CultureWatch

Bill Muehlenberg's commentary on issues of the day...

Is This the End of Christianity in England?

May 21, 2009

One way or another, the lights seem to be going out for Christianity in England. If the secularists do not destroy the church there, the Islamists are happy to have a go at it. Just last week it was announced that the BBC has appointed a Muslim to be “the Head of Religion and Ethics”. This is simply the latest in a long list of Islamist initiatives which may well turn England into a Muslim nation.

As Melanie Phillips documented in her important book, Londonistan, the Islamisation of England is steadily rolling on. See my review of this vital book here: www.billmuehlenberg.com/2006/08/31/a-review-of-londonistan-how-britain-is-creating-a-terror-state-within-by-melanie-philips/

And of course there are also the secularists, especially represented by the militant homosexual lobby. They too have had a tremendously powerful impact on the silencing of Christianity. This is another issue I have frequently documented in these pages.

Consider the latest indication of this, as detailed in the Telegraph: “Churches will be banned from turning down gay job applicants on the grounds of their sexuality under new anti-discrimination laws, a Government minister said. Religious groups are to be forced to accept homosexual youth workers, secretaries and other staff, even if their faith holds same-sex relationships to be sinful. Christian organisations fear that the tightened legislation, which is due to come into force next year, will undermine the integrity of churches and dilute their moral message.”

The article continues, “It comes amid growing concern that Christians are being unfairly targeted by discrimination laws, following a number of high-profile cases of courts finding against believers who stand up for their faith. Religious leaders had hoped to lobby for exemptions to the Equality Bill but Maria Eagle, the deputy equalities minister, has now indicated that it will cover almost all church employees.”

This is what Ms Eagle told delegates at the Faith, Homophobia, Transphobia, & Human Rights conference in London: “The circumstances in which religious institutions can practice anything less than full equality are few and far between. While the state would not intervene in narrowly ritual or doctrinal matters within faith groups, these communities cannot claim that everything they run is outside the scope of anti-discrimination law. Members of faith groups have a role in making the argument in their own communities for greater LGBT acceptance, but in the meantime the state has a duty to protect people from unfair treatment.”

A spokesman for a religious charity, the Christian Institute, said this: “It would be absurd to pass a law demanding that the Labour Party employ card-carrying Conservative members, but that is effectively what churches are being told to do. We just want the same exceptions as political parties. Christians are sick to the back teeth of equality and diversity laws that put them to the back of the queue. We are quite prepared to accept that people will take a different view to us on moral and ethical questions, but that should not mean we have to withdraw from public life.”

But that is the whole point of such laws: to forever rid Christianity from the public square. Consider what a Government Equalities Office spokesman said: “The Equality Bill will not force a church to accept someone as a priest regardless of their sexual orientation or gender. Churches, synagogues, mosques and others will continue to have the freedom to choose who they employ in jobs which promote their religion. But where they provide services to the public they will have to treat everyone fairly.”

This is just typical secular double talk. As if services provided by the church have anything other than a very public outworking. Christianity is a public faith, and everything about it will have an impact on the public arena. So the removal of religious exemptions will effectively silence the church for good.

And that is just what the homosexual activists and the militant secularists have long been working toward. They have been very clever about this. They say that religious people are welcome to practice their faith, just as long as it is not done in public.

It is all about the privatisation of a faith which by its very nature is a most public faith. Believers are commanded to go into the whole world and proclaim the good news of Jesus Christ. But the secularist mafia want believers to be shut at up home in their little prayer closets, or have church services which have absolutely no bearing on the world around them.

Sorry, but that is not biblical Christianity. Jesus told us to be the salt of the earth and the light of the world. The secularists are seeking to de-salt Christianity and remove its light, hiding it under a barrow. This of course is the very thing Jesus said we should not be doing as believers (Matt. 5:13-16).

So these anti-Christian bigots are being quite sneaky about all this: “Sure, you can still practice your faith! Just make sure it impacts no one, affects nothing, and influences absolutely zippo. We are quite happy with a faith like that!”

This is a war of worldviews. Just as the early Christians clashed head-on with the ruling powers of the day, proclaiming Christ – not Caesar – as Lord, so too today we have a full-on battle taking place. The secularists want us to be a silent, obedient and docile bunch who do not ruffle any feathers or make any waves.

But that just cannot be. It is said of the early church that they turned the world upside down (Acts 17:6). That forever must be the true nature of the church of Jesus Christ. Christianity will always have a significant social impact, and Christians will never share their allegiance with any other contender to the throne.

We will certainly seek to be good citizens, but we will not bow the knee to Caesar. Nor will we bow the knee to a militant secularist state that is seeking to drain the lifeblood out of the church of Christ. Christians are always people with divided loyalties. We are citizens of two kingdoms, and when the kingdom of this world challenges the kingdom of God, the latter must take precedence.

At the moment many forces are warring against the Christian church. In England, and much of the Western world, the two main opponents are militant Islam and militant secularism. Both are seeking to crush the life out of Christianity.

The good news is, we know that in the end the church will prevail. But that does not mean that we should now sit idly by, and just pretend the assaults are not taking place. We must be involved in these battles, and do all we can to withstand the twin forces seeking to wipe out Christianity from England and elsewhere.

www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/religion/5357247/Law-will-force-churches-to-employ-gay-staff.html

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24 Responses to Is This the End of Christianity in England?

  • Bill,

    This might not be the best spot for this but wanted your thoughts on a article I just read where the headline says it all: “Lesbian model Katherine Dalton has sex change to become gay man.”
    www.news.com.au/story/0,23599,25520554-2,00.html?from=public_rss

    Yet again in Britian! How does the homosexual lobby justify this away?

    Paul Wakeford

  • Bill,
    A question, an observation, and a challenge.
    1. Will these new hiring laws apply also to mosque-related enterprises, or will they be exempt? That is, are the new “anti-discrimination” laws themselves discriminatory?
    2. As you observe yourself, this is a war of worldviews. My problem, which often angers me, is how “Christian lefties” in the end support these laws, or at least don’t believe that they are anything to make a fuss about. IOW, they bow out of the battle before they even begin the fight, and what is worse, they would deride us for fighting the war.
    3. If Christians in Britain have not seen in the past what is going on, then surely they must now, and resolve on defying the law, just as their Lollard, Puritan, and Covenanting ancestors did. the trouble is that too many are compromised, weak-willed, and ignorant of Biblical principles to engage the fight.
    Murray Adamthwaite

  • It is said that we live in a secular age and that the post war generations, especially since the sixties have taken it as a self evident truth that our lives are autonomous: the rights of the individual are absolute and sacred. Like “Home Alone” kids, we believe that we have become liberated from the inhibitions, constraints boundaries of our cultural past – and particularly of our Christian “prejudices.”

    But unless we wish to go insane, like those who undergo spending too long a time in a sensory depravation chamber, we are forced to view the world through another grid or mesh in order to interpret and make some sense of it. Consequently we have merely submitted to another set of presuppositions, regarding truth, existence and morals.

    As Francis Schaeffer says in “The God who is there,” “The mass of people may not enter an art musem, may never read a serious book. If you were to explain the drift of modern thought to them, they might not be able to understand it; but this does not mean they are not influenced by the things they see and hear – including the cinema.”

    The present generation, though given the illusion that they are independent and free of all constraints, are governed by an ideology that falls on them daily, like black atomic dust, principally from the mass media.

    Controversy, so fashionable two decades ago, especially amongst the intellectual elite, that indulged in endless conversations and that ridiculed certainty or strongly held convictions has finally achieved its goal. Tolerance and broad mindedness have had their time; instead a totalitarian one party state emerges where dissenters and dissidents are silenced by one means or another.

    Tony Blair has recently said, “Actually, we need an attitude of mind where rethinking and the concept of evolving attitudes becomes part of the discipline with which you approach your religious faith. So some of these things can then result in a very broad area of issues being up for discussion.” In other words in an evolving world nothing is fixed, there are no absolutes – excepts those stipulated by the elite, like himself of course.

    Tony Blair also said, “On many issues, I think the leaders of the Church and the Church will be in complete agreement. But I think on some of these issues, if you went and asked the congregation, I think you’d find that their faith is not to be found in those types of entrenched attitudes [code word for belief in the unchanging word of God]. If you asked ‘what makes you religious?’ and ‘what does your faith mean to you?’ they would immediately go into compassion, solidarity, relieving suffering. I would be really surprised if they went to ‘actually, it’s to do with believing homosexuality is wrong’ or ‘it’s to do with believing this part of the ritual or doctrine [code word for belief in the unchanging word of God] should be done in this particular way.”

    Michael D. O’Brien says “How long will it take for our people to understand that when humanist sentiments replace moral absolutes, it is not long before very idealistic people begin to invade human families in the name of the family, and destroy human lives in the name of humanity (and tolerance) This is the idealist’s greatest temptation, the temptation by which nations and cultures so often fall. The wielder of power is deluded into thinking he can remould reality into a less unkind condition. If he succeeds in convincing his people of the delusion and posits for them an enemy of the collective good, then unspeakable evils can be released in society. Those who share a mass-delusion rarely recognise it as such, and can pursue the most heinous acts in a spirit of self-righteousness.”

    David Skinner, UK

  • A sound analysis, Bill, thank you.

    In the Catholic Church we have a ‘formal charter’ if you like. The Corporal Works of Mercy, like the call to preach the good news, is a mandatum – it forms part of the essential character of how the Church and its members express themselves as they relate to the world in Christian Charity. To deny this opportunity (as this legislation clearly does) is to deny the character of the faith – a bit like a spiritual frontal lobotomy, really.

    Clearly, the Church will suffer as will society. We must fight, but we do so rejoicing in the opportunity to share in the sufferings of Christ.

    Paul Russell

  • The question that often arises in my mind is if the Muslims and anti-christian groups are so successful in effecting changes to suit their agenda, why are not the christians? It is obvious in an increasingly demonstrative world, just sitting back and doing nothing is likely to erode every shred of christian values.
    Pat Brams

  • Thanks Bill. Disconcerting. Very disturbing.

    …P.T. Forsyth said: ‘civilisation may deserve to collapse … if God spared not His own Son, He will spare no historic convulsion needful for His kingdom.’ (The Justification of God, p. 194).

    The prayer of Habakkuk readily comes to mind, when severe judgments are in the land: “O LORD, I have heard of your renown, and I stand in awe, O LORD, of your work. In our own time revive it; in our own time make it known; in wrath may you remember mercy.”

    Kind regards, Bill.
    Trevor Faggotter

  • Taking another tack for consideration, this may be the best thing that has happened to the church in England. I lived there till I was 40 and went back in 1996 and 2006 and could sense the decay that was taking place.

    When things like this happen the church has two choices. To obey God or man. The liberals and the bless me clubs will obey man. The true church will obey God and go forth like a mighty army. There is nothing like opposition to focus the mind.

    Roger Marks

  • Some of these churchians shot themselves in the foot by supporting the crappy laws while pleading for exemptions. But the very fact of exemptions shows that the laws themselves are bad.
    Jonathan Sarfati, Brisbane

  • Live free, or die.
    Greg Brien

  • Perhaps I’m overly cynical but are we really surprised by this? Did we ever entertain any delusion that we Christians were the target of these ‘rights’ campaigns from the word go? Classic capricious campaigning. Set up your opponent so they are right in the path of the objectives. Word the objectives so convincingly that trampling over anyone in their path is considered perfectly reasonable. Assure your opponents that exceptions will be made to protect them, setup the temporary diversion then remove that when you go for the final thrust. Hey presto, you can now persecute your opponent (ie, Christians) under the ‘noble’ guise of ‘rights’. To think this all started with a plea to ‘just to decriminalise’.

    Are we really surprised by this? And as a commentator rightly pointed out – Are the Mosques to be held to the same standards? Rhetorical question isnt it?

    Doug Holland

  • Thanks Doug

    Yes you are quite right. Of course we should not be surprised at this. After all, our opponents have been telling us all along how they intend to achieve their goals. Why not take them at their word? Things are nicely going to plan for the other side, and most Christians don’t even have a clue.

    What makes this all the more tragic is how some Christian groups have been deluded into thinking that if we just play their game, and extend to them special rights, and try to “meet them halfway,” they will be satisfied and leave us alone.

    Such reasoning betrays a serious refusal to understand what our opponents are on about. The first rule in warfare is to know the enemy. Sadly some Christian groups have no idea who the enemy is and what they are seeking to achieve.

    They have naively thought that compromise would be an effective strategy. Thus many have said, ‘yes, we will allow these laws, but we want some exceptions for ourselves’. This is foolish in the extreme. If the state grants exemptions, it can just as easily take them away. They are doing that in the UK, they are doing it all around the Western world, and they are doing it here in Victoria as we speak.

    These laws should have been fought against tooth and nail when they were first introduced. Tragically, while some of us did just that, other Christians who should have known better capitulated and gave in, thinking it was the “Christian” thing to do, or an important bit of “social justice” to grant special rights to our ideological opponents. Now we are paying the price big time, and it will only get worse.

    So in many ways we have been our own worst enemy. But I for one will keep fighting, until they lock me away in prison, fine me out of existence, or seek to exile me. This is the clear direction we are headed in. Who will stand up and be counted, and stop engaging in useless and counterproductive compromise?

    Bill Muehlenberg, CultureWatch

  • Winston Churchill defined an appeaser as “one who feeds the crocodile hoping it will eat him last.”

    David Skinner. UK

  • If one really wants to find out what and how the enemy is thinking one only has to contribute comments on the PinkNews site in the UK. This is not for the faint hearted or those who don’t want to get their hands dirty but I believe it is here, no matter how distasteful, that we are going get our training in mind games, because that is what we are into. For the opposition, life is meaningless, just a game and believe me they are winning it at the moment, especially with the minds of our children.

    David Skinner, UK

  • I have thought long and hard about this, and believe that even if churches were forced to get out of being providers of services to the public, yet Christians should remain as supporters of that ‘public service’.
    The other alternatives: fight in the courts and the media and form alliances with the Jewish groups that will also be affected.
    Wayne Pelling

  • One day there will be knock at the door…now where is my tooth brush?

    www.anglican-mainstream.net/?p=10882

    David Skinner, UK

  • According to the thug Maria and her lesbian twin Angela Eagle, it is only the LGBTs who will have equal rights in a free and fair society. Inevitably the LGBTs will extend into LGBTPs, LGBTPN, LGBTZ …..until at least 30 sexual orientations identified by American Psychiatric Association (APA) will have gained their rights and privileges.

    Am I making too subtle a statement when I point out that buried amongst the list below heterophilia are homophilia are described by their sexuality instead of their emotional attachment. This surely is an attempt to convince us that they are genetically and biologically determined, for which there is not an ounce or shred of scientific evidence.

    Asphyxophilia – sexual gratification derived from activities that involve oxygen deprivation through hanging, strangulation, or other means
    Autogynephilia – the sexual arousal of a man by his own perception of himself as a woman or dressed as a woman
    Bisexual – the capacity to feel erotic attraction toward, or to engage in sexual interaction with, both males and females
    Coprophilia – sexual arousal associated with feces
    Exhibitionism – the act of exposing one’s genitals to an unwilling observer to obtain sexual gratification
    Fetishism/Sexual Fetishism – obtaining sexual excitement primarily or exclusively from an inanimate object or a particular part of the body
    Frotteurism – approaching an unknown woman from the rear and pressing or rubbing the penis against her buttocks
    Heterosexuality – the universal norm of sexuality with those of the opposite sex
    Homosexual/Gay/Lesbian – people who form sexual relationships primarily or exclusively with members of their own gender
    Gender Identity Disorder – a strong and persistent cross-gender identification, which is the desire to be, or the insistence that one is, or the other sex, “along with” persistent discomfort about one’s assigned sex or a sense of the inappropriateness in the gender role of that sex
    Gerontosexuality – distinct preference for sexual relationships primarily or exclusively with an elderly partner
    Incest – sex with a sibling or parent
    Kleptophilia – obtaining sexual excitement from stealing
    Klismaphilia – erotic pleasure derived from enemas
    Necrophilia – sexual arousal and/or activity with a corpse
    Partialism – A fetish in which a person is sexually attracted to a specific body part exclusive of the person
    Pedophilia – Sexual activity with a prepubescent child (generally age 13 years or younger). The individual with pedophilia must be age 16 years or older and at least 5 years older than the child. For individuals in late adolescence with pedophilia, no precise age difference is specified, and clinical judgment must be used; both the sexual maturity of the child and the age difference must be taken into account; the adult may be sexually attracted to opposite sex, same sex, or prefer either
    Prostitution – the act or practice of offering sexual stimulation or intercourse for money
    Sexual Masochism – obtaining sexual gratification by being subjected to pain or humiliation
    Sexual Sadism – the intentional infliction of pain or humiliation on another person in order to achieve sexual excitement
    Telephone Scatalogia – sexual arousal associated with making or receiving obscene phone calls
    Toucherism – characterized by a strong desire to touch the breast or genitals of an unknown woman without her consent; often occurs in conjunction with other paraphilia
    Transgenderism – an umbrella term referring to and/or covering transvestitism, drag queen/king, and transsexualism
    Transsexual – a person whose gender identity is different from his or her anatomical gender
    Transvestite – a person who is sexually stimulated or gratified by wearing the clothes of the other gender
    Transvestic Fetishism – intense sexually arousing fantasies, sexual urges, or behaviors involving cross-dressing
    Urophilia – sexual arousal associated with urine
    Voyeurism – obtaining sexual arousal by observing people without their consent when they are undressed or engaged in sexual activity
    Zoophilia/Bestiality – engaging in sexual activity with animals .

    But in the same way that the desire to give Muslims equal rights to the rest of us and thus give them the equal right to take away our rights and impose tyranny on us (for that is what the Q’ran tells the Muslim to do – dhimmitude) so giving equal rights to homophiles is giving them the right to take away the Christian heterophile’s rights (because Hegelian Marxism, from which modern homophilia comes, is determined to destroy all antithesis, categories and absolute moralities, in other words sodhimmitude [Thanks to Mansel Rogerson for this new defintion]).

    David Skinner, UK

  • In time, Christians will become a minority group. I wonder if then, will we have the same power and standing that minority groups have today? Probably not. Best we make a stand now.
    David Visser

  • I first received this news from a similar site to Bill’s, “Christian Concern for our Nation” – a UK site I have subscribed to for several years. I would like to assure folk out there thatt many Christians in the UK have been campaigning against heinous laws there for a long time – both actively by writing to MPs and others and with the mighty weapon of prayer. There have been some victories but it is obvious that persecution is coming soon for true believers. Being honest, this is scary – and we return to the UK from Australia in November. Pray for (all of) us that our faith fail not and that we fight the good fight to the end. I am glad to know that usually the church of Christ expands mightily when persecuted. Let that be the case in Britain too.
    Katharine Hornsby

  • Thanks Bill for this. I sent at letter to the BBC in response to a similar article in Salt Shakers. Will include it here in the hope others will add their voice to see change at the BBC.

    The BBC’s reply below provides some encouragment that our voice might prevail – but not apart from prayer.

    Blessings,
    Michelle Shave.
    PS A link -also at end- to register formal complaints: www.bbc.co.uk/complaints

    Dear Sir,

    Concern about the appointment of a Muslim to a key role in the BBC’s religious programming content is echoing around the world and fuels the fear that Christianity in Britian is not only being sidelined but seduced with the help of appointments such as you have made. Putting a Muslim in charge of a Christian nations national broadcaster’s religious programming is like putting Sylvester in charge of Tweetie’s cage maintenance programme – its a betrayal of your nation’s history and
    heritage and the vast majority of Christians who inhabit your nation which, in case you haven’t notice, is under sustained Muslim siege – from a cultural vantage point.

    With global news increasingly carrying stories of Muslim/terrorist oppression and destruction of Jewish and Christian synagogues/churches and people, your choice of a Muslim appointee is irresponsible if not irrational in light of these continuing developments.Talk of ‘the best man for the job due to experience with such programming etc etc’….is at best just gloss that covers a failure in duty of care to the majority Christian population in your nation and Christians world wide who receive your broadcasts. At worst it’s gullible Trojan Horse trading to your own detriment

    In the interests of not committing cultural suicide, you should give serious thought and appropriate action to reversing this irresponsible if not quisling (I hope not) decision.

    Muslims globally are laughing up their sleeve at Britians appeasement of Islams cultural jihad program of which your appointment of a Muslim is just one such example, while the rest of Christindom is aghast. The Muslims doctrine of Taquia – holy deception – of which you seems oblivious – is now set to permeate through your network with the surrender of such a key position to a 5th column.

    Children in Muslim schools worldwide are being taught “It’s okay to lie to infidels, steal from infidels and rape/kill infidels , because they’re just infidels”(of which you are one if you’re not a Muslim). Evidence of this indoctrination is seen nightly on our news programs. Once they gain the majority control of the BBC’s executive positions, you ‘infidels’ who have put them there will be replaced by their own and the news scripts rewritten to be ‘sharia friendly’.

    May you enjoy your current positions of authority for if you don’t remove your current Muslim appointee, you will soon be silently removed and ‘replaced’ with one of their own – courtesy of cultural jihad! I pray I’m wrong, (though history indicates otherwise) but for you, Britian and the rest of the world if I’m not.

    Yours sincerely,
    Michelle Shave

    www.bbc.co.uk/

    Dear Mrs Shave

    Thanks for your e-mail.

    I understand that you object to the appointment of Aaqil Ahmed as the BBC’s Head of Religion and Ethics and Commissioning Editor TV because he is a non-Christian. I note that you feel that this doesn’t reflect the
    majority religion in the country.

    Aaqil was simply the best candidate for the role. It is BBC policy to recruit on experience and suitability to the post, not on the basis of faith. Aaqil has almost ten years experience in religious broadcasting – first at the BBC where he was Deputy Editor for Documentaries at BBC
    Religion and more recently as Head of Religion and Multicultural at Channel 4 were he was responsible, as you note, for commissioning (amongst many other programmes) ‘Christianity: A History’.

    Aaqil is an experienced programme makers who is well used to serving Christian audiences with a wide-range of programming. As the majority faith of the UK, we will continue to commission programming to serve the audiences. Christian programming will remain the cornerstone of the BBC’s Religion and Ethics department output.

    However, I do acknowledge your concerns over the appointment and I’d like to assure you that I’ve registered your comments on our audience log. This is a daily report of audience feedback that’s circulated to many BBC staff, including members of the BBC Executive Board, channel controllers and other senior managers.

    The audience logs are seen as important documents that can help shape decisions about future programming and content.

    Thanks again for taking the time to contact us.

    Regards

    Claire Jordan
    BBC Complaints
    __________________________________________
    www.bbc.co.uk/complaints

  • I believe it is not the end for the church in Britain. Perhaps it is the end for a church held captive by Babylon, but God’s people will triumph. Perhaps the underground church in Great Britain is powering on despite all odds.
    Greg Brien

  • Do any of the British contributors to this site know the strength of the Orthodox churches in Britain? I only ask as I saw something on a orthodox blog which seemed to indicate that those churches were growing at the expense of the CofE.
    Wayne Pelling

  • Dear Bill
    Thanks for this post. The term Christianity is now meaningless. Oprah calls herself a Christian. That other prominent American does too and he comes across as a covert Muslim. Bishop makes this claim as does the Uniting Church in Aus. How do we resolve this? What is Christian and what is apostate?

    Stan Fishley

  • Dear Bill

    We are under attack it would seem from all sides. We should not be surprised at this. Maybe this is from God to stir us in to action, I don’t know. When it comes to hiring people in my experience, you go for people you know or who come recommended by people you know and respect. Anyone can apply for a job but choosing the best person goes beyond just qualifications, references have a lot to do with it as well. I can’t say too much about this because in Australia we have the Equal Opportunities Laws etc, and I support the ideal, but when all said and done you hire the best person for the job and if the person you reject happed to be gay, “Was he/she I didn’t realize?, just not right for the job, sorry.”. The phrase “Cunning as a serpent, gentle as a dove” comes to mind. But be encouraged, God will build His Kingdom!!!

    Anthony McGlone

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