A number of my friends have asked me why I post the items I do on my Facebook page, from journalists such as Glenn Greenwald, Bari Weiss, Nellie Bowles, Matt Taibbi, Sara Carter, and Mollie Hemmingway, as well as psychologists Jonathan Haidt and Jordan Petersen, Muslim reformers Wafa Sultan and Ayaan Hirsi Ali, and comedians Jon Stewart, Bill Maher, Russell Brand, and the satiric Babylon Bee.
Obviously, this is a very disparate group but they have one thing in common – they are all vilified and despised by many for holding the views they do. As for me, I enjoy hearing them on issues that I want to understand.
Glenn is a Jewish American lawyer who lives with his husband in Brazil after promoting Edward Snowden’s whistle-blowing on the US government’s on-going illegal surveillance of its citizens; Bari Weiss and her wife Nellie Bowles live in New York and write for Common Sense, often on transgender issues; Matt Taibbi self-describes as an atheist/agnostic and writes for TK News and Rolling Stone. Sara Carter is an Hispanic Catholic while Mollie Hemmingway is an evangelical Lutheran. Jonathan Haidt is an atheistic Jewish evolutionary psychologist and Jordan Peterson a Canadian clinical psychologist. Wafa Sultan is a Muslim medical doctor, Ayaan Hirsi Ali was a Muslim but now an atheist while Jon Stewart is an irreligious Jew, Bill Maher an agnostic secularist, Russell Brand a New Ager, and Babylon Bee writers are edgy evangelical Christians.
As I hope you know, I am a passionate follower of Jesus, a Creationist committed to scientific exploration and research of our origins as well as a believer in His second coming – so much so, I’m writing a series of books and articles on the Book of Revelation.
I am therefore not quoting these folk because I agree with their beliefs or lifestyle (some might consider me a right-wing bigot because of my faith, and others, a Communist because I believe in universal health-care and gun control) but because I want to listen to perspectives outside my bubble. The truth is the truth, no matter who says it and whenever they get it right, I agree with them and want my friends to hear it too.
Speaking to the Athenians, Paul quoted Epimenides of Crete and Aratus of Cicilia, not because he agreed with pagan philosophy but because they established his point, that “in Him, we live and move and have our being” and “we are His offspring” (Acts 17:28). Likewise, James quoted Plato (Jas 4:1) and Jude quoted the Pseudiepigrapha (1:14). Can this be misunderstood? Of course. Jesus was accused of being “a gluttonous man and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and other outcasts” but He answered, “Wisdom is shown to be true by its results” (Matt 11:19).
The heading for this post is another twist on Tony Campolo’s ironic book title, We Have Met the Enemy and They Are Partly Right. I’ve added that they are ALL partly right because no one is completely wrong all of the time. I enjoy listening even to my opponents to see if my beliefs hold up under fire. They must have learned stuff I haven’t yet and if they can reveal flaws in my thinking, why wouldn’t I want to learn or be corrected by them? My friend Marcus used to say, “A wise man can learn from a fool but a fool can’t learn even from a wise man”. And besides, aren’t we supposed to love our enemies?
Four issues motivate my posts on FaceBook:
(i) Who’s in Charge?
I always want to know who is in charge of the USA because I believe we were racing towards Armegeddon until Pres Trump put the brakes on. Despite my personal dislike of his shortcomings, I and 74,000,000 American voters agreed with many of his policies and I have no doubt that his attitude to Israel delayed this final battle [see my article Delaying Armageddon]. The Obama-Biden White House was close to sparking it and if Mrs Clinton, their Secretary of State, had won the 2016 presidential election, she would surely have continued down that road. We have yet to see if Pres Biden will too and if he has enough time left before the 2024 presidential election.
I see our world’s steadily increasing animosity towards the Jewish people and the nation of Israel,[A Matter of Simple Justice] especially in the UN where Islam has a blatantly disproportionate influence. As I read Daniel 7:24, the spirit of antichrist that inspires Islam only has to “subdue” a third of “all the nations” and it has already done that with 58 of the UN’s 193 members. I think their expected Mahdi will be the Antichrist.
(iii) Maximising Love & Freedom
I will always promote and defend the five essential values of liberal democracy which maximise love and freedom for all, both here and abroad: (1) the intrinsic worth of every individual (2) the rule of law for all (3) the separation of powers (4) freedom of conscience and (5) elected leaders.[Staying Free] This is why I am so critical of today’s journalists abandoning their sacred calling to speak truth to power and instead too often speak untruths to us all.[Safeguarding the Fourth Estate]
(iv) Our Children
The fourth issue I often raise is to stop our unborn children being killed and mothers unwittingly traumatised by abortion [My Body… Two Heads and Twenty Toes?] and our older children from the institutionalising of gender dysphoria by the transgender crusade. We can learn of the unintended consequences from the unrivalled experience and findings of vaginoplasty surgeon Marci Bowers and Erica Anderson, a clinical psychologist at the University of California San Francisco’s Child and Adolescent Gender Clinic. [Top Trans Doctors Blow the Whistle on ‘Sloppy’ Care]
So yes, my focus is often on American politics and social trends because as they say, “When America sneezes, the world catches a cold!” Surely if the Americans are making the biggest and most obvious mistakes, we can learn from them so we don’t repeat them here in Aotearoa-New Zealand, especially in times of tension. [Staying Free]