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Program #242, #247, #248 “Freedom of Religion parts 1,2,3” – 7/2016 – Synopsis

 

 

The concept of freedom of religion is more complicated and more controversial than you might imagine.  To familiarize you with the issues, I put together this three part series on the topic.

 

Part #1 (Program #242)

This program covers

(1) the foundational importance of freedom of religion. If the state can take away freedom of religion, the state can, and will, take away every other freedom,

 

(2) the decline of freedom of religion in America and the ironic use of The First Amendment to overturn freedom of religion,

 

(3) the default position of mankind is not “freedom of religion” but “freedom from religion,” 

 

(4) how the ungodly remove religious freedom by placing lesser values above God’s higher values, 

 

(5) that the Biblical position is freedom of righteous religion – not absolute freedom of religion.

 

Part 2 (Program #247)

This program covers freedom of religion in the early church and the debate over freedom of religion in the Reformation.

 

Part 3 (Program #248)

This program covers the controversy over freedom of religion in the colonies between Roger Williams and the Puritans.   At the conclusion of the programs, I ask you to decide whether the Reformers were right in their opposition to freedom of religion or whether the Anabaptists and Roger Williams were right in their crusade for absolute religious freedom.  If you were to found a country, would you create a country that is a “Christian covenant” or a country that is a “democratic compact”?

 

One current matter to keep in mind:  Many conservatives (and even some Christian activists) are advocating for absolute religious freedom to fix the ills in our society – that is, if we give both sides (the pagan, LGBT secularist and the Christians) complete liberty, all will be well.  The premise is that freedom fixes everything.    The error here is that (1) pluralism or toleration (the so-called neutral state model) is why we are in the mess we are in, (2) neutrality is a myth, and (3) the Scriptures require the state to enforce God’s moral law.

 

Scriptures Referenced:  Deuteronomy 13:55, 18:20; 1 Kings 18:40; Isaiah 5:20; 1 Kings 11:6-8; romans 3:10-11, 5:10; Job 21:14; Psalm 10:3; Romans 13:4