69-year-old “positivity trainer” Emile Ratelband has brought a peculiar lawsuit in Holland. He is suing the state to change his age to 49. Ratelband has referred to himself as a “young god,” and is quoted as arguing: “We live in a time when you can change your name and change your gender. Why can’t I decide my own age?”
To be sure, this is a silly and narcissistic individual and his case has little chance of success. But Ratelband’s twisted logic articulates themes woven throughout our secular age. Without God, there is no such thing as a normative human nature. All that is left is power. By sheer force of will, many believe we can conquer our biology and decide for ourselves who we are.
This liberation from nature would, in biblical terms, actually be “slavery.” Slavery happens when God gives people over to their own wicked desires (Rom 1:18–32). This inevitably fails apart and leads to despair, because it is a rejection of reality, a rejection of God. True freedom is found in submission to our Creator.
God, we ask that you would impress upon us a reverence for you and for your Word. Satisfy us with lives led within your design, in submission to your truth. Make our families and our churches places where people can escape from the captivity of their own misguided passions, finding their true hope and freedom in following Christ.
Dr. Robert Jeffress is a best-selling author of 25 books, a nationally and internationally syndicated TV and radio host and the senior pastor of First Baptist Dallas, one of the largest and most influential churches in America. Pathway to Victory, Dr. Jeffress’ broadcast ministry, airs daily nationwide on more than 900 radio stations and is broadcast live to 195 countries. His latest book, Choosing the Extraordinary Life: God’s 7 Secrets for Success and Significance, is available in bookstores everywhere. He is an evangelical adviser to the president of the United States, Donald J. Trump.