BY Eddie Cross
TWO weeks ago, I was in Washington DC for a short visit. It has been very many years since I was last in that great city — always one of my global favourites. It did not let me down. I have never seen her looking so good, the flowers on the streets, the clean kerbs and green trees everywhere. We had missed the spring outpouring of flowering shrubs, but the city was, in every way, an example of a dignified, well-run major capital.
Both Houses of Congress were in full session and the place was buzzing, the annual budget was being finalised, House committees were sitting and to say people were busy, is a gross understatement. I had forgotten how hard most Americans work; it is the key to understanding their leadership in so many areas of life.
But what disturbed me most was the very clear evidence, everywhere, of moral degeneration. The loudest voices on the streets were strident demands for the right to an abortion on demand, the so called “Gay Rights”. Flags of the LGBTQ movement were everywhere, even outside our hotel where it flew like the flag of a State along the Stars and Stripes. The strident calls for single sex relationships and marriage. A close colleague, who was a committed and practicing catholic, said to me that he could not even talk about his position on these issues in the office.
I saw evidence of the Christian movements fighting back, but the reference in the media was always labelling them as “right wing Evangelicals” as if their views were somehow neo-fascist. It shocked me to see an application form for a visa to enter a major Western Nation in Europe, which allowed you to classify yourself into a dozen or more sexual categories as if this was normal and natural.
I live in Africa where faith in God and human values are still accepted everywhere. Where going to church on Sundays is the norm, not the exception. We do not accept homosexuality as “normal and natural”, quite the opposite. Single sex relationships are a complete no-no in the average African community. It almost seems as if this classifies us as somehow backward in this new world order. But what we seem to have been lost, is any sense of the fundamental values that dominated that small group of men who crafted the US Constitution. They were all religious refugees from protestant Europe who had a faith based set of values and norms based on the Bible. Let’s look at a few of these: –
The fallen nature of man
They accepted that left to himself, mankind would normally fall back into a life of sin and degradation. Humanity could not be trusted with absolute power and, therefore, they carefully crafted a set of principles in this short document, which we call today “the separation of powers” between the Legislature, the Executive and the Courts. All three can make the rules, but all with limits and each to supervise the other.
The US recognises the family as the basic building block of society. It is the only place to raise children who will then go on to make a positive contribution to society at large, marriage was between a man and a woman who would “become one” as the Bible dictates.
The rule of law and the sanctity of private property. The idea that ultimately law was supreme when it came to managing the affairs of State and of Man. That nobody was above the law, not even the President. The concept that certain issues in law were fundamental — theft, murder, violence and sexual assault.
The ultimate supremacy of God Himself
These men recognised the existence of God and did not query in any way the fact that the world and all that live on it are the products of a process of creation and that ultimately all mankind and all leaders in society were accountable to Him.
All of the above principles are under attack on a global basis by a movement which is basically humanistic in character. This movement puts man at the centre of everything and demands that he sets the rules.
In the 19th and the 20th Centuries the philosophies that dominated thinking and key political systems were also humanistic in character, but with an authoritarian twist. Out of this school of thought in European capitals came the communist parties of the Soviet Union and China. They basically said that the State, under communist rule, made the rules. No reference to God in any way, but they carefully assessed what seemed to work when trying to produce the ideal society and the new “socialist man” and in the process discovered that many of the Christian values espoused by Europe and the USA worked!!
It was these political parties that made same sex marriage mandatory, made it difficult to get a divorce. Even so these political movements failed to deliver a better quality of life and in the end had to concede to market driven strategies to spur growth and in the Soviet Union accept the break up of the Empire and the resumption of Christian worship and values.
But in the West the new movements are based on a general decline in Christian faith. We are in what Billy Graham stated is a post Christian era in the US and Europe. Once you abandon the Christian world view, you have to replace it with something else and in the present time it seems to be the growing dominance of humanistic thought and the complete abandonment of any sort of moral fundamentals.
The system of law in the West is basically founded on the 10 Commandments and once you abandon these, you are adrift on a sea of relativeness. There are no rules except what we think we need. Do I really have to state that this is a recipe for a complete mess? Can you imagine a nursery where the children set the rules?
So ultimately it comes back to the absolute basics, do we believe in God or not? If we do then there are consequences, we are a created entity of incredible complexity and design with a purpose. All life is sacred because its origins are sacred. The conception of a child in a women’s womb is an act of God, a small miracle which our science is completely unable to interpret or understand. We have no idea what turns a tiny bit of human flesh into a living being.
If we do then we understand that if we live life outside of the rules and principles which are clearly set out in Scripture then this is to our own detriment. Is this true, yes I know, because I have seen the transforming power of these principles in thousands of lives and in society. Promiscuity is nothing like life in a secure, binding marriage. Every study of society shows that sex inside marriage is better than outside — if we are created beings then why not? Recently, a professor at a leading University in Europe was dismissed when she refused to accept that sex change was possible. Her arguments were based on science and her own experience, but could not be tolerated by the humanists on campus.
If we do not believe in God, then we have huge problems – we have to decide who lives and who dies, what is right and what is wrong and why. We have to explain the evidence of design and intelligence in all living things. Such answers are simply not available and therefore you have to close your mind and grip the megaphone more tightly as you shout “Roe and Wade” outside the Supreme Court in Washington DC.
- Eddie Cross is an economist and former Bulawayo South legislator. He writes here in his personal capacity