Are you angry? I can make you angry. Some opinions are extreme these days, and it is easy to be offended.
One of the hottest new topics is the indoctrination of children to new moral standards.
Our church had a summer VBS, a Vacation Bible School when I was a boy. We mostly had fun, and someone was very generous with the prizes for memorizing Bible verses. I remember large chocolate bars, that I had never even seen before. My brother told me to memorize, and memorize more, and I could have an amazing prize.
I was diligent, I worked hard at memorizing, and just before I reached the pay-out day, a story broke in our city newspaper. The church was accused of bribing and indoctrinating children with unreasonable amounts of candy.
In those days, that kind of influence over children was forbidden. The church immediately canceled the reward program. The issue was settled quickly, but there was one casualty of that war. One boy did not get the obscene amounts of chocolate, that he worked so hard for.
I’m still bitter.
You have probably noticed that our popular western culture is changing. What used to be considered right and good is becoming wrong and unacceptable, and things that most people thought were wrong, are becoming correct.
The word for this is “canonization.” What we all think may not be changing, but new ideas are being canonized. The received wisdom, that we are supposed to believe, is changing. You might become unacceptable and incorrect if you just continue being you.
As I write this, I see a “Pride” symbol in the corner of my computer screen. I think it comes with Windows.
Also, in the United States, the argument about abortion is re-appearing, and it is becoming violent. Just search the term “Roe Versus Wade” to learn more. Apparently, some church buildings have been vandalized.
Did you see that coming? We live in interesting times, and people have strong opinions.
Apparently, Disney movies, for children, are taking the lead in showing new “canonized” thinking.
So, are they coming for the kids?
When people have strong beliefs about how we should live, they tell other people; they evangelize. Christians have been doing this for two thousand years. We should not be surprised when other ideas, other ways of believing, are promoted to us all. And, it makes sense to promote new thinking to the next generation, if we want ideas to spread and endure. That’s the thinking behind Sunday School.
We might disagree with the new canonized ideas, but we can understand the methods used for spreading them.
Here is a video of Ben Shapiro disagreeing with the promotion of new moral standards, for our children:
(Note: the video contains some strong language and product advertising.)
So, are you angry now?
We need to control our anger. We are told to “Refrain from anger and turn from wrath; do not fret, it leads only to evil.” (Psalm 37: 7 and 8)
If we are angry, I believe the frustration is really aimed at ourselves. How can these things happen around us?
Why are moral changes happening around us?
The Bible has an answer to that question “You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its flavor, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything” (Matthew 5: 13).
Those words are from Jesus, and He warned us that it all depends on us, His followers. We influence the world around us, more than we know.
How did Ben Shapiro speak so clearly about the moral messages that are being told to our children?
He started by believing something. He is Jewish, and he simply believes some things about God and about this world. He has a starting point.
So, when a few fringe radicals make their ideas into our conventional wisdom, is it them, or is it us? Should we get angry and argue and fight? Are we a fading, persecuted minority?
We were told by our founder that we are the salt. If we lose our flavor, we will become useless. When we fade, we know that something else will fill the vacuum.
A good question for everyone, when we see moral changes around us is; How am I doing as salt? What is my starting point?
We don’t need to win an argument, because …
You are the light of the world. A city located on a hill cannot be hidden. People do not light a lamp and put it under a basket but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before people, so that they can see your good deeds and give honor to your Father in heaven. (Matthew 5: 14, 15, and 16)