I had an interesting back-and-forth on a comment forum in my local newspaper. The person to which I responded said this in her comment: “the belief system here is going by the way side as people do become more educated and open minded.” This person was commenting on right-wing Christian voters. By her comment she was saying that Christian conservatives were less educated and more closed-minded, as compared to more liberal voters. Her statement also implies that Christian values fall by the wayside as people become more educated, or more enlightened.
This woman, appears to me to be the classic example of the prevailing attitude of the liberal left toward Christians and more specifically, Christian conservatives. The liberals accuse Christian conservatives of being “moralists” and holding themselves to be superior, morally, to their liberal counterparts. In reality, it is the liberals who thinks they are superior to Christians. By her statement, the commenter was looking down her nose at Christian conservatives, saying that she is more educated, more enlightened, and more open-minded than Christians.
Also implied in her statement is that Christianity, Christian beliefs, and Christian values are for the ignorant and less educated folks, and these beliefs fall away as one becomes more enlightened. In other words, belief in God is nothing more than a figment of the imagination of the unenlightened that changes as one learns more. Taking the implication further, it is saying that Christian beliefs and values are not valid, because they are based on a falsehood.
In addressing this person’s comments, I want to first state that I am a Christian conservative, and well educated. If this person wants to compare education credentials, I would be pleased to do so. That said, advanced education has not weakened my belief in God but strengthened it. I find no inconsistencies in my belief in God and what I believe God has revealed to us in Scriptures, and what I have learned through the education process. I believe that what we see in the natural world and have learned in science is more evident of God than not. Our scientific knowledge exists because there is order and consistency in our universe of great magnitude rather than randomness and haphazardness.
Just looking at the human body, one can see that it is a masterful piece of engineering, rather than an accident. Human scientists and engineers, with all of their advanced knowledge, have not yet been able to create an artificial hand that has the full capabilities of the human hand. We have artificial hearts that cannot fully do what the human heart does. And I have seen no evidence that science has developed a way to successfully replace the blood system in the human body or any animal body. Again, more knowledge does not weaken my belief in God, but strengthens it.
Given a belief in God and believing that God created and gave order to the universe, it is not inconsistent to believe that God would have revealed himself and his will to his creation. I believe that God has revealed himself to us through the writings found in the Bible. I believe that God inspired and guided holy men in the past as they wrote, and that the writings we have today are the result of God’s guidance in the process. Again, advanced education has not weakened that belief but strengthened it. It is not my purpose here to go into a defense of the Scriptures, other than to affirm my belief in the scriptures, The Bible as the revealed Word of God.
Now comes the element of truth. I believe in God and accept the Scriptures as God’s revealed word, then the values presented are accepted as the truth. Because God created the universe with immense order and consistency, I must also believe that the truth as revealed is also consistent. It does not change. It is not relative. Does that make me closed minded? To some degree, yes, but only in the sense that I am firm in what I believe to be true. Certainly, I am open to listen to what others have to say. But, if I do not find what others say to be convincing, I am not bound to change what I believe is truth just because they offer a different opinion of truth.
My firmness in my belief does not make me hateful of others who do not believe as I do. There is a world of difference between disagreement and hate. I can express my disagreement with others and express my different values without hating. I do not hate others.
When I vote for a Presidential candidate, I will vote for one whose values are more closely aligned with mine. That is natural. It is expected that Hillary Clinton will get the women’s vote just as Barrack Obama got the black vote, That happens because people vote for the person they believe is more attuned to their values. I should not be expected to be any different. However, I am not desirous of establishing a Christian theocracy, but I do desire the continued freedom to be Christian. It is not my intention to impose my moral values on others. At the same time, others should not require of me to do things that I would consider immoral.