to be conformed to the image of Christ. If you don’t believe me, scroll through social media. That is exactly the thing that prompted me to write this post. I regularly see believers of Jesus saying things and promoting things that are contrary to a Christian worldview without even realizing it. They, for one reason or another, are failing to “discern” God’s will and have become conformed to worldly patterns of thought.

This is why reading Scripture regularly is so important. God’s Word confronts us about the sinful patterns of thought in our lives and contrasts it to the way God thinks about things. As a result, when we read our Bibles we should regularly find ourselves in prayer repenting of our worldliness and asking God for help to change. When this fails to become a regular activity in our lives we can be sure that the process of renewal has waned and we are slowly being conformed to the patterns of this world.

Scripture must play a central role in our lives. If we are to follow Christ, it will mean a daily renewal and confrontation with ourselves that slowly kills what is earthly in us and allows the Spirit of God to more fully dwell in our hearts. I am pleading with any Christian who is reading this to not take this lightly. Being renewed is a lifelong process and one of the true marks of a believer. Those who fail to endure in this just might one day find that the God they once loved has become an irrelevant relic of their past and the patterns of the world have taken root in their lives. In such a case, a person is exposed for what they are—a Christian by label only, and apart from God’s grace.

Renewal is hard. Thinking biblically is hard. There are a hundred valid reasons for not wanting to do it. We may find Scripture boring or confusing. We may fall out of the habit of reading it. We may stop attending church for one reason or another. We may find a part of the Christian worldview offensive. We may surround ourselves with worldly thinking people. We may even fall in love with one of them. These can all be real challenges but we cannot allow them to become stumbling blocks in our lives. The moment we make peace with patterns of the world is the moment we begin conforming to them. It is like a stream that is flowing away from God and we must actively swim against the current or be swept away by it. Coasting is easy. Swimming is hard. It may seem silly but Dory was right about this one. Just keep swimming.