This tidbit is in answer to the Facebook question: “Given your posts on Liberalism, would you say that classical liberalism isn't the problem today, but Progressivism?”
Please listen to liberal David Rubin’s excellent 10-minute monologue for context*. Let me begin my reply to the above question with Mr Rubin’s comments,
“The Regressive, the Control, or the Liberal left, whatever you want to call it, is a group of people who place identity, usually based on immutable characteristics in a pecking order of social importance such as race, gender, and religion where victimhood is the highest virtue to be had. This ‘oppression’ Olympics allows groups to compete for who is the most oppressed, and thus the most virtuous. And, if someone isn’t as oppressed as you, you have full authority to oppress them accordingly. So Black Lives Matters can protest the gay rights march in Toronto. White Gay men can be banned from leading LGBT organizations on college campuses. Pro-life women can be kicked out of women’s marches, and so on. This backwards ideology which demands that we judge each other not on the content of our character, but on the color of our skin or some other baked-in trait, puts the collective ahead of the individual.”
At the beginning of Mr Rubin’s piece, he lists the names (faces) now used for contemporary liberals: Progressives; Liberal Left; Regressive Left; Illiberal Left; Classical Liberals, etc. Then he offers a list of contemporary progressive objectionable behaviors, from his classical liberal viewpoint!! For example, he cites things like identity politics(see quote above); labeling speakers as racists and violating their first amendment right to speak; and even perpetrating physical violence on college campuses.
Yet, according to Mr Rubin, it’s not ‘Classical Liberalism’, but ‘Progressives’ who are responsible for this departure from the ‘classical liberal’…prototypical tolerance! So…which one of the ‘faces’ of liberalism is actually responsible? Or, is liberalism really a problem at all?
During Mr Rubin’s monologue, he calls himself a card-carrying liberal who supports abortion; gay marriage; legalization of marijuana; rejects the death penalty; favors free speech for all—including White supremacists; he refers to himself as a free thinker; “and the list goes on.” Yet as a classical liberal, who supports freedom for all, he laments the behavior of his contemporary ‘liberal’ friends, “I’ve watched as my team has gone off the deep end.” In other words, according to Mr Rubin, ‘modern’ liberalism has abandoned his ‘classical’ liberalism!!!
Yet, herein lay the problem! On the contrary, Mr Rubin misunderstands; for ‘modern’ liberalism has not abandoned him at all! Liberalism is like a ladder; as one steps-down the liberal ladder, all liberalism—regardless of the title you assign it--ends in the same place!!
Here we go! If you examine the definition of ‘liberal’ as far back as in the 1828 Webster’s dictionary**, you will find the final entry as: “licentious; free to access”. ‘Licentious’ means sexual license***; and ‘free to excess’ refers to lawlessness. These definitions describe the ‘nature’ of liberalism. As a dog barks, so liberalism supports licentiousness and free to excess!
Furthermore, the Bible uses the word lasciviousness in Galatians 5:19, which is synonymous with licentious, and is called a “work of the flesh”(man’s sin nature); confirming Webster’s definition of liberalism.
Although Mr Rubin may be correct in that classical liberalism in America once held values such as: freedom of speech for all; tolerance; respect for the opinions of another without cursing, beating, or killing him; he misses 3 key points:
1.Those values are not liberal values…but Biblical values! They originate in God, Himself!
2.By changing the Biblical doctrine of ‘the separation of church and state’, into ‘the separation of God from the state’, liberalism must reject the Bible; which is both the origin, and most importantly—the sustainer of those traditional values!!
3.As the Bible is rejected, and man’s sin nature is released, God’s gift of freedom to man is perverted into “free to excess”, i.e.lawlessness.
Therefore, the rejection of God’s word, combined with man’s sin nature(flesh), perverts liberal freedom into: “every man does what is right in his own eyes” (Judg17:6); and is followed closely by sexual license, which is nothing more than a euphemism for sexual perversion.
Here is the key to this puzzle, although classical liberalism historically espouses ‘some’ great values, because the ‘nature’ of liberalism is licentious--over time---the lawlessness of licentiousness works to pervert freedom into the works of the flesh. Galatians 5:13 says, we are called to freedom, but are not to use that freedom as occasion for the flesh(sin nature)!!! In plain English, this means do not think your freedom is a freedom to sin! For, God never gave freedom to man to choose sin! Only liberalism believes it can abuse God’s freedom to choose ‘anything’ the flesh desires! On the contrary, God forbade Adam to eat of only one tree!!! Yet, He gave Adam the choice of literally millions of trees to eat!! Therefore, if freedom is used to choose evil, it enslaves, limits, and even destroys choice…and with it progress!
Therefore, when Mr Rubin says, “I’ve watched as my team has gone off the deep end”; in actuality, that is liberalism’s destiny! Once on the slippery slope down the ladder of liberalism, there is only one place to land…one can only move from light to darkness—for that is the very nature of licentiousness!
Therefore, the battle over which face (name) of liberalism is the culprit of America’s woes--is mute!! Progressives; Liberal Left; Regressive Left; Illiberal Left; Classical Liberals—all ultimately drive us to the same camp: a rejection of God, and His word...ultimately ending with God’s judgment!
My beloved friend, this is a spiritual battle—not a political one! Don’t let liberal/progressives fool you by changing their name! Their stripes are the same!
The critical question is: will the Judaeo/Christian values, which created not only America, but Western Culture, continue? Or, will the liberal/atheist values replace them?
Actually…the choice is yours!
***Is it possible even to argue the sexual perversion so present in our culture is not due to liberal--so called--freedom?!?! If there is one absolute evidence of liberalism’s evil—it is their marketing of sexual license, i.e. sexual behavior is without boundaries!
"Genius is nothing but continued attention." -Claude Adrien Helvetius
It’s always good to choose appropriate language. I offer six reasons to control; and even better to eliminate the worse kinds of words from your vocabulary.
1.Spoken words create an atmosphere. 2Timothy2:16 teaches the atmosphere created by ‘certain’ words is ungodliness and irreverence to God. Just like the atmosphere of earth facilitates life, allowing all animate things to live and thrive, what do you think thrives in profanity’s atmosphere? The answer can be determined with a simply test. Think of the times when you either experienced violence, or watched violence on television—what came out of the mouths of the people involved just before, or while in, or doing violence? In the vast number of cases--it was profanity. Profanity facilitates at atmosphere for violence.
2.Profanity also known as ‘cussing’, which is slang for ‘cursing’. Dictionary.com defines ‘curse’: to invoke evil upon; a wish of misfortune; to blaspheme; to afflict with evil. Do you want to do this to another human being—or have it done to you? Is there any wonder profanity facilitates violence?
3.Profanity is one way the flesh is released. The Bible uses the term “flesh” as another name for man’s sin nature. If you are not aware, the sin nature is a diabolical evil!! Galatians 6:8 says, “For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption…” Profanity both stirs-up, and releases the sin nature in both the user and the hearers. To couple the image and likeness of God with man’s sin nature can create a monster of epic proportions—Nimrod and the tower of Babel in Genesis 11 is one example.
4.Profanity often reveals hypocrisy. People who use profanity contend it’s natural when you’re angry. However, they find a way to control the use of their tongues--when certain people are present!!! I repeat, the same people that declare cussing is natural, will not cuss, if they are in certain places, or with certain people.
5.Profanity reveals a small vocabulary. Interestingly, I have found there are only about seven words designated as profanity (H,D,S,B,B,A,F). No human has to use profanity when they have a vocabulary sufficient to use other words to express anger.
6.Finally, profanity facilitates blasphemy. There 4 types of blasphemy mentioned in the Bible, one of those types trivializes God’s name! For example, after stubbing your toe, to use the word ‘God’; or to use the word ‘God’ with another cuss word--trivializes His great name! In other words, instead of calling on God’s Name to save (redemptive purposes), His name is used as a cuss word; or with a cuss word!
On the contrary, the names of God depict His nature…which is foundational to His covenants, His word, and His promises! To trivialize any of these is to trivializes God’s nature, i.e. God Himself---which is blasphemy!
To highlight this point, I find it most fascinating that people often use the word ‘God’ with their profanity?* Have you ever wondered why?!?! On the contrary, I have never heard a person stub their toe and shout “Muhammad!”, while jumping around holding a foot! Yet, the words ‘God’ or ‘Jesus’ are often unconsciously spoken in fits of human rage! This is obviously one of Satan’s greatest deceptions!
In ‘Jesus Name’ we: pray(Jn16:23,24); are saved(Rom10:13); live, and move, and have our being(Acts17:28)!! Every knee will bow, and every tongue confess to the Name of Jesus(Phil1:10,11)!! In fact, ‘in’ the Name of Jesus, all of God’s Names revealed in the OT are consummated! All that God has given to man, and has for man—comes through the Name of Jesus! And people have the audacity to use the greatness of His Name to cuss when they stub their toe?!?! I don’t think so!
Remember two important points:
1.God spoke the world into existence! Therefore, faith is released by words! Or said another way, your words reveal your faith! And, only faith pleases God(Heb11:6)!!!
2.And “Death and life are in the power of the tongue…” (Pro18:21)
Profanity is neither trite…nor funny!
*Or, they use the word ‘Holy’, or some other Biblical word—when they cuss!
Words are, of course, the most powerful drug used by mankind. -Rudyard Kipling
1.Martyrdom of 11 apostles. Judas committed suicide and is obviously not part of this evidence.
First, when Jesus was taken to be crucified, all His apostles scattered for fear; including Peter who denied him, and Thomas, who lost faith. The second fact is all eleven of the apostles ultimately suffered excruciating deaths at the hands of evil men. The question is what happened between these two facts that turned the apostles from fearful to fearless? Answer: After Jesus death, He appeared to every one of the 11 men! In other words, no man dies for a lie! Or, men only die for what they believe to be true. Or, the apostles changed because their truth changed!
For example, when Peter was being prepared to be crucified upside down, don’t you think the very apostle who denied Jesus three times, would have certainly denied Him again, had the resurrected Christ not physically appeared to him? Or, take Bartholomew who was skinned alive before he was beheaded, would have reneged to save himself had he known Jesus’ resurrection was a lie? If Jesus had not appeared to all eleven apostles, who left Jerusalem to minister ‘alone’ from India to Africa, would have all been able to hold to their faith—without ‘one’ exception—including excruciating deaths—if they had not actually experienced the risen Christ?!?!
2.The existence of Church. The city of Jerusalem was full of people who hated Jesus, the apostles, and Christianity. If the body of Jesus would have been produced, it would have killed Christianity in the cradle!
3.James the brother of Jesus. John 7:5 says, Jesus family rejected Him. To be candid, this is really not too hard to believe; how would you react if your brother claimed to be God? In Mark 3:20-21, the Bible declares Jesus family tried to stop Him believing He was insane. And, in John 19:26, while on the cross, Jesus committed Mary, His mother, to the apostle John rather than His family. Why? His family could not be trusted, because they rejected Him.
On the contrary, later James became a pillar of the church(Gal2:9); he took leadership at the council at Jerusalem (Acts15:13-19); it is believed he became the pastor of the church at Jerusalem! He even suffered a martyr’s death! What happened? The resurrected Christ appeared to him(1Cor15:7)!
4.Saul of Tarsus. The Bible declares Saul (Paul): 1.breathed threats and murder against the church(Acts9:1); 2.persecuted Christians to death(Acts22:4); 3.he made Christians blaspheme(Acts26:10-11). Later on however, for Christ’s sake, on five occasions, Paul endured 40 stripes minus one! He was stoned; ship-wreaked; beaten with rods; frequently thrown in prison; yet still wrote 2/3 of the New Testament; and was ultimately martyred! What happened? How did Paul move from murderer to saint? The resurrected Christ appeared to him(Acts9:3-11)!
5.Five hundred people. Over 500 people--at once--saw Jesus alive after the crucifixion (1Cor15:6)
Moving forward, what if, you may be thinking, “I reject the Bible?” Thank-you for your question!
First, to “reject the Bible” in this context, means you reject its’ accuracy as an historical document. The one who rejects the Bible like this has a major problem! Using the scientific method to determine the reliability of historical documents, the New Testament is--by a wide margin—the most reliable historical document in human history! For example, there are over 13,000 manuscript copies of portions of the NT!* As a comparison, allow me to give you just three unquestioned historical documents:
i.Caesar’s works- written in 100-44B.C.; we have 10 surviving copies.
ii.Plato’s Tetralogies- written between 427-347B.C.; we have 7 surviving copies.
iii.Tacitus Annals – written 100AD.; we have 20 surviving copies.**
In other words, if you reject the Bible’s historicity, how can you rationally accept the historicity of any historical document!
Non-Biblical documents referring to the resurrection of Jesus:
5.The Nazareth Inscription (40AD). In 40AD, just 7 years after the death and resurrection of Jesus, Roman authorities created a law, which was punishable by death stating, no one can move a body from its tomb for wicked intent. Does this not refer to grave robbing, a common crime of that day? NO! Grave robbers steal valuables from tombs—not dead bodies! Incredibly, the Nazareth Inscription was so specific, it even mentioned “sepulcher-sealing stones”.
Does this sound familiar? Of course! To the honest person, it sounds like the death of Jesus was the cause of this law! How so? Because the Christians were proclaiming the resurrection everywhere, riots began springing-up; take for example, Acts17:5,6. Therefore, in order to keep law and order, the Romans created a law specifically prohibiting “anyone from moving a body from its tomb for wicked intent.”
The reason the Romans used the term “wicked intent” is two-fold: 1.The Roman and Jewish authorities accused the apostles of stealing the body of Jesus, and declaring Him alive; 2.Jesus was called a Sorcerer(Mat12:24) by the Jews and unbelieving Romans for His miracles.
6. Flavius Josephus (37/38–97), Jewish historian.
“Now there was about this time Jesus, a wise man, if it be lawful to call him a man. For he was one who wrought surprising feats.… He was [the] Christ … he appeared to them alive again the third day, as the divine prophets had foretold these and ten thousand other wonderful things concerning him.” [Antiquities 18:3]
7.The Shroud of Turin. The woven burial cloth found in Jesus tomb. Read here and here.
In conclusion, in my opinion, the resurrection of Christ Jesus from the dead is the greatest evidence:
ii.The God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; the God and Father of
our Lord Jesus Christ is that God.
iii.All other Gods are false (Ps96:5)
iv.For the above reasons, the resurrected Christ said, I am the
way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father,
but by me. -Jn14:6
No better time than now to give your life to Jesus! Pray this simple prayer:
That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation -Romans 10:9,10!
* This does not include thousands of references of historical figures who quote the NT in their works! The entire Bible--from Old to New Testaments--can be reproduced from quotes in the works of early Christian writers!
**Evidence that Demands a Verdict, Josh McDowell
We don’t remain good if we don’t always strive to become better. GOTTFRIED KELLER (1819–1890) Writer