By Lonnie Wilkey
Editor, Baptist and Reflector
We are living in a world where it is not politically correct to do anything that might offend somebody.
Unfortunately, the rules are often one-sided. The rules apparently only apply to Christians. We normally can’t offend anyone, but the non-Christian world can do anything it wants though it offends Christians and it is okay.
Case in point. Baptist Press reported last week that a deputy sheriff visited in the home of a 7-year-old boy in Palmdale, Calif., who dared to share written Scripture notes that his mother had placed in his lunchbox with his classmates at school. Unlike some Internet myths that get started, this apparently is true.
According to Baptist Press, the teacher on at least two occasions reprimanded the boy in front of his classmates causing him to shed tears. That is simply uncalled for and to me is an example of an adult teacher bullying a defenseless child. If it had to be done, it should have been done in a school office with the parents present.
No one with the Palmdale School District is denying the deputy sheriff intervened. They say they don’t know who turned the 7-year-old’s name in to the police. A school official told Baptist Press they do not prohibit religious speech among students but they do require approval of written materials before distribution. The rationale? “Someone might be offended.”
My advice to those people who might be offended because a 7-year-old boy wanted to share the Good News of Jesus Christ is simple. Get over it.
I have to when I am offended, and that happens several times daily.
Here are just a few examples.
- I hate it when I hear people take the name of my Lord in vain. It happens every day.
- I am offended when I hear cursing in public with women and children in earshot.
- The hair on the back of my neck stood up when our nation’s highest court decided last year they knew more than the Bible and redefined marriage to allow homosexual marriage.
- I’m offended knowing that a man can now claim that he identifies himself as a woman and can go into a restroom where my wife and daughter might be.
- I’m offended when I hear people declaring that Muhammed Ali is an American hero. Ali, who died recently, did some good things during his lifetime and he certainly may have been one of the greatest boxers of all time, but it’s hard for me to call him an American hero. He dodged the draft for the Vietnam War. Yes, it was an unpopular war, but it was our country’s war. Many others probably did not want to fight either, but they went. A lot of them never returned home and some of those who did returned without various parts of their bodies. They are the heroes.
- I’m offended knowing that in November I will have to step into an election booth and won’t be able to find a candidate that I can, in good conscience, vote for. I will either have to vote for the lesser of “two evils” (if there is indeed such a thing) or vote for a write-in candidate who has no shot at winning the election.
- I’m offended when people want to “rewrite” history or in some cases “eliminate” events because they are offensive to today’s world. There are those today who want to take photos off walls or pictures off our currency because they once owned slaves. Yes, slavery is wrong but at one time it was an accepted practice. That doesn’t make it right but ignoring it ever happened, or punishing those who condoned it then (and have been dead for more than a century), does nothing now. Rather, history should be preserved to serve as a reminder that slavery was wrong and it should never happen again.
My list of what offends me can go on and on, but what’s the use. A non-believing world simply does not care what offends Christians.
To paraphrase actor Jack Nicholson in the movie “A Few Good Men,” the non-Christian world “can’t handle the truth.” They don’t want to be reminded of morals and values and a Savior who came to redeem a lost and fallen world. For a non-Christian world, it’s all about them and nothing else matters.
I’m 58 years old and know my time on this earth is growing shorter with each passing day. What saddens me most of all is knowing that my children, grandchildren, and the children and grandchildren of my friends will have to live in a world that only is going to get worse each year until Jesus returns. That breaks my heart.
Why is this happening? Christians have remained silent for far too long. We have stood with our heads in the sand and allowed the “minority” to set the rules.
I realize there are some who will read this article and may be offended. I hope not, but as long as I am able, I am going to speak the truth based on God’s Holy Word.
My prayer is that this 7-year-old boy doesn’t allow his experience to keep him from continuing to share his faith. That would be more of a tragedy than the people who might be “offended” because of what he did.
Pray for our country as never before. As I’ve said over and over before and will continue to do so until the day I die: “God is in control.”