Friday, 12 August 2011

A few thoughts on rioting

Since my last blog, several national commentators, and indeed the Prime Minister, have raised the issue at parenting. Here's one, Melanie Philips. Here's a sad blog in the Telegraph from Peter Oborne, on how Britain's moral decay goes from top to bottom.

As I read these kind of articles, few go beyond describing the mess and ascribing secondary and tertiary social causes. Only Philips, of those I've read, (and I understand she is an agnostic) touches the religious root of Britain's moral decay and points to church leaders failure to preach the Bible instead of trendy liberal dogma. I read in the Telegraph the Prime Minister promising to restore moral foundations; how does he propose to do this; how can the House of Commons and the legislative process be sources of moral foundations? There was no hint. You cannot source moral foundations in politics, only express them. Who will tell us where to actually obtain these moral foundations? How do we know which moral foundation is right? After all, the looters were "living out their values", which is something our relativist cultural leadership has encouraged us to do for years. How do we get some roots in our conviction that actually their values were wrong in an absolute sense?

But nobody so far of all those I've read has pointed to the 1960s cultural and sexual revolution as the fundamental societal event that enabled this chain of events, leaving us with. Philips does not go far back enough, pointing to the years of the recent Labour government, who worked out a lot of the "revolution"'s implications, as those who grew up under it came to positions of power.

The present hand-wringing is not getting us anywhere. Hand-wringing is not repentance. Pointing out our moral collapse is of only temporary and limited value unless we also point the way back to moral wholeness. This is the work that preachers of the gospel of Christ must give all their energy too. Society's leaders are confused and do not even know why it is so dark. It's only been a few years, but they do not even seem aware of how we got from there to here. Light needs to shine from God's word, and we need to show the relevance of the Lord Jesus to the present hour. Let every Christian turn to prayer, that they will preach with boldness and directness in the present hour.

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