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Have you ever been caught off-guard by a new meaning for a long recognized word in the English language?

Hi, I’m Rex Rogers and this is episode #79 of Discerning What Is Best, a podcast applying unchanging biblical principles in a rapidly changing world, and a Christian worldview to current issues and everyday life.


Words are how human beings communicate. A gift from God, the power to speak using words, sets human beings apart from animals. But if words do not possess established, recognized shared meanings, they can be manipulated and therefore people can be manipulated. 

Words are hijacked, which is to say, unilaterally repurposed at the expense of normality, reality, and truth, so a given group can control the narrative.

In the postmodern 21st Century landscape in which we live, confusion reigns supreme. And confusion creates division.

Division, which then leads to power, is the goal of the secular progressive left. A way to do this is to distort language, turn discourse upside down or make it impossible by constantly redefining words.

In the 1990s, President Clinton famously defended his conduct with Monica Lewinski by stating "It depends on what the meaning of the word 'is' is."

“Language provides an avenue to express shared meaning so humans can relate to one another. On college campuses, social media, and in the courts, this shared meaning is being destroyed. Through linguistic activism, (the secular progressive Left has) begun a full-scale war on language, playing by their own set of constantly shifting rules.

Words can now literally be defined with their antonym. We are a hair’s width and an ounce of stupidity away from (George Orwell’s frightening phrases in his book 1984), ‘war is peace, freedom is slavery.’ This isn’t innocent linguistic drift or slang; it is a conscious effort to reshape society.

(For example,) consider “the phrase ‘undocumented immigrant’ in place of ‘illegal alien.’ The rallying cry is that ‘no person is illegal.’ But of course, ‘illegal’ refers to the action and status, not the personhood of the individual, and ‘alien’ is the technical term for a foreign citizen.”

The term ‘illegal immigration’ is no longer politically acceptable because it might reflect negatively upon some poor, misunderstood ‘migrant’ who entered the United States illegally seeking a better life. The (secular progressive Left) now identifies them as ‘undocumented immigrants.’

“By separating gender from sex, linguistic activists tore the very fabric of mutual understanding, and created a new class of victims, and by definition, a new class of offenders. Pronouns, the simplest way to identify another party, are now subject to feelings.” Dozens of nonsensical new pronouns sprang into existence.

“Controlling how people speak is the implicit goal of this movement, which combined with anti-hate-speech activism seeks to empower the Left as the arbiters of morality and to punish those who wrongfully use language—ironically, achieved by abusing language themselves.”

Racism is no longer based on religion, color, creed but on political orientation, and anyone who challenges the (secular progressive) Left's agenda is branded a ‘racist.’”

Creating new definitions for existing words helps (the secular) progressive (Left) redefine society into newly created classifications of perceived disenfranchised individuals they promise to protect, while fundamentally changing America.”

Another example: various efforts have been made to remove “husband” and “wife” from federal law, replacing them with gender neutral terms like married couple, spouse, etc. “The current social engineering requires leftists to continually change public perception of reality.”

“Phobia” is now an all-purpose word used to condemn anyone who does not agree with the Left, as in homophobia, transphobia.

The list of hijacked words is now almost endless, including, gay, assault rifle, equity, progressive, pro-choice to replace pro-abortion, Holiday to replace Christmas, and sex, meaning one’s biological physicality at birth, now replaced by the word gender, meaning a changing or fluid condition one feels psychologically or socially.

Same-sex marriage changed the meaning of marriage. Now it’s about something call “marriage equality.”

In many public schools, there are no longer boys or girls but simply “students.”

Global warming is now “climate change”, and since the weather is forever changing, the idea of climate change is impossible to disprove.

Young criminals are now in some localities referred to as “justice-involved youth.”

Tolerance is used to censor opposing views, and any non-leftist views, are ipso facto, hate speech. Justice is now increasingly displaced by “social justice,” something depending not on right or wrong but upon one’s politics.

There’s a “challenge” at the southern border, not a “crisis.” Migrant children are being held in “reception centers” not “cages.” Instead of “border security,” it’s “border safety.” 

In fall 2020 during her Supreme Court confirmation hearings, “then-Judge Amy Coney Barrett was criticized for using the term ‘sexual preference,’ in responding to a question about legal protections for the LGBT community during her confirmation hearing? ‘Sexual preference’ was weaponized by the (secular progressive Left) for being a homophobic slur. The correct term is ‘sexual orientation.’ Most alarming in Justice Barrett’s case is after she uttered the term, 

Merriam-Webster updated its definition of ‘preference’ to include the word’s usage in certain contexts may be ‘offensive.’”

In spring 2022, during “Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson's confirmation hearing, Sen. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., asked the Supreme Court nominee: “Can you provide a definition for the word ‘woman’?” Jackson responded, ‘I’m not a biologist.’”

Science, which used to be defined as conclusions based upon tested evidence gleaned from the natural world, is now something based upon feeling or politics.

Biblical images like the rainbow, meaning God’s “covenant with (humanity), that never again shall all flesh be cut off by the waters of the flood, and never again shall there be a flood to destroy the earth” (Gen. 9:8-16), has now been hijacked as a symbol of the LGBTQ+ movement, adopted in 1978 as its flag.

Diversity now means difference of appearance, not differences in thought, leading to conformity of thought. 

Education at one time meant teaching independent, critical thinking, knowledge, and wisdom, but now it means indoctrination in moral relativism, globalism, and historical revisionism.

Freedom once meant personal liberty but now it means rejection of the burden of being, no stress, and economic dependence on government.

Climate change is not about environmental stewardship and conservation of resources but really is about redistribution of wealth, replacement of free enterprise capitalism by socialism, and minimizing humanity.

If the Civil Rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr returned today, his vocabulary would not fit today’s landscape. In fact, many of his goals, like attaining a colorblind society, are now considered racist. Yes, like Abraham Lincoln, in our Orwellian society, Martin Luther King, Jr. is now a racist.

Witness this quote from Dr. King’s “I Have a Dream” speech, Aug. 28, 1963, wherein he expresses optimism and patriotism, concepts now rejected by the secular progressive Left:

“Let us not wallow in the valley of despair, I say to you today, my friends. So even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream. 

I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.

I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.” 

Scripture reminds us God’s Word is truth. It never changes, and we must live “on every word that comes from the mouth of God” (Matt. 4:4). We are, in turn, to engage in “speaking the truth in love” (Eph. 4:15). To do this, in an age of prevarication and division, we must remember: “Do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.” Our spiritual and perhaps our social/political well-being depends on it.


Well, we’ll see you again soon. This podcast is about Discerning What Is Best. If you find this thought-provoking and helpful, follow us on your favorite podcast platform. Download an episode for your friends. For more Christian commentary, check my website, r-e-x-m as in Martin, that’s 

And remember, it is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm.

© Rex M. Rogers – All Rights Reserved, 2023   

*This podcast blog may be reproduced in whole or in part with a full attribution statement. Contact me or read more commentary on current issues and events at, or connect with me at  

It doesn’t take much reflection to realize a lot has changed in the past 50 years besides iPhones and the Internet. If you are older, have you noted the extensive changes in American culture? 

Hi, I’m Rex Rogers and this is episode #78 of Discerning What Is Best, a podcast applying unchanging biblical principles in a rapidly changing world, and a Christian worldview to current issues and everyday life.

Recently, I’ve been trying to get my arms around the moral freefall so widely apparent in American culture. At the risk of sounding like an old fogy, I must say that the American culture in which I grew up, indeed lived into my middle adult years, is either in serious trouble or gone, depending upon how you want to assess certain measures. The point is, it’s really different now and I’m not sure younger people realize or recognize it.

I’m not suggesting that in days gone by, things were all as they should be, that we experienced no problems and no failures “back when.” Indeed, we had plenty of personal and cultural sins, among them racism, or men treating women in inappropriate ways the MeToo Movement finally and rightly pointed out. What I’m saying now is that moral shifts have taken place in American culture during my lifetime that are as wide, deep, and threatening as a 9.0 earthquake.

When I was in grade school, teachers read a few verses of Scripture each morning before we said the “Pledge of Allegiance” together and started our day. I was in 8th Grade before I learned what homosexuality is and that was from a “Birds and the Bees” conversation with my Dad, not via the street, public school, or television. In high school, I did come to understand racism and civil rights, because I heard Martin Luther King. Jr’s incredible “I Have a Dream” speech on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial (1963), and I watched the social protests of the Civil Rights Movement in the 1960s. When I was in high school, I never saw or barely heard of drugs. 

Throughout my public school elementary, middle school, and high school experience, I was blessed with teachers who knew their subjects and who taught, teachers who were, with the exception of a couple I could name, moral, decent, caring, professional people, teachers who were permitted and who wanted to teach “reading, ‘riting, and ‘rithmetic,” history, biology, language, and critical thinking. 

They did not spend – I should say waste – time on sex education or promote LGBTQ special rights, look upon every occurrence as evidence of failed diversity, equity, or inclusion. They did not re-vision American history as a dark and desperate story of white privilege, cultural relativism or systemic racism. While we learned about conservation and environmental stewardship, teachers did not instill students with fears about climate change or promote socialist, anti-free enterprise, anti-humanity ideologies about saving the world.

Consequently, I was educated, not indoctrinated.

I was taught to respect the fact that men and women from this country in which I was born had on several occasions given the last full measure of sacrifice so that I could enjoy life and liberty. I was taught that patriotism focused on a set of ideals, of aspirations about human freedom, not just blind loyalty to a country or ideology.

I was taught to think, not shrink in fear of micro-aggressions or perceived oppressions. I was not taught “tolerance” in the current sense of the term, meaning a promotion of one demography at the expense of others. Rather, I was taught to “love your neighbor,” to understand that each person a free citizen of his/her country, equal before the law, innocent until proven guilty, free to pursue opportunities without class consciousness and to succeed or fail based upon our own work ethic, commitment, and the merit of our ideas.

I was never taught by parents, preachers, or teachers that there is no such thing as truth, something that is now the prevailing acceptable idea across American culture, and this false idea is reaping devastating effects.

I was taught that boys should become men, and that one aspect of this maturity was a recognition that men should respect and protect girls and women. I was taught that real men were respectable, responsible, and reliable, that real women were capable, considerate, and caring. I had role models of both sexes who were honest, hard-working, and courageous.

Honestly, I did not understand abortion until I got into college, and while I was in college the Supreme Court of the United States handed down Roe v. Wade (1973).

Though I had watched male comedians dress as women for the sake of comedy when I was young, I did not know what a transvestite is, much less what transgenderism is.

And when I say I did not know what these things were, I mean well into and college age, because these things were not part of or morally endorsed by everyday culture. Trans ideology was not taught in school, as it is today, not available on the Internet, as it is today, not presented in acceptable forms on television, as it is today, and not “accepted and affirmed,” as the recommended wording goes, by preachers or churches or Christian families.

Getting hammered, when I was in high school, meant some kids drank too many beers Friday night. We were just beginning to hear about marijuana, and later uppers and downers, LSD, and other spinoffs of the “Sex, Drugs, and Rock n Roll” of the 60s Counterculture. But when I was in high school, this was all “out there” somewhere, not commonly available in our town. let alone hard drugs like heroin or cocaine, and later—actually now---opioids and fentanyl.

When I was in high school, as I recall, two classmates got pregnant. Both girls attended for a time, then dropped out to have their babies. These new mothers eventually returned to finish their educations. The issue—unexpected and unwanted pregnancy—has been around since the dawn of time, but moral codes and expectations limited the prevalence of the problem. At least this was the case when I was in high school, 1966-1970.

Although the FDA approved the first oral contraceptive in 1960, contraceptives were not available to married women in all states until Griswold v. Connecticut (1965) and were not available to unmarried women in all states until Eisenstadt v. Baird (1972).

The pill, as it was called, helped propel the Sexual Liberation Movement of the 1960s toward breaking new boundaries in the 1970s. This movement continues today with LGBTQ demands for normalization. When I was a youth, while this movement was well underway, it had not reached our small town in any identifiable public way. The pill, and other contraceptives developed later, represented the technical or medical side, so to speak, of sexual liberation, but the real rocket fuel to the movement was a significant change in the nation’s public moral consensus – what culture thinks is right and wrong, OK, or up to you and no one else’s business.

American culture’s moral tectonic plates are shifting away from the Judeo-Christian moral consensus that once provided what sociologists of religion called the “sacred canopy” integrating society. 

We’re moving from There is a God, He is the source of our liberty and laws, and We are accountable to him to There is no God, liberty and laws are about libertinism, and we are not accountable to anyone.

In Romans 1 (18), Scripture warns about those “who suppress the truth by their wickedness.” Our culture has long-since begun "suppressing the truth," so it is becoming irrational, unrealistic, and dysfunctional. Unfortunately, it can get worse; there's more sophisticated insanity yet to come.

During the April 2, 2023, Country Music Awards, co-host Kelsea Ballerini sang while joined on stage by a group of drag queens. She later tweeted, “Thank you to these iconic queens and... CMT for celebrating love, self-expression, and performance." Clearly, she did not invite the drag queens because they enhanced her music. She was making a statement.

Celebrity leftist radicalism is nothing new, but Blue State officials, like Gov. Gavin Newsome, California, intentionally positioning their states in opposition to the rule of law, federal courts, and the legislatures of Red States is new. California bills itself as a sanctuary state for transgender kids or those wanting abortion access. Not just California, but a number of Blue States have adopted laws directly contrary to laws in Red States. This includes laws regarding abortion on demand, transgender youth policy, transgender athlete access to athletic events based on gender identity rather than biological birth sex, classroom discussion of race or sexuality, and more.

This division, this civil-war-like antipathy, was unknown when I was young, but it exists now and is being described as “the great divergence.” Given that the bedrock of all this is not politics but moral worldview, the 2020s are likely to be a time of increased challenges to American social cohesion. American culture is coming apart at the seams.

Pray for E Pluribus Unum.


Well, we’ll see you again soon. This podcast is about Discerning What Is Best. If you find this thought-provoking and helpful, follow us on your favorite podcast platform. Download an episode for your friends. For more Christian commentary, check my website, r-e-x-m as in Martin, that’s 

And remember, it is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm.

© Rex M. Rogers – All Rights Reserved, 2023     

*This podcast blog may be reproduced in whole or in part with a full attribution statement. Contact me or read more commentary on current issues and events at, or connect with me at  

When you listen to the news, most of it negative, have you ever wondered what’s causing all this chaos?

Hi, I’m Rex Rogers and this is episode #66 of Discerning What Is Best, a podcast applying unchanging biblical principles in a rapidly changing world, and a Christian worldview to current issues and everyday life. 

How does decline in Christian influence upon culture, in numbers of believers, in theological or worldview understanding of Christian teachings, of a Judeo-Christian moral consensus work itself out in everyday life?

How does this decline evidence itself in culture in ways beyond declining church attendance or increasing biblical illiteracy?

Depending upon the memory of who’s doing the analysis, the dates vary, but there’s general agreement that a dramatic shift in American culture has been taking place for some time. It’s a shift from a culture widely based upon a Judeo-Christian consensus about what public morality and mores should be to one based upon a largely de-Christianized or post-Christian understanding of life.

How does this shift manifest itself?

If an increasing number of Americans do not believe in the Sovereign God of the Bible and his moral will expressed in the Word of truth – I did not say, do not believe in God, just they do not believe in God as he reveals himself in his Word – If an increasing number do not embrace a Creator God, do not understand responsibility and accountability, and believe they create their own truth, these values will most assuredly result in different choices and a different way of of life than what used to be considered good, optimistic and uplifting, right and righteous, humble, and productive.

Today, we are experiencing increases in every form of human problem, especially emotional, e.g., traumatized youth, anxious or anxiety-ridden celebrities, psychological issues, for example increase rage and mass shooters, and a laundry list of what’s now called mental illness.

These developments are not happening because 21st Century residents are less intelligent or less educated than their forebears. These developments are occurring because human beings have rejected or are rejecting patterns of life God said would allow the human race to flourish.

Ignoring God and moral absolutes results not just in an increase in “Nones” – the people who check surveys saying they have “no religious affiliation” = but an increase in every form of social pathology.  

What we are witnessing in America in recent years is not just a blip, some political anomaly, but the consequence of ongoing value choices in which, as a culture, we embrace death instead of life, despair rather than hope, selfish aggrandizement in place of selflessness.

This shift toward a non-Christian worldview also helps explain rapid increases in these categories of behavior:

  1. Gambling viewed as harmless entertainment.
  2. Pornography, like prostitution, now considered a victimless crime.
  3. Debt accepted as almost an entitlement, because in contemporary outlook, debt does not matter.
  4. Promotion of self-actualization as the highest good in life. Only what please me matters, an idea carried with grave effect into familial, marital, and sexual relationships.
  5. The idea that mental illness, often vaguely defined, and not human choices and certainly not sin, is the source of human problems.
  6. The Hollywood idea that marriage is socially unnecessary.
  7. Maybe even the wholesale embrace of the idea climate change is the greatest existential threat to human existence.
  8. The sad Sodom and Gomorrah confusion now vested in attitudes toward human sexuality, so-called sexual “orientation,” and abortion on demand.
  9. Woke philosophy, or should I say nonsense, that in a very short time has infected virtually every part of American culture.
  10. The constant renewal of racism wherein everything is reduced to discrimination, hate, prejudice, and victimhood.

All of these viewpoints are rooted in non-Christian assumptions about God, humanity, life, and culture. The more we pursue our newfound irrational and unbiblical values, the less free, less humane, and less prosperous our culture becomes. We are losing, nay we are jettisoning, the blessing of American commitment to life and liberty.

Where once Emma Lazarus’s poem at the base of the Statue of Liberty was a beacon of hope to the world – 

“Give me your tired, your poor,

Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,

The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.

Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,

I lift my lamp beside the golden door!” 

– now, for many, it sounds like a false promise. Not because America does not still teem with opportunities, but because political ideology has twisted our outlook on immigrants, once a source of strength and new ideas, now viewed as votes to keep politicians in power.

Immigrants given open borders across which to traffic children, hustle fentanyl and other narcotics, only reinforces America’s opioid crisis. 

Immigrants as human beings in want deserve better than to be used by both political parties. They deserve to be invited to participate in a legal process of naturalization, vetted such that the criminals among them are held out, and assisted so they can find a place to put down roots where they can pursue the American dream.

Add to this the sexualization of children that is now so widespread and growing, so heinous, that even listing what is occurring can make you sick.

How can a culture allow this? It does so because we’ve become convinced that for sex anything goes, that anything short of licentiousness is somehow an affront to freedom and well-being. We are a culture that is upside down.

So, for Christians who still have faith in the Sovereign God of the universe, who still believe and attempt to obey the principles of the Word of God, the task is now a tall order in a pluralistic, secularized culture running amok.

But God is not mocked. He is not gone or absent. He has not forgotten us. Our assignment is not simply to believe the truth but to live it.

This is our moment to shine Christ’s light in this dark world. It is our moment to share the ultimate tipping point, the Good News that faith in Christ can transform anyone into a New Creation.

That’s a message of hope for addicts, convicts, the sexually confused, those trapped in unforgiveness or followers of false ideas, religions, or isms that offer no way out. Becoming a New Creation in Christ is there for all, from the Thief on the Cross to the drug-controlled, psychotic killer in the world’s worst prison. If they are still breathing, there is no one beyond the reach of the Holy Spirit of God.

And Christians know this. We have the message of reconciliation. What a mission. What a Great Commission. All in all, it’s a great time to be alive. 

Well, we’ll see you again soon. This podcast is about Discerning What Is Best. If you find this thought-provoking and helpful, follow us on your favorite podcast platform. Download an episode for your friends. For more Christian commentary, check my website, r-e-x-m as in Martin, that’s 

And remember, it is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm.

© Rex M. Rogers – All Rights Reserved, 2023    

*This podcast blog may be reproduced in whole or in part with a full attribution statement. Contact me or read more commentary on current issues and events at, or connect with me at  

Have you heard of Cancel Culture, or been a victim of its vindictiveness? In the tsunami of irrationality now offered by celebrities and media, have you wondered whether truth can survive? 

Hi, I’m Rex Rogers and this is episode #39 of Discerning What Is Best, a podcast applying unchanging biblical principles in a rapidly changing world, and a Christian worldview to current issues and everyday life.


Years ago, I wrote a book called “Christian Liberty: Living for God in a Changing Culture.” The later ebook version was called, “Living for God in Changing Times.” 

Theology hasn’t changed. I stand by what I said then. 

The point was this: while God provides us in the Bible with a moral Do and Don’t list, which we ignore at our peril, that list is far shorter than many think or try to make others believe. 

Beyond these moral absolutes about right and wrong, God gave us principles in his Word by which we can discern and make decisions, then he gives us the freedom to choose. This squares with how he created human beings as thinking, reasoning, if not always reasonable, choosing individuals. 

This also means Christians are free to disagree. As the Scripture says, “One person considers one day more sacred than another; another considers every day alike. Each of them should be fully convinced in their own mind” (Rom. 14:5). 

This does not mean we are free to hold points of view and beliefs contrary to Scripture. We should agree, which is to say obey the Word of God, on moral issues that God has addressed. But we don’t all have to come to the same conclusion on every non-moral issue. 

When that book was published in 2003, I said that Christian liberty may be the least understood and least practiced doctrine in the Bible. I still believe that, though I cannot prove it.

People want to believe what they want to believe. But some of them are not comfortable unless they press their belief upon others. But that’s not Christian liberty.

Christian liberty leaves room within the Church for disagreement. Not disunity but disagreement. God calls the Church to a unity of the faith (Eph 4:13) built upon right doctrine. He wants us to fellowship in community and unity because this is a rather pleasant place to be.

He also told us how we can disagree. And he told us about grace and forgiveness too.

Applied to politics, we have freedom to choose because it’s a free country and also as believers we enjoy Christian liberty.

But again, while I honor others’ freedom to choose, it does not mean I must agree with their choices or views. 

That’s the primary weakness and will be the downfall of what’s called “cancel culture.” In this approach favored by the political Left, there is no grace, no room for difference. 

Cancel culture feeds off the Leftist “woke” philosophy that, somehow, we’re all basically racists and bigots at heart. Therefore, those who embrace this irrational philosophy work not simply to argue the merits of points of view with which they disagree but rather to silence them altogether. 

And then the Left woke philosophy goes further, attempting to silence or cancel the people who hold these views by impugning their character, trashing their reputations, getting them fired, getting their book contracts cancelled, demeaning their religious views, or otherwise unapologetically trying to destroy them, 

to erase them. I don’t mean murder, like the Mafia, but erase them by wiping out a person’s influence and presence, if you will, in society.

It’s way beyond authoritarian. It’s totalitarian. George Orwell’s 1984 come to life.

For woke enthusiasts, others who disagree can never be woke enough. They are always subject to collectivist social media condemnation and a summary vote off the island if they make the slightest faux paus in saluting wokeism. 

That’s what happened, for example, to retired football great, Drew Brees, who in the middle of the NFL’s National Anthem kneel-down for racial justice controversy a while back, dared to say he liked the National Anthem and thought it was worth respecting. Then he was literally attacked online and in media, called a bigot, and accused of not supporting his Black teammates to the point he felt forced to grovel an apology. 

In Left-leaning cancel culture wokeism, “No one is going to be safe from the false cries of racism, sexism, homophobia, Islamophobia, etc.”

“Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama once strongly defended marriage as between a man and a woman, as recently as 2008. But the left gives them a free pass now -- they’re never attacked for being homophobic – while those on the right who have Biblical objections to homosexuality are.”

No one, at least on the Right or among Conservatives or among Christians, who disagrees can ever be rehabilitated or salvaged, and certainly not forgiven.

Cancel culture is in this sense the opposite of Christian liberty, or individual liberty and freedom of speech for that matter, because it is outright censorship or what some have called viewpoint discrimination or prior restraint. 

“However it’s characterized, at base the progressive cancel culture is less about deplatforming extreme ideas and more about persecuting people with whom they disagree. Their aim is not correction but destruction.”

Christian views no longer acceptable—homosexuality, transgender, abortion, salvation, judgment, sin nature. “Our crime is not the adoption of those beliefs but our refusal to abandon them, as the truly enlightened folks seem to have done.”

Christians are charged with homophobia, sexism, transphobia, judgmentalism, being unloving, anti-women, anti-gay, anti-progress. But Christians must not do as surrounding culture, (Ps 1:1, Jn 15:18, Mark 8:38.) We are to love others, respect others, but never let them tell us what to believe or practice or say. They are loved but they are not the Lord. 

We are not to give in to cancel culture, for Eph 5:15-16 instructs us to walk circumspectly not as fools but as wise. We will experience reproach because we share Jesus’ truth. 

But with an eternal perspective on reproach and reward we can accept whatever comes with speaking the truth. Remember, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego, then Daniel paid a price for speaking truth. 

Author Joe Dallas said, “Belief in the exclusivity of Jesus is viewed as discriminatory, Belief in hell is viewed as archaic, Belief in man’s sinfulness is viewed as self-loathing and judgmental, Belief in normalcy of male/female sexual union is viewed as homophobic, Belief in the immutable nature of our assigned sex is viewed as transphobic, and Belief in the value of the unborn is viewed as misogynistic…

Today, human feelings being hurt are interpreted as human rights being trampled…For those who’ll embrace it, truth liberates. But it irritates, sometimes beyond measure, people whose beliefs or agendas are at odds with it.”

In a culture that no longer believes in truth, a culture that has repeatedly rejected moral absolutes, to say you believe something is true is grating to the ear, judgmental, bigoted, offensive, and even irrational or crazy. 

So even “speaking the truth in love,” as the Scripture commands (Eph. 4:15), 

can be rejected by those with whom we share it, even family members or friends. And it is not easy to be seen as the enemy by loved ones simply because you believe what you’ve always believed. You believe the truth of God’s Word.

But “Let us not be weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up” (Gal. 6:9).

In the end, God’s Word will not be cancelled. Truth will not be cancelled.

And while we may in the providence of God suffer short-term vulnerabilities, ultimately, we will not be cancelled either. Because God said, “The truth will set you free” (John 8:32).

Well, we’ll see you again soon. This podcast is about Discerning What Is Best. If you find this thought-provoking and helpful, follow us on your favorite podcast platform. Download an episode for your friends. For more Christian commentary, check my website, r-e-x-m as in Martin, that’s 

And remember, it is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm.

© Rex M. Rogers – All Rights Reserved, 2022   

*This podcast blog may be reproduced in whole or in part with a full attribution statement. Contact me or read more commentary on current issues and events at, or connect with me at  

You’ve heard of “snowflakes,” the pejorative label for young people who seem so fragile these days? But silly name-calling aside, what is it that’s causing so many young adults to express deep-seated angst, feelings evident in their music, their self-destructive behavior, and their despair, and what can we do to help them?

Hi, I’m Rex Rogers and this is episode #20 of Discerning What Is Best, a podcast applying unchanging biblical principles in a rapidly changing world, and a Christian worldview to current issues and everyday life.


American youth are in emotional free fall. This crisis is built upon apocalyptic fears, resulting in what pundits are calling a teen mental health crisis.

Even celebrities--the young, the beautiful, the wealthy, the sometimes educated and sometimes talented—even they speak of “crippling anxieties,” a fear of tomorrow, a fear of life and living. 

“From 2009 to 2021, the share of American high-school students who say they feel “persistent feelings of sadness or hopelessness” rose from 26 percent to 44 percent, according to a new CDC study…Almost every measure of mental health is getting worse, for every teenage demographic, and it’s happening all across the country.”

Social commentator Kristen Soltis Anderson said, “Teens are sad about the world, not only because the world contains sadness, but also because young people have 24/7 access to sites that are constantly telling them they should be depressed about it…Social media is making it ever more possible for today's youth to marinate in despair.”

American teens are told their bodies aren’t good enough and can’t possibly measure up to Instagram models…that is, unless they buy that model’s products.

Youth are told they cannot trust their parents – and this seems plausible to many because their parents are indeed untrustworthy – giving their children broken homes, lack of love or acceptance, or worse, ignoring them.

Youth are told as early as elementary school in some states that the doctors just guessed at their sex, that they cannot really know for sure they’re a boy or girl just by looking at their anatomy in the mirror, so they should question their biology and recreate their own gender identity. To say this teacher-induced confusion is child abuse is an understatement.

American youth are bombarded with compounding fears: the pandemic, personal security vis-à-vis crime and a host of both real and media-hyped crises, unstable finances including inflation, low level prospects of a job, climate change with dire predictions the world will end in 12 years, typical teenage yearnings for social approval and belonging, loneliness, feelings of inadequacy, then add international aggression like the Ukraine-Russia War…there’s no end to fear and stress in a world turned upside down.

American teens and many young adults have lost a sense of purpose and this vacuum is filled with disorientation, disillusionment, despair. Young people drown in a sea of ennui and dread, then they think there’s nothing left for them but nihilism, the idea life is meaningless.

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Youth, and many adults too, get addicted to "doomscrolling," endlessly reading Internet negativity. 

All day, every day, media pound out a steady drumbeat of what they claim are intractable threats to the survival of the human race – the unlimited and unfettered doomsaying of Big Media and Big Tech social media.

The world is overwhelming, and an inescapably negative news cycle creates an atmosphere of existential gloom, not just for teens but also for their moms and dads.”

According to a host of secular psychologists, the solution to the teen mental health crisis is to reduce screen time, encourage self-awareness, accept and affirm who you are or want to be.

The problem with these approaches is they don’t really offer recipes for change, just more pressure on the young person to somehow reach inside and change themselves, something they cannot do.

Now no question we’re living today not only in a time of cascading, layered crises. But it’s also a time when sources of protection, perspective, and promise have been ignored, rejected, or lost.

The biggest problem facing youth today is not screentime per se, though 7 hours average per day is not good for anyone. 

The biggest problem facing youth today is not mental or emotional but spiritual health.

The real problem is that youth have not been given anything solid to believe in. They have no backstop, no safety net, in actuality no truth they can trust.

One huge, ignored issue is that youth and young adults are not going to church. They are not being taught the Bible. They do not know the Scripture and thus do not understand and cannot apply Christian teaching to their everyday lives. More to the point, they do not know the God who is there, the God who is not silent.

According to George Barna’s research, just 6% of American adults possess and live with what Barna carefully identifies as a truly, biblically based Christian worldview. The number of American adults holding a biblical worldview has declined by 50% over the past quarter century. Regarding the youngest adult generation, among millennials it’s 2%, and among teens even fewer understand a Christian worldview. Since most youth and young adults do not possess a biblically Christian worldview, they do not look to Scripture to help them understand reality, identity, or purpose.

Without belief in God there is nothing to give life higher meaning. 

Os Guinness recently observed that society has abandoned a shared moral universe. Instead, we celebrate rebellion in the name of absolute freedom.

We offer our youth uncivilized chaos, wickedness and barbarism, the rude, the crude, and the lewd.

Youth and young adults who experience a tsunami of threatening developments, social or personal, have no fall back.

First, what youth and young adults need today is not therapy, not another surrogate comfort like promiscuity or alcohol abuse but what they need is a relationship with the Lord.

Personal salvation in Christ, the Gospel, is the greatest transformative power in history. Salvation in Christ transforms the old person into the new person. Salvation in Christ brings love, forgiveness, a washing white as snow, deliverance from the chains of sin and despair, new purpose, and that fantastic four-letter word = HOPE.

Second, youth and young people desperately need an everyday application of a Christian philosophy of life, one that enables believers to understand and trust in God’s perspective on this troubled world:

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things,” Phil. 4:6-8.

I remember a song from my youth:

“My hope is built on nothing less
than Jesus’ blood and righteousness.
I dare not trust the sweetest frame
but wholly lean on Jesus’ name.”

“On Christ, the solid rock, I stand;
all other ground is sinking sand,
all other ground is sinking sand.

In every rough and stormy gale,
my anchor holds within the vale.
When all around my soul gives way,
he then is all my hope and stay.” [Refrain]

Young adults beset by anxiety need only come to understand there is indeed a solid rock of hope, as the Psalmist said, “Truly he is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress, I will not be shaken,” Psalm 62:6.


Well, we’ll see you again soon. For more Christian commentary, be sure to subscribe to this podcast, Discerning What Is Best, or check my website, r-e-x-m as in Martin, that’s And remember, it is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm.

© Rex M. Rogers – All Rights Reserved, 2022   

*This podcast blog may be reproduced in whole or in part with a full attribution statement. Contact me or read more commentary on current issues and events at, or connect with me at  

If you noticed that I had a visible tattoo, would it make any difference in your opinion of me? Apparently for some it would—to the point they either acquire or avoid tattoos pretty much for the same reason—they believe tattoos change what people think about them.

Hi, I’m Rex Rogers and this is episode #19 of Discerning What Is Best, a podcast applying unchanging biblical principles in a rapidly changing world, and a Christian worldview to current issues and everyday life.


Tattoos are now visible in whatever direction you look. In the last decade, tattoos have gone mainstream. Nearly half of millennials report at least one tattoo. And the resurgent popularity of body art doesn’t seem to have reached its cultural peak.

Body art of some kind has apparently graced human skin since shortly after the Garden of Eden. Yet one would do well to remember that body ink in its current manifestation is a fashion fad, and, by definition, fads are here today, gone tomorrow.

Today, religious people, including Christians, get tattoos as a way of conveying their faith, including all manner of religious symbolism, crosses being the obvious favorite but also doves, angels, biblical references, and more. In some parts of the world this is an important means of identity.

This is a different world from my youth when tattoos could only be found on three kinds of individuals: 1) a few armed forces veterans sporting small arm tattoos, 2) bikers and other assorted bad guys, 3) or tattooed ladies at the carnival.

Today you can see tattoos on most of the prison population and among professional athletes, the young woman serving you an omelet, innumerable college students, and not a few young pastors. But when I was a kid, religious leaders if not adult culture in general tended to frown upon the practice of getting tattoos. So, I wonder why it’s OK now to wear tattoos when it wasn’t OK in my youth? And I wonder, how do we decide to tattoo or not to tattoo?

When Christians ask these questions the first verse cited is in the Old Testament book of Leviticus: “Do not cut your bodies for the dead or put tattoo marks on yourselves. I am the LORD” (19:28). Some people quote this verse as the letter of the law, thus the end of the argument. No tattoos, ever.

But this isn’t a valid interpretation. This verse commanded the Israelites to avoid certain funeral practices wherein bodies were marked in some pagan hope of attaining a good afterlife. This verse doesn’t really address present-day tattooing, and as part of the Israelite’s ceremonial law it does not directly apply to us today.

So, we look to the New Testament, only to discover it says nothing about whether a person should get a tattoo. The fact is, God didn’t give us a “black or white” yes-no answer on tattoos. He left it in the so-called “gray area” in between, so we have to figure out what to do and “be fully convinced in (our) own minds” (Romans 14:5). In other words, God gave us enough other principles in Scripture for us to be able to decide this “matter of conscience” for ourselves. This is called Christian liberty.

Since clearly God wants us to maintain a lifestyle that honors him, we should make decisions or discern what is best (Philippians 1:9-10). If we discern properly, we’ll live according to God’s command: “So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God” (1 Corinthians 10:31).

So let’s summarize:

--God doesn’t answer all our cultural lifestyle questions and grants us Christian liberty to discern what is best.

--He expects us to choose in a manner that glorifies him.

--Tattoos are not proscribed in Scripture.

--So, each person must decide whether, why, when, how, where, what to tattoo or not to tattoo.

So, to tattoo or not to tattoo?

While we’ve discovered God didn’t give us rules, we should remember he did give us principles to help us answer this question, one of which is that not everything we can do we should do: In 1 Corinthians, it states, “I have the right to do anything,” you say—but not everything is beneficial. I have the right to do anything”—but not everything is constructive” (10:23).

This podcast is about Discerning What Is Best. If you find this thought-provoking and helpful, follow us on your favorite podcast platform. Download an episode for your friends.

So, to discern whether to tattoo or not to tattoo we should ask ourselves and perhaps our confidants these questions:

1. Do I want this body art for my entire life? (Some say 90% of people who get tattoos later regret it; 5% regret it immediately.)

2. What will this tattoo say about me, what I believe? (Like Christian body art sends a message, other symbols send different messages.)

3. Is the place and procedure I’m considering medically safe?

4. Why am I getting a tattoo? (Peer pressure? Rebellion? To look better? To look tough? Other?)

5. What will my tattoo look like in 20 or 30 years? (Have you seen 30-year-old tattoos? They ain’t pretty.)

6. Will the tattoo really look as cool or beautiful as I think, or will it look silly, cheap, sad, revolting, or worse?

7. If I get a tattoo, what might its existence prevent me from doing or experiencing later? (Job or profession? Relationship?)

8. Why shouldn’t I get a temporary rather than permanent tattoo?

Now for the record, I’m, really, not against all tattoos. They just perplex me.

The Christian perspective on tattoos might best be described as, rather than tattoo or no tattoo, tattoos are a matter of the values represented in what is portrayed and why. It gets down to making wise choices about what we place on our bodies, what it says about what we believe, and whether we seek to honor the Lord. Again, for me, it’s about Christian liberty.

Periodically, I see an understated tattoo that seems attractive, like a delicate butterfly or flower, or a tattoo that clearly means something, like a cross, or a phrase like “Never Forget,” or maybe a flag.

But mostly I see huge gaudy looking tattoos, generally worn by men but not exclusively, that I don’t understand: 5” tall grotesque creatures or snakes on a guy’s calf – Is this demonic figure how he sees the world, or himself?

Jagged barb wire on a man’s biceps – Does he feel tough or courageous with this ink on his arm?

Men, and sometimes women, getting so many tattoos the body art is no longer individually distinguishable, and the color is gone, just a run-together blue.

Handsome men – hunks they are called – like soccer start David Beckham, who now makes money as a clothing model, plastering his entire upper body – maybe more, don’t know – with multiple tattoos – Why? Does this make him cooler, more handsome?

I get why the Rock, actor Dwayne Johnson, tattooed his chest and shoulders. It fits his Samoan heritage and acting persona.

If you’re an Mixed Martial Arts fighter like Conor McGregor, maybe all those tattoos make you look more formidable?

But why would attractive models or actresses get multiple tattoos? What can ink add to their God-given beauty?

As I said, tattoos perplex me.

To hear some people tell it, tattoos are often acquired impulsively—in the early years this is part of their public braggadocio. But tattoos last a lifetime and impulsiveness isn’t a good decision-making attribute no matter who you are or who you aspire to be.

Now if you already have a tattoo and want to get rid of it, removal is now possible-if-painful and expensive. Laser and other methods are available.

I’m not suggesting a Never-Tattoo moral argument here, just wondering aloud about a fad that I don’t comprehend.

Piercings are another subject. This I truly cannot understand, for in my estimation piercings are about pain, not pleasure, beauty, or even functionality. The entire aesthetic conjures images of debasement. I believe you can make a moral argument against piercings.

But even here, I admit, there is no clear mandate one way or another in Scripture and you have to wonder where to draw the line: two or five or six piercings? What about just two pierced ears featuring earrings on posts? In the ears piercing is OK, but not in your nose, lip, tongue, or sexual body parts? I think a moral understanding of piercings can be developed, but it’s challenging.

Tattoos are an ancient and contemporary practice, so maybe the word “fad” isn’t accurate? Tattoos it appears are here to stay. But they still perplex me.

Can you imagine George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Elizabeth Taylor or Charlton Heston with tattoos? I can’t either.

Well, we’ll see you again soon. For more Christian commentary, be sure to subscribe to this podcast, Discerning What Is Best, or check my website, r-e-x-m as in Martin, that’s And remember, it is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm.

© Rex M. Rogers – All Rights Reserved, 2022

*This podcast blog may be reproduced in whole or in part with a full attribution statement. Contact me or read more commentary on current issues and events at, or connect with me at