www.herald-journal.com
Laws or love?
May 4, 2009
by Rev. Wally Glucklich, Elim Mission Church, Cokato

The Christian life is founded upon the solid principle of God’s “agape love” being reflected to others through its followers. Jesus exhorted us to love the Lord our God with all our heart, soul, and mind, and to love our neighbor as ourselves, Matt. 22:37, 39.

Agape love is clarified in I Cor. 13 as being patient, kind, not envious, not boastful, proud or rude. It is not selfish or easily angered. Love does not delight in evil, but rejoices with truth.

The concept of true love is also amplified in Romans 12:9-ff, where it states that “love must be sincere. Hate what is evil: cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves . . . Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited.”

As we can see, the Bible builds a society upon principles of God, for God wants us to experience His kingdom “on earth as it is in heaven.” For centuries, humanity has lived by these principles and applied them with dignity to all generations.

But in the 20th century, it became vogue to not take the Bible seriously . . . that the “old fashioned” moral code needed to be changed to a Politically Correct (P.C) code. Over the years, biblical values were slowly removed from the public square.

In the case Everson v. Board of Education (1947), the Supreme Court established the metaphor “a wall of separation between church and state” as a new standard.

In 1962, the Supreme Court removed prayer from schools in the Engel v. Vitale case, where they redefined the term “church” from meaning “a federally established denomination,” to meaning “a religious activity in public.”

In 1963, in Abington v. Schempp and Murray v. Curlett, Bible readings, religious classes, and religious instruction were removed.

By 1980, the Ten Commandments were outlawed for fear that they may offend a student. Soon, any semblance of religious activity, even quiet prayer, was considered offensive and banned by the so-called “separation of church and state” interpretation.

Once this moral foundation was removed from our schools, our society’s morals began to decline. Church attendance began to decline over the years and thus, fewer students were coming in contact with the teachings of the Bible.

We jump forward to the 1990s and 2000s, when we are confronted with the new moral challenge of government-established politically correct thinking, which redefines our morals of good and evil. A new religion without a Supreme Being resulted in a moral code for our society that is quite different from the Bible.

This very month, Congress is working on expanding the hate crime bill, called “The Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act,” and the state legislature is working on a “Sexual Orientation Anti-Bullying Bill HF 1198.” These tend to only codify the PC values of our society.

May I ask, if we would teach our children the principles of God’s Word, as stated in the Bible, would we need to have such laws? It appears to me, that if we followed the principles of Scripture “to live in harmony with one another,” we would not be in need of legislating morals punishable under the heavy hand of government.

A society taught to live by agape love is a much more harmonious society than one required to live under the law. We’ve tried that before in Old Testament (law) v. New Testament (love). The outcome was that Jesus showed us a better way.