SOCIETY IS PAYING FOR LOSS OF ITS CHRISTIAN IDEALS

I have assembled this post from a great article by Greg Sheridan in The Weekend Australian, “Respect for women: Society will pay for loss of its Christian ideals”.

As we have moved away from our traditional Judaeo Christian roots our cultural leaders have been telling us now for more than five decades, that we can transition into a neo-pagan culture and this will somehow be good for women. Obviously, when it comes down to survival of the fittest men are going to be the winners. The teaching of evolution in our schools has undermined the very foundation of those Judaeo Christian roots and yet the latest science reveals that this highly complex universe was created. Life itself is built on highly complex codes (DNA) and the laws governing the universe can only derive from a highly intelligent mind beyond our comprehension.

In Australia, this past five weeks, from the shocking accounts of the alleged rape of Brittany Higgins and other disgraceful sexual assaults in Parliament House to the overwhelmingly powerful National Press Club address of abuse survivor and Australian of the Year, Grace Tame, have provided a wrenching examination of the national soul.

The problem with sexual assault lies with men. They are the perpetrators. But all of this — men and women — exist within a culture. And what’s happening to the culture affects what happens to the human beings within the culture.

The progressive orthodoxy, that we used to be overwhelmingly sexist and we’ve made great progress but we’ve still got a long way to go, is only about a quarter right. On some things we have made progress. On most we’ve gone backwards.

My father, and countless men of his generation, did not treat women with disrespect. Nor did the culture mandate that he should. Our culture, right now, has the greatest trouble treating anybody with respect.

“Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. And the man and his wife were both naked and were not ashamed.” Genesis 2:24

We are on the brink of becoming a majority atheist nation. The loss of religious belief in society affects the way we see human beings, men and women. It goes without saying that Christians frequently do not remotely live up to their ideals, but Christian ideals nonetheless have a lot to offer the culture in this moment of truth-telling and contradiction.

Elements of popular culture today work to degrade women, and men as well. This is beyond politics. The big mistake of the Me-too movement is not to become too sharply critical of men, but to turn their movement into a left versus right culture wars battleground. Abuse and disrespect transcend ideological lines.

The astonishing abusiveness of Twitter is dehumanising. While everybody who ventures into that sewer faces some foul level of abuse, it is far worse for women because so often the abuse is sexualised and violent in its imagery.

The ubiquity of ever more degrading pornography propounds implicitly the idea that women are primarily objects. Conservatives should welcome the Me-too movement in its late discovery of pornography’s damage.

John Dickson, the historian and popular Christian author, and presenter of Australia’s No 1 religious podcast, Undeceptions, wrote a book, A Sneaking Suspicion, about Christianity, in which in the first chapter he made a measured, gentle, friendly and wise argument for sexual fidelity within marriage and even a culture of purity. About six years ago, the culture had become so intolerant of this outlook that some anti-religion zealots managed to get it banned from NSW government schools for a month or so on the grounds it was “dangerous” (the ban was later overturned).

Dangerous? Maybe Christianity has some useful things to say about men and women and how they relate to each other. Rodney Stark, the foremost sociologist of religious history, argues in The Triumph of Christianity that it was Christianity’s pro-woman stance which more than anything led to its rapid expansion 2000 years ago.

Paul’s statement of universality in his letter to the Galatians was revolutionary: “There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male and female. For you are all one in Christ Jesus.”

Larry Siedentop, the great Oxford scholar, in his history of liberalism, Inventing the Individual, judges Paul’s interpretation of Christian universalism as being directly responsible over the centuries for the evolution of liberalism. Destroying the religious distinction between men and women led eventually to destroying the civic distinction between them.

Given that the problem of sexual assault in particular, and domestic violence, of which there is a plague in Australia, is a problem with men, men could do much worse than look to Jesus as to how a man should behave towards women.

Throughout the Gospels, Jesus rebukes male power and patriarchy. In the Gospel of John there is one of the most affecting of all the scenes in the New Testament. A woman caught in adultery is brought before Jesus. The sexism inherent in the ancient world is evident in the fact that the man she was presumably caught with is not brought for punishment. Her accusers want Jesus to command death by stoning, which was the punishment in the law.

Instead, Jesus is mostly silent. He writes on the sand in the ground, and ancient tradition has it he is writing some of the crimes committed by the accusers. He then says: “Let he among you who has not sinned be the first to throw a stone.” The crowd, which had been menacing and unruly and full of that sense of violence a mob can possess, dissipates. I do not condemn you, Jesus tells the woman, go and sin no more.

If you’re not familiar with the Gospels, the best place to start is with Luke. His is the loveliest of the Gospels, because it has the most women in it, and has the most about women. Luke recounts a dinner Jesus attends at the home of a local big shot named Simon. A “notorious” woman shows up uninvited and Simon is furious. But Jesus rebukes him and defends the woman. She is welcome in my company. She is the recipient of Jesus’ love.

There are women, too, of great heroism and agency in the Gospels. Mary, the mother of Jesus, is one. She is an activist, an agent of history, she takes charge of her unexpected pregnancy. I have always liked the idea that she gave Luke all his great scoops about the incarnation of Jesus, which would show Mary already directing her story and directing history.

All the way through the Gospels the women are more faithful and more courageous than the men. The first human being to proclaim Jesus was a woman. At the cross, when Jesus was dying, there were three women, among them Mary, and only one man, John. And when Jesus rises from the dead, the first person to see him is Mary Magdalene, who tells the apostles. She is the apostle to the apostles. But with Easter soon approaching, let’s return to how Jesus treats women. As he is dying on the cross, over three hours in the most excruciating death we can imagine, as his body grows cold, as the birds find he is defenceless, as each breath is an agonising struggle to lift his shoulders and grasp some air, at that time, the last words he addresses to a human being are concern for Mary, his mother.

He tells his best friend John to look after Mary: “This is your mother.” Forget the theology of this, look just at the human love that is there.

Part of the Christian sexual revolution was to make marriage, for the first time, an institution of mutual love and respect, which was not the way it was conceived in the ancient world. Perhaps the central word in Christianity is respect, respect for human beings and human dignity. Christianity allowed its portrayal of human sexuality to become way too negative over the past 150 years. But its understanding that sex is really a big deal was a rejection of a central element of the barbarism of the pagan world.

Dr Emma Woods, in a fascinating piece on the ABC Religion and Ethics website, argued recently that just teaching the importance of consent, while obviously absolutely essential, is not enough to get respect back into relationships; there is a need to teach a morality of sexual ethics.

She contrasts the dominant cultural paradigm of today that sex is mainly recreational with the traditional human moral intuition that sex is a matter of great significance. Men’s brains are a little inferior because it’s easier for them to fall into the mistake of thinking it’s just recreation. Women are more hard-wired, according to Woods, to treat sex as something of great significance.

If it is something of no significance then it is naturally much harder for women and girls to say no — not legally or ethically harder, but psychologically. Yet this paradigm ultimately offends the innate nature of humanity.

One of the most important Christian elucidations of human sexuality is the Theology of the Body, which John Paul II, the greatest of the modern popes, produced. It is too little studied and promoted by Christians, even, weirdly, by Catholics. It is a profoundly rich meditation which cannot be easily summarised.

It starts with the inherent human dignity of each person, created in the likeness and image of God. It also sees the sexual relationship as an intrinsically divine element of human nature. Christians understand God as one being, but also, as the Holy Trinity, as a divine community of love. Both the Old Testament and the Gospels talks of marriage meaning that “the two shall become one flesh”. JP II sees this as a divine likeness in humanity to the community of love in the Trinity.

The Bible, Old Testament and New, is full of love, and the celebration of love, human as well as divine. Just read The Song of Solomon. But there is always the sense of the need for restraint, in order to respect oneself and to respect other people. Christian churches need to preach their positive vision of human relationships much more clearly. And the secular culture, racing to the confused and disastrous entropy of its neo-paganism, would do well to listen.

REALITY OF MORAL LAW

God is the moral lawgiver and has declared there is a moral order that governs life. It is revealed in His Word to us – the Bible. He created us, so He has the authority to tell us how life should be lived. Moreover, He created us in His image to be in a love relationship with us. Consequently, He gave us free will to choose, to trust Him or reject Him. Sadly, our progenitors disobeyed Him resulting in a world separated from its Creator. Demonstrating the extent of His love for us, our Heavenly Father sent His Son, Jesus, to become one of us so that He could provide a way for us to get back into a right relationship with Him. Jesus made it possible for our Heavenly Father to send the Holy Spirit to indwell all believers so they can follow the road map (Bible) God provided so we don’t get lost.

Adam and Eve expelled from the Garden of Eden

However, it must be remembered, all have a conscience, a moral compass which ultimately keeps us from destroying ourselves.

“No society has ever survived or will ever survive without morality, and no morality has ever survived without a transcendent source.” C.S. Lewis, Six Essays on the Abolition of Man

Dr. George Mavrodes taught philosophy at the University of Michigan for thirty-three years. He said that though the reality of moral obligations might not be proof for the existence of God, it is very strong evidence for it. He said that if anyone believes in absolute moral obligations, this only makes sense in a world where God exists. He makes it clear that this is the only way to account for one of the most significant aspects of human life. He encourages people who might not believe in God to be open to the possibility that the theistic view of life is truer to reality.

“Most of the skeptics I have seen move toward faith later told me that it was around this issue of moral obligation that they first began to wonder whether their views really fit the actual world they lived in.” Dr Tim Keller, Making Sense of God

Friedrich Nietzsche, the philosopher who coined the phrase “God is dead,” clearly recognized the hypocrisy that existed among those who claimed to be atheists. He had great contempt for those who didn’t believe in God and yet still clung to a belief in truth, morality, love, and human dignity. Nietzsche attempted to practice atheism until the day he died. As Jean-Paul Sartre said, such a life is “a cruel and long-range affair,” a life where love, beauty, and meaning could not exist. Nietzsche eventually went insane, suffering from the horrors of syphilis and spending the balance of his rapidly declining life in an asylum.

If you have an atheistic worldview and you logically think through its implications, you cannot help but experience despair when you consider that life is purposeless. We are here by chance, and when we die we go into everlasting nothingness. This generally culminates in a life of emptiness.

Diverting the mind is much easier for us today, because of the breakneck, vastly accelerated speed of daily life. The frenzy of digital life allows so little time for introspection and reflection. We find we are subtly, insidiously encouraged to ignore the significant issues of life, particularly the issue of “meaning.” Without realizing it, we seek to divert our minds with work and pleasure, to keep us from having to think about the emptiness of life, knowing that one day this is all going to end.

Without God, life ultimately is absurd.

ATHEIST IN PRAISE OF CHRISTIANITY

A great article from Jonathon Van Maren. He is a public speaker, writer, and pro-life activist. He is the author of The Culture War and Seeing Is Believing: Why Our Culture Must Face the Victims of Abortion. The article demonstrates that even atheists recognise that as the world throws off the restraints of Christian morality, it is descending into chaos.

Historian Tom Holland is known primarily as a storyteller of the ancient world. Thus, his newest book Dominion: How the Christian Revolution Remade the World, came as something of a surprise for several reasons. First, Tom Holland is not a Christian. Second, Holland’s book is one of the most ambitious historical defences of Christianity in a very long time.

While studying the ancient world, Holland writes, he realized something. Simply, the ancients were cruel, and their values utterly foreign to him. The Spartans routinely murdered “imperfect” children. The bodies of slaves were treated like outlets for the physical pleasure of those with power. Infanticide was common. The poor and the weak had no rights.

From There to Here …

How did we get from there to here? It was Christianity, Holland writes. Christianity revolutionised sex and marriage, demanding that men control themselves and prohibiting all forms of rape. Christianity confined sexuality within monogamy. (It is ironic, Holland notes, that these are now the very standards for which Christianity is derided.) Christianity elevated women. In short, Christianity utterly transformed the world.

Holland’s passionate defense of Christianity is fascinating because it appears to be part of a trend. As the West becomes definitively post-Christian, many secularists are suddenly realizing that Christianity may have been more valuable than they thought. While many — including Holland — cannot quite bring themselves to believe Christianity is true, they are starting to believe that Christianity might be necessary.

Douglas Murray, the conservative author and columnist, is also an atheist. In recent years, however, he has started to warn that the decline of Christianity is a dangerous thing. Society now faces three options. First, Murray says, is to reject the idea that all human life is precious. “Another is to work furiously to nail down an atheist version of the sanctity of the individual.” And if that doesn’t work? “Then there is only one other place to go. Which is back to faith, whether we like it or not.”

Murray now occasionally refers to himself as a “Christian atheist.” Speaking with Esther O’Reilly on the Unbelievable podcast, Murray lauded the “revolutionary moral insights” of Christianity. He told her that while visiting the Sea of Galilee, he couldn’t shake the feeling that “something happened here.” And he admitted that as atheists consider morality, “the more we may have to accept that … the sanctity of human life is a Judeo-Christian notion which might very easily not survive [the disappearance of] Judeo-Christian civilization.”

Speaking on The Darren Grimes Show last month, he was even blunter. “There seems to be little point to me in a life spent talking about Labour Party politics rather than God.”

Listen to the Warnings of the Atheists — Christianity is Necessary

These strange struggles also deliver a warning to the West. Without Christianity, we are heading into a thick and impenetrable darkness. Christianity gave us human rights. It gave us protection for the weak. Compassion rooted in commands to love. Forgiveness for enemies. It revolutionized the world. We are now in the process of undoing that revolution. In fact, we are replacing it with the Sexual Revolution.

We should look at what we are destroying before we carry on. We should ask why fences were built before tearing them down. We should listen to the atheists nervously telling us that Christianity is necessary. And we should fight to ensure that our post-Christian culture is again a pre-Christian one.

God’s word tells us this won’t happen, the truth is, the only hope Christians have is that Jesus will return in the not too distant future to rule and reign on earth with a “rod of iron”. God has given us a detailed picture in His word of the last seven years on this planet before He returns. Berean Christians won’t be taken by surprise when the tribulation and even great tribulation that is prophesied happens.

ATHEIST RICHARD DAWKINS SAYS WITHOUT GOD WORLD WOULD BE LESS MORAL

Richard Dawkins, one of the world’s most famous atheists, has admitted that eliminating God from the public consciousness would pose huge problems.  Dawkins insisted that if religion were to be abolished, it would “give people a license to do really bad things.”  The Oxford University fellow said that, without the presence of a higher being, “people may feel free to do bad things because they feel God is no longer watching them.”  Dawkins warned that people would feel entitled to do what they like because they no longer need to obey a “divine spy in the sky reading their every thought,”, a description he often uses for an omnipresent God.

Dawkins – eliminating God from the public consciousness would pose huge problems

Dawkins told of an experiment he came across which intended to find out whether people would be “good” if they felt someone was watching. He concluded from the results that “it seems plausible that, if somebody sincerely believes God is watching his every move, he might be more likely to be good.”  “I hate that idea,” Dawkins added.  “I want to believe that humans are better than that and would be honest whether anyone was watching or not.” 

In response creationist Ken Ham, said, “Dawkins has spent his life fighting God, but still recognises that atheism doesn’t provide a foundation for morality.”  “Without a biblical foundation, anything goes,” Ham added.  “Who determines what is right or wrong?  Everyone does what’s right in their own eyes.  Dawkins is admitting that atheism is totally morally bankrupt.”

The Bible tells us how to get wisdom and understanding. The benefits thereof and the danger of not doing so:

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; a good understanding have all those who do His commandments.Psalms 111:19

“The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear?
The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?” Psalms 27:1

“Oh, fear the Lord, you His saints! There is no want to those who fear Him.” Psalms 34:9

“Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord and depart from evil.
It will be health to your flesh, and strength to your bones.” Proverbs 3:7-8

“An oracle within my heart concerning the transgression of the wicked:
There is no fear of God before his eyes… the words of his mouth are wickedness and deceit; he has ceased to be wise and to do good.” Psalms 36:1-1

“The fear of man brings a snare, but whoever trusts in the Lord shall be safe.” Proverbs 29:25

“And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. But rather fear God who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Matthew 10:28

BEN SHAPIRO ON WHY IT’S CRUCIAL TO DEFEND BIBLICAL VALUES

Political commentator and Daily Wire editor-in-chief Ben Shapiro spoke April 25th, 2018 to 11,000 students at Liberty University about the profound biblical values that created America, and why they’re worth defending today.

America was built on a fundamental idea… that human beings are made in the image of God,” Shapiro said.

“Judeo-Christian philosophy (based on Biblical truth) expects us to struggle, to strive,” he added. “Judeo-Christian philosophy demands that we do our best and that we act virtuously on the individual level so that we can feel secure without invading each other’s rights. The Judeo-Christian tradition says that with freedom comes responsibility.”

Shapiro argued that those values are under attack because Americans now value collectivism over virtue.

“Collectivist philosophy, however, thinks differently—they expect us to give our individual striving for truth,” he said. “All we have to do is trade our individual responsibility for the comfort of collective power. … We can avoid that (individual) struggle by handing over all power to a nanny state.”

Shapiro believes collectivism breeds death and pointed to the case of Alfie Evans, a toddler with an undiagnosed brain condition in the United Kingdom.

The British government has forbidden his parents from seeking medical care outside of the country even though an Italian hospital has offered to treat him. The British courts have ruled it is in Alfie’s best interest to die.

“Collectivists see the state as the source of our morals, and our families as obstacles standing between individuals and their master. That’s exactly what’s happening with Alfie Evans, where bureaucrats are standing between parents and their child, saying that they know best that a child has

Shapiro, a vocal pro-life advocate, explained that collectivism doesn’t just murder babies outside of the womb, it murders baby within the womb through abortion.

Ultimately, collectivism brings the death of family, community, and society, Shapiro argued.

“So, the question becomes how exactly do we go about restoring the Judeo-Christian tradition upon which the nation was built? How exactly do we bring back the philosophy of the Founders and restore their promise?” he continued.

“To do that, we have to go back to basics. We actually have to talk about morality in politics,” he explained. “It is our job to learn, as you are doing here at Liberty, about what made our civilisation great—and what can make our civilisation great still.”

Shapiro received a standing ovation for his remarks. The truth wins out.

GOD IS JUDGING NATIONS TODAY AS ACCURATELY PROPHESIED IN THE BIBLE

The Bible accurately prophesied events which we see unfolding today as the nations turn away from Christian morality which came from the Bible. The rejection of the Bible’s authority and God as creator (evolution) means the Bible’s morality is being rejected as well. Morals are being redefined in ways that would have been unthinkable even a generation ago. The Bible clearly calls homosexual behaviour an abomination. And just a generation or two ago most people would have agreed. The prophet Isaiah warned:

“Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter! Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes, and shrewd in their own sight.” Isaiah 5:21

And the New Testament says:

“For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but have itching ears, they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths. 2 Timothy 4:3-4

Gay Marriage

This booklet is both biblically and scientifically sound, it displays genuine compassion while at the same time not shirking from the truth; e.g. “because homosexuals can clearly love each other and since anything labelled ‘love’ is believed to be good, because their sin is then brought under the umbrella of ‘love’, then their sinful behaviour also becomes good.  For Christians, we should steer clear of a ‘pro-marriage’ stance based upon mere tradition (often politically charged). We need to stand on the principles of scripture that define what God intends for marriage.

Christians who have an uncompromising stance on the Bible’s authority , which follows from a conviction  that its big picture of history is true from the beginning, can be a powerful force, particularly if they can provide evidence to support the Bible’s history as real.

What is KEY is “What does the Bible say about marriage? What does the Bible say about homosexuality and other sexual sins?

“And you shall not lie sexually with your neighbour’s wife and so make yourself unclean with her…… You shall not lie with a male as with a woman; it is an abomination. And you shall not lie with any animal…. it is perversion.” Leviticus 18:20-23

In the New Testament, Romans 1 argues that homosexual behaviour among both men and women is the result of suppressing the knowledge of God the Creator (the one who makes the rules for His creation).

“Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to the dishonouring of their bodies among themselves, because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshipped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen. For this reason God gave them up to dishonourable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; and men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passions for one another, men committing shameless acts with men receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error.” Romans 1:24-27

Jesus was crystal clear on the issue: “Have you not read that He who created them from the beginning made them male and female, and said, ‘Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’.” Matthew 19:1-12 and Mark 10: 1-12

Nations have now embraced the homosexual lifestyle and gay marriage. It is now illegal in the USA for medical professionals or therapists to engage in reparative therapy that seeks to rehabilitate teen homosexuals back into a heterosexual lifestyle.

The White House was lit up in rainbow colours within hours of the Supreme Court declaring same sex marriage legal in all States. The rainbow is God’s covenant so what does this say about Obama?

Gods-Promise-Rainbow-03

The Bible shows God is sovereign and he has judged nations and its leaders down through history. He judged Sodom & Gomorrah and He will judge those nations that embrace this lifestyle. Look at what is unfolding in some of these nations – “Terrifying Bush fires prompt the evacuation of an entire Canadian City” News.com.au

Australians have an important decision before them at the coming election. Labour promises to bring in gay marriage and in fact, you cannot belong to the Labour Party after 2017 if you don’t support gay marriage. The Liberals pledge to hold a plebiscite on the issue as soon after the election as can be done.