The problem for us is that we have been given very firm guidelines of how to live and what is right to do, and what is wrong to do. It is mostly black and white, without grey areas. Our Western society is various hues of grey, empowered by what is known as postmodern relativism, where “what is right for you may not be right for me”. This may as well be the motto of our ‘tolerant’ society.
The fact is that our society is not as tolerant as it makes out. Its one intolerance is against Biblical Christianity, because of its self-evident intolerance. Yes, this is a play on words but it brings to mind the fact that tolerance can only work in an atmosphere of lawlessness. So Christians have a choice to make, do they stand up for Biblical principles as endorsed or stated by Jesus himself, or do they seek to re-interpret them for the modern age, in order to fit in with the tolerance that is demanded by it. Do we compromise to ‘stay relevant’ to society?
Let us return to Tudor England. Here we see that it is not principles at stake but lives. Hugh Latimer was one of the first and possibly one of the most influential reformers of the Church, speaking openly about the errors of the Catholic Church, particularly concerning the Eucharist. He was eventually imprisoned, with others he worked alongside, such as Nicholas Ridley and Thomas Cranmer. They became the Oxford martyrs, burnt horribly at the stake rather than recanting their views. A recantation would have spared them from death. They were prepared to endure such a death rather than speak contrary to their conscience and understanding of Scripture. They weren’t prepared to tolerate the views of Queen Mary.
Today we are faced with the following kinds of headlines:
“Christians threatened after refusing to print gay wedding invites”
Relatively trivial when compared to the persecutions we have read about, but, then again, unthinkable headlines perhaps ten years or so ago. It’s persecution of a sort and it’s creeping onwards and we need to know how to deal with it.
But here are some headlines of a different nature, showing us how the established church seems to be dealing with these threats:
Gone are the days when Christians should look at the established Church for guidance. Political expediency and acceptance are the current goals of the State Church.
This is an extract from the book, Livin’ the Life, available for £10 at https://www.sppublishing.com/livin-the-life-151-p.asp
How far should we compromise our beliefs?
Written by: Miriam Emenike
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