Thursday, November 13, 2014

How We Got Here or Principles of Modern Thought: Equality

Stephen Clark lists five guiding principles of modern thought. The list is interesting since it was written 35 years ago. But looking back one can see that it is spot on. How did we get to a place where sodomite marriage is fine, abortion is fine, women go into combat, and the rejection of one's God given status as a man or a woman is fine ? This list gives you the blocks that build the modern mind.

The Principle of Equality
The Principle of Freedom
The Principle of Developing Full Potential 
The Principle of Authenticity
The Principle of Being a "Full-Person"

Just to be clear on what Clark thinks of these five principles he closes the section saying this:
These five ethical principles exert a powerful influence over Christian discussions of men's and women's roles. Yet none of them are intrinsically Christian principles and none of them derive from a Christian ethical system.
I am going to address these in five posts. Here is what Clark says about the first principle:
The Principle of Equality-"This principle states that all individuals should be treated identically, except for differences in ability or interest...Sometimes the principle of equality is phrased as an attack on anything that would make one person be regarded as 'inferior' to another. This principle militates against social roles ascribed according to age and sex and also against personal subordination. 
Scripture also teaches a principle of equality, but it is a principle of equal care for all members of the body. The scriptural principle is compatible with social roles and personal authority. It is not based on the individualizing of people for a functional society, but is instead based upon a communal life and personal relationships."
There are several things to note about this principle:

First, equality as defined by moderns naturally leads to sodomy, transgenders, and the rejection of male/female roles, among other things. All "roles" become choices we make based on what we enjoy and like, not based on any inherent, built in standard. So a person might be fine with my wife being a homemaker, but they would not be fine with me saying, "Homemaking is the normal, God-ordained, path for women." A person might be fine with men leading my church, but they would be upset with me saying, "Men must lead the church." Each person is equal and what they end up doing is based in the individual's choice, not in any divine law. It also means we can move in and out of "roles." On one level, egalitarians should have a live and let live mentality. But see the next point.

Second, modern equality means you forcefully eradicate anything that makes one person "inferior" to another. The goal is to destroy all positions of authority or empty them of their power.  Egalitarianism is militant.  It is not ultimately content to let others believe in hierarchy. For a while, it pretended to get along, but the goal has always been to drive out by force anything that smacks of inequality. We cannot all just get along. Egalitarians know this better than many conservative Christians.

Third, a plain reading of Scripture beginning in Genesis 1 shows how unbiblical modern equality is. A plain reading of nature shows how unnatural it is.

Fourth, there is an equality in Scripture, but that equality does not eradicate power, authority, hierarchy, male/female roles, etc.  Just because all men are saved the same way, by faith in Jesus Christ, does not make all Christians androgynous, equal in wealth, power, authority, background, knowledge, age, and experience.

Updated at 12 pm on November 13th. 

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Let the saints be joyful in glory, let them sing aloud on their beds, let the high praises of God be in their mouth, and a two edged sword in their hand, to execute vengeance on the nations, and punishments on the peoples; to bind the kings with chains and their nobles with fetters of iron. Psalm 149:5-8