How Western Society's 'Sacred Cows' Attack the Kingdom of God
Riots break out in London in 2011, ruining the liberal claim that people don't feel the need to riot in highly liberal societies. In fact, surely the opposite is the case and an 'anything goes' liberalism simply encourages the expression of discontent and rebellion.
D uring the last number of years, our modern western societies have come to worship at the altar of several 'great truths' which are not supposed to be challenged. Those who do dare to challenge these 'great truths' are ignored by colleagues, continually undermined, subjected to sarcasm and often mocked as 'unenlightened' and 'unintelligent.'
As Christians it is helpful for us to categorize these 'great truths' which our society has chosen to bow down before because they reveal little short of a fiendish and satanic conspiracy to isolate true believers and to make mockery of the kingdom of God! Let us look at some of these modern 'sacred cows':
1. LIBERAL VALUES IN GENERAL
It has become some sort of a badge of respectability for modern politicians to proudly boast that they support "liberal values." In fact, in a democracy, it seems that a politician cannot get very far without 'doffing their cap' in the direction of liberalism. Liberalism has come to mean:
a. Non-judgmentalism, anything goes, and who are we to be critical?
b. Strong authority is, at best, highly suspect and is best avoided and opposed.
c. The freedom of individuals is more important than any religion or creed.
d. All criticism is destructive (apparently, except where liberals decide to be critical of non-liberals!)
e. No culture is better than any other culture, except cultures which are plainly illiberal.
The origins of Liberalism are not entirely easy to trace, many point the finger at twentieth century British atheist philosopher Bertrand Russell, others look at sexual rights anthropologist Margaret Meade, but the influences are much, much older than that. The Universities of 17th-19th centuries enlightenment Europe certainly played a role in popularizing a new breed of philosophical and political thinking which strongly challenged the dogmatism of the church and the whole concept that human beings are answerable to an all-powerful God.
But I want to look at influences which are much older than those:
The Korah of the Old Testament plainly displayed liberalism in opposing the authority of Moses. Korah claimed that all Israelites had equal authority with Moses, which has led to the oft-repeated comment that Korah was 'the first democrat.' Korah plainly hated the authority which the Lord God had granted to Moses. Korah organized a council or committee of 250 (Numbers 16:2) and he obviously felt that these people should be joint-decision makers!
'They gathered together against Moses and Aaron, and said to them, "You take too much upon yourselves, for all the congregation is holy, every one of them, and the LORD is among them. Why then do you exalt yourselves above the congregation of the LORD?"'
Undoubtedly Korah and his 'committee' felt that the authority and decisions of Moses and Aaron were harsh and did not take the wishes of the people into account. We may well guess that this group were also somewhat 'soft' on sin and judgment: here is an early example of 'liberal values'! But the punishment of Korah and his followers was dreadful, they were swallowed up in a dreadful sudden earthquake (Numbers 16:31-33).
But there is a much earlier example of an attempt to spread anti-authoritarian liberal attitudes in the Old Testament! After the Lord God had warned the first couple not to eat from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, Satan appeared as a snake, suggesting to Eve that if a thing looked good (the forbidden fruit), hey! it must be worth trying out! Who is that Lord God anyway? You have a right to enjoy yourself and to conduct your own experiments, in fact, doing so will increase your knowledge and wisdom and you will become like gods yourselves! (Genesis 3:1-14). Here we see a very clear example of anti-authoritarianism and a liberal attitude which rejected the concept of sin - don't forget the third plank of liberalism: (c) The freedom of individuals is more important than any religion or creed!
Our modern western societies are steeped in 'liberal values' - so, lets be clear : why are these "values" such a stench in the nostrils of Almighty God? My earlier suggested planks of liberalism tell us:
If we say that judgmentalism is always wrong then we would have to say, What right has God got to judge us?
If we say that strong authority must be evil, we are also rejecting God's authority.
If we say that the "freedom" of individuals is more important than any religion or creed, we are directly confronting and opposing the revelation of the Holy Bible!
Likewise, if we say that all criticism is to be avoided.
If we say that no one culture is no better than any other, that is not necessarily wrong except that the term 'culture' has come to also include the religion espoused by a particular culture. But Christianity claims excusive truth about God and salvation, therefore Christians must continue to be determined to evangelize to those of other cultures.
It is God's prerogative alone to take life, although, in the light of the Old Testament revelation to ancient Israel, He has certainly allowed for Capital Punishment for very serious offences, for self-defence and even possibly for war against a plainly evil adversary.
Now there have always been a few evil people who have chosen to take the lives of small children, whether through the cruel exposure of unwanted new babies or through the more organized systems of pagan child sacrifice. It is probably true to say that everybody in today's western society would unanimously condemn the evil of allowing small infants to 'pass through the fire' to Molech in some pagan societies of the past, and yet, today it is commonly believed that the exposure of newborn girls still takes place in China, yet this is as nothing compared to the countless thousands of tiny tots who are murdered in the womb! I refer, of course, to the practice of abortion. This wholesale slaughter of tiny babies (we should avoid the term 'foetuses' which seeks to de-personalise these children) is on such a scale as to make ancient child sacrifice appear quite insignificant! Moreover, this is now state sponsored in many nations. Very young unmarried girls are being actively encouraged to have an abortion if they become pregnant, and yet the teaching of moral responsibility is avoided. There was never such a thing as state-sponsored child sacrifice even in the most despicable pagan city states of 4,000 years ago!
Loathsome as this thing is to many of us, I need to make this clear: doctors are paid a good salary (often by the government) for carrying out abortions on an absolutely huge level right across such 'advanced' nations as the UK, USA, Canada, Australia, and most of Europe as well! I DO NOT HAVE THE FIGURES IN FRONT OF ME BUT WE ARE TALKING ABOUT SEVERAL HUNDRED THOUSAND TINY, UNBORN INFANTS PER YEAR!
In complete contrast to this, if a pregnant woman was harmed in ancient Israel and she lost the baby as a result, the offending person could have faced the death penalty!! This starts to show us God's attitude to the harming of little children in the womb. But there is more:
When Israel entered the promised land, One of the reasons that they were forbidden from learning the ways of the surrounding nations was, in fact, the appalling practice of child sacrifice. Child sacrifice was (and is) an abomination to God. Just look at some of these Scriptures which reveal God's oft-repeated contempt for those who feel that they have the right and authority to sacrifice the lives of their own children: Lev 18:21; Deut 12:31; Deut 18:10; 2 Kings 16:3; 17:17,31; 21:6; 23:10; 2 Chron 28:3; 33:6; Jer 7:31; Ezek 20:31.
There is no doubt whatsoever that abortion has become one of the 'sacred cows' which must not be challenged in the western world. Here in the UK this so extreme that if a supporter of pro-life rings into one of those radio 'just ring in' discussion-type programmes which are discussing the protection of small children, his or her call will not even be considered, if it is discovered that the caller intends to attack abortion. But if an anti-abortionist should somehow still manage to reach the programme presenter, they will receive very short-shrift, brief and rude treatment.
So how does abortion attack the kingdom of God?
Because every little child who is born is a potential child of God with the real possibility of inheriting Eternal Life through the appropriation of Jesus Christ! Satan knows this and - make no mistake - he is the real author of the murder of tiny children. In contrast to that, the human family is a God-ordained instituition. God intended that parents of small children do their utmost to protect those children. But God's intentions are not thwarted that easily and I have little doubt that all aborted little ones are even now in heaven. This would mean that one of Satan's most fiendish plots against human beings has only assured that these tiny ones will certainly inherit Eternal Life.
I have written a lot about evolution elsewhere on this site (for those who are interested, some links at the article conclusion). But I must say just a little more here. I refer here to the Grand Theory (macro-evolution) which makes absurd claims. So-called 'micro-evolution' is not really evolution at all but the term has come to stick: this is the area of variations within kinds often according to local factors and/or adaptation. Plant and animal breeders work in these areas.
Regarding the Grand Theory, it must be considered absolutely astonishing that a theory which is not only unproven but is unprovable and which flies against the great weight of observable evidence including the evidence of millions of fossils continues to have influence (although, I feel increasingly little among leading scientists, biologists and geologists). The general public remain largely uninformed of the huge crisis which has been gradually gathering pace for the last 15 years in the scientific community on the subject of evolution. The number of leading scientists who feel that evolution must be challenged appears to be growing year by year. Encouraging too that these challengers of macro-evolution are among the 'leading lights' of science, including the brilliant molecular biologist, Michael Behe.
In fact, one of the reasons that I feel there is a need to say little more here is that there is a huge amount of information on the internet, much of it from scientists which attacks evolution.
But evolution is the huge lie which got accepted because of the very enormity of the lie! This great lie does away with the need for people to feel any moral responsibility for anything they do in their lives; if God did not create the world, He presumably cannot exist so why obey Him? There are many people out there who really do reason as shallowly as this.
So evolution is another great 'sacred cow' of the modern world which must not be challenged no matter what.
It is, of course, especially easy to see how this 'great truth' of our society attacks the kingdom of God. The theory says that there is no Creator God, and that everything we see all around us gradually evolved from lifeless matter (even though such a thing would be a complete scientific impossibility). So moral responsibility is largely removed and it should be no surprise that Darwinist racism and mis-explained 'survival of the fittest' was the very base from which Hitler, Stalin and others have operated. Incidentally, the racism of Darwin is now swept under the carpet despite its profound influence on the 20th century.
Sadly, evolution has caused a gradual, drip, drip, drip erosion of trust in the Christian Faith even among men who are supposed to be Christian leaders; I recently came across a most horrifying British survey of 103 Roman Catholic priests, Anglican bishops and Protestant ministers/pastors which showed that: 97% did not believe the world was created in six days, and 80% did not believe in the existence of Adam and Eve. (News item in Religion Today for 1999-DEC-29. This quoted the Conservative News Service. Original source of data was not specified). While the total number polled was very low (103), this is still a sickening statistic of a horrendous lack of faith among British so-called "Christian leaders." Obviously, few if any evangelicals were polled, but I would like to see around 750 such leaders polled in order to get a more accurate picture.
4. THE EMANCIPATION OF WOMEN
Is not the emancipation of women a wholly good thing? Our society tells us so, and no British politician dare challenge it unless he wants to risk being fired!
But, first of all, let me make it abundantly clear that women are made in the image of God and they are fully equal with men (by the way, Charles Darwin whom we mentioned in the last section, firmly believed that women were inferior to men).
One's attitude here will depend on whether we believe that there is a Creator God who has given a revelation to Mankind, or whether one rejects supernaturalism and feels that human reasoning is all we have.
The movement for the emancipation of women which developed during the 20th century has had a huge impact on society; whereas earlier centuries at least loosely accepted biblical principles that a woman's role is as loving support for her husband, as mother of the children with, perhaps, a more specific role to 'train them up' than men have, the women's emancipation movement has encouraged women to think that there is no reason why women themselves cannot have a career and be 'breadwinners.' One of the results of this is that married women have moved into the work-force in their tens of thousands.
Many married women (affected by the new social climate which tells them that they should have active lives outside of the home) are now discontented to be at home with the children.
The very large-scale movement of married women into the work force which has occurred during the last 25 years or so has been accompanied by several social effects, especially in certain countries:
1. Ever-spiralling divorce figures.
2. Increasing juvenile crime, often involving mere children of 9-10 years (particularly in the UK).
3. A marked problem of male unemployment (especially among men over 40, and especially in the UK).
4. An alarming rise in teenage pregnancies.
Now, is there really no connection here between some of these things? Traditionally it was more often than not the influence of a mother who kept her children out of trouble, while moulding them into decent and honourable young citizens, but this effect is certainly going to be diminished if the mother is busy at work! What about the incredibly high divorce figures? Are we going to be utterly naive and refuse to admit that attractive married women in the office are going to be noticed by their male work colleagues whether married or not?
So how does the emancipation of women attack the kingdom of God?
It attacks it for some of the very reasons we have already noted: God is both designer and supporter of the human family unit with a husband, wife and children. Moreover, although some active 'womens rights' people may baulk at it, He really has given guidelines in the Holy Bible which, if followed, will tend to make families stronger and more unified.
"Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh." (Genesis 2: 24).
The principle of 'one flesh' is the biblical principle of marriage. Like it or not, the picture of the 'constant closeness' of marriage partners comes across in many texts. The apostle Paul also stresses the need for husbands and wives to avoid the possibility of sexual temptation arising by being constant in their marital union (1 Corinthians 7:1-5). The biblical picture of a wife being a close support at her husband's side is far different to the very separate existences of some modern working couples!
Then there is the responsibility to correctly train children 'in the way that they should go', and there are so many biblical texts on this that I would not know where to start. But in our society, it seems to me, that parents of young children in particular are inclined to place them in any nursery/child care unit during the working day and are willing to pay a good fee for doing this, apparently without even considering that such young children are nobody's responsibility except the parents!
5. REBELLIOUS TEENAGE CULTURE
Perhaps this fifth point is not so much a 'sacred cow' of our societies but it is certainly something which is part and parcel of our society, and to the people of eastern cultures it seems very odd. We appear to have just accepted it and never challenged it. Yet we should be angry that scores of people in the music, media and fashion arenas have made a small fortune by the exploitation of our young people for their commercial ends; the result has been the complete alienation of our young people from their own parents.
It should be realized that for hundreds of years teenagers did the same as their parents did - there was no generation gap. They listened to the same music as their parents, read the same papers and magazines and went to the same sort of leisure activities. But this quite suddenly and dramatically began to change with the 'bobbysoxer girls' who screamed with excitement when Frank Sinatra sang. But things quietened down again for a number of years until the Rock n' Roll revolution from 1956. The huge flocking of young people to the record shops and to rock concerts began to give some shrewd marketing and advertising people the mighty vision of a huge teen culture which could be financially exploited. Suddenly young people in countries like USA and Great Britain had more money to spend than they ever had before and some of these shrewd businessmen decided that they wanted some of it!
This new culture - which would continue to drive a wedge between young people in the West and their parents - became reinforced with the arrival of The Beatles in the early 1960's. Peer pressure certainly helped to sustain the impetus - what young person does not want to be part of the 'in group' in their school or college? Even worse, young people read more and more about their favorite pop and rock groups in their teen culture magazines and they wanted to copy them as much as possible; this opened the door to the entry of drugs into accepted teen culture; after all, were there not some trashy 1960s magazines and papers which brazenly showed pop stars taking marijuana or LSD?
Some of our western teenagers came to almost idolize some of these groups and singers, and if they took drugs, well, hey! they must be good!
This has now reached the stage where young people no longer even seem to speak the same language as their parents (and certainly not their grandparents)! But I think that all of us who are parents are responsible for having just allowed this huge alienation to have taken place. Even worse, the greedy people who brazenly sold our kids junk-value music, clothes, literature and worse of all.....morals (under the lying pretense that it was better than their parent's standards) have now started turning their attention to pre-teen kids of 8-12.
It is not difficult to see how the alienation of young people from traditional values in the Christian West amounts to an assault on the kingdom of God!
In Israel it was a very serious offence if young people rebelled against their parents authority, but we have now departed so far from this that the former statement seems quite a surprising evaluation for many people; we have come to see the ongoing alienation as a mixture of cute, amusing and inevitable, and numerous teen-targeted television programmes make this tragic generation gap a subject of humour and comedy. The very odd thing is that we tend to be critical of some eastern and Islamic cultures where young people are not subject to this rebellion and alienation and where they still walk in loving submission to their parents!
The thread of the need and the requirement to love, teach and discipline our children is so strong and so emphasized throughout the Bible that it is almost superfluous to quote the Scriptures - we all know them! Proverbs 22:6 is a good example of frequently repeated biblical warnings to raise kids properly:
'Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.'
Of course, it is only fair to point out that never in human history has our adversary made a more determined bid to drive a firm wedge between young people and their parents than he has from the mid-20th century onwards, but once this insidious campaign got under way, many of us - yes, certainly including myself, I put my hand up and freely admit it - have been slow to react.
Looking back on it, it seems a huge mistake not to have withdrawn our own children from the public school system, but I was undecided on that, and my wife opposed it. We now only have one child in our care but she is fostered and we are not legally able to withdraw her from the appalling, atheism-assuming UK state school system.
We should start off by pointing out that homosexuality is not (as some fundamentalists appear to believe) the 'unforgivable sin,' in fact, in an age where the average male sperm count in the western world has plummeted to a huge degree, more effeminate men should be expected; what has now changed is modern society's new-found determination to actively encourage homosexual behaviour.
Homosexuality/Lesbianism is another 'sacred cow' of the Western world in this 21st century. Any opposing it are immediately looked upon as die-hard bigots of the worst kind! It's assumed everywhere, certainly in the mainly liberal world of the media, that homosexuality is simply an 'alternative lifestyle' and we are not to judge it. As in the case of abortion, any attempting to air anti-homosexual views on various radio 'just ring-in' discussion programs receive very short shrift and are branded as 'living in the past.' The prejudice is so strong, that even in the wake of AIDS (though certainly not all of AIDS has been caused by homosexuals and some claims seem to have been excessive), it is very hard to get a hearing for the viewpoint, however moderately expressed, that homosexuality is a perverse lifestyle which the young should be protected from/discouraged from, wherever possible. Indeed, on the contrary, the British government now states that 'gay rights' people should be allowed to enter schools and speak to older school children, making a brief case for homosexuality as one possible lifestyle!!
The apostle Paul makes some very interesting comments about homosexuality in Romans 1:24-27. The preceding verses seem to make it plain that God allows a society who willfully rejects His revelation to bring curses upon themselves:
'Because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Professing to be wise, they became fools.'
Here, without doubt, we see the origins of many things, including evolution, idolatry and liberalism!
But no society has willfully rejected the Lord's revelation more than the societies of Europe and America; we must realise that churches and chapels were full to overflowing in Britain and America just one hundred years ago, but such devotion to God has now greatly waned, especially in Britain. This effectively means that - as a society - we have rejected God in favour of secularism and anti-God liberalism. This applies far less to the eastern world where the name of Christ has not been widely known, so it is less true that God has been rejected. Indeed, we do find that secularism, liberalism and deviant sexual behavior has been especially accepted in those countries where much has been known about the revelation of God and Christ! I maintain that this is what we should expect to find........
'For this reason God gave them up to vile passions. For even their women exchanged the natural use for what is against nature. Likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust for one another, men with men committing what is shameful, and receiving in themselves the penalty of their error which was due. And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a debased mind, to do those things which are not fitting.'
Again, God is the Creator of the human family unit in which men and women come to love each other and produce children, seed for His kingdom: this was always God's intention. Things which set out to destroy this God-given pattern are warring against the kingdom of God.
So we have looked at six things which have become 'sacred cows' in the formerly Christian nations, and it should be clear to all who call themselves by the name of Christ how these things are at direct odds with, and directly attack, the very clear principles we find revealed within the Holy Bible.
Robin A. Brace
2004. Slight update in 2011.