Saturday, December 3, 2011

Proverbs 28:12 commentary; freedom of religion

12 ¶ When righteous men do rejoice, there is great glory: but when the wicked rise, a man is hidden.

In countries where there is freedom of religion and freedom of conscience righteous men and women are free to rejoice, to give thanks, and to give glory to God. But, when a country is ruled by wicked men and women or a wicked culture that does not regard freedom of religion and conscience the righteous must hide. You don’t find outspoken Christians in one of those wicked nations where Christians who speak up glorifying God and rejoicing in their salvation are murdered or locked away.

2Corinthians 3:17 Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.

The greatest gift that America has given the world, the greatest ideal, is not our economic system but our commitment to freedom; freedom of speech, freedom of religion, freedom of conscience, and the like. Within certain arguable bounds our government permits people to speak their minds and worship as they so choose. Yes, there are many divisions of religion here, many denominations and many arguments as to what true faith is but that is also our strength in that no one church organization can openly rule the rest. As long as the government stays secular the more freedom Christians will have to worship and to serve Christ.

There will be a constant struggle as to what the bounds are of expressions of faith but this argument is also good in that the dialogue implies that there is freedom and that we are only arguing about what the limits should be in order not to infringe upon another’s right to enjoy their freedom. When righteous men are free to rejoice, there is great glory. But when the wicked rise, who wish to impose their own brand of faith whether it be in a god or gods or whether it be in man alone, so that no one else is free to follow the dictates of their own conscience in who or what they worship and how, then the righteous are hidden, the man is not to be seen who glorifies the God of the Bible, the One who created all things.

In America you have the freedom to believe and to worship and walk God’s way or the freedom to go to Hell in your own. You have the freedom to search out the difference. It’s a freedom we must always guard.

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