The greatest sin to enlightened men is intolerance. Every other (debatable) sin pales in comparison. In fact, the very concept of sin itself has become the poster-child of intolerance. Tolerance is the new standard by which most ideologies and behaviors are judged. The specific content of various doctrines isn’t evaluated, just how well everyone agreeably endorses it. Twisted tolerance is the mechanism that will deliver death to a people, to a nation, and to a world.
Today’s tolerance insists that every person has the right to define himself. That right insists that societal norms, legal precedent, and religious doctrine undergo any revision necessary to affirm individual definitions of identity. The line between chastity and whoredom was erased by tolerance. What separated truth and lie disappeared by the same rationale. The difference between innocence and guilt depends on who you ask. Good and evil are whatever someone says they are. My good is your evil and your good my evil.
Can tolerance reconciles differences of opinion?
“Everyone is entitled to their opinion.” Indeed, but opinions aren’t generally enforceable. Attaching license to act without restraint based solely on opinion is anarchy borne of apathy or delusion. The father of an unborn baby with a fervent desire to raise and cherish his child has no option to exercise his desire. If the woman carrying his child prefers abortion there should be a crisis of tolerance. Even the most able defender of tolerance cannot produce common ground between the father and mother. The child seeks to be born and live. Many are of the opinion that it should receive the opportunity for life. Many others are of the opinion that it should not. There is no common ground of tolerance between warring opinions when each insists on an outcome mutually exclusive to the other’s desire.
The lie of tolerance is evident to all with “eyes to see.” (Romans 11:8) When opposing demands for tolerance face off only one walks away in victory. How is that tolerant? Power always go to whoever has the power to define tolerance. Any opinion contrary to that definition will be, by definition, intolerant and guilty of egregious sin. The desire of a father who seeks a living child has no standing if the woman decides to kill the child. “Tolerance” is on the side of death.
The only way for the lie of tolerance to flourish is to eliminate absolutes and objective standards. The only way to do that is to eliminate God. The strategy proved effective in Genesis 3 and is equally efficient today. How is lethal tolerance spread?
- Parents accept laziness and willfulness from children because they do not respect the very standards they taught their children.
- Teachers accept laziness and willfulness from students because they do not respect the very standards they taught their students.
- Communities accept laziness and willfulness from the public because they do not respect the very laws they passed to order and protect society.
- Nations accept laziness and willfulness from everyone because they do not respect the boundaries and laws passed to order and protect the nation.
- Christians accept laziness and willfulness from their fellows because they do not respect the laws and commands of the God they profess to worship.
What about God?
God’s Word has a lot to say about standards and tolerance. Consider the following citations from Jeremiah. Keep in mind that this chapter begins with news of the coming reign of Jesus Christ.
Profaneness has gone out into all the land from the prophets. The prophets make you worthless. They speak a vision of their own heart and insist, “The Lord has said, ‘You shall have peace’” and to everyone who walks according to the dictates of his own heart, “‘No evil shall come upon you.“ – Jeremiah 23:15-17 (paraphrased)
“And the oracle of the Lord you shall mention no more. For every man’s word will be his oracle, for you have perverted the words of the living God.” – Jeremiah 23:36
False prophets and worldly intellectuals preach consistency and correction as sins of intolerance. Rather than risk being “divisive” by sharing a political, sociological, or moral illustration, permit me to offer one familiar to almost everyone.
Before we learned to read we were all blank slates. Most learned to read the same way. We learned one letter, then two. We memorized the Alphabet Song and painstakingly practiced drawing each letter. I remember using huge pencils and grade Z lined paper not much smoother than an emery board. Eventually each letter was paired with its pronunciation. Letters combined to form words and words began to relate to objects and actions.
The process was orderly and consistent. Each time a letter or concept was mastered it elevated the standard of what was acceptable. The day a child first wrote the letter “A” on a paper next to a red apple was the day “A is for Apple” set a new standard. Consistent correction cemented “A” as forever being the first letter of the alphabet and the first letter in the word apple.
As days passed the child learned to form words. Though early attempts weren’t always perfect, children showing mastery of news concept is cause for celebration. Writing the word apple has produced a variety of excellent attempts even with errors.
A common mistake is drawing letters backwards and leaving out letters that aren’t pronounced. Writing apple with backwards “p”s and no final vowel is a laudable initial effort. However, once a child understands and exhibits the “knowledge of the truth”, backwards letters and mis-spelling are no longer acceptable. Errors are consistently corrected and standards confirmed. On the day the child understands the right way to direct a “p” and that apple ends with “e” the standard becomes the rule.
Parents are elated and entertained the first time their child sings the Alphabet Song correctly. Would most parents be equally proud and amused if that same child sings it wrong five years later? Tolerance suggests they should. Why must a child be confined to the arbitrary standards of traditional spelling? The child should be allowed to express his individuality. What does it matter that few understand his speech or writing? That only reflects poorly on those who insist the child adhere to rigid standards.
“For if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sin.” – Hebrews 10:26
Prophets of tolerance insist that God will overlook any deviance from His laws and commands, that “no evil shall come upon you.” Prophets of tolerance speak death.
Lies. Death. Deceit.
“They have taught their tongues to speak lies; your dwelling place is in the midst of deceit; through deceit they refuse to know Me” says the Lord. – Jeremiah 9:5-6
Choosing deceit over God’s command began in Genesis 3 when Adam and Eve bought the lie that, “Surely, God hath not said…” You must choose between God’s standards and the insane doctrine of tolerance the world demands because there is no common ground.
There is a line in the sand that divides the conditions of Eternity. One side is eternity with God and on the other eternity without God. Unless you have the power to create the eternity of your imagination, embrace tolerance at your peril. It is the doctrine of death.
Originally published March 2016
Updated for this website February 2017.