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Political correctness and censorship

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There are an increasing number of things, which cannot be said in public in our society. TV and radio and the education system exercise a form of censorship, which has crept into our society while most people have been looking the other way and not noticed what is going on.

 

In brief the censorship can be boiled down to two main areas:

 

 

These two are linked. In public today it is increasingly difficult to say that abortion and homosexuality are morally wrong, or that Islam, Judaism or Hinduism are wrong in their approach to God. Recently I was interviewed on a Christian radio station and told before the interview that I should not say anything critical about another religion.

 

This raises a huge problem relating to freedom of speech and the preaching of the Gospel. The Bible is clear that there is a right way to approach God and a wrong way. At Mount Carmel, Elijah was right and the prophets of Baal were wrong (1 Kings 18). The Jewish religious leaders in Jesus’ day were wrong in their understanding of Moses and the Prophets (Matthew 23) and wrong to reject Jesus as the Messiah (Luke 16.29-31, 24.25-48). The Greeks were wrong to worship Zeus, Diana and all their other gods (Acts 14, 17, 19). The false teachers were wrong when they denied apostolic teaching that Jesus was fully God and fully man (2 Peter 2, 1 John).

 

In the study of maths or modern languages we accept that there is a right answer and a wrong answer. But in moral and spiritual affairs we are not to say that something is right or wrong. This is actually a means of censoring the truth about God and the revelation of the Gospel.

 

Part of the problem is that there are people in the world who think that others are wrong and therefore wish to kill them or persuade them by force to change their minds. This is probably why Kofi Annan, UN Secretary General, said in his speech accepting the Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo: ‘The idea that there is one people in possession of the truth, one answer to the world’s ills, or one solution to humanity’s needs, has done untold harm throughout history – especially in the last century.’

 

The person who understands the Gospel realises that when Jesus told Peter to put away the sword (Matthew 26.52) he forbad the use of force as a means of spreading the Gospel. Our only method is by persuasion, expressing God’s love for the world revealed in Jesus Christ. When I first became a Christian I remember hearing the late Richard Wurmbrand speak passionately about why Communism is an evil ideology, which is wrong in its basic assumptions about God and humanity. He then spoke equally passionately about why we should love the Communists and seek to win them for the Lord. As I had just come out of the Communist Party this made quite an impact on me!

 

Today it seems that most people in our society are incapable of making this distinction between how we view a way of life or an ideology and how we view the people who follow that way of life. If we say that homosexuality is wrong, it is assumed that we are ‘homophobic’ and hate homosexuals. If we say that Islam is wrong, it is assumed that we are ‘Islamophobic’ and hate Muslims. The concept that we can love the people but say that they are wrong in their thinking is beyond the grasp of much of our society today.

 

In fact society says it is harmful to say such things and our freedom to say them is increasingly being censored. And here we come to the crunch. There is something, which the politically correct world considers to be wrong. Biblical Christianity. Most of the view points which are under attack today just happen to be ours!

 

TV broadcasters decided not to show the anti abortion ‘Prolife Alliance’ film at the time of the election on grounds of ‘decency and good taste.’ The Appeal Court have ruled that this amounts to censorship in a case which drew public attention to the hypocrisy of the ‘illiberal elite’ who control public broadcasting. They are willing to put out all manner of filth, including an increasing amount of violence, pornography and foul language before the 9 o’clock watershed, but they banned a film, which exposes the reality of the murderous practice of abortion.

 

Emmanuel College, Gateshead, has run into heavy condemnation for teaching creationism alongside evolution. The High Priest of Darwinism, Richard Dawkins, has claimed that the school’s Christian teachers are undermining the scientific teaching of biology. A number of comments from evolutionists on this issue show that they object in principle to any other theory than their own being taught on the origin of the universe and of life. The fact is that there is a great deal of scientific evidence which points to our existence being the result of God’s creation and design, rather than the evolutionary process. Apart from rare examples like Emmanuel College this whole area of discussion is totally censored from the broadcasting media and most of the educational system. The ‘illiberal elite’ would like to censor it from Emmanuel College as well.

 

The European Parliament passed a resolution in March called ‘Women and Fundamentalism.’ As yet this resolution has no binding force, but when you understand the agenda of those promoting it, you can see that it aims at preventing Christians from being able to give clear teaching on moral issues and at cracking down on those who are deemed to be ‘fundamentalists’.

 

The precise wording deplores ‘the interference of the Churches and religious communities in the public and political life of the state, in particular when such interference is designed to restrict human rights and fundamental freedoms.’ What do they mean by ‘rights’ and ‘freedoms’? The resolution gives an example: ‘For instance in the sexual and reproductive sphere, or incite and encourage discrimination.’ The resolution calls on ‘all believers of whatever creed to promote equal rights for women including the right to control their bodies.’ What this means in plain English is that Christians should not condemn abortion, homosexuality or sex outside of marriage, but should in fact promote them!

 

An example of what this means in practice was a recent incident in which street preacher Harry Hammond was arrested and fined in Bournemouth for holding up a sign saying a sign saying ‘Stop Immorality, Stop Homosexuality, Stop Lesbianism.’ Mr Hammond was charged with harassment after a homosexual complained that the street corner sermon was an incitement to attack homosexuals. In fact the homosexuals attacked Mr Hammond, pelting him with dirt and eggs, but no charge was brought against them.

 

The resolution on fundamentalism also calls on the EU to shape its foreign policy with a view to ‘helping eradicate anti-Western reaction or fundamentalist tendencies.’ ‘Fundamentalism’ does not just mean the Islamic variety, but Christian fundamentalist views. These include believing in God as Creator, Jesus as unique mediator between God and humanity bringing one way of eternal salvation and that marriage is the only acceptable sexual relationship to God. ‘Fundamentalism’ also means believing that there is a non-negotiable truth revealed in the Bible, which affects how we live.

 

On the subject of the Bible it is alarming to read that a top European Union judge has warned that distributing the Bible could become illegal under a proposed European anti-racism law. British Law Lord Scott of Foscote was speaking about another EU law which is meant to normalize member-states’ laws against racism. ‘The offence in question would almost certainly cover the distribution of Biggles (novels about a fictional WW II pilot). It would probably cover the distribution of the Old Testament as well’, he said.

 

Scott outlined the European Commissions draft definition of racism and xenophobia as involving ‘the belief in race, colour, descent, religion, or belief, national or ethnic region, as a factor determining aversion to individuals or groups’. The proposed offence would include ‘public dissemination or distribution of tracts, pictures, or other material containing expressions of racism or xenophobia’. Apparently the Bible which tells us to ‘love your neighbour as yourself’ could be classified as such a document!

 

All of this adds up to a growing control of our society by forces, which are militantly opposed to the truth of the Bible and increasingly control what we can and cannot say in public in our society. In so doing they are taking steps, which will censor our right to proclaim the ‘whole counsel of God’ (Acts 20.27). How long we will be able to produce and disseminate magazines like this one remains to be seen.

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