Wednesday, September 14, 2016

You Can Kneel For Anything Except God



It is another fall semester and the rabid advance against religious freedom hastens. A typical and recent example is the University of Nebraska Lincoln. At the opening of its fall semester, its newly installed Chancellor, Ronnie Green, informed the students of the University’s "nonnegotiable" “belief statements” regarding "values acceptance." “We insist on a culture of respect … We do not tolerate actions of hate and disrespect.” However, throughout his entire speech, Green failed to share any clarifying examples. I wonder why? And, he closed by saying, “We take action when we observe something or someone being treated unfairly or in a demeaning manner.” These “belief statements” were reinforced in a memo to the students and a posting on the school website. It is well known that UNL has been on a liberal trajectory for quite some time. Needless to say, these comments come as Christian beliefs are accused of being intolerant, hateful, and racist on campuses nationwide.

Before we examine the hypocrisy of our culture in this, there is plenty of hypocrisy in Green’s statements all by themselves. For example, his nonnegotiable values are in the form of “belief statements” while the school objects to the belief statements that are nonnegotiable for Christians. That is an example of not accepting the values of others. They say their priority is values acceptance, while they reject the values of Christians with prejudice. What about tolerating Christians by respecting their values? Also, did you notice how they are “belief statements” and not declarations of fact? Isn't belief religion? I digress. Apparently, the University insists on a culture of respect … except towards Christians. They don’t tolerate actions of hate and disrespect … unless they are directed at Christians. They take action when they observe someone being treated unfairly or in a demeaning manner ... unless that someone is a Christian. Christians are being systematically silenced, flunked, expelled and openly persecuted on college campuses nationwide … all in the name of respect. It never dawns on these oppressors and their fans that such actions are disrespectful to Christians. This is how blind we have become.

And, that brings us to Colin Kaepernick. Kaepernick is an NFL football player for the San Francisco 49ers. And, at the opening of the season, in keeping with the spirit of the ill-founded Black Lives Matter movement, he decided to refuse to stand during our national anthem while everyone else in the entire stadium sought to express American unity and equality. Kaepernick, however, would rather draw attention to himself, divide us, and support the false agenda that condemns America as a bad actor on the world stage in the category of being systemically oppressive to people of color. Aside from the obvious fact that America is the most freedom-loving country that statistically provides more opportunities to people of all ethnical backgrounds than any other country on the planet, because she is imperfect by Kaepernick's standards, he will not stand in unity with the rest of us. Kaepernick thereby decides to disrespect our flag, disrespect our police officers and disrespect our veterans. And, he also disrespects the rest of us simply trying to experience a peaceful and respectful unity for just three minutes before a game void of divisive politics.  


And, guess how Liberals (like Chancellor Green) feel about Kaepernick’s acts of disrespect, division and not accepting our values personified in singing our national anthem? Well, to the left, Kaepernick is a hero. But, Keapernick's influence did not stop there. This foolish act of disrespectful division over a false agenda was followed by Brendon Marshall of the Denver Broncos and then by four players from the Miami Dolphins. And, this failure of immature non-leadership did not stop there. It was also foolishly followed by a number of high school and even middle school football teams across the country over this past weekend. To Kaepernick and his foolish followers, I pose a simple question: if America is so oppressive to minorities, and more so than other countries, then name just one country that statistically scores more favorable to America when it comes to freedom, opportunity and prosperity realized by minorities. Just name one that is better. Hint: there isn’t one. And, there is no perfect country that lacks racism in its past. Newsflash: humans have always been immoral. But, you can’t name one country that is more moral on this subject today than America over the past 60 years. We will fight for Kaepernick's freedom of expression, but we will not excuse the lack of intellectual, moral and visual integrity on top of disgraceful leadership. If being disrespectful is nonnegotiable intolerance according to the left, then why is disrespect of our intelligence, our beliefs, our peaceful moments of unity and equality heralded by them?

While we are on the subject of football and taking a knee before NFL games, let’s contrast the treatment of another player who did so – Tim Tebow. Tebow, an openly devout Christian, routinely took a knee before every NFL game to pray to God for the safety of all the players, etc. For this act of courageous love towards the other players, guess how the left treated this football player for taking a knee? You guessed it – he was so shunned that, in spite of dramatically reversing the failing Denver Broncos in his rookie year back to playoff victory, he was ultimately blackballed out of the sport altogether. The double standard is clear. The hypocrisy is clear. The disrespect is clear. The demeaning of values is clear. You can apparently kneel for anything except God. You have freedom of expression except for God. I remind every reader that true oppression begins with suppressing basic rights like freedom of speech and religious expression. Kaepernick enjoys free speech while Christians on college campuses do not. How is that for upside down? Remember, religious freedom is the first in the Bill of Rights, even explicitly cited.

The fact that people are not moved by the obvious is further sign that spiritual blindness is spreading rampantly. That means it will probably keep getting worse. In John 15:18, Jesus famously said, “If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you…If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you.” Jesus laid out the truth test for His claims to be God in the form of prophecy. That was bold 2,000 years ago. As His prophecy becomes remarkably true, so proven are His truth claims. If history since Jesus is an accurate guide, God’s true church will be either physically or financially forced underground even in the West, as it was thus persecuted throughout history in nearly every advanced civilization between phases of national prosperity and national downfall. But, this gives Christians reason to have hope. First, we have hope because we know how this ends. Second, we have hope because in history this is always followed by church awakening, revival and profound effectiveness. The third reason why this gives us hope is because our faith is reinforced as true with every act of hateful hypocrisy. We are watching the prophecy of Jesus unfold before our eyes in ways only God could have known 2,000 years ago. The blindness defies logic, but enables fulfillment of Christianity-affirming prophecy. Nobody other than God could have predicted that only one religion would be so blindly and universally persecuted. All the while, nobody seems to wonder why. Keep the faith and embrace His hope.


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