Thursday, 1 February 2018

Do you agree with Ofsted that evangelical Christianity is dangerous, anti-British extremism?

Do you agree with Ofsted that evangelical Christianity is dangerous, anti-British extremism?

And if not, are you going to do anything about it?

In a speech reported in The Times today, the head of Ofsted used the Christian Institute - which defends nothing more than mainstream evangelical Christianity - as an example of dangerous extremism whose ideas need to be explicitly and deliberately combated by school-teachers.

That Ofsted thinks and operates like this - quite openly, quite explicitly - is is not really news. The aggressive promotion of a particularly intolerant brand of secularism to all schoolchildren under its remit has been normal for Ofsted for several years. They don't expect to be contradicted if they say, and operate, in accordance with the idea that mainstream evangelical Christianity is extreme and dangerous, and that combating it is a child welfare issue.

But it is, unfortunately, apparently still news - or too hard to believe - for large swathes of evangelical Christians and churches in the UK. We are, by and large, quite happy to keep having our children educated under a regime run along these lines, in the naive and wrong beliefs that a) they probably don't mean it, and b) even if they do mean it, it doesn't make a difference to what happens at school, and c) even if it does influence them, then we can undo that fairly easily.

I'm convinced that everybody who claims to believe these things really does. I'm sure there's a large element of fear involved. If we admit that it's really the case, that has implications. It'll involve blood, sweat, and tears - not least in dealing with fellow Christians who disagree with us. And who wants that?

Well, ultimately, we should want it - because we want to please Jesus, and that means, not allowing our children to be indoctrinated into intolerant, aggressive secularism 6-7 hours a day, 5 days a week. We have to choose, and quickly, whilst the window of opportunity is still open for us to do so.

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