I often find it ironic that "evangelicals" are most concerned about
religious freedoms when it is they that seek to discriminate against the faith
of others. When a Mosque is being proposed to built anywhere they are the first
to protest its construction. When someone is describing other religions as cults
(ex: Catholic or LDS) you can pretty count on that person being an
"evangelical". It is hard to take "evangelicals"
serious on religious freedom when they seek to deny it to others.
Evangelical religion is doing its' level best to use the bully pulpit to
push itself and its' agenda onto the public stage, and every time it
encounters resistance, or even law, it claims religious freedom is at risk, even
as it seeks to restrict freedom of others.
Religion in today's corporate world has less to do about a God and being
and doing good: church and religion today is more about business (money) and
politics with power over others.
Evangelicals tend to push the envelope of religious freedom towards political
activism. and of course they do it while getting tax deduction for their
contributing members under the veil of "non-profit" status for their
The name "evangelical" says it all. Their religion involves injecting
their beliefs into ever interaction, conversation, and setting. Anything less is
oppression to them.
See the first six comments as reasons why evangelicals are legitimately worried
about their freedom of religion being taken away. The comments essential serve
justify treating evangelicals' religious freedom less than that of other
Constitutionally guaranteed freedoms. This freedom should be thought of as
speech. If you want freedom of speech, then you must allow someone to speak out
vehemently against the things you hold dear. If you want freedom of religion,
then you must allow someone to worship how or what they may, even when it
inconveniences you or even when their religious beliefs and practices bother
you--yes, even when they say things that get your blood boiling. The
evangelicals' alleged "misuse" is no reason to injure their rights
to the first freedom, for Congress shall make no law respecting the
establishment of religion nor prohibiting the free exercise thereof.
I couldn't agree more with a few of the above comments. It's amazing
how evangelicals call for tolerance when I'm considered the devil in their
RE: Hutterite,Evangelical religion is doing its' level best to use the
bully pulpit to push itself and its' agenda onto the public stage. Which
bothers you the most?Tradditional Judeo-Christian values like: Honor
your father and your mother, “You shall not murder.“You shall not
commit adultery. “You shall not steal.“ “You shall not(lie)
bear false witness against your neighbor. “‘And you shall not bear
false witness against your neighbor.“You shall not covet. And or, The Evangelical(euangelion)or Gospel, “ For God so loved the
world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not
perish but have eternal life”(John 3:16)
What religious freedom is being threatened? The freedom to deny civil rights to
minorities who think differently than evangelicals?Bigotry based on
religion is far worse.
My goodness, there's a lot of "anti-evangelical" rhetoric in here!
As an Evangelical Christian, trained for the ministry, I may shock them all when
I say: You're absolutely right - but only to a certain degree. The above
comments seem to be gross generalizations about all Evangelicals, when in fact
these statements are true of only a small but vocal minority. Do we want to be
able to teach Intelligent Design alongside of other theories of evolution?
Yes.(Darwinism, BTW, is still ONLY a theory, as any reputable scientist will
attest) Unfortunately, some of the so-called mega-churches seen on TV surely do
seem to be money magnets. However, the great majority of we evangelicals attend
much smaller, community-minded churches seeking to do good in our little corner
of the world. As for those politically active, anti-everything evangelicals
(Westwood Baptist Church comes to mind),they are an embarrassment to
Christianity; again, they do not at all represent the huge majority of
Evangelical Christians, who seek only to follow the Savior's admonishment:
"This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you."
Strange, I thought almost every one knew about religious philanthropies, besides
the Salvation Army, which is a church by the way. One must also remember that
occasions like Christmas and Easter developed into customs over more than two
centuries in this country; and it is hard for people to see these customs get
the heave-ho. So, have a little patience.After all, we don't mind
people bringing their customs with them from their homelands. It's what
America does. On another front, while we still have problems with toleration and
civil discourse, usually, shouting matches is about as bad as it gets, anymore.
One cannot say that about some that are coming into our country,lately.
Sometimes there are conflicts between some religions' practices and the
laws of our State/Federal governments. As we see a growing diversity, we may see
more of these issues.
As active Mormons who attend an Liberty University, we have had some of the most
positive experiences among Evangelicals. We have never been discriminated
against and in fact have had just the opposite experience. Many of the comments
above display ignorance and antagonism. How about a little more civil interfaith
dialogue in place of hostility to a religious group with many of the same values
we hold together. Even though there is the occasional unfriendly, just as there
are in any groups, our experience being surrounded by Evangelicals on a daily
basis has been an overwhelming positive experience.
It is hypocritical to claim discrimination when you do the same. Jesus had
nothing good to say about the hypocrite.
@jttheawesomewhile I admit to having very strong feelings about
evangelicals (or any religious people for that matter) that seek through e force
of law to make others live their beliefs I think your comment is very important.
In our civil discourse we must avoid gross over generalizations and avoid
spiteful comments that harm those that seek peace. thank you.
RanchHand, what is the discrimination you are referring? The article is about
religious freedom guaranteed by the Constitution and not individual preferences
of some Evangelicals. The same concern is echoed by other religious groups, and
which Elder Oaks has recently spoken.
@jttheawesome"Darwinism, BTW, is still ONLY a theory, as any reputable
scientist will attest)"Yes, but the definition of theory means
something different in the field of science. Specifically, to quote the National
Academy of Sciences a scientific theory is "a well-substantiated explanation
of some aspect of the natural world, based on a body of facts that have been
repeatedly confirmed through observation and experiment."That's why scientists are so insistant about it despite calling it a
theory. When they use the word they mean it in a different way than the more
common usage of it to mean a guess or idea.
I think the main reason we are not all on the same page is that we are all
speaking a different language.I believe that we can and should have
some core values that we can all stand for as Americans whether or not we are
atheistic, follow an organized religion, or something else. The Declaration of
Independence, the Constitution, particularly the Bill of Rights, and other
documents of national importance contain expressions of values which we can all
accept--basically: "Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness."None of that means that anyone else has a right to dictate our values or
in any way force compliance to anything other than allowing others the same
freedoms. Unfortunately, it is usually government that has the power to force
compliance to things that are not for the overall good of the country.
I remember a few years ago, while visiting in Spanish Fork. A Baptist minister
talked to me about the dangers of being a Mormon, and missionaries were being
sent to call Utahans to repentance. Cult, and devils were used to describe the
local people. I have seen similar people at the Manti pageant with the same
rhetoric.This didn't look like religious freedom to me, but a
I guess it’s a sign of the times that when any group that feels itself
being marginalized they end up playing the “victim” card. The irony
here though is that mythic religion has been totally dominant for centuries, and
now when humanity is beginning to wake up and reject their worldview, the
religious folks are freaking out. Hopefully someday (if they don't destroy
humanity first with their lust for an apocalypse), mythic religion will become
about as important to future generations as magic is to us.
I will remind readers of the following:"The Church of Jesus
Christ of Latter-day Saints is the kingdom of God on the earth, but is at the
present limited to an ecclesiastical kingdom. During the millennial era, the
kingdom of God will be both political and ecclesiastical, and will have
worldwide jurisdiction in political realms when the Lord has made 'a full
end of all nations' (D&C 87: 6)." (LDS Bible Dictionary).Doctrine and Covenants 87:6 says this "end to all nations" will be
accomplished through war and bloodshed:"And thus, with the sword
and by bloodshed...shall the inhabitants of the earth be made to feel the wrath,
and indignation, and chastening hand of an Almighty God, until the consumption
decreed hath made a full end of all nations;"What happens to the
nonbelievers?D&C 1:14 declares:"...the day
cometh that they who will not hear the voice of the Lord, neither the voice of
his servants (the Mormon leaders), neither give heed to the words of the
prophets and apostles (the Mormon leaders), shall be cut off from among the
people;"That doesn't look like religious freedom to me.
To me religion is what you do religiously. My manners and my daily rue teen. My
free agency is something that I think is under attack. If I want to smoke, drink
booze or eat potato chips is my choice. My free agency to decide if I want to be
a couch potato or a healthy guy is my choice. I believe in the supernatural But
My choice, the things that I should decide for my self are being interfered with
greatly. Freedom of religion is a lot more than which church I have to belong
to, or what that group of people wants.
How lovely the first 8 comments were, generalizing their hatred and prejudice
against all evangelicals. How unethical not to specify which groups had
offended. But this is a democracy afterall, and it doesn't ensure
accuracy.Where are the Mormons with any historical perspective here?
I am 7th generation (former) LDS, and we've complained about persecution
and interference with our rights to practice our religion since 1830.. The
Manifesto didn't stop the next 4 prophets from keeping their covenant of
Celestial Marriage, nor did any priesthood change take place until 1978. That
was the original pioneer spirit, but it is almost totally muted today. Only the
FLDS have any serious legitimate complaints in this area today.As an
evangelical, I feel no threats to the practice of my religion and do not
understand all the whining and grand-standing of those who do. I listen
carefully to their concerns, but simply do not see them. That may be my
perspective because I evangelize and do ministry in Third World countries where
true bigotry and imprisonment flourishes...All the "haters"
here need to find another venue to complain on, and allow civil discourse.
@jttheawesomeAs atl134 said, in science the word "theory"
does not mean a mere speculation. It is instead an explanation that is able to
subsume a large variety of facts into a coherent whole, allowing them to be
understood. In science, theories are useful because they allow us to make
predictions about what to expect in new circumstances. Theories are always
subject to revision in the light of new facts, because that is the scientific
way of progress.There are many scientific theories that you would
probably not describe as "ONLY a theory, as any reputable scientist will
attest." These include:The germ theory of diseaseNewton's theory of universal gravitationThe atomic theoryThe
kinetic theory of gasesEinstein's theories of special and general
relativityQuantum mechanicsThe theory of plate tectonicsThe theory of evolution fits very cleanly into this list of scientific
theories by providing a unified explanation for a long list of detailed
observations. Any reputable scientist will attest that it is a theory, but
"only" a theory in the same way the the germ theory or the atomic theory
is "only a theory".
@Chemist and atl134Thank you both for your educational comments. If
people would clearly grasp these distinctions, we might finally relegate ideas
like Creationism and Intelligent Design to the same dustbin of pseudo-science
now occupied by Astrology and Alchemy.As someone said commenting on
another article, “religion is about subjective truth”… it
tells us nothing about the objective world and attempting to do so, in my view,
only speeds its demise. Not convinced? Ask yourself the following questions:1.Name a fact about the natural (objective) world in which a scientific
explanation was later supplanted by a religious explanation. 2.Name
a fact about the natural world in which a religious explanation was later
supplanted by a scientific one.Are the answers not obvious?
"The fool says in his heart, 'There is no God'". The
"scientific" explanations of the moment are fleeting. Astronomy being a
prime example of theoretical changes initiated by baffling conundrums just
within the past short decade, eg. Black Holes.Meridian must have a
lack of text books or Internet access not to be able to answer the last two
questions ad infinitum. How sad to be hooked on theories that disprove
themselves every day, and none that have disproved a single Biblical event,
including Creation itself.
@CapellaPlease notice what I did not ask – I did not ask
“name a scientific explanation that has been supplanted by a better
scientific explanation.” That happens all the time and is what we expect
from rigorous and robust science. As to your question about
disproving something found in the Bible, if you have not found anything
I’ll simply suggest you’re not trying very hard. A quick Google
search will provide a laundry list of false assertions. If you need help getting
started, here’s perhaps the earliest.Genesis 1 states the
Earth was created before the stars (i.e., light), which we now know is
impossible. And that is just the first of many errors in the
creation story. It works much better though if you take it metaphorically. I’ll readily admit that science is in its infancy and we’ve
likely barely scratched the surface of what we can learn and know about the
universe. But the question remains, are you going to gain (objective) knowledge
about the universe through science and reason, or by referring to a sacred book
written by shepherds in the Iron Age?
No help needed for those who read Genesis 1:3- Light was created on Day 1, earth
on Day 3. Why not read the conversions of atheist physists and
scientists who set about to disprove the Bible, realizing they had never read it
correctly? There are a plethora of them, who debate the silliness of the
Hawkings, etc.My husband is a rocket scientist and works with the
premier scholars on his field, 80% of whom are Judeo-Christian Bible
believers.You failed Genesis chapter 1. Go back and chronolize the
order of God's Word. Only fool's think this book was written by
shepherds in any age.
@Shazandra (and I’m guessing Capella) – “No help needed for
those who read Genesis 1:3- Light was created on Day 1, earth on Day
3.”Actually you have it backwards…From the
NIV Bible - 1 In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. 2
Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep,
and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters. 3 And God said, “Let
there be light,” and there was light. By the way, you never
did answer either of my original questions. I’ve reached my
comment limit, so no doubt you’ll get the last (and based on your previous
comments) dubious word. Best to you… and as Luke said to his
father “let go of your hate.”
Hutterite & Mukkake on page 1 have it pretty much nailed.Per
TOO...How exactly does that differ from any religion when they get
an opposing opinion?
at Tyler D 17:00 on 1/30 ---The hate is a by product of being
motivated by fear & guilt. Are you surprised?
I need to mention that there are a lot of Super Boll Fans that watch the game
religiously. Religion is what you do religiously. It called free agency,
personal choices. It's my choice to exercise, and eat healthy, I can't
make that choice for any one but me. Nor can I make any choice for any one to
smoke, drink or eat grease, high fructose corn and lots of carbs and vegetate.
All the words in the world don't mean any thing, It's what you do.
Literal Biblists read the Hebrew in context, so E=MC2 is actually a great
theory. If Einstein was correct, Energy and Mass were created on Day 1. The
planetary "stuff" was made into planets on Day 4."Light"/Or (Hebrew) was created and separated on Day 1.Atmospheric and stellar "Heavens"/Shamayim on Day 2, and the waters
were separated.Dry land and oceans, Earth's/Eretz watering system and
vegetation were on Day 3."Lights"/Maor are created from the
existing Light= sun, moon, stars, planets, on Day 4.Isaiah 60:19 and
Revelation 22:5 both state that there will be no sun in the future Kingdom, but
"the LORD God will be your Everlasting Light". "In Him
(Jesus Christ) was Life, and the Life was the Light of men. And the Light
shines in the darkness and the darkness did not comprehend it." (John
1:4,5)Unless man is indwelt by the Light, born spiritually, he
cannot understand it. That is pure Biblical Christianity. All else is
Kind of hard to disprove something that never existed in the first place.
Jesus? Probably. God? No.