Saturday, August 22, 2015 4:07 AM

Think Critically or Speak Foolishly

Saturday, August 22, 2015 4:07 AM
Saturday, August 22, 2015 4:07 AM

D.A. Carson points out in his book “The Intolerance of Tolerance” that not much thought goes into what is today called the “new tolerance”. He saw the following on a sign in the Harmony Café in Wisconsin.

I realize:

that it is natural for people to be uncomfortable with those who are different

from themselves, but I will work to overcome these feelings;

that people have different abilities, appearances, beliefs, ethnicities, experiences

and identities, and I realize that the world is a better place because of these differences.


Certainly sounds good until the truth of this secular homily is put to a test. D. A. Carson applies some critical thought.

And yet, and yet.… When we are told that people have different “beliefs” and “identities,” and that “the world is a better place because of these differences,” are we really to buy into such sweeping declarations? How about the belief that the world would be a better place if all Jews were thrown into the ovens? How about the belief that pedophilia is a fine expression of love? How about the belief that there is nothing morally objectionable about crushing the skull of a baby and sucking out its brains, when in the normal course of events it was only three weeks from birth? How about the dogmatic insistence that all religions are really saying the same thing, even though this belief is terribly insulting to the most devout followers of almost all if not all the major world religions?

Is it really true that all “experiences and identities” make the world “a better place”? How about the experience of being gang-raped? Or of being a repeat sex-offender? Do these experiences make the world a better place? Of course, I still want Christians to be able to talk to anyone, including those who hold to these beliefs or who have experienced these things. But surely that is different from pledging not to “pre-judge” all beliefs and experiences. Some beliefs and experiences ought to be “pre-judged.”[ii]

[ii] Carson, D. A. (2012). The Intolerance of Tolerance (pp. 171–172). Grand Rapids, MI; Cambridge, UK: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company.

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