January 29, 2011 | Stuart Schwartz
Why do they hate us?
That’s the question our secular elites pose to us about a world of dictators, thugs and, especially, Muslims. Come on, people, think! Why do they hate us? This is a favorite topic of discussion during faculty get-togethers and elite media tête-à-têtes over half-caf skim lattes on Manhattan’s Upper West side.
The question, of course, is rhetorical. They think they know the answer and are merely seeking an opportunity to enlighten the rest of us, those who inhabit the world outside the rarefied atmosphere of Manhattan, the Beltway, or numerous other enclaves of our secular sophisticates. The world hates the ‘you us’ (educated elites and assorted other sophisticates excluded) because you are rather ordinary, largely humble, and almost 80% consider yourselves Christian. This leads you to hold to all those weird spiritual qualities regarding principle, truth, and Godly behavior.
In their eyes, believing that—with the help of God—we’re capable of distinguishing between right and wrong is hugely wrongheaded. Right and wrong are culturally, socially, and politically dependent. If, for example, you are a woman living in an Islamic society then it is right that you live in terror of the males surrounding you, are the actual property of first your father and then your husband, and have no role other than servicing the men to whom you belong. For an authentic Christian: it is wrong to cause an individual created and shaped by God in His image to live in fear and subjugation. But among our elites, the latter statement is laughably simplistic, for no one can know—let alone an invisible entity in the sky—what is right for another.
Out of this comes the type of cultural relativism that has been established as part of our elite worldview. Arab oil money, for example, underwrites Islamic study programs at our top universities, buying the kind of intellectual fraud that seeks to legitimize radical Islam as it institutionalizes oppression and totalitarianism; meanwhile, our judicial system paves the way for cultural relativism (example: a New Jersey judge ruled that a Muslim man who raped his estranged wife was not guilty of sexual assault because “Islam forbids wives to refuse to have sex with their husbands.”)
At the core of this is a growing disdain for both God’s Word and Christians who understand the Bible as God’s Word, a light in a dim and fallen world. Those who believe in the Christian fundamentals are, after all, the stuff of late night network jokes and Georgetown salon snickers. Leading the charge on authentic Christianity is the Washington Post, the consummate Beltway insider medium that provides a platform for ‘enlightened’ Christians who know that Jesus is best displayed in a Christian “who votes for Democrats, has gay friends, and believes in evolution.” Or so says one of the many columnists the organization uses to shower its disdain upon authentic Christians. Its subsidiary, Newsweek, even pronounced “The End of Christian America,” which its editor—a Washington Post company veteran—declared “a good thing.” Christianity is finally getting the revamping it has no needed, with the definition of Christian being updated and the tyranny of those who refused to view God’s Word in relative terms finally ended. The Christian baton has been passed to a new kind of Christian.
Brian McLaren, the Maryland pastor celebrated by the literati for his insistence that a “new kind” of Christianity is taking hold in the United States, is representative of this approach. Its adherents can be both Christian and, for example, Hindu or Buddhist…for we are the world, we are uniters and not dividers, Jesus wore sandals not wingtips, and we’d like to teach the world to sing in pu-r-r-r-fect harmony. This new kind of Christian is so sophisticated that, like the Washington Post commentator, she does not believe in the Jesus of the Bible. Instead, the Washington Post Christian—or the New York Times Christian, the NBC Christian, the Georgetown bistro Christian, etc.—believes in an evolved Jesus who would, if he were alive today (no theological disconnects here—the elite Christian celebrates the teachings of Jesus, not his divinity, and elite Christian theology is as relative and pliable as the values and lifestyles of its trendy promoters), would understand the need for abortion, celebrate gay and lesbian marriage, and would join Barack Obama and Nancy Pelosi at the political barricades…natch!
And God help the individual, public figure or mere student, who openly displays belief in the omniscience and omnipresence of God. Divine guidance is accessed by prayer and meditating on His Word. God tells us to digest his Word, to “eat it,” to work it into our essence (Revelation 10:9 NIV). We do that over a lifetime, building our understanding of what he does and does not want, allowing his spirituality to shape our souls. It is that simple. And that threatening. The result is a struggle against “the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms,” (Ephesians 6:12 NIV) all well represented by our cultural elites. That is why when Sarah Palin said that God has a plan for her life—a belief shared by more than three-quarters of Americans—she drew trailer truckloads of guffaws from the nation’s self-anointed sophisticates. Vanity Fair, the New York magazine that delights in nasty caricatures of those who dare to live and work west of the Hudson River, somehow transformed that into her saying that her “rise to power is divinely ordained,” a gun-totin’ Elk-killing megalomaniac intent on establishing a Christian theocracy.
Our traditional elites view Sarah Palin—and us, the ‘you us’—as awesomely ignorant. They resent our resistance, our attempts at living life in a way that would please a God who has spent millennia hammering into our heads an understanding of the world He created—not ordering up half-calf skim lattes at some celestial Starbucks.
Dr. Stuart H. Schwartz –
Liberty University Department of Communications
Contributor – Baptist.org
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