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Have you ever felt unsafe in your church? Have you been present when a stranger loudly disrupted the service? Have you thought about what you would do if a threat develops in your church? 

Hi, I’m Rex Rogers and this is episode #74 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 was taken to church by my Christian parents from before I was born and certainly every opportunity thereafter. During my adult life, I’ve attended thousands of services of one kind or another in a variety of churches across the country.

Only once in all those years have I directly witnessed a person disrupt a service by yelling, screaming actually, and making threatening gestures toward attendees and the pastor. Thankfully, this person was not armed, nor did he hurt anyone before a few men were able to usher him out of the auditorium. And I do mean “usher,” because in this case the disturbed man cooperated, those surrounding him did not manhandle him, and no violence occurred.

I tell this story to tweak your memories about when you may have experienced something similar or something far more dangerous. Overall, churches, synagogues, mosques and other “faith-based” organizations enjoy a record of safety and tranquility. So don’t be afraid to go to church.

However, as anyone knows who’s paid attention at all, safety threats in houses of worship, just like with malls and schools, have increased in the past thirty years.

Some have called these incidents “hate crimes,” and no doubt some were. But, “jarringly, most victims of church shootings likely know their attacker. Nearly half of the offenders (48%) were affiliated with the church…and nearly a quarter (23%) involved ‘intimate partners,’ such as wives, girlfriends and husbands.”

“In (Carl Chinn’s book, Evil Invades Sanctuary, The Case for Security in Faith-based Organizationsin his) dataset, robberies account for more than a quarter of homicides within houses of worship, followed by fights between domestic partners (16%) and personal conflicts between people who do not live together (14%).”

“Chinn found that more than 10% of all homicides at houses of worship involve mental illness. Religious bias accounted for about 6%.”

But as the saying goes, during an incident, it does not matter why a shooter is shooting, only that he is placing church goers in danger and must be stopped.

Mass shootings are variously defined as an incident in which 3 or 4 or more are killed not counting the perpetrator. Many people date the surge in mass shootings and other threats to the deadly Columbine High School massacre April 20, 1999, in which 12 students and one teacher were murdered, 21 injured, and later the two killers took their on lines in the high school library.

Since 1999, the USA has become almost jaded at the near weekly reports of shooters showing up in what are called “soft targets,” e.g., schools, malls, university campuses, hospitals, houses of worship, arenas, concerts, nightclubs, transportation sites, parades.  

Sadly, nearly all these soft targets are also places that have been declared “gun free zones” wherein people with lawful Conceal Carry Licenses are not permitted to enter with their concealed weapon. Of course, as the number of shooter incidents demonstrate, “gun free” does not mean bad actors don’t enter with guns, and does not mean safety guaranteed, only that people feel safe, not actually are safe.

In the US, according to Carl Chinn’s research, from 1999 to 2019, there were 2,183 incidents in which deadly force was used in faith-based organizations. Guns were used in 56.6% of these incidents. The deadliest church shooting occurred in 2017 at “First Baptist Sutherland Springs in Texas, with 26 deaths including an unborn child…

In addition to these incidents at Christian churches, fatal shootings have happened at other religious sites, including at a Jewish synagogue, a Benedictine monastery, a Sikh temple, and an Amish school.”

Jan 17, 2022, “Top officials with the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Department of Homeland Security warned…Faith based communities have and will likely continue to be targets of violence by both domestic violent extremists and those inspired by foreign terrorists.” 

There is a difference between safety and security. “Safety is about protecting people from accidents or injuries, while security protects people from crime or harm.  It includes the measures taken to protect people from accidents, injuries, and exposure to hazardous conditions. 

“Security can be defined as the state of being protected from crime, violence, or other harm. It includes the measures taken to protect people from theft, vandalism, terrorism, and other threats.”

Remember, not all threats to church safety and security involve shooters or guns, in fact the majority of incidents do not. Concern for the safety and security of parishioners also includes being prepared to respond to accidents, childcare protection, robbery, sexual crimes, vandalism, bomb threats, fire, health or medical emergencies, adverse weather, and more.

So the primary recommendation of experts in church safety and security, men like Carl Chinn or Skip Coryell, whose Concealed Carry for Christians is very interesting, is that your church should be intentional. In other words, acknowledge the possibility of threats to your congregation’s safety and security, think proactively about them, and do something to be better prepared should something ever occur.

Why? Why should a church prepare for the safety and security of its attendees? Well, do you teach your children how to safely cross a street? 

When our boys were in middle school, I began to talk to them about awareness in public spaces, especially a men’s room at a mall or arena. I didn’t say be scared or don’t go there. I said, get your head up, know who else is around and what’s happening, determine before you enter whether it appears safe, and certainly look sharply as you enter. This is common sense. It is also a morally defensible thing to do. It’s good stewardship of ones God has entrusted to you.

Same at the church. Shouldn’t a church take reasonable steps to be as prepared as it can be to deal with emergencies, including God forbid, an active shooter?

We know from Scripture that “victory rests with the Lord,” but we also know that “the horse is made ready for the day of battle” (Prov. 21:31).

The average person who thinks about such things for the first time often jumps immediately to ideas like “God will take care of us,” “Guns have no place in church,” or “Christians should never kill.”

In response, we can say, Yes, God will indeed take care of us, but nowhere in Scripture did God say do not take care of yourself, do no defend yourself, do not defend or care for others.

Perhaps it would be nice if guns never went to church, but a shooter intending to kill doesn’t think about such things. If you show up with no gun, well, maybe you’ve taken a knife to a gunfight and you will lose, every time. This is irrational, unreasonable, possibly unintentionally suicidal, and in terms of not protecting others, immoral.

Finally, according to the Ten Commandments, Christians should never murder, but there are numerous instances in Scripture where believers killed because evil forced them to do so. Think if the young shepherd boy David vs Goliath.

And the point of safety and security, including as considered appropriate, Christians carrying a gun, is not to kill the perpetrator but to stop the threat. Stopping the threat might mean the bad actor must be killed, but that’s a last resort and not the desire or plan of well-trained safety and security team members.

“Remember,” Chinn says, “most of personal protection has nothing to do with a firearm. The first step is waking up and smelling the evil.”

For churches looking for simple steps to make themselves more secure, Chinn offers these nine guidelines.

  1. Confirm support from your church’s leadership team.
  2. Do a baseline readiness evaluation.
  3. Start with what you have, where you are.
  4. Keep it simple.
  5. Keep it legal.
  6. Know your insurance agent and policies.
  7. Network with your community.
  8. Train and drill.
  9. Develop policies and procedures.”

Churches need not become armed camps. Nor do we want churches to adopt security postures like museums or airports, forcing everyone who enters to walk through a metal detector. The church is and wants to be open to all.

But we’ve learned a few things from the awful spate of shootings in faith-based organizations. With intentional planning and budgetary commitment, we can harden the target, we can add security cameras, appoint a safety and security committee comprised of knowledgeable and trained volunteers, develop “What if” plans known to the pastoral staff and others that allow for calm crowd engagement in the face of adverse circumstances, and make known to the public what’s considered basic to their safety and security so they can help in the process.  

We now do this regarding childcare in virtually every church. Why shouldn’t we take similar loving steps for our fellowship?

So, I encourage you to find out if your church has a safety and security plan and procedures, and if not, help the leadership understand this is part of their stewardship.


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  

America’s children are at risk as never before, partly due to our increasingly licentious culture, partly due to the Internet, but is there anything we can do about it? 

Hi, I’m Rex Rogers and this is episode #73 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.

There are certain topics I do not want to think about, much less spend time researching and writing about them. This includes pornography, the subject of the last podcast, and it certainly includes the sexualizing of children and youth.

These are ugly, debauched, perverse, dark side subjects that—and I am serious now—make my stomach turn as I learn more about what is actually taking place.

Yet if we are not informed, how can we do what we should do as salt and light? If we do not have some understanding of the sexualization of children trends gripping our culture, how can we fulfill Jesus’ statement in John 17?

Jesus prayed to the Heavenly Father in what is the true Lord’s Prayer, “I have revealed you to those whom you gave me out of the world.” 

“My prayer,” Jesus said, “is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one. They are not of the world, even as I am not of it. Sanctify them by the truth, your word is truth. As you sent me into the world, I have sent them into the world,” (John 17:6, 15-18).

So, believers are in the world, are to be not of the world, and yet are to go into the world as ambassadors of reconciliation.

Do we do this best in ignorance? Of course not. We fulfill our calling as unto the Lord if like the ancient men of Israel who God called to leadership, we become “from Issachar, men who understood the times and knew what Israel should do,” (1 Chron. 12:32).

For some time now, “the far left has been hard at work normalizing the sexualization of young children. Attempts to expose children to sexual material are pervasive in schools across the country and often involve teaching the leftist gender and sexual ideology. 

From obscene books in school libraries to explicit content in entertainment, children from preschool to high school are faced with sexually charged content while their parents are kept in the dark.”

“Children are being exposed to numerous sexual messages every day of their lives. In fact, by the time a child reaches puberty, she or he has likely been exposed to thousands if not tens of thousands of sexualized messages…Often, these sexual messages are not only explicit but also violent and demeaning in nature.”

“The biggest impact, however, that the super-sexualization of children can have is its overall looming effect on the day-to-day existence of kids. Sexuality becomes much more of a player than it should, irrespective of the child's age. It's as if children's normal curiosity towards sexuality gets ratcheted up a number of notches as if on steroids.”

“The "facts of life" have not changed, but ‘inclusivity’ and ‘sex positivity’ and other popular buzz-word concepts have changed sex education. Despite studies showing that modern sex education fails to achieve its stated goals and results in increased student sexual activity, school systems are devoting up to 70 hours of classroom time per child to sex education.”

“A troubling trend in sex education is the push to teach ‘sexual consent,’ presumably to equip kids to resist committing, or being a victim of, sexual assault.”

“But many parents aren’t buying it. Consider this statement from a ‘Get Real’ trainer at Planned Parenthood League of Massachusetts: ‘Building skills around consent means moving beyond the ‘how to say no’ model of teaching refusal skills to also teach young people how to ask for consent...’”

But “consenting to a sex act does not make that act healthy, acceptable, or safe—especially when the actors are children! The ‘consent’ movement seems less about avoiding assault and more about promoting sex and sexual rights.”

Sex education “lessons can be highly manipulative—carefully designed to get children to approve of the concept of sexual rights and fluid sexual “identities,” and to reject their religious beliefs, the authority of their parents, and even physical reality itself.

Sexualizing children, I mean 5-16-year-olds, is shocking enough. But even more shocking is that what I’ve listed illustratively thus far just skims the surface. This isn’t happening in some clandestine, back-alley way. It’s taking place every day in America’s schools, and increasingly, teachers charged with purveying this so-called sex education are told not to inform parents, or students are told not to inform parents, especially when transgender issues are involved.

But schools are only one battleground. Rapid sexualization of children is even more pervasive on the Internet.

Law enforcement officials are talking about a “global sextortion crisis.”

Sextortion involves “cases where children are coerced into sending explicit images online before being extorted for money are increasing dramatically, with more boys falling prey.”

“Sextortion cases where local children are being coerced into sending nude and explicit content online is being fueled by a growing overseas market.”

“Once a perpetrator has a photo or video, they can then turn around and use it to either extract money or more photos and videos from the victim.”

“Typically…with boys…the extortion or the motivation for the extortion is cash or money or some monetary benefit…With the girls…the currency is more photos.”

“The sextortion cases are mainly occurring on digital platforms where children are spending their screen time. Phones, gaming consoles and computers by way of social media, gaming websites or video chat are often used by predators posing with fake accounts as girls of a similar age, deceiving boys into sending explicit photos or videos... Offenders then typically threaten to release the photos unless the victim sends payment. And in many cases, the predator will release the images anyway.”

“The sexualization of young girls is an ongoing problem in America that’s leading to a myriad of problems, from exposing girls to societal pressures to perpetuating sexualized violence. Sexualization is negatively impacting many girls’ cognitive functioning as well as their physical and mental health.”

“Girls, in general, experience more mental health issues than boys and sexualization often factors into the way girls identity themselves and measure their self-worth. When girls experience sexualization or objectification first-hand, it can stir up a wide range of emotions. Depending on the severity of the instance, it can lead to anxiety, depression, or even PTSD.” 

And more: low self-esteem, eating disorders, self-harm, and suicidal thoughts. Sexualization in any form is different from but often turns into sexual abuse.

Hypersexuality in media is like toxic air. It’s everywhere and always harmful.

Sexualization of children in America is happening for several reasons, 

1) first and foremost, sin. Remember that word? People’s hearts are deceitful and wicked and if they can find ways to do wrong, they will.

2) Another reason is money. Bad actors make money off the sexualization of children, whether through sextortion or trafficking or kiddie porn or sex appeal marketing. (“Advertisements and programming that target and sell commodities to children, particularly girls. Such items include Bratz Baby Dolls, which target six-year-olds with fishnet stocking and miniskirts, and padded bras on bikinis sold for seven-year-olds, raising national controversy on the dangers of encouraging females to portray their identities using sexual items from a young age.”

3) There are people who embrace a Leftist philosophy that socially and politically rejects Judeo-Christian values and traditional religion like Christianity, and promoting the sexualization of children is a direct hit on parental rights, family values, and the nuclear family as a basic unit of society.

4) Smart phones, the Internet – technology does not cause sexualization, but it certainly is a means by which it can happen, quickly, globally, without boundaries or borders.

I don’t suppose I need to develop a theology of why sexualization of children is wrong and injurious. But it wouldn’t take much time in Scripture to do so.

The wisest thing I think I can say is: “Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings” (1 Peter 5:8-9).

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  

Did you realize—actually I hope not—that pornography, along with gambling, are among the biggest money-making schemes on the internet?

Hi, I’m Rex Rogers and this is episode #72 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 made the unprovable claim that unforgiveness was the #1 sin in the Christian Church. It might be and I could be correct, but it’s not the kind of thing one can measure.

Now, though, with the development of the Internet since the late 1990s, the #1 sin in the Christian Church might just be pornography. That’s right, looking at salacious pictures. Christians? Yes, Christians and just about everyone else.

Common sense, and certainly moral values, tell you pornography is insidious. It is beguiling, alluring, treacherous, and it entraps both the willing and the unsuspecting because it keys on otherwise normal human curiosity and inclinations regarding sexuality. “Brain scans have shown that pornography has the same effect on the brain as cocaine.” So, yes, pornography is insidious.

Pornography is now also ubiquitous, meaning it is virtually everywhere, and via the Internet, accessible 24/7 to anyone with a smart phone. 

It is also increasingly in our face, in print or billboard advertisements, in media commercials, in online popups, in entertainment like cinema, television, plays, videos, online games, and more.

When I was a kid, guys would sneak around to buy what we called “dirty magazines” at the newsstand. Then they’d have to find somewhere to look at the pages and, even more challenging, figure out where to discard the magazines so their mothers would not find them.

Needless to say, this anecdote is from the Dark Ages. Fewer people than ever buy “dirty magazines” because the porn they are after is available on thousands of websites on the World Wide Web. “Porn sites receive more website traffic in the U.S. than Twitter, Instagram, Netflix, Pinterest and LinkedIn combined. 

More than a dozen states in the US declared pornography a public health crisis in 2019…Hollywood produces about 3,000 movies a year; the porn industry films around 12,000.”

“Porn usage surged during the COVID-19 pandemic. One pornographic site found that the more restrictive the COVID rules, the greater the increase in porn viewership.”

“New Pew Research Center data has found that nowadays, 63% of men under 30 are electively single, up from 51% in 2019 — and experts blame erotic alone time online as a major culprit.”

Every second:

  • 28,258 users are watching pornography on the internet.
  • $3,075.64 is being spent on pornography on the internet.

Every Day:

  • 68 million search queries related to pornography- 25% of total searches- are generated. 
  • 116,000 queries related to child pornography are received.

How Online Pornography Affects Americans:

  • 40 million American people regularly visit porn sites.
  • There are over 42 million porn websites, which totals around 370 million pages of porn.
  • The porn industry’s annual revenue is more than the NFL, NBA, and MLB combined. It is also more than the combined revenues of ABC, CBS, and NBC.
  • 11 is the average age that a child is first exposed to porn, and 94% of children will see porn by the age of 14.
  • 56% of American divorces involve one party having an “obsessive interest” in pornographic websites.
  • 68% of church-going men and over 50% of pastors view porn on a regular basis. Of young Christian adults 18-24 years old, 76% actively search for porn.
  • 33% of women aged 25 and under search for porn at least once per month.
  • Only 13% of self-identified Christian women say they never watch porn—87% of Christian women have watched porn.
  • 55% of married men and 25% of married women say they watch porn at least once a month.
  • 57% of pastors say porn addiction is the most damaging issue in their congregation. 69% say porn has adversely impacted the church.
  • One-third of porn viewers are women.

Consider these statistics:

With the increase in porn consumption in the workplace, it translates to lost productivity, and in some cases, lost jobs and lost careers.

Pornography is not just harmless titillation. 

Viewing porn leads to addiction, warped ideas about sexuality and women, a decreased ability to maintain healthy relationships, and an increase in teen pregnancy, the pursuit of degrading, uncommon or aggressive sexual behaviors, and a loss of self-control and self-esteem.

The cost of pornography to society is immense. “In the US alone, the porn industry is a huge industry that estimates $16.9 billion each year…Porn can affect the mental well-being of kids, adults, families. Families can face problems like infidelity, material dissatisfaction, separation.”

In just the past seven years, subscription sites have been developed “that enables content creators to monetize their influence," according to one site itself. “It is a platform that allows creators to upload their content behind a paywall, which can be accessed by their fans for a monthly fee and one-off tips.” 

This means sex workers, entrepreneurial girls and women, actresses and models, who want to make money from their pictures and videos, can now create their own homepages, charge what the traffic will bear, interact with their fans via direct messages if they wish, and profit directly from their posts.

Typically, the content posted on these subscription porn sites goes far beyond what is currently permissible on social media sites like Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, etc. These social media sites are often used as places to post teasers to entice viewers to access the subscription sites.

One the world’s most popular subscription pornography sites (a name I’ve chosen not to use on this podcast) “claims 28.5 billion total visits. That’s 81 million a day, almost 4 million an hour, 56,000 a minute.”

America has become not just a sex-saturated but a porn-saturated society. And this rapid embrace of the dark side has had its effect.

Young Americans do not think pornography is a negative thing. When they speak about pornography with friends, 90 percent of teens (ages 13 to 17) and 96 percent of young adults (ages 18 to 24) say they do so in a neutral, accepting, or encouraging way. Only one in 20 young adults and one in 10 teens say their friends think viewing pornography is a bad thing…Teens and young adults say, ‘not recycling’ is more immoral than viewing pornography.”

“Most teens are ‘sexting.’ While you probably think your Jesus-loving child is keeping things kosher when you aren’t looking, you’re likely wrong. Sixty-six percent of teens and young adults have received a sexually explicit image via text and 41 percent have sent one. More girls than boys have sent explicit images.”

“Porn is not just a ‘male matter’ anymore. While men have traditionally consumed pornography at a much higher rate than women, it appears that females (particularly younger ones) are starting to catch up. Thirty-three percent of women ages 13 to 24 seek out porn at least once per month.”

“Efforts to decrease the use of porn have gone nowhere in recent years, and instead its use has skyrocketed due to the internet… It’s estimated that 91.5% of men and 60.2% of women consume porn. In 2019, for the first time a majority of Democrats said they found it ‘morally acceptable,’ 53%. Only 27% of Republicans do.”

In his ebook, Your Brain on Porn, Luke Gilkerson concludes, “Pornography is essentially wrong because of its message: it rips sexuality from its relational context and presents human beings not as creatures made in God’s image, but as sexual commodities—something to be bought and sold.”

Pornography has also become even raunchier. Sexual intercourse was once considered “hardcore pornography.” Now, graphic sexual intercourse is mundane and the term “hardcore” is applied to sadomasochistic activities, violence fetishes, and other perversions and books and movies like “Fifty Shades of Grey” normalize degeneracy.

Since pornography is insidious and ubiquitous, it can overwhelm us. But we should remember, porn is also iniquitous

It is sinful because it twists the human sexuality God designed for enjoyment and procreation in lifelong monogamous marriage into something rude, crude, and lewd.

Porn debases both the producers and the consumers. It inevitably, it leads to other sin, and it destroys what it touches, hearts and minds, relationships, marriages, careers, reputations, self-respect.


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  

Is the revival that seems once again to have started on Christian university campuses real, genuine, God-ordained, and will it ultimately make a spiritual impact?

Hi, I’m Rex Rogers and this is episode #71 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. 

Revival on college and university campuses are not new to American history. But in the current post-Christian culture one no longer expects it.

That said, revival services started this month at Asbury University, Wilmore, Kentucky. “Impromptu nonstop prayer meeting over the past week, drawing visitors from across the country, attracting millions of views on social media and fueling talk of a nationwide religious revival.”

Scripture reading, public prayers, confessions, arms raised, worship singing, some students being saved by making professions of faith in Christ.

“Personal testimonies have gone viral on TikTok, Instagram and YouTube, racking up millions of views and inspiring carloads of visitors to descend on Wilmore, population 6,000, to share in what some are calling a movement.”

The movement has spread to other Christian institutions of higher learning: “Lee University in Cleveland, Tennessee; Cedarville University in Cedarville, Ohio; Oral Roberts University in Tulsa, Oklahoma; and the University of the Cumberlands in Williamsburg, Kentucky.” Also, revival has now been reported at Samford University in Birmingham, Alabama and Campbellsville University in Campbellsville, Kentucky.

“What is happening resembles the famous Asbury Revival of 1970…That revival shut down classes for a week, then went on for two more weeks with nightly services. Hundreds of students went out to share what happened with other schools. But what many don’t realize is that Asbury has an even more extensive history with revivals—including one that took place as early as 1905 and another as recent as 2006, when a student chapel led to four days of continuous worship, prayer and praise.”

The fact of these revivals seems to fly in the face of recent predictions suggesting Christian colleges and universities may soon be a thing of the past.

John Hawthorne, a retired Christian college sociology professor and administrator, said, “Denominations won’t budge, so colleges will need to lead the way. “Otherwise, they might not survive, because students are used to values far different from churches’ teachings.”

’Today’s college freshman was born in 2004, the year Massachusetts legalized same-sex marriage,’ Hawthorne said, suggesting there might not be enough conservative students in the future for some of the universities to survive.

“The majority of Christian colleges and universities list “sexual orientation” in their nondiscrimination statements, and half also include “gender identity” – far more than did so in 2013,” according to Jonathan Coley, a sociologist at Oklahoma State University who maintains a Christian higher education database of policies toward LGBTQ students. 

“At some evangelical schools, the argument has now moved from fighting over student's sexual and gender equality to fighting for LGBTQ diversity in faculty and staff hiring.”

“This year, Eastern University, located in St. Davids, Pennsylvania, and affiliated with American Baptist Churches USA, amended its policies to allow for the hiring of faculty in same-sex marriages.”

So, in this view, Christian colleges and universities who don’t “get on the right side of history” and alter or jettison their biblical beliefs about human sexuality are likely to fade into the sunset very soon. Meanwhile, God may have other things in mind.

“People and media have been converging on the (Asbury) campus to try and understand what is happening; what is God doing?...Among those who have attended, who are believers, there seems to be little doubt the hand of the Holy Spirit is at work. The revival began without any famous Christian leader or band being involved. It was not pre-promoted.”

William M. Wilson, president of Oral Roberts University, said, “The revival is helping fill a spiritual void among members of Generation Z.” In his view, “these young people are feeling in their life this spiritual vacuum, somewhat of an emptiness in the society they’re in and a real need for hope.” 

“The mental health crisis in this generation is significant. The uncertainty of the times, the feeling of lostness, in a world of 8 billion people, who are they, in the midst of it, the desire for purpose. I think,” the ORU president said, “all of these are driving a generation to look beyond themselves for the answer.”

In 1 John 4, the Scripture says, “Dear friends, 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. This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, but every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus is not from God.”

So, we need to ask questions even as we pray in hope regarding these revivals:

  • Is this revival consistent with the Word of God?
  • Will students’ humility be sustained?
  • Is Jesus Christ exalted?
  • Does this revival involve confession and repentance, obedience, salvation by faith in Christ, open confession of love for Christ?
  • Will God move this revival to public universities?

At Asbury, students are arriving from other universities: the University of Kentucky, Purdue University, Indiana Wesleyan University, Ohio Christian University, Transylvania University, Midway University, Georgetown College, Mt. Vernon Nazarene University, and many others.

After witnessing the revival for himself, an Asbury Theological Seminary theology professor said, “There is no pressure or hype. There is no manipulation. There is no high-pitched emotional fervor.

To the contrary, it has so far been mostly calm and serene. The mix of hope and joy and peace is indescribably strong and indeed almost palpable—a vivid and incredibly powerful sense of shalom. The ministry of the Holy Spirit is undeniably powerful but also so gentle.”

I do not know what God is doing at Asbury or these other universities, but I do believe God is working, that he is doing something powerful and far-reaching.

I pray that the Lord will send his Spirit upon the land beginning perhaps with the most spiritually bereft of places in America—not Hollywood or Broadway, not Bourbon Street—but the college and university campus.

Students coming of age in America have been sold a bill of goods. Our culture has taught youth to reject God, absolute truth, morality, even biological science. Instead, they’ve been taught skepticism and cynicism, that nothing deserves their faith, that nothing and no one is worthy of their trust, certainly not patriotism and not the USA. And sadly, a lot of adults have given youth good cause for their cynicism.

Youth are taught in school, in their music, in their celebrity worship, in their sexual confusion that nothing matters, that there is no purpose, just uncertainty, angst, disquietude.

And nothing has been put in place of this deconstruction of timeless verities. All young people have is nihilism – the idea life is absurd and meaningless. 

Is it any wonder that there is an epidemic of mental health issues among America’s young people?

Nihilism—a philosophy that is irrational, false, wicked, and the face of death, destroys everything it touches, and now it is destroying the nation’s next generation, making them believe life—their lives—are meaningless.

Then the Spirit of God moves among some of his children, speaking in a whisper (I Kings 19:11-12). Perhaps God is whispering at Asbury University and other Christian colleges and universities eager to hear.

If the Lord sends revival across the youth generation, he will change the future of not only their lives but their families, the culture, and the country.

I encourage you to follow these revivals. Pray the Spirit of God will move. Pray God bless America.


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  

Women and some men are posting on social media images and videos of themselves, which is predictable, but have you noticed their justifications and rationales for doing so?

Hi, I’m Rex Rogers and this is episode #70 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.


Any number of trends can be identified on social media because it is a dynamic environment. 

There may be good trends, of course, because human beings created in the image of God are capable of making right moral choices and doing noble things.

But human beings are also fallen, meaning we have a sin nature and are capable, in fact active, on a daily basis of making bad or wrong moral choices and doing ignoble things. That’s where some disturbing social media trends emerge relative to something now called “body image.”  

When I say “social media” here, I am not alluding to pornographic subscription sites but to Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, TikTok and a few others that are readily accessible to the public including children.

It’s interesting to note the number of so-called “online influencers,” mostly women, who regularly post scantily clad pictures of themselves and seek to justify their actions by claiming they are affirming “body positivity.”

They argue that they are doing something wonderful and meaningful in the name of “female empowerment,” but basically what they are doing is demeaning themselves in order to get likes, fans, followers, and in some cases, financial reward.

I’ve mentioned before that older, now no longer top tier entertainers, work to stay relevant in social media. Since their talent is no longer in demand or perhaps they are past their creative zenith, the only way many women celebrities can get attention is to post near naked or suggestive pictures of themselves. 

Some do this as a business proposition in order to market what they are wearing, like bikinis or casual wear, while others do so because it’s all they’ve got to—what was that—“stay relevant.” 

To attempt to justify what they are doing and raise it to some perceived lofty level, some aging models or celebrities talk about “authenticity.” They claim they must post these pictures to be “true to themselves.” This is their “identity,” and they say everyone should “love yourself” or “find your true self.”

Some claim they post au naturel images because, somehow, this is good for their “mental health.” They say they have “overcome self-judgement” and that one should be comfortable “loving yourself in your own skin.” Some claim they are fighting the good fight against the emotional struggle of “body dysmorphia.” Others just get right to the point and declare they are “sex positive.” The new vocabulary and rationales offered for what was once considered scandalous and prurient behavior are endless.

The Women’s Liberation movement of the 1970s plowed new ground for women in society, making headway opening professional doors, lobbying for equal pay for equal work, and promoting equality for women in general. Unfortunately, radical feminists took this movement and ran with it, some ending up in an untenable hate-all-men outlook. But there are still some now seasoned warriors who just want women to be given equal opportunities in society.

More recently, the long overdue MeToo movement called powerful, immoral men to account. Some, like the infamous Harvey Weinstein and Bill Cosby, were demonstrated to be predators and rightly sent to prison, though sadly, Cosby’s sentence was later overturned.

Others, caddish men who took advantage of their power and prestige to prey on women, men like Matt Lauer, Charlie Rose, Bill O’Reilly, had enough money to settle the allegations against them but still lost their high-profile media positions.

Then, MeToo began to run aground with slogans like “believe the woman,” a comment that seems just and indeed helps correct old patterns wherein women were summarily dismissed, but in actuality, “believe the woman” as an absolute elevates demography above evidence-based truth. 

Result is, we have a confused public understanding of male-female relationships and social media only adds to the confusion.

Among the younger set, Generation Z now in college, as of July 2021, university athletes are now able to make financial arrangements based upon their NIL, meaning Name, Image, Likeness. This new pot of gold suddenly available to university athletes means the best known, most talented, and of course the best looking, can make a lot of NIL money. Many NIL arrangements are endorsement contracts with clothing manufacturers or other legitimate businesses. I’m not suggesting there is anything is wrong with the free enterprise of athletes making income.

But I think unregulated NIL opportunities, the transfer portal making it possible for any recruit to switch schools in a moment, and the wide-open university athletic conferences, now jockeying for television money, means collegiate sports is in for a confusing time that almost inevitably is going to result in some kind of scandal. 

Remember, the love of money is the root of all evil.

Some female university athletes are already making hay based on their looks, and their willingness to post titillating videos. By far, the lead example of this is Louisiana State University gymnast, Olivia Dunne, who is now reputedly making seven figures per year for her posts.

No question she is a talented and accomplished athlete with several gymnastic accomplishments. 

But increasingly, Olivia Dunne and her peers are providing their huge followings on TikTok, YouTube, and Instagram with content that pushes past simple storylines or marketing clothing into what critics say is playing into the “objectifying women” scenarios that the Women’s Liberation and MeToo Movements railed against.

In fact, older women who fought those earlier social battles, some of whom are avowed feminists, argue today’s young women are taking a backward step, undoing much of what women fought for in the 70s, including the major achievement of Title IX that prohibited sex based discrimination in school athletic programs.

The interesting comeback from the young, online influences is that while men may objectify women, the online influencer women say they are not responsible for what men think or how they behave. In other words, they push back, saying we can do whatever we want, and we have no accountability to anyone.

Maybe it all depends? It’s true, a woman cannot control how a man thinks, or if he thinks improper thoughts, it’s not her doing. On the other hand, if the woman, particularly these online influencers, post provocative, semi-clad pictures and videos intended to attract followings, can they really claim they have no responsibility? Such an argument seems a long way from the honorable women described in Proverbs 31.

This said, men also use social media to make money based upon sex appeal. They “run the gamut from gamers and fitness influencers to singers, pranksters, and even doctors.”

None of this should be surprising. Human beings tend to pervert anything we get our hands, or rather our hearts, on, including now social media. Why would we expect anything different from the world?

We should, though, be able to expect different behavior from Christians. We should not spend time on sites designed by online influencers to entice, to tempt, to draw us in. We should not emulate the world by employing the same provocative poses in images and videos—something I’ve seen younger Christians do on Facebook and other social media platforms.

Rather, we should work to proclaim the Lordship of Christ in all of life, including our social media activity. This is a worthy kind of online influence.

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 noticed an increase in on air over-the-edge language or behavior, like television and cinema’s fascination with the F-word or sexual situations in commercials, or outright obscene or pornographic displays in cultural discourse? We are a culture in moral free fall.

Hi, I’m Rex Rogers and this is episode #69 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.


The Grammy Awards, dating to 1959, are the music industry’s annual recognition of outstanding achievements in the music arts. They are considered by many to be a television spectacle featuring the best and increasingly the most outrageous in music artists.

This year in 2023, “award nominees Sam Smith and Kim Petras performed their duet titled…"Unholy," complete with ominous red lighting and dancers writhing amid flames. Smith was dressed like Satan in a red cape and top hat with horns. He tweeted photos of himself during rehearsal saying, "This is going to be SPECIAL." To which CBS, the network broadcasting the show, responded with the tweet, "You can say that again. We are ready to worship!”

Sam Smith first came out as gay, then genderqueer, an umbrella term meaning not solely male or female, and most recently as non-binary preferring to be addressed as they/them. Fellow artist Kim Petras is transgender, having had gender-confirmation surgery when he/she was just 16 years old. Petras made appearances as “the world’s youngest transsexual.”

Petras said of the Grammy performance, “I think a lot of people, honestly, have kind of labeled what I stand for and what Sam stands for as religiously not cool, and I personally grew up wondering about religion and wanting to be a part of it but slowly realizing it didn’t want me to be a part of it,” she said, per Variety. “So it’s a take on not being able to choose religion. And not being able to live the way that people might want you to live, because as a trans person I’m already not kind of wanted in religion. So we were doing a take on that and I was kind of hellkeeper Kim.”

The Sam Smith/Kim Petras emphasis on Satanism came just two years after rappers Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion “performed,” (I use that word advisedly) with a risqué presentation of the song “WAP” at the 2021 Grammy Awards.

In the lyrics, Cardi B and Megan discuss how they want to be pleased by men, specifically referencing numerous sexual practices.” The song’s title, WAP, is an acronym representing a phrase so graphic and crude I’ve chosen not to say it on this podcast. 

During the performance on network television, Cardi B channeled her stripper past with some pole dancing. Both musicians strutted, writhed, twerked, and grinded together on a huge bed in Barbarella-esque skimpy outfits. Media reporting on the event spoke of female empowerment, sexual pride, and a sex-positive message. Apparently, sex-positive is the new way of describing bacchanalia. 

Musicians and entertainers in general have always been on the edge if not over it in terms of rude, crude, and lewd. This goes back thousands of years in multiple cultures. What’s new now is the degree to which these kinds of celebrations of debauchery are presented and promoted on television, and the degree to which the entertainers themselves are looked upon as some kind of avant garde role models or bold and brave defenders of personal liberties.

There was a time when I was a kid that cartoons, for example, the old cartoons, reached up, so to speak, to high culture. They made funny and harmless entertainment for children in the context of Mozart or Shakespeare, or the best of Americana. Now, beginning somewhere in the 1960s, cartoons or children’s entertainment in general has been on a decades-long slide toward presentation of what is debased and morally questionable.

Articles are regularly written that attack or at least judge conservatives in general or Christians in particular as Puritans or prudes, because they often object to the content presented in television shows, movies, or as illustrated above, awards shows.  

Such articles argue the culture wars are a figment of conservatives or Christians; imagination, that nothing really is going wrong, and no one on the right side of history should object to an anything goes approach. The reason these articles say the culture wars do not exist is because the authors don’t have a moral compass that recognizes wrong or is willing to embrace any standard short of licentiousness. The Grammys are just one example.  

Such moral chaos is the stock in trade of many contemporary so-called artists, online influencers, or celebrities. As they age, and perhaps as what talent they have begins to diminish or is no longer marketable, the artists or celebrities seem willing to do about anything to get themselves covered online, to in their minds stay relevant.

Madonna is one example, a one-time rock star who now spends most of her time making outrageous comments and, sadly, disfiguring herself with plastic surgery. 

Britney Spears is another younger version of Madonna. Britney is a one-time youthful pop star who is approaching middle age, is not producing marketable music, and who to stay in the limelight spends much of her time post pictures of herself with limited even no clothing, just strategic coverage. Even her children have tried to get her to stop this embarrassing and demeaning display.

There is such a thing as the culture wars. Yes, some people have acted in overwrought fashion and brought ridicule toward those who simply believe in family values. But it is easy to demonstrate the moral decline of contemporary culture and discourse.

Politicians, not just celebrities, and television commercials now regularly use four letter words, build their message around sexual inuendo, flash partial nudity or vulgar hand gestures. 

Celebrities in my youth, like Johnny Carson or Jerry Lewis, were certainly familiar with lewd behavior or language, but cultural norms at the time kept them in check on air. Not so now.

 “The real problems in our world are not the result of bad political policies or poor education or inequitable income distribution. The problem in our world is that there are forces of wickedness in heavenly places, and sinners are held captive by them to do their will. And that means the single solution to all of the problems in our world is the gospel of Jesus Christ, and that human solutions to spiritual problems are utterly useless.”

So, Christians, we know the truth, and it is our task to make it known. Don’t give in or give up. Speak the truth in love.


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