Monday, February 12, 2007

Can Canada be great without God?

Is Canada still a nation that professes it is under God? This piece of news reflects a growing No. The 'god' they now profess is the god of 'freedom of speech' for all, yet by their actions, they deny it to Christians. It sounds incredible, that a brochure that is given to every student to take home, asking whether the parents would like their kids to be given a Bible free of charge, is also banned! All it takes is one parent to protest and the entire Burnaby district board decides to ban the children and parents' choice to free Bibles. Will the board consider equally the other argument, in that a parent protest the ban, and will the ban then be reversed? People who have a right NOT to receive Bibles, also similarly have a right to say YES to receiving Bibles.

Come on, we are not talking about pornography or other forms of immoral culture. You mean, giving kids pizza or Safeway brochures are better for the educational development than free Bibles that can help in the spiritual and moral development of children?

The fall of the Roman Empire is a case in point. It has been said that Rome fell not because of its lack of military power, but because it was not build on any moral or spiritual foundation. Instead, it was built on secularism. Francis Schaeffer's thoughts was deemed prophetic when he describes the contemporary culture as hopeless.

"Schaeffer elaborates on the two impoverished values: Personal peace means "just to be let alone, not to be troubled by the troubles of other people … . to live one's life with minimal possibilities of being personally disturbed." Affluence means "an overwhelming and ever-increasing prosperity—a life made up of things, and more things—a success judged by an ever-higher level of material abundance." ( 2006)

Note how prophetic it is, his lament about the individualism and the materialism that is projected under the guise of 'freedom of choice' and 'freedom of speech.' A pretty well-written argument (Feb 9, 2007 issue) against the Burnaby Bible ban is written by freelance contributor Jennifer Cole, to entitled: "Who wins in Bible ban?" in which she argued:

"Burnaby's existing all-inclusive policy allows students to request any religious book they would like: Bible or Quran. Burnaby cannot be responsible if only the Gideon's are offering religious material to students; all other recogized religious groups in Canada can approach the board and ask the same - and have not."

"The values that educators and parents complain are being lost to upcoming generations: The bullying behaviours that find their way into the playground, drug habits that start from peer pressure found in school cliches, would perhaps be countered if children at a young age, within a peer setting, were exposed to materials that offered constructive approaches to negative actions, giving the individual a lasting sense of personal empowerment and inclusiveness."

Jennifer ends her column with a thought provoking question: "What value is taught by not allowing the Bible to be given (by free choice) to Burnaby children?" Extreme practices of 'freedom of speech/choice' reminds me of an old Malay proverb: "The bean forgets its pod." Canada is increasingly choosing to forget that the creation of a great Canada starts from a recognition of God's mighty grace on the land. The Canadian national anthem recognizes the need for God in "God keep our land glorious and free!", but actions such as the ban, mocks that same line.


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