Saturday, 24 July 2010

Religious Liberty Monitoring: USA: not immune from Western religious liberty trends

 “The principal religious liberty trend of the multicultural West is that religious liberty is disappearing as the traditionally Judeo-Christian culture's Biblical foundations are being excavated. The excavation is integral to the social engineering/renovation project underway aimed at producing a 'post-Christian' culture. Unfortunately, most Christians do not comprehend the implications of this phenomenal strategic shift, and likely will not until the new social order has been consolidated and direct persecution starts to impact them personally.

Christians in the West are losing the right to criticise non-Christian (minority) religions (particularly Islam) and witness to non-Christians (particularly Muslims). They are also losing the right to conscientiously object to new social norms being imposed upon them essentially at the behest of radical feminist and Gay Lesbian Bisexual Transgender (GLBT) lobby groups.”

This quote is from an excellent commentary on the threat to religious liberty posed by post-Christian, liberal social norms. The non-thinking nonsense in the two stories illustrating the piece is breathtaking. Its a long blog but, I think, well worth taking time to read.

One of my favourite quotes is from George Orwell who wrote,“Liberty is the right to tell people what they don’t want to hear.”  This , as the blog illustrates, is being taken from us in the truly meaningless name of multiculturalism and tolerance. Some Christians are being taken in by this message, mainly because “tolerance” seems so right somehow, so typical of what Jesus would do. They need to remember that this same Jesus declared, “I am the way and the truth and the life, no one comes to the Father except through me” (Jn. 14:6) Let’s define a couple of terms that are frequently abused today and bring them back to their true and original meaning, the meaning they had before the liberals got hold of them:

TOLERANCE: My dictionary gives the definition of an allowable variation from a standard dimension. In the liberal world there is no standard dimension and every worldview, philosophy and “lifestyle choice” is equally right.  Tolerance, according to my dictionary, means indulgence of beliefs or practices different from one’s own. One who is tolerant is said to be practicing forbearance, to be enduring something. The language of tolerance then is endurance, forbearance, indulgence, allowance. To tolerate something is not to give it approval but to indulge it, to endure it for the greater good. Liberals would have us treat the words “tolerance” and “approval” as synonyms and fiercely condemn anyone who isn’t “tolerant” by this definition.

Democratic principles demand that, while I disagree profoundly with the tenets and practices of Islam, I am willing to endure its presence in a democratic society. I am not, however, bound to like, appreciate or approve of Islam and I am certainly not bound to welcome the  colonisation of Western societies by Muslims with the attendant cultivation of Muslim principles and ideas.

PHOBIA: A phobia is defined as an exaggerated and illogical fear. Common phobias include fear of spiders, the dark, flying, indoors, outdoors etc. It does seem irrational for a grown person to fear a common house spider, or to fear going outdoors, but plenty of people do and many seek help to overcome them. This word has become almost meaningless as people are encouraged to think of those who disagree with them as phobic. The previous paragraph would, in the eyes of many, identify me as “Islamophobic.” I also adhere to the biblical view that homosexual practice is wrong in the eyes of God and this, to many, makes me “Homophobic”.

Of course, the old way of presenting the same idea is by dubbing people “anti” this, that or the other. Critics of Mormonism are dubbed “anti-Mormon”, of the Roman Church as “anti-Catholic” etc. In those days it was easier to see that these tags were often ways of avoiding the issues and dismissing the critic by naming and blaming. In those days fewer people got away with it.

Things have changed however and the liberal lobby has such a grip on society that people indifferent to faith issues don’t just tut in disapproval when they hear people declaring strongly held beliefs contra to the beliefs of others. These days, to hold strong beliefs, no matter how tolerant one is prepared to be towards others, is to risk vilification and possibly prosecution. Because you are allowed to be anything in the brave new world – as long as it is liberal and adheres to the new dictionary definitions prescribed by liberals.

Some Christians fail to see that, while democratic principles, tolerance, liberty and freedom are precious, nevertheless, our first loyalty is to the God of the Bible. I note that many who enjoy this new way of looking at the world move away, very quickly, from Scripture and instead embrace the values of fallen man. If freedom and tolerance mean immorality, compromise, idol worship and worldliness then we had better get back to the true definitions of those terms. More urgently, we had better get back to God’s Word. Click on the link to read the Religious Liberty Monitor review.

Religious Liberty Monitoring: USA: not immune from Western religious liberty trends

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