In just the latest sign of the growing hostility to Biblical Christianity, Cable Channel HGTV announced that it would not air a new show starring two Christian twin brothers because of their profession of belief in the Biblical view of marriage and opposition to abortion. More and more, the persecution against Christians who hold to Biblical standards are under attack and
According to reports:
Christian viewers of the Home & Garden Television (HGTV) are now up in arms after the network announced Wednesday that they have “decided not to move forward” with a reality show called “Flip It Forward” starring conservative Christian twin brothers David and Jason Benham who are openly opposed to abortion, homosexuality and no-fault divorce.
HGTV has decided not to move forward with the Benham Brothers’ series.
— HGTV (@hgtv) May 7, 2014
The episodes of the show were expected to reflect the brothers’ experience in flipping houses for profit and helping other families do the same “with a healthy dose of sibling rivalry between the brothers along the way,” according to MSNBC.
The move by HGTV occurred after Right Wing Watch, a liberal blog, wrote a report on the Benhams and their father, attacking them for their stance on homosexuality and abortion by referring to them as “Anti-Gay, Anti-Choice Extremist.” After the article went viral, the cable network informed the brothers their show was cancelled. All this despite the fact that HGTV knew about the brothers’ Christian beliefs and about the rally David hosted, a year before the show was even filming.
“We explained it to them and we gave the proper context for my statements,” David said. “And they looked behind our eyes and said, ‘they don’t have any hate in their hearts for anyone, so we are going to give them a show.’ And then they made us an offer.”
“We let them know that we love Jesus, that we love people and we love real estate and we are good at what we do,” Jason added. “And they saw that there was no hatred inside of us, for any people, any individual, any human being, and they knew we would be a great fit for the network.” (source).
Yet once pressure came from outside sources, HGTV changes their position and cancelled the show. The Benham brothers explained the ordeal in an interview with ABC:
Choosing Christ Over The World
The Bible is clear that homosexuality is a sin. Jesus Christ, quoted the book of Genesis when defining Biblical marriage:
And [Jesus] answered and said unto them, Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female, And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh? Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.- Matthew 19:4-6.
Throughout Scriptures, the Bible is also clear that the killing of the unborn is a sin. Rather than seeing an unborn child as a “fetus” or “not viable” the Bible says that pregnant women are “with child.” The Bible also details that life begins at conception:
And Leah conceived, and bare a son, and she called his name Reuben: for she said, Surely the Lord hath looked upon my affliction; now therefore my husband will love me. And she conceived again, and bare a son; and said, Because the Lord hath heard I was hated, he hath therefore given me this son also: and she called his name Simeon. And she conceived again, and bare a son; and said, Now this time will my husband be joined unto me, because I have born him three sons: therefore was his name called Levi. — Genesis 29:32-34.
So the brothers, in their open stance, were demonstrating their belief in God’s Word. And for this, they lost their television show that had nothing to do with spiritual issues. But then Benham brothers are not deterred. In a joint statement they released, they stated:
“The first and last thought on our minds as we begin and end each day is; have we shined Christ’s light today? Our faith is the fundamental calling in our lives, and the centerpiece of who we are. As Christians we are called to love our fellow man. Anyone who suggests that we hate homosexuals or people of other faiths is either misinformed or lying.
Over the last decade, we’ve sold thousands of homes with the guiding principle of producing value and breathing life into each family that has crossed our path, and we do not, nor will we ever discriminate against people who do not share our views.
We were saddened to hear HGTV’s decision. With all of the grotesque things that can be seen and heard on television today you would think there would be room for two twin brothers who are faithful to our families, committed to biblical principles, and dedicated professionals. If our faith costs us a television show then so be it.” (source).
In the face of losing out on financial success and fame, the brothers used the opportunity to praise Jesus Christ even more. Praise God for Christian men who are still willing to stand for BIblical principles and not compromise, even in the face of losing out on career opportunities. On their website, the brothers provide a Bible-reading plan to finish the Scriptures in one year as well as other Bible study tools.
Christians Standing With The Brothers
As a result of the cancellation, many Christians have taken to social media to express their disapproval with HGTV’s decision and announce their intention to boycott the network. Additionally, Christian advocacy groups have also come to the defense of the Benham’s:
Faith Driven Consumer — the group behind the IStandWithPhil.com movement which played a key role in the return of Phil Robertson to Duck Dynasty after he was suspended indefinitely from the show for his views on homosexuality, is now throwing their weight behind the Benham brothers.
“Following the sudden cancellation of the upcoming HGTV series “Flip It Forward’ simply because the stars of the show, brothers David and Jason Benham, hold a biblical worldview on the issues of life and marriage, Faith Driven Consumer is announcing a brand new grassroots campaign called #FlipThisDecision to return the show to the network’s fall lineup,” said the group in a release Thursday.
“This is pure intolerance, discrimination, and bullying toward those who hold to widely held and legitimate views. HGTV’s rash actions hold no place in America’s rainbow of diversity,” said Chris Stone, founder of Faith Driven Consumer and Certified Brand Strategist.
“Whether people agree or disagree with the Beham’s faith-driven perspective is beside the point; the Benhams have a right to have those views and to be treated equally with those who hold to other viewpoints. This is the very definition of tolerance,” he said. (source).
The group has started a website, flipthisdecision.com, in support of the brothers. They also spread the news across the web when Sun Trust Bank, who underwrite the bulk of the Benham’s property deals, cancelled their service with the Benham’s company. After a strong outcry, the bank quickly reversed its decision.
Pray For Strength In The Face of Persecution
Blessed are ye, when men shall hate you, and when they shall separate you [from their company], and shall reproach [you], and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of man’s sake. Rejoice ye in that day, and leap for joy: for, behold, your reward is great in heaven: for in the like manner did their fathers unto the prophets. – Luke 6:22 -23.
Pray for the Benham brothers to continue their strong stance for the Christian faith. What happened with their show is just the start of the increasing move to marginalize Bible-believing Christianity. As more and more apostate pastors compromise the Bible and their message to appease the world, fill the pews and achieve success in the flesh, it is that much more important for pastors and Christians who preach and believe the Biblical Gospel to boldly proclaim the Gospel of forgiveness of sin and eternal life in Jesus Christ. Scripture is clear – all people have sinned. Regardless of whether one is gay or straight, a parent or had an abortion. And the Gospel is God’s free gift to reconcile all people back to Him. And as more and more Christians are being vilified for their beliefs, the centrality and focus on the Gospel must increase – because God’s Spirit is the only way to cure and remedy the true problem plaguing society: sin.
The brothers have already accepted HGTV’s decision as God’s will. As they shared in a statement on their Facebook page:
When the tables have turned in life, we need to realize that God owns the tables. He always has a plan and it’s far greater than any plan we could ever come up with. It may be hard and painful to understand at the time, but God’s ways are always best,” began the brothers in the post.
“Remember the Israelites in Egypt — God turned the Egyptians against them so that they could fulfill their destiny. ‘He turned their heart to hate His people, to deal craftily with His servants …’ Ps 105:25,” (source).
The Benhams are not better than anyone else – they are just better off. Because they have put their faith and trust in the Son of God, Jesus Christ, who died for their sins and the whole world’s. True success and riches are achieved in Jesus. The Benham brothers clearly know this and are not ashamed.
For the eyes of the Lord are over the righteous, and his ears are open unto their prayers: but the face of the Lord is against them that do evil. And who is he that will harm you, if ye be followers of that which is good? But and if ye suffer for righteousness’ sake, happy are ye: and be not afraid of their terror, neither be troubled; But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear: Having a good conscience; that, whereas they speak evil of you, as of evildoers, they may be ashamed that falsely accuse your good conversation in Christ. – 1 Peter 3:12-16.