Friday, 30 April 2010


If former Archbishop of Canterbury Dr George Carey proves right that judicial decisions against religious believers could lead to 'civil unrest', Christian believers must not be guilty of it.

Dr Carey made his comment in his witness statement to the High Court in support of the Evangelical Christian marriage guidance counsellor, Gary McFarlane, who was appealing against his sacking by Relate for his biblical principles:
The fact that senior clerics of the Church of England and other faiths feel compelled to intervene directly in judicial decisions and cases is illuminative of a future civil unrest. I am concerned that judges are unaware of these basic issues on the Christian faith; further it is difficult to see how it is appropriate for other religions to be considered by the Judiciary where the practices are further removed from our traditions.

Lord Justice Laws this week dismissed Mr McFarlane's application to appeal against his sacking.

Whatever the outcome of Thursday's General Election, a combination of an increasingly oppressive culture of political correctness, compounded by the spending cuts needed to save Britain from a Greek-style 'junk status' credit rating, could lead to civil disorder on the British Isles. But Christians must not be in any way associated with any form of civil disorder or misbehaviour.

Our civil marching orders as Christ's soldiers and servants are clear in the New Testament, for example 1 Peter 2:
Dear friends, I urge you, as aliens and strangers in the world, to abstain from sinful desires, which war against your soul. Live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day he visits us. Submit yourselves for the Lord's sake to every authority instituted among men: whether to the king, as the supreme authority, or to governors, who are sent by him to punish those who do wrong and to commend those who do right. For it is God's will that by doing good you should silence the ignorant talk of foolish men. Live as free men, but do not use your freedom as a cover-up for evil; live as servants of God. Show proper respect to everyone: Love the brotherhood of believers, fear God, honor the king (vv11-17 - NIV).


  1. I think that in many ways Christian status in the coming decades will be mirroring the Early Church: at first, there were only certain jobs/professions that the first believers could do, many things being closed to them. The same will be true in our society in 20 years' time. Loyal, orthodox Christians simply won't be able to follow certain professions because they will be required to sign assent to things that will be just outside the realm of what is possible without totally betraying Christ. That may seem extreme, and it won't happen for a while; but, if the present trends continue, with no drastic reaction, they will come eventually.

  2. Sir, I quote from an article on the subject of obedience to government by, amongst others, Samuel Rutherford, the Scottish Presbyterian.

    'As for Romans and First Peter, in which the apostles Paul and Peter had told Christians to submit to government, Rutherford affirmed that God did create civil governments which were owed obedience. These civil governments were created by God acting through the consent of the people. A ruler who did not obey God’s commands lost his authority. Rutherford explained that Romans 13 was valid insofar as governments, which received their power from God, ruled in accordance with God’s law. Tyrannical rule, however, was contrary to God’s grant of power, and was, accordingly, a sinful illegitimate power which must not be obeyed: “a power ethical, politic, or moral, to oppress is not from God, and is not a power, but a licentious deviation of a power; and is no more from God, but from sinful nature and the old serpent....”

  3. The challenge facing the Christian community in this country is not yet at that stage of the deification of the State. That was the situation facing the confessing Church in Nazi Germany and indeed in the Soviet Union. Tyrannicide is arguably legitimate option for the Christians in those circumstances and/or in participating in moves to remove a criminal government.

    The challenge we face in the UK is how we react in the face of politically-correct actions against us by the police and when decisions go against us in the courts. Getting involved in actions of civil disorder has surely got to be absolutely ruled out for the Christian in these circumstances.

  4. Richard Brown5 May 2010 at 05:31

    I wouldn't disagree with the premise of this argument, that civil disorder for Christians is a no-go area, but need to point out that most changes in public perception have been brought about by exactly that.

    Civil disorder and less-than-peaceful protest, or the threat of it, by minorities makes politicians take you seriously, whether the minority is homosexual, or Muslim, or animal rights. That's rather been the pattern of politics these last 20 years, and those who refuse these sorts of tactics are the ones left behind.

    The alternative for Christians can only be strong, dynamic and outspoken leadership, but we've haven't got much of that either.