“Teach me to pray so that others will know your will.”
“Teach M***** to be more like you because right now s/he isn’t behaving righteously.”
“Teach my father/mother/brother/sister that I am right and they are wrong about ******.”
In our prayers, in our walk, GOD doesn’t need our opinions. Our opinion is not required!
We are an opinionated lot, we human beings. And nowadays, with social media, we freely have the “right” to our opinions and the expression of them. Even the mainstream media outlets are full of editorial opinions which are expressed more than fact-based journalism … or at least that is my opinion (irony intentioned).
What does the LORD say in His Word about opinions?:
Romans 12:5 ends with “…. do not be wise in your own opinion.” I suspect that is not a frequently taught principle, neither inside nor outside the church.
“DO NOT BE WISE IN YOUR OWN OPINION”
This I believe is a word for today. For us. For you and for me.
I learned a while back that my opinion can get me into trouble: it leads me to judge, it leads me to close-mindedness, it leads me to relational breakdown. And what does it yield? Only a release of exasperation. That’s just my flesh! And I suspect it is the same for others of us… but that’s just my opinion. This conclusion is born from personal experience, but still it is only an opinion.
Walking away from the Word of GOD, society in the West has lost its compass. This habit of freely (and can I say sometimes: thoughtlessly and disrespectfully) expressing our opinion is a part of it.
I encourage us not to be wise in our own opinions but to “study the Word” and allow it to sharpen us (Hebrews 4:12)… and allow us to dwell peaceably with all men.
“Teach me to be more like you, to know your word and to live it out, by the power of Holy Spirit in me.”
Battles hard fought and hard won are the more valued victories. That we have left the EU is almost unbelievable to me. Watching the news and seeing it in the newspaper headlines helps. We’ve left! Hallelujah. Praise GOD. We’ve left. I’m so relieved.
Some people do not agree the future is hopeful. It’s important to be sensitive to others but not hide or apologise for being happy; rather, let us try to carry others with us.
“Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice.” (Philppians 4:4)
When we minister to others the Truth of Jesus and the Gospel, we must not hide our joy and delight. Brexit is nowhere near as important, but there is a similar importance to allow ourselves to rejoice when we are happy. Let us be free to enjoy our sense of freedom and victory that has come from leaving the EU and to enjoy the rebirth of freedom for the nation of the United Kingdom.
Jordan Peterson is a Canadian clinical psychologist and university professor and the new guru of university students across the globe. The answer to the positive thinking of the 1990’s, he has hit the public with a book called 12 Rules Life.
He is a firm believer in freedom of speech and freedom of thought. He’s angry that his Canadian Government has imposed a demand that if a transgender person wants you to address him/her using a particular pronoun, you must; it’s the law. Dr Peterson doesn’t have a problem with addressing individuals how they choose; he does have a big problem with it being made illegal to do otherwise. It’s a slippery slope: creating a law imposing how we address someone, to losing our freedom of speech entirely.
Here’s one of many, many videos he’s posted, this on freedom vs equality:
To surf YouTube will bring to you any number of short or long interviews or lectures given my Jordan Peterson.
One strong societal current seems to be flowing way beyond Political Correctness to thought control. As regards anything to do with women’s rights or the rights of lesbian, gay, bi-sexual or transgender people, this seems to apply; the attempt to indoctrinate young people is rife. It has happened on university campuses. It is being pushed in elementary schools. If the spokespeople are the new “Establishment” then Peterson is definitely anti-establishment.
The Establishment used to be comprised of conservative-leaning folk. Ironically, those who have established themselves as main-stream are the leftists with the attitude that human rights re-defines biology, and women’s rights to choose supports the termination of newborns (in some US states) who are born alive when a term abortion has failed and birth results in a living child. Such an attitude quite contrasts the conservative establishment of the past.
But how an attitude toward abortion and LGBT rights infecting our freedom of speech? Because whenever someone disagrees with the radical ideas, the dissenting voice is accused, berated, attacked for his views, and labelled racist, bigoted, or some other unworthy denigrating title.
Yup, Peterson is quite a cool figure in the eyes of many young people, particularly young men who have become lost in the Feminist extremism and other current trends.
But why is Jordan Peterson relevant to Watchman on Alert?
Jordan Peterson speaks his mind without apology. That is refreshing. It is bold. It is life-giving in a society which is becoming increasingly stifling.
Jesus said in John 12:50,
“And I know that His command is everlasting life. Therefore, whatever I speak, just as the Father has told Me, so I speak.”
Jordan Peterson speaks his mind in a refreshingly direct, even blunt way, kind of in the vein that Jesus spoke to Pharisees.
The Western world is clamping down on freedom of speech, in the name of protection against terrorism and extremist speech. Jesus spoke as he saw fit, and so does Jordan Peterson. In Western society, we all used to celebrate our collective freedom to speak our minds, until political correctness crept in. Now, like a bulldozer, there are groups telling us what we can and cannot say. On university campuses, speakers are being denied access because a voice of dissent rises to say, “Oh, this will offend me.” It is no longer a matter that the person who “may be offended” does not attend the seminar, but rather that the speaker should not even be allowed on campus.
What about freedom of religion
Those of us who speak of Jesus, while we have sensed for a long time an awkwardness about speaking of our Faith openly, now find it illegal to do so on the job, in the UK and other places.
We must not bulldoze our faith upon people, but likewise, we must not be silent, when the Father leads us to profess His love and righteousness. And most of all, we must not take for granted our right to speak. Freedom of speech is an important part of our ability to witness, and at its bedrock, it is our freedom of thought sincerely articulated.
Today we witness children being told what to think by those who believe Faith — especially the Christian Faith — is untrue and detrimental to society. We who practise our faith are told we must not indoctrinate our children (witness parents losing their children to state institutions in Scandinavia for example).The socialist and atheist-driven movements hate any hint of indoctrination of Judea-Christian values and yet instead, they attempt to indoctrinate children at the primary school level with transgenderism that defies biology and common sense, in the name of protecting minorities.
Many youth have already been indoctrinated into thinking right is wrong and wrong is right. Brainwashing has brought democracy and free thinking into question and even rebuke.
But Isaiah 5:20 says,
Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil;
“Who put darkness for light, and light for darkness;
Who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!”
The Father is sovereign and this we must remember. Yes, these times are rife with strife, and yet we do not fear, for, “who is he who will harm you if you become followers of what is good?” (1Peter 3:13)
We must pray that our freedom to think our minds, and speak our thoughts in love and truth, will not be totally forsaken by those who preach human rights, yet hypocritically threaten to silence those of us who disagree with their (new) definitions and parameters.
We must spread our love (not just the love but also the righteousness of Yehovah GOD) and the truth of the Gospel, without fear.
We must be aware of our dwindling freedoms, so that we can value them all the more, not taking them for granted, but using them to the fullest while we still can.
And we must love even those who seek to stifle us, as we are commanded to love our enemies.
Finally, we must hope Jesus — our Yeshua, our Passover Lamb — will return soon.
Safe rooms or Medication vs Conscience and Conviction of HS
I have a theory, a suspicion really, that I’d like to share with you:
There is an active movement which serves to protect our children but is actually preventing them from growing into free-thinking, healthy and strong people, emotionally, physically, and spiritually.
Today in our universities and some communities, there are “safe” locations, where people can escape to, to avoid anything distressing. And universities are preventing some visiting speakers from coming because the challenge of listening to such people, whose views are unpopular, may distress some of the voluntary attendees.
I’d like to suggest that this idea of safe rooms is not only unhealthy, but really is a means to kill any opportunity to learn, to expand thinking, or for inner conviction of conscience or the Holy Spirit.
Today, youth are being encouraged to avoid anything uncomfortable, but that is the way which ultimately prevents learning and growth. Sure, we don’t want people to be abused, but abuse is a far cry from being stretched or being made to feel a little uncomfortable, which are necessary in order to mature.
While society seeks to protect its youth, it is, in fact, preventing youth from challenges that invigorate and lead to personal growth.
If we vaccinate from flu, we prevent our bodies from building up natural antibodies that would strengthen and protect us. Similarly, if we medicate our depression, we are only suppressing our grief, which leads to deeper depression.
And if we avoid discomfort, we can avoid feeling guilty, but guilt is a part of recognising responsibility, failure and growth.
Ask a person who is confident if they’ve every failed. Of course they have. Failure brings about a necessary learning curve to improvement and growth.
Ask a person who is depressed if they sense a purpose or meaning to their lives, or whether they have vitality; undoubtedly most, if not all will say, “No.”
The way we grow, find joy and fulfilment in life, is through meeting challenges. Whether we succeed or fail is not the point but rather whether we try. That is what matters.
If we cocoon our youth, they may avoid emotional and physical bruises, but they will not grow. If a duck does not break open its shell on its own, but it is done for him, he will not become strong but will wither an die. By keeping our youth “feeling safe” we are in fact, preventing them from reaching their full potential. And that is far more criminal than any thing a person might say on a podium or confront with an alternative view.