What Would Grandpa Say?
editor's note: Published in the July 2014 issue of Think magazine,
used by authors permission.]
by Jim Mettenbrink
cant judge me! People misusing Jesus
own words Judge
not, that you be not judged
(Matthew 7:1) in order to at least intimidate someone into silence.
To be sure, the context (verses 1-5)
of Jesus statement is not about criticism of a persons belief or behavior,
but rather about being a hypocrite criticizing someone, while sinning
in the same way. Making a judgment or condemning sin was not and is
not prohibited by Jesus. The apostle Paul repeatedly made judgments
about sin and sinners (e.g. 1 Corinthians 5). But have you
ever wondered what gave rise to the popularity of You cant
judge me, or at least not utter your judgment out loud? Today,
this accepted silence is couched in an all too familiar term.
Hows your PC working? No,
not your personal computer, but Political Correctness. Through
several centuries PC had changing meanings.
Further, most of us never heard of it until
relatively recently. However, since 1991 the media have bathed us
in its current usage. Although, tired of hearing the term, I am sorely
saddened by its practice, even by Christians. A broad spectrum of
American society has become one of cowardly and submissive robots following
PC! Why? What has caused this unAmerican
characteristic? Having an understanding of PC will lead serious Christians
to introspection of their beliefs and thereby prompt each to have the right
attitude toward PC and be in harmony with God.
In his 1991 University of Michigan commencement
address, President George H.W. Bush (198993) spoke against
a movement that would declare certain topics off-limits, certain
expressions off-limits, even certain gestures off-limits
. In effect, his statement announced that a cynical and
tyrannical foe threatened to obliterate the first amendment of the US constitution,
which is now having an impact on Christendom. The warning had come
from the mouth of the highest and most powerful elected official in the
world the US president.
PC has become the cultural standard of redefined
tolerance. At one time tolerance was the respect of others beliefs
and practices even though a person did not accept them as valid or right.
For example, when I joined the USAF in the mid 1960s, it was only
a matter of days before we were asking about one anothers faith. All
of us were open about it. We obviously did not agree with one anothers
beliefs, but we respected one another and their right to hold their beliefs.
No one ridiculed the Catholic for making the sign of the cross at
the mess hall. More so, in the days of my childhood, we were taught
to tolerate the unbearable person and his unmannerly, even disrespectful,
behavior. However, in the last couple decades PC has become the guideline,
or rather the hammer and anvil, of what is narrowly defined as acceptable
versus unacceptable speech in almost every sphere of life. In other
words the new tolerance is dictatorial tyranny. And it is worse than
just speech or gestures as President Bush warned.
Respecting a person, even one who is
abhorrent in character or belief did not arise from man, but from God. He
created all of us with an eternal spirit. Out of His unfathomable
love for all of us, let alone the most despicable, Jesus sacrificed Himself
to provide a way of reconciliation with God (Romans 5:8-11). In
societies where the Bible has had significant influence, it became a cultural
norm to respect one another because of Jesus love, even though they disagreed.
What would happen if Jesus, the knowledge of His love, and the
Bible were removed from that society?
That sinister thought began to slowly infect
mankind, especially the Western world, via the Renaissance which began in
Italy in the 1300s. Certainly, great progress was made in literature,
art and architecture, but it was also a radical shift from glorifying God
and living for Him to mans self indulgence. Europe began the
slow trek of depending upon itself rather than upon God. The 1600s
brought the Age of Enlightenment (Age of Reason) and the influence of Voltaire
and Descartes who essentially proclaimed that although God created this
universe, He no longer had any involvement with it Deism. Man
was now on his own. At the same time the Age of Reason spawned a movement
to criticize the Bible. Exercising Higher Criticism
essentially made man the judge deciding whether the Bible was from God or
The technological progress of the Industrial
revolution (1700s -1800s) made mankind more self sufficient, prompting him
to depend even less upon God, and more upon himself for the answers of life.
The advent of Darwins Origin of the Species
in 1859 took God out of the creator role and completely naturalized our
existence. The supernatural, i.e., God, was no longer needed.
By the end of the 1800s, higher criticism
had de-constructed the Bible so as to declare that neither Jesus nor His
apostles ever existed, thus the New Testament is irrelevant. In effect,
this endorsed the naturalist premise that man is his own god.
These premises developing through several
centuries began to come together as a new religion in the first quarter
of the 20th century. In 1918, Curtis Reese, a Unitarian minister,
evolutionist and leader among the no-God men, stated
at an annual Unitarian Conference that God was philosophically
possible, scientifically unproved and religiously unnecessary.
In 1930 Charles Potter, also a Unitarian minister, wrote Humanism:
A New Religion. He stated, Humanism is not
the abolition of religion, but the beginning of real religion. By
freeing religion of supernaturalism, it will release tremendous reserves
of hitherto thwarted power. Although it was first called
Religious Humanism, in time it was renamed Secular Humanism, attempting
to hide the fact that it is a religion.
In 1933, the first Humanist Manifesto established
the foundational beliefs. Humanism made man his own god, who could
make his own ethics and morality. By the mid 1970s, it was being taught
surreptitiously in the high schools. In 1982, I forbid my 7th grade
son from participating in a series of values clarification classes (read
that undermining parental values class) teaching the kids
to decide for themselves what is right and wrong. Todays teachers
were taught that as students in these public schools and later were taught
in public universities to teach the Humanist doctrine. Humanism became
Americas defacto state religion!
Humanism was spawned within the context of
Modernism which states real truth is determined by observation (scientific
method, etal). Spiritual and philosophical truths were deemed
as not absolute, but relative. Morals and ethics are not absolute
but changing as the situation dictated. Since man is his own god,
making his own rules, he can change them at any time on any occasion (Situation
If man is his own god, there is no real sin,
only choices. That being the reality, who could say any one is ever
really wrong? You cant judge me. Enter
For over 20 years, the PC doctrine has been
applied to ensure no one offends another. It is the watchdog guarding
the humanist choices from being offended by others different choices
or beliefs. PC tries to protect the masses from those who know God
and His absolute ways.
At the same time Postmodernism began its prominent
rise. It has the sense of equality everything must be equal
and equally accepted. For example the USAF Academy has worship services
for Wiccans in the chapel because it is an equally valid religion. This
principle applied to the religious and moral realm is an anathema, especially
for anyone who believes in Jesus.
Postmodernism, not only dictates respect for
the other persons choice (e.g. immorality), but you must consider
it as equally valid with yours. In practice, this means a Christian
can not say homosexuality is wrong. It must be considered as valid
as heterosexuality. This explains why there is an increasing opposition
to any semblance of God, Jesus and the Bible in the public realm.
In 1993, Dr Fredrick Hill, a school administrator,
stated, It is the mission of public schools not to tolerate intolerances.
The United Nations Declaration of the Principles
of Tolerance states, Tolerance
rejection of dogmatism and absolutism.
Since Jesus said, I am the Way, the Truth and the Light. No
one comes to the Father except through me
(John 14:6), Postmodernism judges Jesus as unacceptable because He
is intolerant of all other faiths. There is nothing in Christianity
which Postmodernism will tolerate. It now uses government to force
folks to be tolerant celebrate everything as equal and valid. Examples:
(1) In 1995, Samuel Kent, a US District court judge threatened any student
with six months in jail who would mention the name of Jesus in the graduation
prayer. (2) In 2010 Augusta State University told Jennifer Keeton
her belief that homosexuality is immoral is incompatible with the counseling
profession. She was ordered to undergo diversity sensitivity training
and write about its impact on her beliefs. Todays PC would be
better called PCP (Postmodern Correctness Police). Postmodernism moved
PC from silent disagreement to forced validation. PC is the silencer
and PCP is the handcuffs.
King Solomon wrote, And there is nothing new under the
sun. Is there anything of which it may be said, See, this is
new? It has already been in ancient times before us (Ecclesiastes 1:9-10). The principle
that everything is equally valid is not new.
Judahs King Manasseh brought wholesale
idolatry, including homosexual religious rituals (2 Kings 23:7) into
Gods temple. All religions were valid, except Gods. The
scriptures were literally lost (reflecting the disrespect for God),
only to be found by his grandson Josiah, some 20 years later (2 Kings
21-23). Evidently, Judah had such a Humanist attitude some 100
years earlier. God said Woe
to those who call evil good, and good evil
(Isaiah 5:20). There was no right or wrong.
Grandpa says, Know the devil is sly and often works slowly. Thus
to judge righteously, one must study the Bible to know real right and wrong.
And pray for boldness (Acts 4:29). Parents, its your responsibility
to ensure your children are being reared righteously and not postmodernly
(Ephesians 6:4). Oh
and we are commanded to judge
judge according to appearance, but judge with righteous judgment (John 7:24).
Thomas Jefferson Memorial God who gave us life gave us liberty.
Can the liberties of a nation be secure when we have removed a conviction
that these liberties are the gift of God? Indeed I tremble for my
country when I reflect that God is just, that his justice cannot sleep forever.