Sunday, May 20, 2012

Censorship, Threat and Intimidation

  • A prominent British Christian conservative ‘blogger [going by the pseudonym “Archbishop Cranmer”] is under attack from a government agency, at the behest of a homosexualist activist group, for supporting the defence of traditional marriage…Cranmer came under investigation by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) when he posted an ad for the petition being run by the Coalition for Marriage that recently tipped over half a million signatures, including those of several members of the House of Lords. He has been given until May 21 to answer the accusations against him from an alleged 24 anonymous complainants.
It might be imagined that the petition had advocated sending gays to hell or at least stoning them. However, gays aren’t even mentioned. Instead, the petition is just a reassertion of what Western civilization has always taken for granted:

  • I support the legal definition of marriage which is the voluntary union for life of one man and one woman to the exclusion of all others. I oppose any attempt to redefine it.
However, such a seemingly innocuous statement has now become the basis for criminal charges. How has this happened? Has science proven that heterosexual marriage undermines social well-being or leads to child abuse or promotes suicide? Not at all! In fact, in The Case for Marriage, Linda Waite & Maggie Gallagher are emphatic that:

  • A preschooler living with one biological parent and one step-parent was forty times more likely to be sexually abused than one living with two natural parents. (159).
Well then, has it been demonstrated that by disallowing other forms of marriage, society suffers? In Evangelical Ethics, John J. Davis writes of the work of British Anthropologist, J.D. Unwin:

  • After a comprehensive study of both Western and non-Western cultures throughout human history, Unwin concluded that the record of mankind “does not contain a single instance of a group becoming civilized unless it had been absolutely [heterosexually] monogamous, nor is there any example of a group retaining its culture after it has adopted less rigorous customs.” Unwin observed that a society’s adoption and maintenance of heterosexual monogamy as a social standard “has preceded all manifestations of social energy, whether that energy be reflected in conquest, in art and sciences, in extension of the social vision, or in the substitution of monotheism for polytheism.” (116)
Well then, why the uproar against the definition of marriage as heterosexual? And why should someone be threatened into silence for even expressing such a view? What impels such intimidation and bullying? I think that we can explain it historically, sociologically, and even biologically, but perhaps the most illuminating explanation might be the theological one:

  • But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God-- having a form of godliness but denying its power…always learning but never able to acknowledge the truth. (2 Tim 3:1-7)
Nevertheless, we have every reason in this world and the next for confidence, as Paul continues:

  • But they will not get very far because, as in the case of those men, their folly will be clear to everyone…In fact, everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted, while evil men and impostors will go from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived. But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have become convinced of… (2 Tim. 3:9-14)
Our Lord assures us of bright skies. The weather-man also does this, but he is sometimes wrong. However, our Lord controls the weather!

Therefore, Paul concludes with this counsel:

  • In the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who will judge the living and the dead, and in view of his appearing and his kingdom, I give you this charge: Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage--with great patience and careful instruction. (2 Tim. 4:1-2)


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