Episode 320: The UK’s Secular Inquisition
Episode 321: ACNA HOB on Holy Orders
Charles Spurgeon was a man way ahead of his time. He saw the folly of premillennial dispensationalism almost from its inception and took a far more optimistic view of the final triumph of the Gospel than many of his contemporaries. With regard to another theological and philosophical aberration ascendant in his day, Spurgeon was nothing short of prophetic. In 1872, he wrote:
Now-a-days, if a man is very reverent towards the word of God, and very desirous to obey the Lord’s commands in everything, people say, “He is very precise,” and they shun him; or, with still more acrimony, they say, “He is very bigoted: he is not a man of liberal spirit;” and so they cast out his name as evil.
Bigotry, in modern parlance, you know, means giving heed to old truths in preference to novel theories; and a liberal spirit, now-a-days, means being liberal with everything except your own money—liberal with God’s law, liberal with God’s doctrine, liberal to believe that a lie is a truth, that black is white, and that white may occasionally be black. That is liberal sentiment in religion—the broad church school—from which may God continually deliver us.
Two years later, in a sermon entitled “Needless Fears,” he observed:
The very persons who talk most about being liberal in their views are generally the greatest persecutors. If I must have a religious enemy, let me have a professed and avowed bigot, but not one of your “free thinkers” or “broad churchmen” as they are called, for there is nobody who can hate as they do; and the lovers of liberal-mindedness who have no creed at all think it to be their special duty to be peculiarly contemptuous to those who have some degree of principle, and cannot twist and turn exactly as they can.
A century and a half later, we can see the truth of Spurgeon’s words not only in the religious sphere, but even moreso in the political sphere. There are none more intolerant than those liberal crusaders for “tolerance,” and none more intent on quashing diversity than those who claim in all their liberality to “celebrate” it.