Why Christians Should Support Religious Liberty for Everyone, Including Non-Christians

"While I agree that the prospect of every American coming to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ would be a miracle of biblical proportions that would benefit the world in ways we can’t even imagine, restricting religious liberty isn’t the way to get there." - Dale Chamberlain

Related: Are Some Evangelicals Taking John MacArthur’s Religious Liberty Comments out of Context?

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Aaron Blumer's picture

EditorAdmin

There really isn't any context that can fix statements like those. And this is not the first time JM has made public statements like these. See these from March of 2021...

Is Religious Liberty Really a Dance With the Devil?

John MacArthur: ‘I wouldn’t fight for religious freedom because I won’t fight for idolatry’

As context, the John MacArthur that used to be opposed to the Revolutionary War as ungodly rebellion is now in favor of COVID-rule rebellion. His thinking on issues isn't what it used to be.

Views expressed are always my own and not my employer's, my church's, my family's, my neighbors', or my pets'. The house plants have authorized me to speak for them, however, and they always agree with me.

Bert Perry's picture

....that religious freedom in the Christian tradition is rather bounded.  We are free to voluntarily come into our churches and worship, convene other meetings in other venues, and even make decisions regarding our own employment and associations based on our own religious convictions.  We are not, however, free to do things like Aztec/Druidic/etc. human sacrifice, ritual prostitution on the lines of the worship of Aphrodite, or wage Jihad in the way of Boko Haram or Al Qaida.  It's not a moot point, as even today, there is a practice of ritual prostitution in Hinduism that has led to horrendous AIDS issues in Delhi--my son-in-law spent a few months serving in a hospital serving the mostly castrated victims of what we'd consider homosexual rape.  I'm somewhat shocked that the British didn't crack down on that more while they controlled India, to be honest, in the way they mostly ended Sati, the brutal murder of widows on their husbands' funeral pyres.

In short, the notion of religious freedom combined with individual soul responsibility is in a way a doctrine that results from a fairly modern version of Christianity, and as we go forward, we're going to need to retain the notion that the preservation of real (Christian) religious freedom requires its bounding.

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

Joeb's picture

Larry I know you don't like me saying stuff about your precious Donald and the Christian Right but it directly applies here.  Eric Metaxes whose a Fellow on Liberty's think tank along with Adjudicated Trump Lair Attorney Sydney Powell is a Dominionist. Eric pushes a Christian Caliphate led by their Lifetime Mullah Donald Trump.  If that's not restricting freedom of religion I don't know what is.  

 Trump Congresswomen Lauren Boelbert has said in Sunday church services that the Baptist Churches and Pastors should run the United States and if we lose at the ballot box it's rigged therefore we can get our guns and take what we want. Genius Madison CAUTHORNE Greene and Matt Gatez have said the same repeatedly.  John MacArthur is part of this crowd.  
 

Hey Larry it's going to get real interesting for Donald and the rest of the gang. 11 Oathkeepers just got indicted for Conspiracy to commit sedition by violence.  Some of those Oathkeepers guarded Stone and were with Stone before the attack.  Donald's lawyers had a meeting in December with the Fulton County District Attorney and the Investigators regarding last chance to talk us out of indicting Donald on State Rico Charges in 3 months.   Boy I'm glad Donald burned his bridges in GA.  Having his people threatening to hurt that one election worker and her mother to force them to falsely say they did take Trump ballots out of the count doesn't help either. You know the suit cases.  Then threatening to rape Sectary Rasfensberger's wife in front of him and kill both of them if he doesn't do what Trump says and the next day he gets the infamous phone call from Trump and Meadows which was recorded. Boy the Mark Meadows must have one of those on off switches to I'm an Evangelical Christian and Love Jesus and the Democrats are Baby Killers.  Got to love these PHONIES. 
 

Oh Gatez's former girlfriend got immunity and went before the Federal Grand Jury.  Wow wait until all those fine Christian Right Florida Legislators get named for being at Gatez's Fund raising parties with hookers and drugs. You  know like the Trump ones above who switch on I'm an evangelical Christian and Love the Lord and hate those baby killing Democrats when needed. They all push taking over the government by the barrel of gun and take away religious freedom from Muslims Hindus and Jews  So all the above directly applies  
 

Ed Stezer's prediction is coming true   The reckoning is coming for the Evangelicals for being involved with Donald Trump as Ed Stetzer warned.  There is a new book out and  I'll have to get it   It's titled Jesus and John Wayne and Subtitled White Evangelicals Have Corrupted a Faith and Fractured A Nation   I think that says it all  

Now take it easy Larry I'm just using a little satire.  Not trying to be disrespectful but you have to admit the above applies. It's a shame the Christian Right has become so twisted by Trump.  I remember when Pastors from the Christian Right would vehemently defend Muslims and Hindus and others Leaders when it came to them building their houses of whorship. I believe Falwell Sr Pat Robinson and others would come to the defense of Imans and other religious leaders when the Christian Right Pastors perceived that the Local and State Governments were unfairly trying to stop houses of worship from being built.  WHAT HAPPENED TO THE CHURCH AND THESE PASTORS. Now that Right has embraced Violence and Terrorism so they can't say it's Islamic Terrorism.  . 

Larry's picture

Moderator

Larry I know you don't like me saying stuff about your precious Donald and the Christian Right but it directly applies here.

I am not sure who you are referring to but I think I am the only Larry here. The reference to "your precious Donald Trump and the Christian Right" is confusing because it has no reference to me at all. Trump nor the Christian right is precious to me. I am adamant about churches and pastors staying out of partisan politics in the public realm. So this is just an odd comment. I am not sure why you address any of this to me. I think I reject everything you talk about here, although I am not sure because some of it is a bit hard to follow and I don't really keep up with it. 

Yes, a lot of your posts get unpublished because they are off topic and seem incoherent or confused. This is marginally on topic, but it is filled with a lot of nonsense. You have been asked many times to take care in your posting and I would encourage you to do this.

JD Miller's picture

Joeb wrote:

 Trump Congresswomen Lauren Boelbert has said in Sunday church services that the Baptist Churches and Pastors should run the United States and if we lose at the ballot box it's rigged therefore we can get our guns and take what we want. Genius Madison CAUTHORNE Greene and Matt Gatez have said the same repeatedly.

Joeb, please cite the quotes in context if they were made.  If those quotes do not exist as you represent them, then apologize for slander.  If those quotes do exist as you represent them- and you are able to site them-, then you will have nothing to apologize for and the rest of us will be able to pass them along as well.  

  Also I do not understand why Larry is being addressed.  I have not seen him post on this thread. 

I hope your post is not taken down.  I think it is helpful for all who read your comments to know your character behind the keyboard so that they might be a bit more skeptical about what you write.   On the other hand this could also be a great opportunity for us all to be encouraged if you respond in a godly way to concerns about how your posted.  

Praying for you, Jerry

Joeb's picture

On September 13, 2021 at a Right Wing Conference Held At A Church Lauren BOEBERT made it real clear that the CHURCH IE her understanding of a church should be telling the Government what to do & that only Christians should be in public office. BOEBERT GREENE CAUTHORNE & GATEZ have repeatedly supported Trump's Mass Voter Fraud Lie and in plain language have said that their resolution if the vote doesn't go their way due to it being rigged is WE SHOULD GET OUR GUNS AND TAKE WHAT WE WANT ie KILL DEMOCRATS.  There you go.   If people on Sharper iron don't question whether the above fine Representatives of our government know the Lord and question my character I'd say you one needs to seek out the Lord.  
 

Larry I owe you an apology.  Sorry for offending you. My fault. 
 

My statements are all truth. Anyone who defends the Christian Right and Trump at this point is in sin. Questioning my character is offensive to me.  These so called Trump Evangelicals are not Patriots and I will speak the truth to that with my last breath. If one finds that offensive then one should seek out whether they back truth and our Lord or DONALD TRUMP.   Right now their is no difference in sin between Trump Evangelicals and the Far Left.  Just a difference in sins committed. .  Religious Freedom in this Country is going down the toilet due to the people like John MacArthur and Trumper White Evangelicals.  
 

The GAUL & Corruptness by somene like JIM BOOB DUGGAR and his wife Michele to say BIDEN and the Democrats planted that Child Porn on Josh's computer and then say this was just another example of the Democrats going after Believers to take away their freedoms says it all. Huckabee defended the Duggars in how they handled Josh and called them fine believers in our Lord. Now we know Jim BOOB outright lied to everyone.  He lied Anna's parents about Josh and they have publicly said they never would have allowed Anna to marry him if they knew the truth. 

The biggest threat to this Country for Religious Freedom is the Trump Republican Party and the White Evangelicals still backing him.  If that shows my CHARACTER by taking that position I take that as a compliment.  

JD Miller's picture

I cannot in good conscience pass on information about our elected representatives that comes from someone who was not there when they made the statements and he tells me that they said something somewhere (no specifics even where) that he interprets to mean such and such.  No direct quotes or context of the quotes was given by Joeb, so I am not in a position to warn others about these representatives based on the information that Joeb has given us.

I did find some quotes from Boebert from a Sept 13 Yahoo news article.  Here is what they wrote:

Later in her speech, Ms Boebert suggested that the Christian church had "relinquished too much authority to government."

"We should not be taking orders from the government, the government needs to be looking at the church and saying "how do we do this effectively?" she said.

I am Baptist and one of our distinctives is separation of church and state.  It seems that even among Baptists, there are some that think the church should get guidance from the government, while there are others who think that that the church should tell the government what to do.  I believe that neither should be the case.  At the same time, I think the government could learn a lot if they looked to the Lord and asked how he would have us do things more effectively.  If that is what she meant, then I cannot disagree with her.  Still, I want to be careful about assuming what she meant one way or the other.  I would hope others would as well.

Andrew K's picture

Joeb wrote:

Anyone who defends the Christian Right and Trump at this point is in sin.

I don't question your character at all, but you have no authority to make this claim. 

Rob Fall's picture

I view a vote for Trump and the GOP as a vote against the Nancy Pelosi Democratic machine. Joeb do you have any alternatives for me?

Hoping to shed more light than heat..

Joeb's picture

At this point it's clear Trump lied.  TRUMP LOST THE ELECTION AND CONTINUES TO LIE ABOUT IT. I'm sick of those aforementioned TRUMP Congressmen and Congresswomen threatening to get their guns to take what they want.   So Rob do you still support a man who LIED AND CAUSED 60 of my Fed Law Enforcement Brothers and Sisters to be maimed for life and caused the deaths of 5 more Rob. Oh wait Rob are you still in buy into the big lie and buy into that January 6, 2021 iwas not a big deal.  I sure hope you don't.  I'd hope you'd want everyone held fully accountable and jailed from Trump on down if their guilty.   

My prayer is that Trump goes to jail that Liberty is totally exposed for the Ungodly men that run it by the class action lawsuit and Rachel Dehollander exposes all those fine SBC Conservative Baptist Network Pastors for the Criminals they are. My prayer is also that true Christian Republicans will stand along side Adam Kissinger to support putting Trump and any of his fellow minions in jail.  How's that Rob for pursuing the simple right and wrong that So called Christians don't still seem to be able to do.  Boebert supports of Trump's lie and that alone makes her in SIN.  Simple is it not.  That's the point. Like I said they all have a PHONY vs I love Christ on and off switches. If they truly loved the Lord they'd denounce Trump and run to support Adam Kinzinger.  
 

The Evangelical Church's reckoning  is coming for their sin in being involved with Trump who would get rid of Freedom of religion if he became a Dictator like he tried to do. If Rachel Dehollander smoked Nasser and got a 900 Million Dollar settlement from the  University of Michigan and the Olympic Committee just think what she is going to do to all those Godly Pastors in the SBC CNB.  I'm going to sit back and watch this happen.  The White Trump Evangelicals deserve everything that's coming to them. They have abused women in numbers rivaling the Catholic Church   Ungodly men and criminals  HANNAH KATE WILLIAMS' story spells it out in spades  

Truthfully my real prayer would be that like BJU these Trump Pastors and Legislators if they know the Lord will confess their sin into buying into Trump's lies and repent. That's my true prayer.  If BJU Men can do it so can all the others.  BJU is the one bright spot in all this mess and a clear example for ALL TO FOLLOW   MACARTHUR fired and slandered HAM and I'd bet HAM took a solid stand and called MacArthur to repentance which MacArthur rejected.  Very very sad when people who claim to know Christ would openly buy into Trump's lies and John MacArthur's as alleged.  We as believers are suppose to stand for Righteousness but that's not happening. 
 

Rob Fall's picture

You're so focused on Trump and company that you haven't answered my question. He and they are fairly irrelevant to my locality. As Tip O'Neal once said, "All politics is local." So far the national and state GOP has done little to make any difference in my Congressional district.

The tenor of your remarks is so vitriolic that I pretty much ignore them.

Hoping to shed more light than heat..

Joeb's picture

Rob I don't vote based on all Democrats being demons. I gave that up after 35 years of voting a straight Republican ticket. I see no difference between the extreme right and the Extreme left.  Just different sins.
 

At the local and state level Bannon is pushing a program of putting in Trump's White Supremecist Thugs ie Proud Boys and Oathkeepers on school boards. So if you support that have at it.  This has lead to Threats of violence toward Democrats and Moderates on School Boards all over the Country. It's a Bannon/Trump tactic to intimidate people from running and into resigning ie Ohio Congressman Gonzales. Trump even took credit for getting Gonzales to resign.  Threats to kill his wife and kids tend to do that. . Hence I won't vote for one Trump Republican at the LOCAL or State level. I'm voting for Shapiro for PA Governor. The Trump Governor guy running was pushing the BIG LIE and still is. 
 

Ask the Republican Commissioner of the Philadelphia's Election Board what he thinks of the Trump gang after he received direct threats to kill his wife and kids if he did not throw out Biden votes. The Trump Thugs posted his address and the addresses of the Schools his kids went to and all his family's names. My advise is to do what Adam Kinzinger is doing cooperating with Pelosi the Vamperic One and the Old Bat. .

 Oh yeah ask Metro Police Officer Fanone to who was a big supporter and voter of Trump what he thinks of Trump and the Christian Right Congressmen and Congresswomen now after he was beaten almost to death by TRUMP THUGS Rob.  He now works for CNN after being forced out on a medical disability.  God bless him what a hero.  When it comes to Trump Candidates I vote DEMOCRAT or Independent.  Better a Democrat then a Racist White Terrorist and Killer ROB don't you think. 
 

So if I'm so terrible for standing against Terrorism then your comments about me are a complement.  By your comments I'd say your against Adam Kinzinger and Liz Channey working with Pelosi to get Trump and hold all accountable for 1/6/21. YES OR NO ROB.   Let's be honest here.
 

I'd vote for Chris Christie and a Adam Kinzinger ticket for President and VP in a Manhattan minute in 2024.  If you want Religious Freedom vote Independent or Democrat if the other choice is a Trumper unless Orange Donald is behind bars.  

Larry's picture

Moderator

Larry I owe you an apology.  Sorry for offending you. My fault.

You didn't offend me. You were simply incorrect to associate me with views I don't hold. 

However, remember that one of the biggest misleading statistics (i.e., lies) from the 2016 election was the evangelical support of Trump. Most evangelicals voted against Trump when there was another option during the primaries. Had all the evangelicals voted for the same primary candidate, Trump would have almost certainly never been elected. However their vote was split between multiple candidates, thus diluting their power. They supported Trump only when he was the only option to Clinton. So it is clear from primary data that most evangelicals voted for someone else when they had the chance. So it would be nice to be done with that story. My guess is that even now, evangelicals would gladly support another candidate. There are some very strong evangelical Trump supporters. But my guess is that most are not.

You would be well-served to document these claims you are making about these things you claim are being said. You would also be well-served to stay on topic. Here, in a post on religious freedom, you talk very little about religious freedom. You do manage to work in Liberty, MSU, Denhollander, BJU, the SBC, the Duggars, and more. Keep on topic. 

JD Miller's picture

Larry wrote:

You would be well-served to document these claims you are making about these things you claim are being said. You would also be well-served to stay on topic. Here, in a post on religious freedom, you talk very little about religious freedom. You do manage to work in Liberty, MSU, Denhollander, BJU, the SBC, the Duggars, and more. Keep on topic. 

Further Joeb continues to denigrate evangelicals and godly pastors (if they have done wrong we cannot call them godly and they need to be held accountable.  If there is no evidence they have done wrong, then we must not slander them).  Finally it is racist to focus on the color of an evangelical's skin.  We can talk about people's positions but I agree with Martin Luther King Jr. (note what day it is today) that we ought to judge a man by the content of his character, not the color of his skin.

Rob Fall's picture

Joe, please note I referenced the local Democratic machine currently run by Nancy Pelosi. I wasn't referring to "all" Democrats.

Joeb wrote:

Rob I don't vote based on all Democrats being demons. I gave that up after 35 years of voting a straight Republican ticket. I see no difference between the extreme right and the Extreme left.  Just different sins. SNIP

Hoping to shed more light than heat..