I think most people have heard of the Duggars. They’re the Christian fundamentalist family in Arkansas with nineteen children. Their popular cable television “reality” show was cancelled last July after it was revealed their oldest son, Josh, had molested underage girls, including some of his sisters, as a young teen. The family was further embarrassed when evidence of Josh’s recent extramarital activities was exposed.
God’s Word says “Be sure your sin will find you out” (Numbers 32:23) and that’s the truth. But no one is able to look down on Josh in judgement. We are all unrighteous sinners without a single plea. If we haven’t engaged in physical sexual impurity, we’ve thought about it and Christ says our thoughts and desires are the undeniable root of ALL sin (Matthew 5). But the Good News is that Jesus died for our sins and rose from the dead to offer salvation to all those who accept Him as their Savior. Being an Evangelical Christian, I share the Duggars’ belief in the Gospel of salvation by the grace of God through faith in Jesus Christ alone. I just don’t share some of their hardcore separation practices and their condemnation of non-abortive contraceptives.
Well, the rest of the Duggars are still trying to make a living with speaking engagements and a few TV specials in the works (excluding Josh) but they’ve encountered some interesting opposition recently. It seems that many Roman Catholics are riled because of the Duggars’ well-publicized missionary activity in Central America, specifically in the countries of Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador. Catholics argue that the citizens of those countries are 100% Christian (predominantly Catholic) and don’t need to be evangelized by the Duggars and their Protestant church friends. Of course the Evangelicals’ Gospel of salvation by God’s grace through faith in Jesus Christ alone is entirely different from Roman Catholicism’s legalistic “gospel” of salvation by sacramental grace and perfect obedience to the Ten Commandments and church rules. Canadian Catholics are proudly boasting they were able to pressure a provincial home-school association into rescinding its invitation to the Duggars to speak at a 2016 event. See the stories here and here.
Catholic indignation over Evangelical missionary work is nothing new. The Catholic church’s history in South America, in league with civil governments, is marked by intolerance and persecution of non-Catholics. See my previous blogs here and here. It’s so ironic that some Catholics scream “persecution” and “vitriol” when they encounter some written opposition to their religion, like this humble blog, when their church has a long and very dark history of HEAVY-HANDED intolerance right up into present times. I pray for the Duggars and all Evangelicals who continue to bring the Gospel to the lost souls of works-righteousness Catholicism.