Saturday, June 26, 2010

Are you scared of it?

Two newspapers in Australia have reported that their are 'concerns' over the way scripture, or Religious Instruction, is being taught in N.S.W. public schools. Volunteers from the community, as well as church pastors, take these classes as part of the legally mandated Scripture classes run in public schools in the state. A study by Macquarie University has been told that children are being told they will go to hell if they do not believe in Jesus Christ.
Does anyone dare write to the people running the study and tell them: bluntly, though it's not intended to be a threat, that is what the Gospel does teach. There is only one way for the human soul to be saved after the body dies. The soul is everlasting, and it may or may not be saved from permanent misery by separation from God; and that one way is to know Jesus Christ and believe in Him.
The complaint is that kids are being brainwashed, or scared, or something, into 'extreme views' of Christianity. Apparently the pure truth taught by the Christian Gospel is 'extreme'.
It might be that those teachers who put this across had in fact said that Jesus came to save the world, and die for us, rather than just trying to scare kids. Evangelism is 'the Good News', after all. But it is not extreme to teach about the threat of dying unsaved, unless you want to falsify Christian doctrine into a wishy washy thing about just being nice to people.
Suppose it scared kids to be shown what can happen if they drink and then drive, by telling them what happens in vehicle accidents? Should they not be told in case it makes them uncomfortable? What about the risks involved in unsafe sex? Should others keep silent in case hearing the truth upsets someone? In Australia, we have health warnings about skin cancer caused by too much exposure to the sun. Should we stop running them in case it upsets someone?
It is not compulsory to attend Scripture classes in public schools. No-one has to be there. But if the classes are about Christianity, should they not tell it like it is?
I had to grapple with this when I first became a Christian, at 24 years of age. It was not good to know that some 'good' people I knew were not saved. They needed to come to terms with Jesus, not just be well intentioned. I find it difficult to cope with. But if it's true, it is true. You can't escape an issue by denying it.
That is why some people do not want to hear the Gospel. It would confront them with things they don't want to have to admit or deal with. I can't make them, but they can't make me deny what Christianity is and dumb it down for their convenience. If they don't like hearing, what does that show? They might be afraid it's true? It's funny the way some people scoff at Christianity, yet get uncomfortable when ever it is discussed.
Are they scared of it?

3 comments:

Marshall Art said...

"Are they scared of it?"

I believe the answer is an unequivical...YES! I think that's the reason people advocate a "separation between church and state" the way it is pushed today. Most people know well that their behavior leaves a little to be desired and to have God ever present in their lives is a reminder. That cramps their style. They would prefer not to have to think about God, but instead go on and live the life that on THEIR terms is "good". To be held to the standards God has set is much too restrictive to them, not realizing that they have allowed themselves to be enslaved to their personal spiritual poison. Thus, to be reminded of the penalty of doing things one's own way is indeed frightening, because they can't shake the feeling that, hey, maybe that Christian stuff is true! What if it is?

At the same time, some argue that they don't want to be threatened to believe, and so they take the truth as a threat that they can dismiss without fear. But as you say, to learn about the faith without learning ALL of it is no good to them.

What they don't realize is that for Christians, such horrors are not a concern because of our faith. But the horrors of rejecting God is a fact that must not be dismissed.

Marshall Art said...

I don't think I spelled "unequivical" the right way.

Fr. Peter Doodes said...

Are they scared of it... yes

As Mark Twain once said; the parts of the New Testament that gave him the most trouble were not those that he could not understand, but that he actually could understand.

Sometimes His truth falls upon stony ground Andrew...