This blog loses a reader

Well, this blog has lost a reader. So I find in a thread on Averyfineline. Doug Harrison, the author of the blog, had written a post on the Steeles’ song “We Want America Back.” Harrison was criticizing the simple-minded evangelicals who “wanted America back” because society is moving away from God and from Christian standards. Essentially, his argument was that gay marriage, abortion, no prayer in schools, and other liberal panaceas should not bother Christians because these things do not affect us personally. He stated: “There just aren’t that many instances in ordinary American life when evangelicals are going to be penalized or forced to suffer severely for their beliefs.”

When I read this, I decided to post the following comment:

You said: “There just aren’t that many instances in ordinary American life when evangelicals are going to be penalized or forced to suffer severely for their beliefs.”

This is true to an extent. So why are Christians getting worked up, if you will?

A good part of the reason we care is that, in several arenas, we are only one step away from where we could be forced to suffer severely for our beliefs. Let me give just one example: Gay rights.

In Canada and several European nations, it is a criminal action to read certain sections of the Bible aloud, because those sections state quite clearly that homosexuality is a sin. The gay lobby in this country is pushing for similar legislation, making speaking against homosexuality a hate crime. Such legislation has been considered by the U.S. Congress, but since we had a Republican majority to date, it has been voted down.

If Christians could be imprisoned for reading certain sections of their Bibles in public, would you not agree that we would then be “forced to suffer severely for our beliefs”?

I was amazed to see another poster reply thusly:

Well, Avery, so much for the intelligent, civil conversation. Daniel Mount’s post really blew my mind. Absolutely ridiculous. Guess there goes another blog off of my list. …

Well, guess what? I’m a conservative Christian, and I’m not ashamed of it. If you don’t want to read a blog written by a conservative Christian, then don’t read my blog. If you don’t want to listen to music made by conservative Christians, than quit listening to most Southern Gospel groups. Whatever their political affiliation, I think that most Southern Gospel performers would agree that marriage is between a man and a woman, and that it should be a basic element of religious liberty to read the Bible out loud. I believe that my views on this topic are fully within the mainstream of thought in America’s evangelical subculture.

That said, let me assure you of this: This is a Southern Gospel blog, not a politics blog. I will not discuss politics here, except as it directly affects Southern Gospel (such as the song under discussion). If you object to reading a non-political blog written by a conservative, so be it. See you at the next Legacy Five concert!

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7 Letters to the Editor

Southern Gospel Journal welcomes letters to the editor. We will post the most thoughtful and insightful submissions. Ground rules: Don't attack or belittle groups or fellow posters, or advance heresies rejected by orthodox Christianity. Do keep comments positive, constructive, and on topic.
  1. Good for you, Daniel! You just keep on and let those who don’t like it, go somewhere else. Christians hava just as much of a right (indeed, a responsibility) to speak up about our beliefs as all the other POLITICALLY CORRECT, but Biblically INCORRECT groups do! I am sick and tired of those who do not have the Christian beliefs that I do to expect me to embrace–or at least condone– their beliefs! It’s just NOT gonna happen.

  2. Daniel,
    Way to go!!! I agree with you 100%. Stick to your beliefs. They are correct!! I, too, am a Conservative Christian and even though I can’t vote yet, when I can vote I WILL be voting Conservativly.

    The following paragraph is not just to you but to everyone that reads this.

    Sometimes I think that we need to look at whose fault the moral decline in our nation is. Is it really the left?? Or is it those who haven’t stood up for what was right, not voting, not speaking out? i.e. Prayer in public schools (Granted their probably were some speaking out[ I wasn’t even alive yet, so I don’t know], but were their enough speaking out to cause a difference?)

    It is a sad thing that our world is coming to. 🙁

  3. Thanks, Roanna and Donna!

  4. I’m a Democrat (and some would classify me as a liberal) and a Christian. I’ve been told and seen it written that the aforementioned combination is an impossibility! That being said, I still read this blog even though Daniel and I are on opposite ends of the political spectrum. Why? As stated for the southern gospel music aspect. I read a lot of message boards, blog etc that I don’t agree with – I think it’s a good learning experience and in the case of politics, so I know what I’m voting for (and against).

  5. Dean,

    Thanks for stopping by. As I said in the post, let me assure you that it is fully my intention to stick to Southern Gospel topics here.

    And I know many Democratic Christians, some of whom are very good friends of mine. 🙂

  6. Daniel,

    As Dean mentioned, I also think it’s important to keep one’s ears open and read broadly, even reading those with whom one disagrees. I probably don’t share a lot of the same opinions / convictions / beliefs that you hold (I’m pretty confident of that). I probably don’t share a lot of the same with Averyfineline either (although I suspect I’m closer to his perspective). So, like Dean, I read what you have to say because you write about a subject that interests me. It’s always good to hear what others have to say. Probably 90% of the things you blog about have nothing to do with any issues we might disagree on anyway.

    Indeed, none of this brouhaha over at Avery’s blog would have developed if there were not a bunch of people who already know they’re not inclined to agree with Avery who read his blog anyway. So I’d say it’s good that they’re reading him and it’s good that Dean and I are reading you.

    The danger that I fear is when one becomes certain that one has somehow acquired a monopoly on truth. And, for some reason or another (well, actually, one could pretty accurately explain it sociologically) conservatives (especially fundamentalists, but not limited to them) tend to be the ones who acquire this total confidence that they know God’s will about everything and their interpretation of the Christian faith is the ONLY valid one. (To be sure, there are plenty of conservative Christians who manage to avoid that pitfall, but the tendency is undeniably there and undeniably vigorous.)

    The theological or political beliefs I hold may not be the same as yours. I think I’m right–if I didn’t, I would change my views. But the danger would come if I were to change my statement from “I think I’m right” to “I am right and you are definitively wrong.” It’s just too easy to refer to fellow Christians as being “politically correct” but “biblically incorrect” instead of actually mulling over the fact that there are an awful lot of Christians who have a different point of view that ALSO happens to arise out of their Christian faith.


  7. Tom,

    Thanks for your reasoned and reasonable comments. Do not fear, I am not one of those who feels as though they know everything. There are certain areas in which I am fairly confident that I understand the will of God–i.e., that He intended marriage to be between one man and one woman–and there are othe areas in which I am still seeking to know more about His will.