Just recently Sprite, a product of Coca-Cola, released an ad in Argentina celebrating LGBTQ teens and the families that support them. In the ad parents, siblings, and grandparents are depicted helping someone in their family get ready for a pride rally. A mother puts make-up on her son. A father drives his son and his son’s boyfriend to the rally. An older sister tightens a corset on her younger sister to hide her feminine appearance. Younger siblings are seen painting a heart on the Argentinian flag, soon to be worn by an older sibling at the rally. And a grandmother adorns her grandson in drag.
With this ad Sprite implies what the good, right, and true family looks like. It teaches the viewer that if their family looks like these families then they are doing it right. If their family does not look like these families then they are doing it wrong. With this ad Sprite applies pressure to Argentinian households to give into the sexual revolution. Truth be told, Sprite isn’t the only company targeting households with ungodly teaching. Other companies are doing this, they are doing it in America, and they are aiming at American households. Your household, your children, spouse, parents, and you, are the focused target of false teaching.
This all may sound alarmist, which isn’t my intent. (Yet, truthfully, it is alarming, in a sense, to actually think through what sitcoms, commercials, sports stars, and county music singers tell us they believe is truth and what we should believe is truth with them.) I only point out this example to raise an important question: What should a family do if a company targets their household with false teaching? Should the product be boycotted from the house? Should an angry review be put on the company’s site or an equally angry email be sent to the company? Should attention even be drawn to the product or situation? Should the church know about it? What is the proper response to such a situation?
First, and most regrettably, no one should be surprised by such a situation. Titus 1:10-11 tells us there are many rebellious, deceptive teachers whose aim is to upset the household. They upset it by replacing the truth of God with their false teaching. Replacing godly truth with any other “truth” is ultimately destructive (devotionally, spiritually, relationally, emotionally, and physically) because it breaks the listener away from the gospel and God. Why target the family? Satan targets the family with his truth-replacement-therapy so he can set destruction up early in a person’s life. The family is God’s foundational relational unit for teaching His truth and raising people up in faith and love. If the household believes ungodly “truth”, then it will be raised on that “truth”, its members will continue to teach that “truth”, and ultimately they will be destroyed by that “truth”.
So what should a family do? In Titus 1:10-11 Paul tells Titus to silence the false teachers! Bold command, but this doesn’t mean that Titus ought to force the false teachers to physically stop talking. Instead, in V13, Paul advises Titus to silence them by rebuking or refuting them with God’s truth. We ought to rebuke and reprove false teaching with God’s truth. Combat false teaching (and affirm godly teaching) with the truth of God’s Word. Instead of banning a product from your house or blocking them on your child’s Twitter feed, bring their false teaching (or affirm their godly teaching) to the truth of God’s Word and discuss it. This takes time, understanding (not only what God’s Word says is truth, but also what the company is proposing is true), and prayer. The goal and product of refuting false teaching with God’s truth in your home is that everyone may be sound in faith. Setting a pattern of analyzing a truth claim, discussing it and God’s truth, and then applying God’s truth to the situation helps everyone know and rely on God; this is especially true for your children, who will one day move out and be responsible to analyze, discuss, and apply God’s truth over and against any number of truth claims.