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THE MANY USES OF THE WORD "FREEDOM" PDF Print E-mail
Written by Calvin Fox   
Thursday, 31 December 2015 16:22

 

The Many uses of "Freedom"

“With the advent of WWII, the dominant abstract word was "Freedom" and many were harkening once again for the Declaration of Independence and its cry for Freedom. in 1941, FDR preached the "Four Freedoms" (of speech, of worship and from want and from fear) and politicians spoke of "Free Europe", freedom-loving Nations and the "Free World". There was even a “Freedom Train" traveling the Country with the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, papers by Alexander Hamilton and the Gettysburg Address, as well as the Documents of surrender signed by Germany and Japan.

WWII was followed by the Cold War and the language of Freedom was again employed to arouse the Nation. This War was to free captive Europe form Communist slavery, to free China from the Maoists. The cold war was fought for cultural freedom, the free market and free enterprise and ultimately, for a free world! Freedom, Capitalism and Democracy were all bound together.

It was not long before the concept of "Freedom" was transformed into "Rights"- social rights and economic rights- rights for protection from poverty and rights for security in old age and against unemployment now; Rights for decent housing and medical care. Eventually, there was the demand for Civil Rights for African Americans. There were demands for the Rights of Women, Children, the Unborn, Gays, Native Americans, Prisoners as well as welfare rights and rights of privacy, of expression, of Education and Protection and, fittingly, the right to die [Euthanasia]

Reference: Contested Truths by Daniel Rodgers

 

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Last Updated on Thursday, 31 December 2015 16:26
 
WHAT IS FREEDOM or LIBERTY PDF Print E-mail
Written by Calvin Fox   
Thursday, 31 December 2015 16:15

 

The word is almost always connected with other words or concepts that describe the American Political System or Democracy. And its origins are commonly said to be in Ancient Athens or in Rome. The usual History of the subject is totally secular. But, Stanton Evans has written, "Such 'Democracy' is not what we are looking for here. We are concerned with Models of Liberty and that is not what ancient Greece or in Imperial or Republican Rome provide. That is because the concept of personal and social Freedom for all its Citizens is unknown and impossible in Nations which are controlled by an all-powerful King, Dictator or Regime which, by definition, must deny it. Freedom requires a government that is limited to prevent it from becoming oppressive."

Evans goes on to insist that the Principles of both personal freedom and the concept of the limited State were known in Medieval Europe. There we find the beginnings of *representative institutions, *popular sovereignty, *social contract, *elected Rulers, *limited Powers and *Government under Law.

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Last Updated on Thursday, 31 December 2015 16:16
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THE MYTH OF FREE-WILL PDF Print E-mail
Written by Calvin Fox   
Thursday, 31 December 2015 15:57

 

“Free Will” and the Need for Government

Free Will is defined as “The ability to make choices without causal influences, free of determinants: ‘I will choose or do what ever I want- nothing determines or causes my choice or behavior or makes me choose one thing, or do one thing, rather than another.’” Note this is also a defintion of personal "Freedom" or "Liberty". Free Will defined this way does not exist, neither does complete Freedom. There must be restraint and reinforcement in the Community to get people to chose or to do "the right thing" for the "common good".

However strongly we desire to be independent, the reality is we are part of a community or group of some kind, from birth. Many outside influences impact our lives about which we had no choice whatsoever. We accept that. Did you choose to be born? To your mother? As an only child or the middle child? In the year and month when it happened? Did you choose your gender? Your physical features? Your race? Nationality?

Decisions we may think we made freely, have actually been influenced, caused or determined by something or someone. Did you freely choose to go to college? Or to not go? Without anyone or anything influencing you? Did you choose to marry? The person you married? When you married? Without any one influencing you? Did your age influence your decision? Your family situation? Your hormones or emotions? The list could go on and on.

Did you ever make a mistake? Do something foolish or stupid? Was that a free choice? Was your choice not to not do those things a free choice? Was there something or someone influencing you either way? Did you choose to sin uninfleunced by anthing, anyone? Every time? Why did you not choose to not sin? Did ignorance ever influence your decisions? Selfishness? Laziness? Anger? Fear? Lust? The Weather?

 

We do have a will. We do make choices and are responsible for them and for their consequences. But our will is always under the influence of something. There are many determinants of all our decisions. Have you ever made any decision that has truly been free from influence of some kind? The answer must be “No”.

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Last Updated on Thursday, 31 December 2015 15:57
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THE EVANGELICAL DRIFT PDF Print E-mail
Written by Calvin Fox   
Friday, 26 June 2015 13:14

There is a continuous stream of polls and surveys that document and confirm the trend that American evangelicals are  drifting from sound Doctrine and Theology, usually in favor of "Moralistic Therapeutic Deism" : a belief in a God who is always available (on call) to people with problems, offering them comfort and counsel in their personal lives and relationships.  A God who loves and cares for them, but makes no serious demands upon them.  There is open rejection , even disdain, for hard or demanding Doctrine about the Nature and Decrees of this God and great misunderstanding about The Trinity and the distinctive work of the Father, Son and Spirit.  There is also a growing rejection of the Bible as the authoritative Word of God and what it teaches about Salvation.  Here are three of the latest surveys-

http://www.christianpost.com/news/moralistic-therapeutic-deism-the-new-american-religion-6266/

http://www.theamericanconservative.com/dreher/church-crisis-organized-religion/

http://ligonier-static-media.s3.amazonaws.com/uploads/thestateoftheology/TheStateOfTheology-Whitepaper.pdf

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THE IMAGE OF GOD PDF Print E-mail
Written by Calvin Fox   
Tuesday, 16 December 2014 19:32

“We are not to reflect on the wickedness of men but to look to the image of God in them, an image which, covering and obliterating their faults, an image which, by its beauty and dignity, should allure us to love and embrace them.”
John Calvin, Institutes of the Christian Religion

The faculties in which all human beings image God, the ways in which every human being is like God are these:

  • Creative
  • Rational
  • Moral
  • Relational
  • Spiritual

This list is based primarily on the Creation Narratives in Genesis.  All these faculties are corrupted by sin, but nevertheless, they remain, though flawed, within every person and are what give all of us our value as human beings- Gen 9:6 , James 3:9



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