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Monday, April 22, 2013

EHK, Standing up for your Beliefs: Refusing to be religiously politically correct

Throughout this past week as the Boston Marathon Bombing events unfolded, a common theme running through the media was not only to "jump to conclusions" about the terrorists' motives or their associations (aka don't assume it was the work of yet another Muslim extremist), but to even stretch and reach to try to pin it on potential "right wing extremists".  And one Salon writer went on to say he hopes the bomber is white since, you know, our country is racist and the supposed "white privilege" would prevent us from being wary of Islamism and all the poor peace loving Muslims out there caught in the cross fire.

While I'm all for the not jumping to conclusions part, I was repulsed by our media's continual castigation of our country's natural reaction to foreign influenced terrorism occurring on our own soil.  For the most part, this is born out of a need to be politically correct.  See , it's ok to frown upon and even offend Americans and their straightforward (typically Christian God based) values, but it's not ok to point out how Islam is continually racking up an extremist high score that leaves all other extremist causes in the dust.  In other words, even though the cause is staring us right in the face, those adhering to political correctness not only will not touch it, they'll admonish those that do point out the obvious:  Islam breeds far more extremists the world over than any other religion, be it spiritual or secular.  The PC police are so afraid to confront this truth, they'll look everywhere they can, make far reaching assumptions and stretch already tenuous connections in their scramble to show that this is not the case.  

When it comes to Christians, this same type of political correctness regarding other religions needs to be avoided.  Let's get one thing straight before I continue.  I'm not for proselytizing.  And I'm not for condemning those that believe other religions.  That's not my way nor do I think it's Christ's way.  We're the light on the hill and by our works we attract those to follow.  Yet, being passive in the pursuit of Extending His Kingdom does not mean being passive in accepting that "different religions work for different people" doctrine that seems prevalent these days.  

There's a couple things wrong with this type of thinking.  First, a "whatever works" approach means that someone is choosing a religion based on how well it meshes with their own feelings, thus putting the religion's tenets as secondary to one's own personal feelings. In other words, this type of relative/subjective choice of religion based on feelings makes practicing said religion pointless as someone's true religion in this case is their own feelings.  They want to find a religion that adheres to their feelings rather than adhere themselves to their religion.  While it's quite possible that someone may actually become influenced enough such that the religion changes their feelings (which has happened alot in Christianity), believing that people will be naturally led to Christ by their own feelings is just lazy from an EHK perspective (not to mention it means that we're not actively attempting to fulfill His mandate).  It puts all the work on God to convert them through conviction of the Holy Spirit while we'd do pretty much nothing.  

Second, "whatever works" belies an under lying attitude that is undermines EHK.   If someone believes "whatever works", then they must not believe Christianity is the best and "correct" religion.  To truly Extend His Kingdom, we must fully embrace the idea that Christianity is for everyone.  Not just the people that feel good about it.  Furthermore, Jesus said it Himself, "...no one comes to the Father, but by me."  Meaning that the only path to salvation involves in believing and accepting Him as our Savior.  So any religion that does not recognize this simple fact will not work for anyone as it is not correct.  So again, if someone doesn't believe in the sovereignty of Christianity, then there's a good chance they don't really care to Extend His Kingdom, which seems pretty clearly as disobedient to God.  

Again, we don't need to proselytize.  This isn't justification for dropping a Bible on someone's head.  This is recognizing the distinction between actively letting our light shine and believing the relative nonsense that every other religion is just as valid as Christianity.  It's ok to believe Christianity is correct and right while not condemning or scorning non believers.  In fact, that's what I believe should be the proper course.

Case in point, I'll say it:  I don't recognize Islam's legitimacy.   I think it's a perversion of Christianity.  As I previously touched on the origins of Islam, there's several reasons to believe so.  However, the biggest one comes from the fact that Islam does not believe that Jesus is the Son of God and part of the Trinity.  He's just another prophet, which directly contradicts the above mentioned John 14:6.  Furthermore, Paul warned against "alternative gospels" to the Galatians:

6 I am amazed that you are so quickly deserting Him who called you by the grace of Christ, for a different gospel; 7 which is really not another; only there are some who are disturbing you, and want to distort the gospel of Christ. 8 But even though we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to that which we have preached to you, let him be accursed. 9 As we have said before, so I say again now, if any man is preaching to you a gospel contrary to that which you received, let him be accursed.   Galations 1:6 - 9

This wasn't in direct response to Islam itself since this epistle is about 500 years before the time of Muhammed, which I consider the "start" of Islam.  However, the message is quite clear:  You preach a gospel contrary to Paul's gospel, and you're cursed.  And what could be more contrary than believing Jesus was just another prophet instead of being the Son of God and our Savior?  It doesn't matter how much co-opting they do of the Old Testament, this one simple fact is enough for me to know its falsity.

And looking to today with the high levels of extremism running through Islam, you could chalk it up to mere coincidence.  I, on the other hand, see it as Paul's warning come to fruition.  By following an alternative gospel, they are cursed.

Now keep in mind, I'm not going to be running around condemning every Muslim I come across.  I'm not going to go out and trash them and their religion.   But I AM, if asked, going to state my opinion if someone asks me or if something is said that challenges my beliefs.  There is nothing wrong with standing up for the sovereignty of Christianity, especially when it's under attack.  If that makes me politically incorrect religiously, then so be it.

So while people are free to practice their own religions and I'll not condemn them as such, I'm also free to believe those religions to be false and pray that in my continuing efforts to Extend His Kingdom, they'll be Saved.