Skip to comments.Do Our Christian Beliefs Have A Place In Our Public Lives?
Posted on 02/28/2014 4:52:43 AM PST by LD Jackson
I have been pondering the question posed in the title of this post for quite some time. I believe the main source of this pondering is the furor that is ongoing in America over the rights of individual business owners, who happen to be Christians and hold certain religious values, to refuse to service certain segments of our population. I was informed last year in a discussion on this blog that these Christian business owners had no such right, that if they did not want to serve a certain group of people, that constituted discrimination, and they should shut their business down. The person who made those statements was so offended by my views on this issue that she has not visited my blog since that time.
This issue has raised its head again in the last few days. The Republican controlled legislature in Arizona passed a bill that gave business owners the specific right to claim their religious beliefs as a defense, were they to be sued for refusing service. The uproar that followed was amazing to me. No matter how much the supporters of that bill tried to explain what it was all about, it was misrepresented and demonized, to the point that Arizona Governor Jan Brewer had little choice but to issue a veto.
I engaged in a discussion before the veto on a Politico article in defense of the bill by Rich Lowry. When I questioned why liberals didn't understand that our Christian beliefs were important to us, business owners or not, I was inundated with replies to inform me of the error of my ways. The basic premise was that Christian business owners had no right to allow their religious beliefs in to their business practices. I guess we are supposed to check them at the door, like a hat or coat. I don't know about you, but my religious beliefs are a part of who I am as a human being. I don't remove them when I go to work.
As I was driving home last evening, I happened to be listening to America Now with Andy Dean. He was discussing this issue and said something that somewhat shocked me. He was completely in favor of Governor Brewer's veto, saying we could not allow anything that resembled discrimination. As a proclaimed conservative, he was throwing the religious liberties and beliefs so many of us hold in the trash. Consider me to be now enlightened.
Back to the question at hand. Do our Christian beliefs have a place in our public lives? My short answer to that is a resounding yes. As Christians, are we supposed to leave our religious beliefs at home, on the chance that we may offend someone who does not belief in God or morality? Should we walk around, fearing discrimination so much that we refuse to allow our Christianity to show in public?
The overwhelming sentiment from the left seems to be that anytime Christians voice their opinion on a given issue, no matter if we cite our Christian beliefs or not, it constitutes a cramming of our beliefs down someone's throat. We are summarily informed we can not do that. They expect that to end the discussion because this is America. After all, don't we have "freedom from religion"? What they really mean to say is that we should have freedom from Christianity. Islam, Hinduism, Buddahism, and any other religion is praised to the sky. Because so many people are offended at the name of Jesus Christ and anything to do with his life, Christians are told to check their Christian beliefs at the door, take a seat, and shut up.
My friends, this is not the America I grew up in. Not even close. Our religious freedoms are on their way out.
It is a question of authority. Is the bible a higher authority than a states laws? Liberals say no.
A true Christian has a Christian life, period.
You’re asking the wrong question. It should be “Can a Christian’s religious life be SEPARATED from his public life?”
They will pay. Every knee will bow.
Never mind “Christian” beliefs. What about “Jewish” beliefs, or even Muslim beliefs? Will the “rights” of customers force resteraunt owners, Jewish or Muslim to served food that utterly violates their deeply held beliefs. After all the Christian “patron” may well want a HAM steak for his meal. Will someone demand the “right” to have Chinese food in a KOSHER dining room?
People of varying religions actually close their businesses on religious holidays, thus depriving a customer of his/he “right” to patronize that business. Will the business owner soon lose their right, as this country was founded, to direct their own business according to their religious beliefs.
In a well publicized case, the couple desiring a cake was in no way prevented from obtaining a cake in celebration of their wedding. I’m quite sure there were several other
bakeries in the are ready and HAPPY to oblige
What we are seeing is an society developing that is truly AGENDA driven people whose basic motto is “I WANT...”
I have heard the expression “The ME generation”. I think this is a prime example.
Seems pretty clear to me.
We just have a criminal feral government that ignores laws/amendments that it doesn't like.
Its pretty pathetic when you feel you should excuse your beliefs.
It is time to be righteously angry and BOLDLY refuse to be bowed by these cretins.
Perhaps Christian bakers, florists, photographers, wedding planners, singers and all others that offer products and services for Christian weddings could retreat to the Church in this way:
1. Stop advertising and offering wedding products and services to the general public.
2. Offer wedding products and services to churches only.
2a. An engaged couple or their financial supporters place an order through a church (where the wedding will take place) or through a list of planners that the church provides and the church or planner forwards the order to the business that is to provide the wedding product or service.
2b. No money passes through the church except the normal fee for the wedding service and rent of any church facilities used for wedding guests. Money may pass through the church referred planner.
2c. The wedding couple, their parents or backers pay directly to the business where the order was placed or to the church referred planner.
The Church could be used here as a sanctuary for Christian businesses to steer wedding related business through churches that perform traditional weddings.
The business for churches would be non-financial orders or requests only or an act to provide a referral list of planners or facilitators; no cash flow through a church is required.
Legal challenges to this business flow would fail basic business law. The wedding aspect of such businesses would cease to be public and become specialized to churches or their referenced planners only.
Engaged Christians or their planners would adapt to ordering only through a Church or to church referenced planners. In practice a wedding planner could request to be on a church’s list and proceed to deal directly with businesses that offer wedding products and services. Christian businesses with wedding products and services could insist on their part that wedding planners be on a list provided by a church.
Christian businesses that formerly offered products and services for weddings can continue to offer products and services to the general public that are not wedding related. Wedding related products and services would be available only to churches or their list of planners and facilitators.
This closes the loop and preserves the sanctity of Christian marriage.
Jewish weddings in most cases already do essentially the same thing. They keep the loop closed to Jewish businesses.
**Do Our Christian Beliefs Have A Place In Our Public Lives?**
God is the highest authority, to Whom ALL must bow. Even the United States of America ...
God made me, God owns me, I owe EVERYTHING to God.
If that doesn’t affect my “public life”, then I have rejected and spat upon God. My Faith and my allegiance to God MUST come before all else and inform everything that I do.
When the State (or anyone else) tries to place itself before God, it commits blasphemy and idolatry.
Really? It isn't obvious?
All of our beliefs have a part in our public lives. What we believe is who we are.
I am getting confused about why people want to make things that are extraordinarily simple into complex by adding a bunch of stuff that is irrelevant.
When you get off point you are conceding ground. When you concede ground you lose ground. When you lose ground you lose.
English Standard Version (ESV)
33 but whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven.
I have found that attrition rather than promotion has always worked for me. I live my life in a way that anyone who encounters me sees living example of God’s grace. (And no I do not do it perfectly. Some times I can be a real jerk.)
There was a movie ‘Ship of Fools’. A new one should be made, entitled ‘America, A Nation of Fools.
The country was founded by people who did not separate their religion from their public life. To even suppose that you might means their America is under attack.
I have heard several times, including by Governor Brewer, the remark that no one can show that Christian businesses are harmed by serving gay events. Which is to deliberately miss the point. There is a difference between offering a product or service that does not require you to take part in something you consider immoral, and offering a product or service that does require you to participate.
Serving a meal in your cafe to someone doesn’t require you to take part in his private immorality, if he behaves himself publicly. Catering an event that is itself immoral does require you to participate. Shooting a photo of someone on your premises again doesn’t require you to be complicit if he behaves himself. Photographing an event that you consider immoral does require you to participate.
Some Christians may draw the line differently than others, some may not object and some obviously do object. But your moral and religious life is yours, it is not to be dictated by anyone else. The founders knew this. Our current overlords are trying to overthrow them and define for us what is moral and what is not.
If this becomes law, that people are obliged to participate in immorality, then they will find other ways to avoid doing so. But the fact that they are forced and people are trying to force them with impunity means that they are no longer free men before the law.
You will notice that Christians built a country in which people would be respected who did not agree with us.
Anti-Christians are building a system that is totalitarian. It is in their spiritual genes. It is inevitable.
The wages of turning your back on the God of the Bible is slavery. An America even nominally under God was a free country becoming more free. An America that rejects God is headed for the cliff. The only question is how bad will it get before people get the message. This is like something out of the Old Testament and we are witnessing it.
This is an idea with merit. It is based on the most Christian of ideas: we can love the sinner without loving the sin. For me, one of the reasons Christians have not just a right, but an obligation, to refuse participation in any way with a sin, is that by doing so, the Christian also sins.
This is the crux of the problem. Non-Christians don’t understand the concept of loving the sinner while hating the sin. Liberals don’t understand the difference between reality and what they think is real.
While your idea is one that needs discussion, we could also determine how to best educate those suffering from ignorance and stupidity, along with their implacable selfishness.
We were established to be One Nation under God. As General George Washington included in General Orders issued in July,1776 and as President Lincoln included in his Gettysburg Address—and as President Ronald Reagan noted if we ever cease to be a nation under God we will be a nation gone under.Americans have chosen to allow the government usurp Religion and the Church.
The baker's were usually tied to a church or denomination. We had a Catholic cake lady, a Lutheran one, and a Methodist/Baptist one. Each lady typically served their specific church or churches.
In my personal case, as my Bride is Catholic and her cousin was the local “Catholic” church cake lady, she got our business. But typically it was (and I think still is) done by where the wedding was held.
It is a question of Truth. The left sees themselves as the protector of Truth, and feel it is their solemn and sacred duty to enforce that worldview on everyone in order to “save” them.
In other words, they are very serious about their religion. It is we Christians who are, it seems, not.
Christianity is offensive because it implicitly states that nothing you do will of your own will is ever be good enough to ensure your salvation.
The natural/autonomous man cannot abide this assertion.
Another way to look at it is
what facet of creation is exempt from the authority of the One Who created it?
Yes, churches have a great ability to organize and protect themselves and their members.
Still, the legislation and lawsuits should go forward because more is at stake than just weddings. As one astute poster reminded us that the Soviets drove Christians into their homes and harassed them if they should show any trace of their Christianity in public or in the workplace.
In the meantime it is a good strategy to ‘close the loop’ while fighting the broader battle for religious freedom.
Iron Jack— The Christians public life may partially be separated from his religious life—i.e. Rev.John Witherspoon ,as President of the College of New Jersey—and later as member of the Continental Congress. But No Christian ought allow the Government lay down the rules for what is legal Morally. “Our Constitution was made only for a Moral and Religious people,it is wholly inadequate for the government of any other.” President John Adams Oct.11,1798.Read the Fast Day Sermon preached by the President of the College of New Jersey ,John Witherspoon “The Dominion of Providence over the passions of Men “ p.529 Vol 1 Political Sermons of the American Founding Era ,1730-1805 Ellis Sandoz Editor Liberty Fund 1998.Or the Sermon Preached by Samuel West ,an Election Day Sermon ,1776 Note;Samuel west went on to serve as delegate to the Mass. Ratifying convention,1788.As proven by the life of Benedict Arnold who desperately wanted his public life as National Hero exploited but his private affairs as Traitor kept hidden. One cannot serve two masters. Whatever one is when no one else is looking is who they are when they serve in public office.
What is funny is my pastor is demanding we do the opposite in order not to offend others.
He hasn’t been the same since his brain injury
Jesus to His disciples, in Matthew 5:
14 You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden.
15 Nor do men light a lamp, and put it under the peck-measure, but on the lampstand; and it gives light to all who are in the house.
16 Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.
If we take lumps for acting on our faith, SO BE IT!!!!!
Anyone who insists that you violate your religeous beliefs for their benefit is an anti-religeous bigot. When they accuse you of discrimination, accuse them of religeous bigotry.
Anyone who insists you perform your labor for their benefit without your concurrence, and uses the power of the state to enforce their edicts, believes in slavery. Call them a slaver.
Take their money as a deposit, and return it the day before the event, telling them that you are too busy to do their job.
I think it’s important to draw the distinction between one’s MORAL life and one’ RELIGIOUS life. Where one’s religion is an integral part of himself and not just some ritualistic trapping, it informs his morality to the degree that the two are inseparable. But religion is about more than morals; it encompasses dogma, ritual, and liturgical practices. The latter can be compartmentalized for public officials; it is not valid to insist that your particular religious rituals be imposed on the general populace, for example. But it is undeniable — and desirable — that your moral values not be left behind at the statehouse door. If that happens, you become Nancy Pelosi or Ted Kennedy, professing a religion that you practice only as an occasional photo op, backdrop, or disguise.
Well put—and I think we can agree.
As I loo over this again hours later my stupid fingers yet again typed nonsense...
it should say ATTRACTION not attrition......at least it makes more sense that way