Albert Mohler appeared on the front page of The Louisville Courier Journal yesterday next to the headline “Mohler: Christians should boycott gay weddings.” The story was later picked up by USA Today which ran a similar headline Baptist leader: Christians should boycott gay weddings. Since then, it has been featured in news outlets across the country.
It turns out that the report is about Mohler’s new book We Cannot Be Silent: Speaking Truth to a Culture Redefining Sex, Marriage, and the Very Meaning of Right and Wrong. This book tells the story of our particular moment in American life in the aftermath of the sexual revolution. And yet if all you had were the headlines, you might conclude that he just wrote a book-length treatise on how to boycott gay weddings. Nothing could be further from the truth.
Yes, Mohler does address whether Christians should attend gay weddings, and he does in fact say that they shouldn’t. But he offers that counsel in only three paragraphs—about one page out of a 256-page book! I wonder if it ever occurred to newspaper editors that focusing on one page out of 256 might be a little myopic. That slant may be good for clickbait and for selling newspapers, but it’s a distortion of the real import of this book. And I’m not the only one to notice this.
The book is actually about how we got from point A to point B as a culture. Twenty years ago, not one nation on the planet recognized gay marriage. Today, gay marriage is increasingly seen as a fundamental human right. And in our own nation, legal gay marriage is now recognized as a constitutional right. How did we get here? And how did this moral revolution happen seemingly overnight? Those are the questions that Mohler answers in this book.
As cultural analysis, this book is a tour de force. It explains the tectonic plates moving right beneath our feet—how worldview and basic ideas about the human person have shifted in the Western world. The scope is vast, and it illuminates the particular changes that have led us to where we are now. As Mohler himself explains:
We look out on the horizon around us and realize that our culture has been radically changed. In this case, the storm is a vast moral revolution, and that revolution is not even close to its conclusion. In fact, there will likely be no conclusion to this moral revolution within our lifetimes, or the lifetimes of our children and grandchildren.
We are now witnesses to a revolution that is sweeping away a sexual morality and a definition of marriage that has existed for thousands of years. This is the morality and understanding of marriage that has been central to societies shaped by biblical witness and the influence of both Judaism and Christianity. It is also important to note that throughout human history—in virtually all civilizations—marriage has been understood as the union of a man and a woman. That has changed.
This book is about this moral revolution, how it happened and what it means for us, for our churches, and for our children. It is important to trace the revolution and understand that the most heated controversies of our day did not emerge from a vacuum onto the daily headlines. Every revolution has a story, and the story of this revolution is one that we can now trace. To put the truth plainly, this revolution did not start with same-sex marriage, and it will not end there.
This book is much more important than the headlines are suggesting. And it is Mohler at his best doing what he does best—cultural analysis from a biblical worldview. If you want to understand the times that we are living in and the true nature of the challenges Christians face, you need to read this book. Mohler is right. We really cannot be silent. And this book will equip you with the words that you need in the midst of the revolution.