Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Are Bibles A Threat?

Even though the country of Switzerland maintains a military force, their foreign policy with regards to military conflict is almost always neutrality. Even throughout the entire struggle of World War II, they refused to take sides. However, their World War II posture in light of what was clearly happening around them begs the question of whether neutrality is truly neutral. After all, was it neutral to aid the aggressor (Hitler’s Germany) with access to banking, etc.? Is laundering currency and gold stolen from slaughtered Jews neutral? Is neutrality in the face of historic atrocity a moral option? Is neutrality on such matters moral deception rather than high ground?

Another more modern day example of militant neutrality occurred in Wisconsin in late 2013. A guest that was staying at the University of Wisconsin-Extension was offended by the placement of a Bible in their room. This contrived “offense” evolved into a complaint which was followed by a formal letter issued from The Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF) demanding the Bibles be removed. The letter claimed that the Bibles constituted an endorsement of Christianity. By placing the Bibles inside public accommodations, the FFRF argued that "religious neutrality was being abandoned." The school’s Chancellor responded by removing the Bibles stating, “We want to make sure all guests are comfortable in our lodging.” But, is "neutrality" constitutionally mandated? If so, how does the presence of a Bible breach neutrality? Is a Bible placed in the top draw of a night stand a threat to anyone? If the presence of a Bible breaches neutrality, doesn’t the public removal of all Bibles also breach neutrality? Isn’t over-accommodation of militant atheism the opposite of neutrality?

In truth, more often than not, “neutrality” is not neutral at all. In the case of Switzerland during World War II, their neutrality was the near moral equivalent of endorsement. And, in America, removing Bibles innocently placed in visitors' rooms is further accommodation of atheism at the expense of religious freedom.

I realize atheism is cleverly hiding behind the deception of neutrality. But, as this blog has pointed out in multiple posts, atheism is just as much a religion as Christianity if not more so. In fact, atheism requires more faith than Christianity. The distorted logic displayed in the FFRF’s demand is ironic. But, what the FFRF failed to prove was how anyone is harmed by the presence of a Bible. Who is the victim that they are protecting? What exactly is the damage or threat being averted? 

The Constitution and other laws were written to restrict and punish violators because violators threaten the freedoms or lives of others. Such laws are not written to silence Christians or to eliminate a Bible from being present in a public forum. Given the context in which the Constitution was written and the public/official practices of its Framers and Signers, it is beyond obvious that nobody responsible for the drafting and passage of the Constitution supported the removal of Bibles from any location. That is because such a government mandated posture is in fact unconstitutional, whereas the presence of a Bible in the top draw of a night stand is not. And, the Constitution is not meant to protect anyone from being offended.

Religious neutrality is not even mentioned in the Constitution. What is in the Constitution is the freedom of religious expression and the prohibition of Congress from establishing a national religion. To that end, the word neutrality does not exist in the Constitution nor is it implied. And, certainly, the presence of a Bible is not a violation of the Constitution, even in a publicly funded institution.

Is it any wonder that we never hear of examples where items related to other religions are similarly removed? Why only the Bible? Why are yoga classes not treated as endorsement of Hinduism? Why are activities promoting Zen not treated as endorsement of Buddhism? Why is Islam immune from such censorship? The truth is that those advocates for silencing Christianity are not actually concerned about the freedoms of others or the harm to others. They are only concerned with eradication of the God of Christianity from our public discourse. And, that is in fact an unconstitutional agenda. What is even more sad is the growing number of "christians" who defend this politically correct and one-sided brand of neutrality.

As Christians, we must realize that all conflict is part of the larger conflict - spiritual warfare over the souls of mankind. All other wars and conflicts are just subordinate and contributory battles within the larger spiritual war. And, in this larger spiritual war, Jesus, our King, Lord and General, said in Matthew 12:30, “Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters.” With Jesus, there is no neutrality. And, since Jesus determines the ultimate reality, neutrality is in fact a clever deception. With Jesus, behaving as Switzerland is aligning with His opposition. Despite the irony that Switzerland’s symbol is the cross, in spiritual warfare, there is no Switzerland. Rather, siding with “neutrality” offends our King. In this war, and most if not all battles, you must think clearly, critically and Biblically. Then, you must decide who you would rather offend, your fellow man or He who wages war for your eternally beneficial destiny?