Sunday, April 12, 2015

Old "Tolerance" And New "Tolerance"---in pursuit of the love of the truth (II Th 2:10)


In response to my recent post (here), sister Ruthie, my fellow sister in Christ, left the following intriguing comment .

"I wanted to let you know that I shared this particular post (“Testimony of my spiritual transformation (Part 2)- how a decisive step to practice headcovering breaks my oriental syncretic mindset”) with my children that I'm homeschooling and my one college aged son. We had an interesting talk about the Japanese culture especially in how the Japanese people worship and also how it affects family. 

"We are from the U.S., and my one son said that this is very similar to what is going on here in the states. The phrase "tolerance" is a huge buzz word being used in the schools and colleges. We don't want to make anyone feel bad by disagreeing with them or making them feel as if they are being condemned. We need to be tolerant. This is the current philosophy of the world. I agree with you that as Christians, we need to be constantly seeking after the truth (Jesus) and following what the Bible says. This will definitely lead to conflict with the saved and the unsaved alike.

"Even now, the topic of headcovering is a perfect example of how the world's philosophies have leaked into our churches and thus affected our beliefs in everything from headship, men's and women's roles in the family, divorce, respect for our parents, children taking their parents to court,...the list goes on and on. It all begins with departing from The Bible and what it teaches."

Yesterday, I watched the Youtube sermon entitled; The Intolerance of Tolerance (by D.A. Carson). In this sermon, he is explaining that there is a transition of the meaning of “tolerance” lately. He says, the word “tolerance” used to indicate “to accept the existence of different views” whereas the current meaning is going to be more and more like “to accept the different views themselves.”

The new “tolerance” insists that there is no absolute truth and that we have to accept this religious relativism absolutely. And this new concept not only has been fully accepted in society but also setting itself up to the supreme value with its coercive force.

Then he encourages us, saying “Don’t be surprised when you face conflict or suffering because of your belief. The Bible says, ‘for to you it has been granted on behalf of Christ, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake’ (Phil 1:29).”

I asked myself, “what made me shrink from seeking the love of the truth (II Th 2: 10) and living up to it?” And I found that deep inside me, there is a hidden desire to avoid the Cross. If it is possible, I don’t want to be disliked by others. I want others say, “she is a compassionate Christian” but not “intolerant, unloving and fanatic” one. I don’t want to say some of the Biblical truths which sound uncomfortable to the modern ears. In a word, I want to preserve my ego and don’t want to die and live with my crucified Savior!

“Why, then, do you fear to take up the cross when through it you can win a kingdom?In the cross is salvation, in the cross is life, in the cross is protection from enemies, in the cross is infusion of heavenly sweetness, in the cross is strength of mind, in the cross is joy of spirit, in the cross is highest virtue, in the cross is perfect holiness. There is no salvation of soul nor hope of everlasting life but in the cross. 
Behold, in the cross is everything, and upon your dying on the cross everything depends.There is no other way to life and to true inward peace than the way of the holy cross and daily mortification. Go where you will, seek what you will, you will not find a higher way,nor a less exalted but safer way, than the way of the holy cross."(The Royal Road of the Holy Cross, Imitation of Christ, p 57)
He is the Way, He is the Truth, He is the Life  source

The Cross will eventually unite us or divide us. The current “inter-faith” movement is trying his best to obscure the Cross of Jesus Christ, for they think the Cross is the stumbling block /offense for those who adhere to other religions. But like Paul, we say that “I determined not to know anything among you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified” (I Cor 2:2).

The current religious toleration and relativism is posing as if it was a harmless virtue but it is actually very intolerant and hostile to those who dare to say what the Bible says and live up to it. Moreover, it is very hostile to the Cross of Jesus Christ.

O Lord, help us to walk your way—the way of the Cross. Grant us the love of truth (II Th 2:10) and discernment to know the schemes of our enemy who are trying to deceive even the chosen ones. Unite us more and more under the holy name of Jesus Christ. Amen.