Thursday, November 12, 2020

Will we ever see freedom a cause of the left?

Some Democrats with whom I've spoken think liberals already are champions of personal liberty. Speaker Pelosi thinks mandating health insurance sets people free. Senator Bernie Sanders sees bread lines as a form of freedom.

Answering the question requires first understanding the meaning of two terms: freedom, and the left.

Freedom is the individual power to do right. One of God's great desires is that we “live as free men” (1 Peter 2:16).

The left is a term that originated in the feudalism-ending French Revolution. The Catholic Church had also been the state. When power shifted from the church to the state in France, the state displaced the church. That is, instead of looking to God for hope in eternity, the French looked to the state for their hope.

The transition out of feudalism looked much different in England. Further out of reach from the Catholic Church, and under greater influence from the Protestant Reformation, the British never wholly threw off their monarchy or state church. America's mother country never sought to drive a wedge between church and state.

Both countries had a way of persecuting and driving out the Reformers. The Huguenots left France in the 1500s. The Puritans left England in the 1600s. In both cases, America was a land of refuge and a land of mission.

After America threw off her English oppressors in the 1700s, she made protecting religious liberty a priority. Extrinsic motivation to do right was seen as essential and desireable. The church needed freedom to be aflame with righteousness, and the state best remained out of the way for it to do so.

The left in America today takes its ideas of freedom from the French. It has no use for the church.

If the left is defined by its rejection of God, and freedom is defined by God, then no, freedom will never be a cause of the left.

That's not to say people on the left could never become part of the cause of freedom. God can turn people away from rejecting him, and I pray He does so.

Some on the American left think they are already on God's side. They fundamentally misunderstand how He has described the purposes of government apart from the role of man in general.

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