Undermining Religious Liberty In The Workplace & God Fulfills His Promises
When most people hear the phrase “sex-based harassment,” they think of unwanted sexual advances in the workplace, assault or inappropriate comments that are sexual in nature. And, an Lifeway Bible study recalls that “Luke 24 opens on resurrection morning with some women bringing spices for the body of Jesus, but they found the stone rolled away from His tomb and two gleaming angels instead.”
When most people hear the phrase “sex-based harassment,” they think of unwanted sexual advances in the workplace, assault or inappropriate comments that are sexual in nature. This definition is derived from guidance released by the Equal Employment Opportunities Commission (EEOC) in 1980 and provides legal basis to prevent and rightly prosecute such harassment in the workplace.
The EEOC’s definition remained unchanged for 43 years – until this October when the agency proposed new enforcement guidance that raises concerns regarding religious liberty and what the legal protections are for Christians in the workplace to prevent harassment due to religious and moral convictions.
In this enforcement guidance, the EEOC expands the definition of “sex-based harassment” to include two new sub-categories:
1. A redefinition of pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions, expanded to include abortion and family planning decisions, such as contraceptive usage; and,
2. Sexual orientation and gender identity.
The EEOC is responsible for enforcing Title VII of the Civil Rights Act which prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex and national origin. Though guidance from the EEOC is not legally binding, this updated guidance is important because it serves as a reference for how the EEOC is claiming the law should be interpreted by the courts, EEOC investigators and employers.
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A Lifeway Bible study recalls that “Luke 24 opens on resurrection morning with some women bringing spices for the body of Jesus, but they found the stone rolled away from His tomb and two gleaming angels instead. The mourning women were terrified, but Jesus had risen, just as He had said! The women ran to tell the disciples, who thought the women were out of their minds, but Peter went to see and found the open tomb, just as they had said.
Later that day, Jesus joined two men walking to the city of Emmaus. Along the way he helped them understand the importance of his life, death and resurrection.
Those disciples raced back to Jerusalem to share what they had seen and heard, and they found that their testimony was not unique. Jesus had begun appearing to His disciples to confirm that He was alive and had defeated sin and death. Now the testimony of the disciples and Jesus’s followers has come down to us in the New Testament for us to read, hear, and believe. And for those of us who have believed, this is good news to share with even more so they too may hear and believe the Gospel, just as it has been said.”
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