A Strange Alliance : Secular Humanism and Neo-Paganism

By William D. Howard

  Beginning in the 1700s, in Europe one can see the forming of a strange and seemingly self-contradictory alliance of intellectuals and writers that made up what we now call the “Enlightenment”. Broadly speaking the “Enlightenment” was a much needed antitoxin against religious fanaticism, senseless wars, and the social/political injustices of that period. But all social movements carry within them the seeds of ideological extremes and so did the “Enlightenment”.  Secular humanism was one of those extremes and the neo-paganism was the other. Instead of reforming the Judeo-Christian culture and returning it to its original humane beginnings, secular humanism opted for the total elimination of religious faith. Religion in general was seen as an evil, retrograde, influence.

  Like a bi-polar mind divided against itself, the “Enlightenment” also produced a number of writers/philosophers that promoted a neo-pagan view of life. The secular humanists were the dominant voices, but the neo-pagans could claim the most famous writer of this period, Jean-Jacques Rousseau. His great influence on both the French Revolution and the next great cultural/social movement “Romanticism” is well established. Rousseau began the cult of nature worship and promoted a morality based upon the standard of personal feelings.

  The debates and contradictions we see in modern American culture today are exactly the same. Those who want to eliminate the influence of religion not only in our government but our society in general and those that promote a “New Age” of nature worship. They seem to be natural enemies but in reality they work in a symbiotic alliance to undermine what has been our Judeo-Christian tradition. They are strange bedfellows and useful enemies. What they do have in common is the main objective of ending what has been the dominate influence of the Judeo-Christian morality in American history.

If we seek a second commonality it is in their values systems. Both reduce truth and goodness to human sized standards. Each individual is his own oracle or as the once prominent radical of the 1960s, Jerry Rubin told us: “If it feels good do it.” Rubin is a good example of the strange hybrid mix of pagan values, nature worship, and Marxist ideology. Based upon his own immature understanding of life and history and following the pagan credo of feelings first, he made wild statements that excited an equally ignorant youth culture of that day. This is why young voters today are carried away by the socialist rhetoric of Sanders, Warren and the most historically ignorant of them all A.O.C. Without an understanding of the lessons of history, and without core values that have withstood the test of time all people are subject to the sway of demagoguery. For this reason it would be more accurate to call the “Democratic Party” the “Demagogic Party”. Their common methodology is to cut the cord between reason and facts and make emotions the primary adjudicator of truth.

  Secular humanists believe that you can have a highly moral society without religious faith but history has shown that it takes the inspiration of religious faith to maintain a high moral standard. The other great enemy of Judeo-Christian culture are the neo-pagans who talk a good game of peace, love, and healing the planet, but are always found attempting to undo the linkage between sexual morality and the sacredness of human life. Religious studies author Michael F. Strmiska wrote:

“… in pagan magazines, websites, and internet discussion… Christianity is frequently denounced as an antinatural, antifemale, sexually and culturally repressive, guilt-ridden… authoritarian religion that has fostered intolerance, hypocrisy and persecution throughout the world.”

  Unfortunately for the neo-pagans and secular humanists who believe the same thing a statistical study of the world’s different cultural regions proves a very different case. Those parts of the world which have been most influenced, by the values and spiritual outlook of the Judeo-Christian tradition, are the same areas of the world which are most prosperous and have the best record of human rights and democracy. These are also the same areas which have experience in modern history the least amount of wars and genocide. Those who would object to this view and who point to the wars and genocide in Europe before 1945 as proof must face the historical fact that Hitler’s Nazi German empire was based upon a pagan value system. Western civilization rejected those values and paid a high cost in defeating that empire. The same is also true of the secular humanists who would promote a socialist or so-called progressive agenda. They must face the facts, that the wars and mass-murder perpetrated by Communist Russia and China, were the product of a violent off-shoot of secular humanism.

When you take God out of the discussion you are only left with human philosophies and some are more hate filled and dangerous than others. Marxism was the product of a malevolent human mind that cost the world over 100,000,000 lives and counting.

  If one over-lays a series of maps showing those regions of the world which are today least free, have the most human rights violations, are poorest and have produced the most wars and refugees, one sees a common connection. They are the same regions of the world which historically have had the most enduring pagan cultures. Where there are exceptions to this rule (Like Japan or South Korea) it can be explained by the fact that they have been highly influenced by the value system of Western Civilization.

  Despite the overwhelming historical evidence in favor of the positive influence of the Judeo-Christian tradition, the secular humanists and neo-pagans continue their tireless efforts to undermine and replace it with a new pagan foundation.

  Opinion polls taken in America, on questions about sexuality prove that they have largely succeeded.  Tom W. Smith in a piece published by the University of Chicago in 2013 stated the bottom-line:

“ …there has been an increase in sexually-permissive attitudes over the last four decades… with more approval of premarital sex, same-gender sex, gay marriage… and the legal access to pornography.”

  These changes were not accidental. They are the by-product of intentional efforts, made by a committed community of believers who are in control of our mass-popular culture. President Obama’s endorsement of homosexual marriage and the Supreme Court’s narrow ruling in its favor were only the cherries on- top or the white flag of national surrender.

The American Psychological Association, as early as 2001 reported that “… 68 percent of television shows during the 1999-2000 season contained sexual content…” A Kaiser Family Foundation, report in 2011, found that between 1998 and 2005 the number of sex scenes on American television had doubled. Another more recent study showed that in the 1970s there were only five homosexual characters presented on American television, but by the 2000s there were 390.  The Atlantic, reported in 2011, that “92% of Top Billboard songs are about sex”. Chrysalis L. Wright Ph.D. wrote in Media Psychology Review, that “… young adults listen to music between two and four hours each day… more than 1/3 of popular songs contain explicit sexual content and 2/3 of these references are degrading…”

  The latest homosexual propaganda that has recently appeared on TV is an ad entitled “Beyond I do”. It presents two totally silent lesbians, holding several small children and looking very contented. The message is clear: Gay marriage is not the end of the homosexual rights campaign but its new beginning.

  Homosexual marriage once celebrated by the Progressives as the capstone of Gay rights is now viewed by the same people as a new corner-stone to build America’s pagan future on. Starting in the 2020 school year, the state of Illinois will require its public schools to include LGBTQ history in their curriculum.  Christian and Jews have of course been here before, and just as when in ancient Rome they refused to celebrate human carnage as sports entertainment or refused to commit collective adultery and call it “love making”, we must now refuse to accept the “Politically Correct”, “New Speak” of “One Love”. Some homosexual feminists, are now calling for what they describe as “Open-sourced fully collaborative gestation.” Put in laymen’s terms they would replace the traditional family with homosexual social engineering.  The question must be asked, how many innocent children will be subjected to their radical family experiments? How many lives must be sacrificed upon the altar of “Political Correctness”.

  The great Author of “Animal Farm” and “1984” would, if he were alive today easily recognize the language of the Left as propaganda. The words gay and homophobia are both insidious, gay because it is a euphemism for a life style which is anything but benign. Homophobia is especially insidious because its use transfers the sting of abnormality to the normal. The deviant now becomes the healthy and morality is turned up-side down. In ancient Rome, Jews and Christians faced the same type of smear campaign. They were labeled “anti-social”, even “lovers of death”. They suffered for their beliefs but in the end it was pagan Rome which collapsed under the weight of its own perversion. The Pro-Life tendency of Christianity grew in strength, while Rome’s population declined as a result of self-inflicted infanticide.

  Like America’s culture today, ancient Rome set a very low bar for sexual morality. It promoted a harsh double standard in the treatment of women. With few exceptions it licensed male promiscuity and allowed pederasty and the rape of men, women, and children who were slaves. Judaism raised the standard to a much higher level. It strongly condemned adultery, homosexuality, a husband forcing himself on his wife and sex outside of marriage. Judaism produced the healthiest and most wholesome, family life in the ancient world. Jesus another Jew, raised the standard even higher. His view was encapsulated in his statement:

 “If a man looks on a woman and lusts after her, he has already committed adultery.”

  His statements implicitly condemned polygamy, easy divorce and made love the only acceptable standard for human relationships. All of this raised the value and improved over time the treatment of women. Most importantly his teaching linked the sacredness of human life with his teaching on sexual purity. By linking these two principles of Judeo-Christianity it became impossible to pretend that rape, pedophilia, adultery, prostitution or any type of permissive sexuality were compatible with the respect for life, either slave or free.

William D. Howard is a freelance writer who had a long career as an educator. He holds degrees in philosophy and history and has traveled widely in over 40 countries.


Sex trafficking survivors urge Canadian Parliament to open criminal investigation into MindGeek

By Brandon Showalter, Christian Post Reporter

Anti-pornography advocates and survivors of sexual exploitation have called for the Canadian Parliament to open a criminal investigation into MindGeek, the parent company of Pornhub and over 160 other websites that profit off videos showing “rape, nonconsensual pornography, and child sexual abuse material.”

In a 12-page letter to the Canadian Parliament’s Standing Committee on Access to Information, Privacy and Ethics, a collective of 104 survivors of sexual exploitation and 525 nongovernmental organizations from 65 nations called for a criminal investigation into MindGeek, which is headquartered in Montreal, Quebec. 

Joining the group is the Washington-based National Center of Sexual Exploitation, whose Law Center filed a legal brief on Feb. 19 backing an investigation into “how the nonconsensual content on MindGeek websites is violating international legal norms against slavery and torture.”

“MindGeek has profited from rape, nonconsensual pornography, and child sexual abuse material for years, and it is time to open a criminal investigation to hold this company accountable,” said NCOSE senior legal counsel Dani Pinter in a statement Monday.

On Feb. 1, the Canadian House of Commons Ethics Committee held public hearings to hear witnesses’ testimonies about MindGeek’s alleged practices. Four days later, MindGeek executives were questioned by the ethics committee. 

Multiple reports have emerged revealing how Pornhub, one of the largest pornography websites in the world, has allowed illegal content on its site and has been slow to verify consent and remove the videos.

“[I]t apparently stores a copy of all content on its servers, even child sexual abuse material (CSAM); and it turns out that MindGeek executives even claimed a partnership with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children but NCMEC says no such partnership exists. These issues are just the tip of the iceberg,” Pinter added. 

“The outcry from such an overwhelming number of survivors and organizations against MindGeek’s exploitative business model must be heard, and we are proud to stand with them. Survivors deserve justice and Canada has a unique opportunity to fully investigate MindGeek.” 

Last month, MindGeek executives insisted that they were trying to create a “safe environment for people to consume adult content.”

Michael Bowe, an American attorney who has been investigating Pornhub for a year, was among those who spoke at the Feb. 1 hearing where he cited the case of a girl younger than 10, who had been trafficked and had child sexual abuse material made of her. The material had been posted on Pornhub for over 10 years and had stayed there until late last year.

Pornhub came under considerable scrutiny in December when New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristofdetailed how the company had failed to enforce its policies and had contributed to an explosion of child sex abuse online. In the column, Kristof described the porn giant as “[pedophile] Jeffrey Epstein times 1000.”

Later that month, 40 women who were victims of Girls Do Porn — the owners of which have been charged with various sex crimes — filed a lawsuit against Pornhub, claiming the site had profited off their exploitation as victims of sex trafficking.

The United States Department of Justice effectively shuttered Girls Do Porn in 2019 when its senior staff were arrested and charged with various crimes. The site had been a partner of MindGeek up until that point.

Launched last year by the group ExodusCry, a Change.org petition calling for Pornhub to be shut down given documented link to trafficking has garnered nearly 2.2 million signatures. 

https://www.christianpost.com/news/sex-trafficking-survivors-urge-canadian-parliament-open-criminal-investigation-mindgeek.html


Christian leaders call for repentance, overhaul following Ravi Zacharias sexual abuse report

By Brandon Showalter, Christian Post Reporter

Christian leaders and a former associate of Ravi Zacharias’ ministry are calling for repentance and an overhaul of organizational practices after a report released Thursday detailed the late apologist’s pattern of sexual abuse.

In an email to The Christian Post on Friday, Carson Weitnauer, who previously led RZIM’s U.S. speaking team, said he now believes that Zacharias was not only a fraud, as he articulated in an earlier op-ed published by CP, but that the organization bearing his name is as well. He further asserted that the ministry’s apology is unacceptable in light of the revelations released in the report. 

“The organization’s apologetic-sounding statement was released by an anonymous board, is incomplete in its scope, avoids calling on the Zacharias Estate to release the Thompson’s from the NDA, and announces no resignations or removals of those most responsible for this tragedy. 1 John 3:18 instructs us, ‘Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth,'” said Weitnauer to CP. 

“I pray that many churches and nonprofits will decide to learn from this catastrophe and take immediate action to mitigate the risk of personally repeating it,” he added. 

RZIM issued an apology Thursday with the announcement of the results of an extensive independent investigation in which victims claimed that Zacharias had engaged in “sexting, unwanted touching, spiritual abuse, and rape” over the course of many years. 

The ministry hired the Atlanta law firm Miller & Martin to conduct the independent investigation. In the apology statement published as the report was released, RZIM said it was “shocked and grieved” by the actions of the late apologist and that “corporate repentance” was needed. 

Weitnauer said it’s crucial that churches and ministry organizations appoint senior leaders who bear responsibility and that they establish or strengthen policies against abuse of every kind — provide training on toxic cultural dynamics, and ensure board members and community leaders are informed and watchful advocates for survivors and other vulnerable members of their communities. 

“The continued prevalence of sexual abuse within the church, and the weak response to it by church leaders, is a great discredit to our witness,” Weitnauer said. “For the sake of the Gospel and the honor of God, and our commitment to the wellbeing of victims, may we instead courageously resolve to build communities that are full of truth and goodness.” 

Other Christian voices and thought leaders have expressed a variety of emotions. Many said they are disgusted and shaken, but noted that news of respected evangelical leaders falling has become common. 

“I’ve thought about this a lot since it all came out and I guess it sucks to say that I’m not surprised when this happens anymore. Because it just keeps happening. God, have mercy,” said author Jackie Hill Perry, tweeted Thursday.  

She added in a subsequent tweet-thread Friday that she had attended the funeral for the late apologist last year and that the news of his misconduct left her feeling “thrown.” 

“Not because I’m surprised per se’ but because it’s disorienting. I’m reminded that giftedness will never translate to godliness. Neither is orthodox teaching the proof of righteous living…Ravi’s ministry was a gift to most of us but his fall is a warning to all of us. Take heed lest we fall too.”

Teacher and popular speaker Beth Moore said in response to the report that, at base, “in every situation where a Christian leader has lived in gross hypocrisy, carrying on a double life, for years on end: They are out of fellowship with Jesus. Period. YOU CANNOT SUSTAIN THAT IN FELLOWSHIP.”

“The Holy Spirit convicts of sin. Every believer has and will fall into strongholds of various kinds of sin but, in fellowship with Christ, we cannot bear to remain in it. We will repent. We can implement all the accountability systems & MUST. But what we’ve got on our hands are people using piety and outward appearances of righteousness to hide the fact that they have little to no intimacy with the Father and Son through the Holy Spirit,” she added. 

The board of the Zacharias Trust, the U.K. branch of the ministry, also put out a statement announcing that they had made the unanimous decision to separate from RZIM. Although the organization has always been a separate entity in terms of governance with its own trustees, the Trust said that current circumstances have led them to conclude they must operate without any link to the organization. 

“The UK entity will also choose a new name. This process will take time to complete but the UK Board is convinced that this is the best and only way to ensure that the ministry can continue to serve the UK church with integrity. This will also give us the opportunity to review the lessons to be learned from these awful events,” the Trust added. 

COMMENT:

Part of our mission is to “… help the abused, the abuser and those affected by abuse to heal…just not all in the same setting.” Please contact us if you need assistance. If it is an emergency dial 911.

https://www.christianpost.com/news/christian-leaders-call-for-overhaul-after-ravi-zacharias-report.html

VIDEO When Never Becomes Now – Why Does God Allow Abuse?

By Sandra Hastings

The young man was enthusiastic, energetic, and highly motivated. He was determined to stand true to his leader regardless of the cost. Confident in his own ability, he boasted, “Even if all the others desert you, I will never!”

Yet, only a few hours later, this young man hung his head in shame when he heard a cock crow. He had not only deserted his leader, but he had denied three times that he even knew him. What Peter thought would never happen became reality.

We raised our two daughters to love the Lord and I was sure if they married young, active, Christian men, they would surely live happily ever after. My children would never experience divorce. However, as time went on, their marriages encountered major problems and both my daughters went through the heartbreaking devastation of a divorce. My emotions recoiled in protest. What I had believed would never happen, became reality.

How many of us have said a particular situation or event would never happen to us or to those we love: addiction to alcohol, pornography or drugs, sexual abuse, divorce, an incurable disease, criminal behavior, missing in action or an affair? The list is long of those things which we hope will not and somehow refuse to accept could happen to us personally or to members of our family, and yet, they happen.

I realize many factors contribute to the above scenarios, but I do want to draw our attention to one in particular. We are involved in a serious, spiritual war. This is not a fantasy or the imagination of fanatics. It is reality.

“For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” (Ephesians 6:12 KJV)

Our enemy Satan with his angels, though created beings, are more cunning and powerful than we are and have one plan in mind — destruction. Satan is out to destroy testimonies, marriages, families, churches, and lives. To accomplish his plan, he cunningly lays traps, waits for the perfect opportunity and preys on our weaknesses and blind spots.

It is easy for us to become busy and preoccupied with life — to become confident in ourselves. However, when this happens, we let down our guard, and our enemy has an open door to attack. As a result, life can take an unexpected turn and we experience like Peter, “never” becoming reality. In our selves, we are no match for our enemy.

The good news is we don’t have to rely on ourselves. We have Jesus Christ, the King of Kings and Lord of Lords to help us (James 4:6-8). Our Lord provides the spiritual armor we need and gives us the weapon that can defeat anything our enemy throws our way. This weapon is the Word of God and we need to have it in our hearts and minds, sharp and ready for action (Ephesians 6:13-17).

Although our enemy is ruthless, we do not need to be afraid. It is needful for us to take the battle seriously, never to forget we have an enemy and learn to daily put on our spiritual armor. As the rapture draws closer, our enemy grows stronger. May we heed Peter’s warning to us:

“Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: whom resist steadfast in the faith …” (1 Peter 5:8-9 KJV)

May we claim the victory that is ours.

“Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.” (Romans 8:37 KJV)

Copyright © Sandra Hastings, used with permission.

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https://www1.cbn.com/devotions/when-never-becomes-now


Why Does God Allow Abuse?

How could a loving God let abuse happen in every destructive form imaginable? Couldn’t God stop this madness? This undeserving and unfortunate part of life digs deep within the lives of those who are victims. This special video with Dr. Josh McDowell provides a riveting answer that will alleviate your perception by memorably explaining why a loving God could let such awful events transpire.

https://truelife.org/answers/why-does-god-allow-abuse


Women Deserve Justice and Safety, Not Mob Tyranny

By Penny Nance | July 1, 2020

 

The month of June marks the 24th anniversary of an event that changed my life forever.  That morning, early in my pregnancy with my first child, I was violently attacked on a running path in Virginia by a complete stranger, a sexual predator who later was sentenced to 18 years for my assault along with that of two other women.

It was the most terrifying and traumatizing moment of my entire life. I have never spoken of the race of my assailant, nor will I now. It is irrelevant to my life.

However, the racially-charged unrest on our streets have made me reflect on the fact that the woman who saved me from being raped was black. She was a single mom with her son in the car, late for an appointment, but who saw another woman, not a white woman, but another woman in distress, and she stopped her car to save me.

She courageously stopped, and she honked, and she yelled and made an evil man run away.  She also called the police, who came as fast as they could.  The police didn’t ask about the race of the victim, and she didn’t mention it. We were both relieved when they came and were grateful when their detective work found the man whom I identified, but sadly not before there was another victim.

I remember crying and her hugging me as I bled on her beautiful white dress. She was an angel. Her name is Mary. We were two women united. Our bond was beyond race.

My question is:  Why are these “woke” mobs today trying to destroy what bonds us as human beings? The vast majority of Americans of every race are all in strong agreement that George Floyd’s murder was a travesty. Those who committed the crime must pay the price of their actions to the fullest extent of the law. No one in authority should be allowed to abuse others. Compassionate American women agree on this point, but something insidious has taken root.

Unfortunately, we are allowing an incident that unifies us so strongly to be used to divide our country. Peaceful protests by sincere citizens have now been largely hijacked and have disintegrated into an anarchist movement that may be setting civil rights progress back decades.

The lawless mobs tearing down statues dedicated to abolitionists expose the truth.  They purport to fight racism, but one look at the victims of their rage reveals the lie. Many are in fact hurting the very people for whom they pretend to fight. It isn’t about race anymore. It’s now about a “woke” left using others for their own selfish purposes.

Their cries to “defund the police” are a sick joke. To paraphrase James Madison, if men were angels, we wouldn’t need government. A vacuum will be filled. As I experienced, men are not angels, and the need for law enforcement is essential or else vigilante justice will ascend.

Where were the left’s politicians this week when South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott offered a bill that would actually change current law enforcement practices? No, they aren’t serious.

This has consequences.  Many women originally sympathetic are now no longer buying their message. Women want safety. We want our homes, families, and businesses protected. We must unite against a hijacked movement that threatens all of that.  Women seek to live in peace and unity. Why do so few of our leaders understand that?

Concerned Women for America members call on our nation’s leaders to rise up to the challenges this moment demands or resign. We are tired of standing by while our cities are burned, our heritage is erased, and our churches are desecrated.

Truth is the basis of all unity. Without it, there can be no union.

Some are trying to fight. President Donald Trump just issued an executive order to restore law and order.

Meanwhile, other leaders express support for the lawlessness while cowering in fear, hoping the mob does not come after them. Most appalling, even our spiritual leaders, many pastors, join the mob, ignoring their godless call for the destruction of the God-designed “nuclear family structure,” among many other anti-Christian teachings.

Just last week, one of the most prominent voices in the Black Lives Matter movement called for tearing down statues of Jesus. This is the mob many of our spiritual leaders have joined, taking a knee, in some cases literally, to what is tantamount to a new religion.

Our children’s future is threatened by the perversion of justice and the resulting shattering of hope.

We deserve leaders who will stand up to proclaim Truth, aside from popularity. We deserve leaders who dare stand up to the mob and recognize that the Church is essential. We deserve leaders for such a time as this. We deserve leaders with the courage of Mary.

Penny Nance is the CEO of Concerned Women for America, the nation’s largest conservative women’s organization.

https://cnsnews.com/commentary/penny-nance/women-deserve-justice-and-safety-not-mob-tyranny