We Have This Understanding
September 29, 2022
by Nicole D. Hayes
“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will” (Romans 12:2, NIV).
Bad things happen when people cast off restraint. Adverse or sometimes even irreversible outcomes occur when ethics, sound guidance and warnings are ignored. We are increasingly and unfortunately witnessing such in healthcare. I am talking about our society’s reckless and harmful support for experimental and unproven hormonal and surgical gender-affirming therapies for minors struggling with gender dysphoria. This is not the standard of care, and the risks are numerous—with all of it done without evaluating for underlying mental health issues or psychological distresses that may be contributing to the youth feeling incongruent with their biological sex. The unsafe, unevidenced therapies are such a danger to children that the United Kingdom’s National Health Service has ordered the Tavistock gender identity clinic to close, given the clinic’s current model of care “leaving young people at considerable risk of poor mental health and distress” per this July 28, 2022 BBC article. (I also invite you to read this August 25, 2022 blog post on the clinic’s closing written by CMDA member and California family physician Dr. Andre Van Mol, whose expertise on gender identity issues we absolutely appreciate. Dr. Van Mol also serves as co-chair of the American College of Pediatrician’s Committee on Adolescent Sexuality.)
Our society reflects something pastor Dr. Tony Evans has said before: “Because the people lacked faithful teaching about the one true God, they were essentially left without instruction. Because the divine rules were not being applied, people made up their own rules.” To this point, he references Judges 21:25: “In those days Israel had no king; everyone did as they saw fit” (NIV). Or as the English Standard Version says of Judges 21:25, “In those days there was no king in Israel. Everyone did what was right in his own eyes” (emphasis added).
This is the pattern we are witnessing in our culture and society—and it has been this way since the time of humankind. People will do what seems right to them without seeking or applying God’s wisdom and instruction. They want to appease their flesh and do not desire God’s guidance, as submitting would mean allowing Him to lead and affect your decision making.
However, for those of us who follow Christ—who have put on Christ as noted in Romans 13:14, so we identify ourselves with the spirit of Christ Jesus who reproduces our walk and conduct so it mirrors His—we have this understanding to give no room to the flesh. The flesh is weak and subject to moral frailties. Put no confidence in the flesh. This requires us to daily walk close with the Lord and to remain spiritually alert and spiritually sensitive so we will know “what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will” (Romans 12:2b, NIV).
Society wants society’s teachers who will “tickle their ears” only with what they want to hear. For those of us who follow Christ, we have this understanding that staying with the truth is the only way to seek the welfare of others, our patients and society. We have this understanding that we are called to be truth-tellers—those who are committed to truth no matter the situation. I am so pleased with and praying for healthcare students who are courageously upholding truth in their classrooms amid curriculum and discussions seeking to advance wickedness and harm to future patients. I am so pleased and praying for courageous healthcare professionals who are upholding truth in interactions with their patients, in their healthcare settings, in medical schools or in professional organizations when it is increasingly unpopular and consequential to do so. Several CMDA members who have spoken truth on matters with sound, ethical, medical and scientific evidence, particularly on the issue of transgenderism, have faced consequences. They have been disciplined by their supervisors and higher ups. Some of them have been fired. Some have been sued. For some, it has been their crucible.
In August 2021, a federal court issued a decision affirming the right of CMDA members to avoid participating in gender transitions and abortions. And in August 2022, a federal appeals court unanimously affirmed that previous decision. The permanent injunction protects all members of CMDA, current and future. This is a valuable protection for CMDA members in their commitment to practice Hippocratic medicine in a culture that is rapidly moving away from this longstanding foundation of Western healthcare. Learn more at cmda.org/transgendermandate.
We have this understanding as truth-tellers, as those whose minds have been renewed to discern what is God’s perfect will, that we cannot be “yes men” and “yes women” in spaces that lack spiritual guidance and have no commitment to truth or sound medical evidence. Essentially, these are spaces where they do what is right in their own eyes. Despite the opposition or what we might lose or suffer for speaking truth, we have this understanding that we are called to represent God’s standards, pursue righteousness and justice and protect the vulnerable. If we cannot be counted on for this, then who can?
To win this, we must love truth and stay with truth. When we refuse to hold to the truth, we reap every wicked thing we are seeing in society today. The Pulpit Commentary on Proverbs 29:18 says, “The prophets were the instructors of the people in Divine things, standing witnesses of the truth and power of religion, teaching a higher than mere human morality. The fatal effect of the absence of such revelation of God’s will is stated to be confusion, disorder and rebellion; the people uncontrolled, fall into grievous excesses, which nothing but high principles can restrain.”
When people cast off restraint, it is not freedom they create but captivity.
As we continue to stand in truth, my prayer is we will have great influence on those who are operating without divine instruction. And I pray they will seek God’s people for godly wisdom as the failure of their flawed reasoning begets harm and trouble on every side. As a pastor once said, “Their issues will have issues.” I pray those who have intentionally restricted their access to God will now draw near to Him. He will not disappoint, and He delights in this.
In the meantime, dear brothers and dear sisters, “…be strong and do not give up, for your work will be rewarded” (2 Chronicles 15:7, NIV).