...so this will probably come across disjointed (rare, i know).
Today, over at CJ's blog, "view from the cheap seats & other stuff", he was talking about the similarity of "old" Atheism and "new" Atheism. That was not what caught my attention though. This is what did:
I was stopped this past February in Heathrow airport when I was trying to go over to London to speak. I had been invited to preach there by Church of England Church, an established church in the UK in the middle of London. When I got to Heathrow, new laws had been passed. They wouldn’t let me in. I waited 20 minutes, 30 minutes, 40 minutes, while they asked me more and more questions. What exactly would I be saying? Finally they let me in, but with cautions…(this is a quote from Mark Dever and a message he gave at the NEXT conference in Baltimore. The full message can be heard HERE).
I have heard about some pulpit censoring being done in Canada, especially surrounding homosexuality, but this was the first i had heard of this kind of situation. I am concerned about this. I am seeing more and more situations of governments "throwing out the baby with the bath water". Meaning that they make some broad generalization to appease a (usually) smaller portion of the population. I am not dismissing the concerns behind such actions, but i am saying that it is impossible to continue to make broad changes for each "niche" of society.
Last night a friend on Facebook was advocating a law prohibiting Airlines from offering peanuts at all, that they would have to offer pretzels. I understand about the people with peanut allergies, etc. but why can't the airlines just be forced to carry the alternative in addition to peanuts. Personally, i don't care because neither is enough to get me through a flight, i usually carry my own snacks.
I do not advocate things like killing abortion providers or gays/lesbians. I do not feel that 9-11 was God's judgment on America's slow pulling away from Him. AIDS (or any other disease) is not a judgment of God against drug users and homosexuals. I also do NOT agree with Evangelicals and "Born Agains" who are in the spotlight that spout such things.
The truth is sin is sin, and as soon as Adam and Eve ate of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, death entered the world. The Bible is clear that while we are to bring the message of God to the world, we are not the ones to exercise judgment. We can, to the best of our abilities, share what is declared as sin, but in the end it is only God who exercises judgment. If you only lust after a woman (or a man) in your heart and/or mind, you are guilty of adultery. If you only covet your neighbor's possessions in your heart/mind you are guilty. If you call your brother a fool, you are guilty of murder. When it comes down to it we ALL are sinners, and not just a little bit.
There are no "big" or "little" sins. Sin is sin, and it only takes one to be in violation of the entire deal.
Christianity has been guilty of abominations in the name of "God". The Inquisition and Crusades of course come to mind. But when Jerry Falwell proclaims that AIDS or 911 is a judgment by God for certain sins he is missing the point. There will be a day of judgment, but the wages of sin in this life is death. Mortality is 100%. Sometimes AIDS is a result of drug use, or homosexual activities, but that is not saying God went out of His way to have it happen. God is also in influencing AIDS and cancer research. The interdiction of terrorists - most of which we do not hear about - is allowed by God.
I believe until Christ returns we will continue to see actions like the one quoted above. Those reactions are a result of the Jerry Falwells in this world. I understand the cause, but i don't understand the all encompassing reactions.
I pray a lot that His glory will be shown, that His righteousness and Holiness will be proclaimed... but in the hands of imperfect Christians... and the (general) laziness of humans as a whole... such reactions are becoming the norm.