They shall not live in your land, because they will make you sin against Me; for if you serve their gods, it will surely be a snare to you (Ex.23:33).
The modern world talks a lot about religious tolerance, but it doesn’t practice it. Humanism is very intolerant of its religious rivals, but its public practitioners are loath to reveal this fact. It wouldn’t be good public relations in a society where there is a residual of Christian belief.
As Patrick Buchanan noted in 2008,
Canada’s commitment to multiculturalism and the equality of all religions, races and cultures requires the silencing of those who do not believe all races, creeds and cultures are equal.
Because the Church has been progressively impacted by humanism and has abandoned God’s law, it has been inclined to accept notions of tolerance too. Tolerance sounds appealing to the modern, pluralist mind. But the Bible never teaches tolerance at all; rather, it teaches freedom, based on obedience to God’s commands.
Jesus Christ promised His disciples freedom, but that freedom (like all of God’s promises), had an “if” attached. He said “…if you continue in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine; and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free” (Jn. 8:31-32).
Implicit in Jesus’ statement, is that there is no freedom apart from obedience to Him. Of course it isn’t possible for any government to eliminate all activity that is hostile to God; governments are not the Holy Spirit. But it is possible to legislate according to scripture, so that those public manifestations of behaviour hostile to the God of scripture are prevented from occurring, or if they take place there are sanctions imposed. That’s the role of the magistrate.
The covenantally faithful State, as a hierarchical institution, is supposed to be limited by God’s law in order for it lawfully to execute God’s judgments. In order to establish a Christian culture, there have to be identifiably Christian laws-Biblical blueprints, in other words- by which the national covenant could be judged by God and other nations.
The individual or nation that says, “Let people do what they want, come what may, without reference to law” is in denial of God’s judgments, and anarchy does not honour God. Christian freedoms in society require Christian sanctions to uphold them.
Jordan was right:
Culture follows from, arises from, and is dependent upon faith. Spiritual loyalty to God, in faith, must precede and be the ground of all cultural change. It not only must be, it inevitably will be. The gospel has inevitable consequences, and so does Baalism.
“Peaceful co-existence” between different religious groups has commonly been an illusion. Everyone wants to be religiously faithful, and religious values have implications and impacts for individuals and all cultures. God expects us to live out the implications of His world-views; in fact He warns us what will happen if we don’t insist upon instituting His forms of law and culture:
…if you do not drive out the inhabitants of the land from before you, then it shall come about that those whom you let remain of them will become as pricks in your eyes and as thorns in your sides, and they will trouble you in the land in which you live. And as I plan to do to them, so I will do to you (Num.33:55-56).
This text serves as a commentary on what has been happening in the West for hundreds of years. The Church has failed to “drive out the inhabitants of the land,” and now they are troubling us.
The solution is not that we drive them out or execute them through genocide, as in Joshua’s day. It is that we painstakingly re-establish within the Church and then society the desire for Christian law and culture in the land, rejecting all notions of multiculturalism and legal pluralism, both of which are offensive to the God of heaven.
That will take time, faith and perseverance on the part of God’s people, the very things required of Joshua and Caleb before they would inherit the promises of God. But “…whoever believes in Him will not be disappointed” (Ro.10:11).