Saturday, June 4, 2011

All So One Person Isn’t Offended

My gorgeous wife pointed me to THIS article yesterday and we were both stunned. It’s graduation season for high schools across the country and one set of parents decided to file a lawsuit against a Texas school district to prohibit public mention by students of any religious discussion. The Judge, to my utter dismay, ruled that students are forbidden from using religious words including “prayer,” “amen” and “bow their heads.”

Why did the Schultz family go to such great lengths to make this fuss? In the words of the judge: so the parents and their son would avoid “irreparable harm.”

I would ask the reader to please open up the faculties of your mind and examine the goal of the Schultz family, the ruling of this federal judge, and then ask yourself: does this make sense? What is it the Schultz’s are trying to accomplish in actuality? Isn’t it the suppression of any public expression of religious belief and conviction? Do they believe they have a unique right to not be offended? Why suppress the rights of others to express themselves? The answer to the last question, ladies and gentlemen, is the core of this debate.

There have always been people who wish to silence religious opinions, especially those who profess faith in Jesus Christ as the only Savior of sinners. In fact, rather than be surprised by this reaction, we should be prepared for it. Doesn’t the Bible describe dead sinners as “suppressing the truth in unrighteousness” (Romans 1:18, NASB)? Their suppression … their holding down of God’s truth is not done innocently. They know full well that which is known about God because He made it plain to them (Romans 1:19). Therefore we are left with only one possible conclusion: their suppression of the gospel is purposeful and forceful.

Because people like the Schultz’s exist I can’t help myself but give constant thanks to the triune God in heaven for allowing us the privilege of the first amendment of the United States Constitution, which makes clear our right to say things people disagree with. No doubt there are creative and gifted minds at work to undermine the First Amendment – as evidenced by the Schultz family and various unjust judges – but it will take a lot of effort to explain away this powerful right granted to us:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

What has amazed me in all of this is the arrogance and pride that is naturally associated with the Schultz’s lawsuit. The only way they can justify taking away the God-given right of freedom of speech is if they truly believe they have a special right not to be offended. It is as though they believe they are superior in some way to religious people – especially towards Christians. How else can they make a case forbidding student citizens from freely expressing their own beliefs?

One wonderful thing the Enlightenment brought about was the recognition that since all people are created in the image of God and are equal to one another, they therefore have basic rights before one another [although I consent this idea was not always expressed or defended the way I now do].

Knowing the evil intent that exists within many in our own free nation, we need to be prepared for the reality that our rights may be taken away from us. On that day we will then answer the Schultz family and the unjust judge, like Peter and the Apostles: “We must obey God rather than men” (Acts 5:29). In the meantime, may the Lord grant to us grace to act as salt and light to preach the gospel to a lost and dying world.

Thanks for reading,


1 comment:

  1. Just saw over on James Swan's blog that the order was reversed! Let's bow our heads and pray and thank God, amen!