Says the local school administration.
In response a hearty “AMEN!” is heard from the upturned faces of the Secularist-faithful as they give praise to the great Secularist gods of the vacuous mind, the hardened heart, and the exaggerated self-importance.
And even those of us who don’t worship the Secularist’s idos have somehow been shanghaied into shrugging our shoulders and saying to one another, “Well, it’s only fair isn’t it? I mean to say, we can’t endorse religion on school property and everybody knows the 10 Commandments are a distinctly Christian thing… right?”
(Sound Loud Buzzer Noise Here…)
While I believe heartily in the divine inspiration of Scripture and the exclusivity of Christianity as the only true and God-given religion I nevertheless can admit that the there is much about the background of the 10 commandments that should delight the syncretist and pacify the secularist crusader.
To begin with the 10 Commandments came from Mt. Sinai – a mountain nowhere near the American Bible belt but right in the heart of the modern Islamic world. They were initially written on two stone tablets in a manner influenced by the ancient polytheistic Mesopotamians. They put in their first appearance during the idolatrous worship of a golden cow. After sometime they were penned upon scrolls in Hebrew by an Egyptian nobleman who grew up to discover that he was really a Jew. Centuries later they were referenced by the Christian Savior in His Sermon on the Mount. When Islam was finally dreamed up in the 7th century a version of the commandments was placed in the Koran.
There’s a thumbnail sketch of their history… It’s a little difficult to argue that the 10 Commandments give preference to the Christian religion… Ah, but therein lies the problem! “Don’t confuse me with the facts!” Shouts the Secularist educator busy prying the commandments from school walls, “I’m trying to look trendy!”
Yes, we’ve noticed but this fad of secularism is frankly growing a little stale and has begun to stink. I for one am bored with it. Why is it that your worldview compels you to pull things down, break things apart, silence “unacceptable” speech about God, and ban holy books? What misguided passion drives you to embrace this? And why don’t you see your secularist agenda for what it is – bigotry against God.
There is nothing sectarian about the 10 Commandments. While they are held in high regard by Jews, Christians, and others they are not the sole property of these groups. The teachings of the ten commandments are the property of mankind. Instinctively we know its teachings. Even the agnostic generally abides by its rules. This is true in every culture and in every belief system around the world… Show me the religion where murder is held in high regard! Show me the strange form of idolatry where theft and vice are virtues! Show me the ridiculous conclave of men where reverence for Deity is mocked and ridiculed (university professors and pop-stars excluded)… I say it again – the teachings of the 10 commandments are the property of mankind and are stamped on our hearts and chiseled into our consciences. Christianity would argue that this universal morality of man is proof that we are made in God’s image. Born with an inbuild mechanism that knows right from wrong and justice from injustice without anyone ever teaching us these things. Here is one of the distinctions that makes man different from all creation; he, unlike the pelicans, the palm trees, and the planets of our solar system is a moral agent, knowing good from bad.
“Well then,” responds the secularist educator with a triumphant smile on his face, “If we already know the commandments there’s no point in keeping them up on the wall!”
To answer this I can only rely on the “narrowness” and “bigotry” of my rather unfashionable and backward Christian beliefs. The law was written down not primarily to tell us something about the law itself but to tell us something about the Law-Giver. In short, the 10 commandments remind us that our moral compass is no mere accident of an unguided process of evolution but rather proof of the existence of a God in whose image we’re made and to whom we are all accountable… If this is a troubling thought for my secularist readers you have great cause to be troubled.
You might remove the Decalogue from a High School wall in Marion, Ohio. You might succeed at making public schools bastions of religious ignorance. You may even (as Mussolini did) silence any dissenting voice within striking distance of your school grounds… but remember this, you cannot remove the heart of the commandments from the heart of man. Those commandments were put up by God and He’s not taking them down… try as you might, you aren’t either.