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Have you heard that men can now have babies? I know. It surprised me too, but it’s a new truth in this Orwellian age.

Hi, I’m Rex Rogers and this is episode #44 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.

Truth is now under attack. Satan, the father of lies, has America in his crosshairs (Jn 8:44), and he is using contemporary philosophies, “isms” if you will, to lead people to suppress the truth in wickedness (Rom. 1:18).

As was said in the days of Isaiah, “truth is nowhere to be found” (Is. 59:15), or in the days of Jeremiah, “truth has perished; it has vanished from their lips” (Jer. 7:28), or the days of Daniel, “truth was thrown to the ground” (Dan. 8:12).

The attack shows up in references to “your truth” and “my truth” or “she has to live by her truth,” or “no one should force their truth on someone else.”

But you say, “It’s common sense.” Not anymore. You say, “It’s obvious.” Not anymore. Or you say, “Wait, it’s part of nature and natural law.” Not anymore. No, truth is no longer alignment with divine revelation and the evidence of creation. Truth is whatever we want it to be.

Truth under attack is apparent in a host of irrational statements our culture is now expected to accept as fact. Have you heard these amazing new “truths”?

  1. What’s in a womb is not a baby, just a fetus, not human unless it is wanted, or at least until it is born, and then it may still be at risk in the minds of those who believe a woman and a doctor should be able to decide whether the newborn should live.
  2. Biological sex at birth is not immutablebut is socially determined, thus boys can identify as, then transition to become girls, while girls can identify as, then transition to become boys.
  3. Men can become pregnant and have babies, hence we no longer have mothers but “birthing persons.”
  4. Abortion does not involve a baby human being but rather is about a woman’s control over her own body, is essential to reproductive health, and is a human right.
  5. Crime and violence are not lawlessness, just the poor and other victims of white privilege doing what’s only fair.
  6. “Gender is no more regarded as a binary concept where one can either be a male or a female. It has emerged as a continuum or spectrum where one can identify themselves as any of the gender identities. The term gender identity means how a person identifies themselves concerning their gender. It may be regardless of their anatomy or genetics…The idea is to make everyone feel comfortable in their skin irrespective of what gender they wereassigned at birth.” That was a quote. Notice the last phrase, “assigned at birth,” which reinforces the idea that someone arbitrarily labeled the baby a boy or girl, rather than sex being a biological given.
  7. Same-sex marriage is normal.
  8. Each person is determined by skin color, sexual orientation, or gender.

Those of us who disagree with these new “prevailing acceptable narratives” can now be ostracized on social media, lose employment, have reputations destroyed, or otherwise be “cancelled.”

People who oppose abortion are now labeled “abortion extremists,” “anti-woman,” and a threat to freedom.

People who believe biology matters, and who disagree that a person can decide to change sex in order to participate in sports or frequent bathrooms designed for the opposite sex, are accused of bigotry and hatred.

Nor is religion any longer accorded an honored space. Revisionists reinterpret history claiming religion is a greater source of human violence than secularism. 

No matter that this is upside down. The murderous record of 20th Century secular Nazi and Communist regimes alone puts the lie to this supposedly new “truth.”

In America today, Judeo-Christian values drawn from the Bible are being described as a means of preserving white patriarchy and white supremacy. This, too, is a lie.

Pedophiles, who once were called perverted, are now being described as simply “minor attracted persons.” Drag queens reading to grade school children is said to be about diversity and inclusion, not about normalizing twisted and degraded sexuality.

The attack on truth took on new urgency in the 1960s with the emergence of something called “moral relativism,” the idea that there are no absolute, objectively definable, and knowable truths. Everything is relative. Thus, nothing can be said to be better, right vs wrong, more beautiful, correct. Truth is unknowable.

In his writings in the 1970s and to his death in 1984, Christian philosopher Dr. Francis A. Schaeffer recognized this cultural threat when he coined the phrase “true truth.” From a Christian perspective, this phrase is redundant, but Schaeffer found it necessary to convey what he meant by truth, real objective truth, in an age given to relativizing all statements.

In the early 21st Century, human feelings now matter more than objective reality, and if you say you disagree with a person, thus hurting their feelings, you are guilty of stomping upon their human rights. 

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. 

But Schaeffer reminded us, “Truth carries with it confrontation. Truth demands confrontation; loving confrontation, but confrontation nevertheless.” Truth, true truth, challenges error, falsehood, lies.

To “buy the truth and do not sell it,” as it says in Proverbs (23:23), can come with a price. To those who do not want to hear, those who are in the language of the Old King James “willingly ignorant” (2 Pet. 3:5), truth is the enemy. You who hold and express the truth are the enemy. If we state truth, as we should, we will face opposition, ridicule, maybe rejection and hurt from our own family and friends.

But the price of not holding fast to the truth and of not speaking the truth in love is enormously high. 

If there is no truth, there are no inalienable human rights, no real freedom. If there is no truth, there is no trust because one can never be sure or certain. We’re left with deceit, pain, disillusionment.

People wonder, “What’s happening to America? It seems like we’ve gone nuts, that nothing is valued, not patriotism, not law and order, not decency. It’s like we’re a different country.”

Well, we are a different country, at least in the sense that great swaths of the population now embrace ideas and values, an entire worldview, that would be foreign even to the criminal element a generation ago.

The idea there is no truth, nothing trustworthy, not even God for many people, undermines everything else we experience. And this attack on truth is being propagated from the White House and the U.S. Congress, state capitals, courtrooms, the ivy halls of academia from kindergarten to graduate school, corporate messaging, sports, entertainment, and the arts.

Scripture says, “When the foundations are being destroyed, what can the righteous do?” (Ps. 11:3). What do we do? We speak truth. In an age of untruth, of attack on truth, our greatest testimony is to be people of truth, to live truthfully, to speak truthfully.

In Jesus’s prayer of John 17, he said, “Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth. As you sent me into the world, I have sent them into the world” (Jn 17:17-18).

We are to be in the world but not of the world even as we go into the world.

And we are to speak truth. We will face opposition. We may be harassed or in some way hampered. But God is God. He cannot be canceled. His truth remains forever.

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  

If you’ve lived very long as an adult, you’ve probably incurred some personal debt, but how much debt, and is it good or bad debt? 

Hi, I’m Rex Rogers and this is episode #43 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.

Debt is now commonplace in contemporary postmodern culture. Nearly everyone is in some way engaged in some form of debt.

There was a time, though, before the 1960s, when debt, especially living beyond ones means, was considered morally questionable or at least unwise. Politicians worked to balance budgets. Individuals and families labored to avoid bad debt and get out of debt. 

Now, it seems, American culture not only tolerates but embraces debt. We think we are entitled to live the good life, i.e., what we can’t afford as presented to us by online influencers, the beautiful people, and celebrities. We want to be like them. We want affluence and the materialistic stuff that goes with it. So, charge it.

Personal credit cards are maxed out. In 2022, there are 537 million credit card accounts in the US, up 6% or 32 million, since 2021. Just before the pandemic in 2020, total credit card debt reached $893 billion, but it climbed to $71 billion in 2021. Meanwhile, average credit card interest rates are a usurious 16.59%.

Eighty percent of Americans have consumer debt, amounting to $14.6 trillion in personal debt. In 2021, the average American has $90,460 in debt according to CNBC.

Conservative financial guru David Ramsey is very opposed to the idea of owing money to a lender in any shape or form. Not only does he think consumers should ditch credit cards and pay for purchases in cash, he believes it's ideal to purchase a car outright rather than secure an auto loan. Ramsey recently tweeted that the only good debt is debt that is PAID OFF. 

Ramsey is strict when it comes to debt. He’s not necessarily wrong, just difficult for some to reach this level, but if they can, more power to them. I know at least three families who say Ramsey’s counsel helped them early in their marriages and is responsible for their financial stability now.

Most financial advisors, though, consider mortgages good debt because they feature reasonable interest rates, and because they mean one owns an asset, equity. Auto loans might be considered good debt. While cars don't tend to appreciate, they do make it possible for people to drive to work and earn a living.

That’s a look at the micro level – personal debt. Now let’s look at the macro level – national debt.

As of January 2022, the US National Debt stands at $30 trillion plus for the first time ever. If you want to scare yourself, go to and look at the US National Debt Clock. The digital display moves faster than you can count the dollars aloud. On the same page, the US Gross Domestic Product logs at $24,813T plus and climbing rapidly. The US total debt is over $92,229T, and it too was increasing before my eyes faster than I could count or comprehend.  

“Debt held by the public as a share of GDP peaked just after World War II (113% of GDP in 1945) but then fell over the following 35 years. In recent decades, aging demographics and rising healthcare costs have led to concern about the long-term sustainability of the federal government's fiscal policies… 

During the COVID-19 pandemic, the federal government spent trillions in virus aid and economic relief…At the end of 2020, debt held by the public was approximately 99.3% of GDP, and approximately 37% of this public debt was owned by foreigners.” It’s called external debt. The United States has the largest external debt in the world.

Neither Democrats or Republicans can claim to be great budget managers who keep the national debt at some manageable level.

  • $10.6 trillion when Barack Obama took over on January 20, 2009.
  • $19.9 trillion when Trump took over on January 20, 2017.
  • $ 27.8 trillion when Biden took over on January 20, 2021.

As a culture, the American people have become profligate. That’s p-r-o-f-l-i-g-a-t-e. Profligate. It means “given to or characterized by licentiousness or dissipation, morally wrong,” or “given to or characterized by reckless waste; wildly extravagant” or “spending money or using something in a way that wastes it and is not wise.”

Postmodern Americans seem to want their cake and eat it too. They want, regardless of the cost to themselves, their nation’s wellbeing, or their progeny.

But what we do with money, individually and as a society, is a profound moral issue. Jesus made it clear that whatever our station, since God owns everything, we are merely stewards. Thus, we are accountable to God for how we manage our assets.

Scripture never says debt is a sinbut it does strongly state that debt is dangerous: “The rich rule over the poor, and the borrower is slave to the lender. (Prov. 22:7).

Remember that 37% of US debt that is currently held by foreign interests? It’s not a comforting thought.

In a sermon entitled, “The Use of Money,” delivered in 1789, great early American preacher John Wesley said, “Earn all you can. Save all you can. Give all you can.” It’s difficult to do this if we go into irresponsible levels of debt.

Scripture also states that one is responsible for one’s debts: “Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another” (Rom. 13:8). “The wicked borrow and do not repay, but the righteous give generously” (Ps 37:21).

Scripture indicates we are each blessed by God with time, talent, and treasure, and we are accountable to him for the stewardship of our livelihood that makes it possible for us to care for our families. The Bible is, after all, the source of the famed Protestant Work Ethic that helped propel the development of Western Civilization.

Recently, President Biden announced an extensive student loan “forgiveness” program. The idea is that somehow letting selected students out of their financial obligations would be a good thing for them. 

But unless you are the one who extended the funds and hold the I.O.U., forgiving debt does not make it go away. In the case of the student loan “forgiveness,” it simply transfers the debt to the American taxpayer, including those who scrimped and sacrificed to pay off their own loans. The student loan “forgiveness,” therefore, can only be seen for what it is, a ploy to buy votes, a grossly inequitable governmental action, and a disincentive to pay off loans for those who go into debt in the future.

Student loans are generally among the lowest interest rates. When I was in graduate school in 1978-1982, we took out two loans because I wanted to march right through the program and get the degrees, rather than stop out for a time to save for the next semester. This worked for us, but for the next ten years we paid $68 per month to take care of our obligations. Because student loan rates are typically lower, than for example financing a car, whenever we had funds to add to our payments, we put this into the car, not the student loan. Consequently, to pay it off took the full ten years. I remember when my wife and I celebrated the final payment.

When we load up on debt, personally or nationally, we mortgage our children’s and our grandchildren’s futures. This is immoral.

Knowingly incurring debt beyond our means, personal or national, is a matter of want more than need. It allows our desires to rule our hearts and our actions, and somehow, we convince ourselves we will never have to pay the piper.

But the believer who lives “Christianly” remembers scripture: “Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, ‘Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you’” (Heb 13:5).


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  

Does the sudden passing of a celebrity sometimes get your attention, make you think about the afterlife? Do the comments of people in the entertainment business give you much hope about where they will be or where you will be in the afterlife?

Hi, I’m Rex Rogers and this is episode #42 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.



A car crash August 5, 2022, in Los Angeles and the horrific fire that resulted caused the death August 11 of actress Anne Heche at age 53. She lapsed into a coma while being rescued by emergency first responders and never regained consciousness, later being declared legally dead due severe anoxic brain injury from smoke inhalation and other thermal injuries.

The tragedy was magnified when preliminary blood tests revealed the presence of drugs in Heche's system. In other words, her erratic high-speed driving, collision with another garage, and finally, a blast off the road some 30 feet into a house, may not have occurred if she had not been under the influence.

My point here is not to pile on Anne Heche for using cocaine and maybe fentanyl, though I know this was not good, justifiable, or safe. She apparently had emotional struggles and, sadly, may have turned to drugs to help ease this pain.

My point here is rather to think about what her 20-year-old son said in response to his mother’s passing.

Homer Laffoon posted this: “My brother Atlas and I lost our Mom. After six days of almost unbelievable emotional swings, I am left with a deep, wordless sadness. Hopefully my mom is free from pain and beginning to explore what I like to imagine as her eternal freedom."

In no way am I making fun or otherwise throwing rocks at this young man’s comment out of his grief. In fact, I find his sentiments particularly sad. 

Not only did he lose his mother, he possesses only a vague sense of where she might be or if there is anything out there at all. He simply says he hopes she is free of pain, and he “imagines” her eternal freedom. But he does not know. He expressed no real confidence. I feel for him and his brother.

It brings to mind a few personal experiences. While I was in graduate school at the University of Cincinnati, a coworker in the campus research lab where we were employed, had gone north to Michigan with his wife for a winter ski outing. Tragically, on the way home they hit an ice patch and he was killed in a head-on collision. His wife survived but was hurt badly. Several of my colleagues and I attended the funeral in a Greek Orthodox Church. This proved to be without question the most uncomfortable experience I had had up to then and perhaps since, and for a few colleagues too who commented later.  The service was nothing but utter anguish, no words of solace or hope, no sense of peace or meeting again someday, nothing from the priest about where my friend might be in the afterlife. Frankly, my colleagues and I could not wait to get out of there. It was dreadful.

A few years later, my family lived next to an older couple. This church-going family suddenly lost their son to drugs and a wild lifestyle. I remember standing on the gentleman’s patio expressing my condolences when he told me about how the chimes on his back porch had rung that morning and he felt this was his son sending a message that he was alright. Out of compassion for his grief, I did not disagree outright with what I thought was a faulty, pagan grasp for emotional peace, but I did talk to him about what the Scripture says about the afterlife. What amazed me was not only the man’s superstitious statement but that it came from a man that was a relatively faithful attendee at a nearby Presbyterian Church.

In later years still, in West Michigan where I live now, I attended the funeral of the son of a notable businessman I knew. The son was 40-something and had committed suicide with a belt in his own garage. His wife found him. The funeral was held in what the leading self-avowed theologically liberal church in the area, Fountain Street Church in Grand Rapids. While in its early days this church had been a beacon for biblical truth, certain pastors led it away from the Word and by the time this funeral took place, there was little evidence in the program that anyone acting in an official capacity believed the Bible. 

Most notably, a friend of the deceased offered a short eulogy. The man was deeply broken up and, understandably, barely got through his comments. Primarily, and I think distressingly, he said that his friend had loved hawks and that that day on the way to the funeral the speaker had seen a hawk flying high above. He said he knew that this was his deceased friend telling him he was OK. 

Again, like the back porch chimes, this sentimental thought is gut-wrenching in its grief and tearful leap of faith to pagan ideas, trying to find some sense of peace in the face of tragic, avoidable death. The pastor who took the podium thereafter never once offered words of hope to the family and did not share a Christian perspective on what was taking place, only an impotent pep talk.

Like for Anne Heche’s son Homer, I feel profoundly for these people. Their heartsore pain is real. I do not make light of them. Indeed, I am moved by the hopelessness of their positions. Their forlorn, groundless commentary offers them little more than the typical response oft-heard in media about people “sending our thoughts and prayers,” a religious-sounding phrase that usually doesn’t mean much other than that people are trying to express respect.

Contrast this with the passing of my father at age 86 in April 2018. In the providence of God, I was able to get home a couple of days before from a trip to the Middle East with SAT-7, so I was with my mother in Ohio when she came out to the living room saying, “I think Dad has passed.” We both then entered their bedroom where I quickly came to the same conclusion as Mom, Dad was no longer with us. I later observed at Dad’s funeral, if each of us could choose how we depart this earth, wouldn’t most of us like the idea of peacefully falling asleep in our own bedroom?

I will be forever grateful to the Lord that I was there, for Mom but also for me. We were grieved, of course, because there was a loss. Dad was no longer with us. But I cannot imagine that experience without the confidence of knowing Dad knew the Lord and therefore we knew exactly where Dad was.

In the Old King James version, the Scripture’s promise about the homegoing of one of his saints, says, “Absent from the body, present with the Lord” (2 Cor. 5:8).

I like to remember this biblical theology. While there is hurt because there is a separation, still, we do not grieve as others grieve. We know that our loved one is not “gone,” but simply “absent,” now more alive than ever, now not just “resting in peace” but “rejoicing in peace.” 

So, while Mom and our family miss Dad, we know he is well, and we will see him again one day. This is a fantastic Christian certainty—no ambiguity—just truth and an incredible source of peace and joy.

But when celebrities pass, you sometimes hear vacuous statements like what certain entertainers observed when Frank Sinatra died, that “heaven will be rockin’ tonight,” supposedly as Frank joined with other members of the infamous Rat Pack. It sounds like bravado, and it is. But it masks their fear and uncertainty.

People like to believe that life begins by chance. It’s evolutionary, without God or at least without his involvement, thus in life they acknowledge no responsibility, no accountability. So in this view they can do what’s right in their own eyes. Then sooner than they’d wish, they face their own mortality. Life comes to an end.

These same people who believe life begins by chance do not want to think that life ends by chance. No, that would mean their life had no meaning, that they have no meaning. As human beings, they understandably want to believe they possess significance. So, they create a variety of perspectives on the afterlife, most of which are grounded upon works-based assumptions that they have earned their way to heaven or some expression of “eternal freedom.”

But none of this is what the Word of God says. The Bible says, in the beginning God created, which includes human beings. It says we possess eternal significance because of our divine creation. It says we are blessed by God, given talents and time by God, and are accountable to him for how we use them. It also says that we, all of us, are born in sin, that we are not righteous, and that we cannot earn our salvation, which is offered to us by a loving, forgiving God by grace through faith in the finished work of Jesus Christ on the cross and in the resurrection (Rom. 3:21-28, Gal. 2:16). Sin condemns us and salvation cannot be earned. It is a free gift for all that embrace it (Rom. 6:23, Eph. 2:8-9). This is the Gospel, the Good News (John 3:16, 5:24; Rom. 8:1).

Finally, the Bible makes it clear that we can have an assurance of the afterlife.

“And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life. I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life” (1 John 5:11-13).

For those who have trusted in Christ as their Savior, the Word says that someday Jesus will return for the Resurrection of those saints that have passed, then the Rapture of the living saints. “And so we will be with the Lordforever. Therefore encourage one another with these words” (1 Thess. 4:13-18).

I do not know where Anne Heche is today, but I know her spirit lives. Her childhood was troubled, but she had a religious mother, so I pray that somewhere in Anne’s life she accepted Christ as her Savior. Have you?


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  

Have you thought much about getting older? Your answer probably depends upon your age now. Younger, not so much? Older, absolutely. Real question is, what should characterize us as we age?

Hi, I’m Rex Rogers and this is episode #41 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.

I’m getting older and so are you. There, I said it. The cat’s out of the bag…sort of.   

We all know this, of course. I mean, who doesn’t know they’re getting older? Kids like to remind us, “I’m 8 years old and next week I’m going to be 9.” They’re proud of the process. It’s like an achievement. But for the rest us, the ones who’ve “reached a certain age,” we’re not so enamored about what birthdays imply. No one, but retirement homes and life insurance agents, seem to want to talk about it.     

Meanwhile, the “Fountain of Youth” offered by the cosmetics industry notwithstanding, aging is inevitable, inexorable, and irresistible. And youth is irretrievable.      

Now there is one alternative to aging. Not aging, which comes with its partner, death. Some wag once said, “Nothing’s certain but death and taxes.” Yes, that’s true on both counts, which is why one joke common among elderly folks is “I’m glad to be here. Hey, I’m glad to be anywhere.” Older people love that joke. 

We know “people are destined to die once,” (Hebrews 9:27), but death doesn’t claim everyone early. Aging is the “better alternative.”

Aging comes to us all, great and small. So, the question is not will we age but how will we age?

When someone says, “My, she’s aging gracefully,” mostly what’s being said is that she is aging well physically. In other words, she looks pretty good. Nothing wrong with that, though some people wryly note that aging gracefully is more about gravity than grace.   

Yet there are a few things we can do to reinforce our prospects of aging gracefully.     

One of my mentors once said, “Are you taking care of yourself? You know, whatever you do for the Lord you do in a body, so if you burn out your body you can’t keep serving the Lord.” That was Dr. Wilbert W. Welch, long-time Chancellor of Cornerstone University, who at the time was well into his 80s. When a gentleman of this age gives you advice on how to take care of yourself you’ve got to admit his words carry a lot of credibility. He lived, by the way, into his mid 90s.   

Aging gracefully seems to be what most people, and certainly Madison Avenue, are worrying about. To an extent, I have no problem with this. Like Dr. Welch said, taking care of yourself pays dividends.

But still, I’d suggest, if we’re talking about physical things, aging gracefully is mostly beyond our control. What happens, happens.     

My energy in my 60s is not my energy in my 30s. My eyes were once especially sharp—I won all the read-the-sign-way-down-the-road contests. Now I wear blended tri-focal lens, and the beat goes on.

Aside from the physical, there’s another profoundly more important way to approach aging. We can consider what it means to age graciously, which is entirely within our control.

Abraham Lincoln once said, “Every man over 40 is responsible for his own face.” His point, for women too: our choices, our lifestyle, show up in our countenance.    

Scripture says, “A happy heart makes the face cheerful, but heartache crushes the spirit” (Proverbs 15:13). What’s on the inside shows up on the outside and etches tracks of its passing.

It’s possible to abuse our body, mind, and souls with worldly excesses: binge drinking and alcohol dependency, drugs including prescription opioids, unhealthy diets, cigarette smoking, little or no exercise, ongoing stress-inducing behaviors like overwork, lack of sleep, relentless drive for greater wealth, damaging and broken relationships, absence from church or other positive community, addictive pursuit of psychoactive drugs, sex, gambling, social media/Internet, video gaming—“About 41% of video gamers say they play video games to escape from real life…Over 7% of video gamers are addicted to this activity.

And then there’s shopping. Wait, shopping? Yes, shopping. “Over 17 million Americans cannot control their urge to shop, even at the expense of finances, marriage, jobs, and family.” Obviously, this stresses budgets and relationships.

Finally, there’s obesity, which can cause everything from arthritis to certain cancers to heart disease to diabetes. “The estimated annual medical cost of obesity in the United States was nearly $173 billion in 2019 dollars.” Obesity is linked to six chronic diseases. It is one of the top five causes of death.

Notice disease per se is nowhere listed. Of course, disease takes a toll in a fallen world, but human beings are more responsible for their problems than we are typically willing to admit.

So, to review, it’s possible to inflict all manner of attitudes and behaviors upon our bodies, minds, and souls that debilitate our physical, mental, and emotional conditions and increase the prospects of an early death.

It’s hard to age gracefully or graciously if we die before our time. And don’t blame the Lord for this. He gave us all we need in Scripture for a joyful, productive, healthy life. But sound counsel is not effective if it is ignored.

Aging graciously can contribute to aging gracefully, but it’s about more than the physical. Aging graciously is about the spirit. Aging graciously is how the “real me” interacts with the world.     

We make jokes, but there’s really no place in Scripture where we can justify “grouchy old women” or “crotchety old men.” It isn’t there, yet who we are inside often heightens or sharpens with age, and it comes out. Meanwhile, Solomon said, “Gray hair is a crown of splendor; it is attained by a righteous life” (Proverbs 16:31).    

Doug Steimers was a wise friend. He served 5 years in the Canadian Army during WWII, was married for 65 years to June, who’s with the Lord, and then several years to Betty. He pastored churches in Canada and the States for 40 years, helped churches in conflict for 10 years, and for more than 10 years in his “retirement” founded and led a caregiver’s ministry for his church. He did this into his 90s.   

Rev. Steimers, or Doug to most anyone, uses the word “intentionality,” meaning we should not simply grow “older” but “closer,” on purpose, to awareness of God’s presence in our lives. He says, “I’ve often asked myself and others, ‘How are we seniors using our last years for God?’”     

Doug said seniors should share more compassion than complaints. He recommended people do two things: 

  1. “Use your life intentionally for God; think about your motives,” and 
  2. “Broaden yourself,” keep learning, keep being open to what God can do with you now, today, at this age.       

It’s true that Doug, like Dr. Welch, was blessed with good health, which allowed him to remain active. But he also made decisions relative to his activities. For example, he voluntarily decided not to drive after dark or in heavy traffic during the day. There came a point in time when he declined public speaking invitations because his own evaluation suggested he could no longer speak in a manner to which he’d been accustomed.    

We can learn even more about aging graciously if we unpack Doug’s decisions. In thinking proactively about his life, he offered us a model. He didn’t “keep going” out of some spiritualized sense that he must because God demanded it. He didn’t wait until others felt he should not continue to serve—it’s always difficult (and it happens a lot) when an older person refuses to stop or change long after he or she should have done so.   

Doug didn’t associate his “worth” with his ability to do certain things. Not doing these things didn’t create for him an “insecurity problem.” No, his sense of who he was rested in his relationship with the Lord. Doug knew God is in charge of aging as well as serving, ministering, working.      

Dr. Welch modeled a similar process for me too. In his 80s, he chose a times, resigned from boards, decided not to continue speaking publicly when the rest of us still wanted him to do so, and made personal arrangements regarding he and his wife’s future living and care. I honor Dr. Welch and Rev. Steimers for their godly examples of proactive stewardship.   


We can fight it and complain about it. Or we can consider it a blessing and use it. That’s what I learned from Wilbert Welch and Doug Steimers. Aging gracefully is OK but might be selling our potential short. Aging graciously is a way to multiply a positive impact upon others in our latter years.   

Aging godly is another level. Who better to proclaim God’s faithfulness than older people? 

I understand our Rogers family verse better now than when my wife Sarah and I chose it at the birth of our first child in January 1976. “The Lord has done great things for us, and we are filled with joy” (Psalm 126:3).    

Aging ones know: “Surely goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever” (Psalm 23:6). 

Aging gracefully, graciously, godly is a worthy legacy.


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  

Most Americans are taking some kind of drug daily, ones that improve the quality of or even save our lives, so the issue is not drugs per se but what kind of drugs? Are we addicted and has chemistry become a substitute for spirituality in our lives?

Hi, I’m Rex Rogers and this is episode #40 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.

Opioid abuse is now a national epidemic, more lethal than the worst diseases.

“Opioids are a class of drugs naturally found in the opium poppy plant and that work in the brain to produce a variety of effects, including the relief of pain with many of these drugs. Opioids can be prescription medications often referred to as painkillers, or they can be so-called street drugs, such as heroin.”

America is now the most medicated country in the world, and we apparently possess an insatiable appetite for opioid medications, legal prescriptions or illegal synthetics on the street. For example, one in four American women are taking some form of psychiatric medication, chemical treatment for depression, anxiety, ADHD or other mental disorder. One in six in the general population.

These drugs “don’t just relieve pain and worry, they produce psychic euphoria, a sense that the rest of the world has slipped away, especially when abused—perpetuating the potential for addiction.”

So, drugs become a way to cope, to manage the stresses of life, some of which are unavoidable—just life in the real world—but many stresses and anxieties are rooted in how Americans choose to live their lives: our overdrive toward financial success, overwork, insufficient rest, lack of a sense of community found in family or church, little perspective on why we do what we do, perspective traditionally found in religious worship now increasingly tossed aside. 

In other words, we create our perceived need for artificial chemical support

We damage the body, which Scripture calls a temple of God (1 Cor. 3:16-17), we lose control and subject ourselves to influences like the seven deadly sins, we place our health and spiritual wellbeing at risk (Col. 3:17), and much more even unto death.

These deaths of course include junkies as portrayed on TV crime shows, down and out people who’ve lived on the dark side for years. But these deaths also include your neighbors in brightly painted suburbs, people behind the white picket fences who live what might be called “respectable” lives.

“Many people who take opiates find that they need the drug just to feel normal, rather than to relieve pain. Tolerance does not necessarily mean that addiction will occur, but it makes addiction more likely.”

The opioid fentanyl poses an exceptionally high overdose risk due to having an extremely unpredictable fatal dosage when mixed with other drugs. 

“Starting around 2013, fentanyl disrupted the North American market for illegal drugs, capitalizing on pre-existing demand for opiates such as heroin and prescription pharmaceuticals. In 2016, fentanyl and fentanyl analogues were the most common cause of overdose deaths in the United States at more than 20,000, about half of all opioid-related deaths.”

Compared to heroin, it is more potent, has higher profit margins, and, because it is compact, has simpler logistics. It can be cut into, or even replace entirely, the supply of heroin and other opiates...As of 2018, fentanyl was the most commonly listed opioid in overdose drug deaths, surpassing heroin.”

“More adults between 18 and 45 died of fentanyl overdoses in 2020 than any other leading cause of death, including COVID-19, motor vehicle accidents, cancer and suicide. Fentanyl also killed more Americans in general in 2020 than car accidents, gun violence, breast cancer and suicide, according to the analysis of CDC data from Families Against Fentanyl. Fentanyl deaths doubled from 32,754 fatalities to 64,178 fatalities in two years between April 2019 and April 2021.”

“Opioid dependence in America doesn’t discriminate; it just infects. Transcending geography, class and religion, it’s ravaging a generation, claiming lives by way of both addiction and death.”

But with all this, when was the last time you heard a sermon, or even a reference in the pulpit, to opioids? If your answer is, I can’t remember, then that’s evidence of part of the challenge from a Christian point of view. Some churches are doing good work on this, but much of the Body of Christ is not as active as we could be. Overwhelmed perhaps by so many problems, dealing with people willingly putting drugs into their bodies, especially prescription medicines, may not seem as urgent.

But the Church needs to share “Thus saith the Lord” in terms of where individuals look for peace and solace, emotional reinforcement, even relief from physical pain.

By the way, I’m not suggesting individuals who take pain medications are doing something wrong. Far from it. I understand that legitimate treatment for a host of physical or emotional afflictions can be enormously important and helpful. And I believe God enabled humanity to learn from and develop remedies from his created order, medications we can use to bless people’s lives.

But the statistics clearly indicate that many people are doing more than this. 

They’re attempting to drown their troubles with various opioids, rather than seeking respite in the Spirit of God. Instead of seeking first the kingdom of God, they hope for better living through chemistry. This includes drug addicts for sure, but it may also include millions using drugs like opioids to deaden their sense of agitation, loss, defeat, despair, gut-wrenching sorrow, or absence of hope. It’s substance abuse just like alcoholism, though this abuse uses pills.

We’re told that what addicts need most are meaningful relationships with people who are there and who care. This, the Church can provide, but it will take understanding, commitment, time, and money. The Church can support individuals struggling with opioid dependency by helping them identify the root of the problem. What caused the need? For Christians this means looking honestly at the heart.

If we are prolife, as I believe Christians should be, then we must be prolife holistically or comprehensively, meaning in every way. We are indeed responsible to help those who cannot help themselves.

So, I recommend pastors delve into this issue. Pastors don’t have to become a doctor or psychologist, just a shepherd applying a Christian worldview and biblical teaching to a real-world contemporary issue.

And I recommend the rest of us work to learn more about the current opioid crisis in America, that we discover how our church might reinforce both prevention and recovery, and that we try to discern what part we might play in aiding those who need our assistance.

Physician Matthew Loftus wrote in his Christianity Today article, “if addiction is even remotely an issue of misplaced affection, then for Christians, the gospel is the only suitable starting point. ‘All people—addicts in particular—are called to start with the gospel that satisfies our hunger, trusting in God’s love for us and repenting of our sin.’”

“Many people recover without trusting in Christ, yes, but those who are grasped by the gospel have a significant head start in sorting out the ‘hierarchy of loves’ as they untangle the particular ways in which sin has created strongholds in their lives.”

In 1 Thess. 5:14, the Apostle Paul reminded us, “we urge you, brothers and sisters, warn those who are idle and disruptive, encourage the disheartened, help the weak, be patient with everyone.”

The opioid crisis is a national emergency. The question remains how the Church will meet the challenge.


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  

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