The World As We Knew It, Part Two: Leadership Reflecting The General Public

There are other signs that the world we thought we were living in has changed.  In recent articles about the memoirs of ex-German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder the thought patterns of modern, post Christian Europe are revealed.  Schroeder told Der Spiegel magazine that he was alarmed by Bush’s talk of God.

“What worried me, despite a relaxed atmosphere to our talks, and to a certain degree what made me skeptical was how much it came through that this president saw himself as ‘God-fearing’ and saw that as the highest authority.”

The most terrifying thing about this statement is that a government official in “Christian” Europe would publicly declare that he does not see God as the highest authority.  Now the problem is multiplied when we consider that it does not make logical sense to believe in the concept of God and not credit God as the highest authority.  Germany of all states should understand the value of having a higher authority to answer to.  The concept that government officials, if they are the highest authority, or even if the Constitution or the administrative laws are considered the highest authority, leaves very little comfort to the rest of the world.

If we accept the concept that God exists, how can we then declare that he is not the highest authority for rules and regulations guiding the interaction of people on the planet?  Schroeder’s comments are further proof that Europe has continued to drift further from the faith of the Catholic Church and the Reformation, both the strongest arms of the Christian faith.

He goes on to state that “Quite rightly we criticize that in most Islamic states the role of religion in society and the secular character of the legal system are not clearly separated. But we haven’t taken note as readily of the U.S. Christian fundamentalists and their interpretation of the bible that show similar tendencies.  There is thus little scope for peaceful resolutions if both sides claim to have a monopoly on the only truth.”

The statement further exemplifies the problem.  Europeans, for the past decade and a half at least, have begun to equate Bible believing Christians with Muslim extremist.  The language has changed.  Now, secular humanists in Europe talk about “fundamentalists” as if the concept of fundamentalism was the most evil thing alive.  As long as our faith does not affect our lives we are free to believe.  As soon as our faith intersects the world we live in we are fundamentalist and should be treated with suspicion or completely disregarded.

Perhaps the saddest point of all is that statements like these from Schroeder do not gain traction in Europe or America.  It might be that the value of faith to Americans is already so low that such statements do not seem to contradict what we already believe and practice as a people.

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Books Worth Reading

C.S. LEWIS--Mere Christianity; CLAIRE BERLINSKI--Menace in Europe: Why the Continent's Crisis is America's Crisis, Too; BRUCE BAWER--While Europe Slept: How Radical islam is Destroying the West from Within; DAVID LEVERING LEWIS--God's Crucible: Islam and the Making of Europe, 570-1215; THOMAS SCHIRRMACHER--The Persecution of Christians Concerns Us All; PHILIP JENKINS--God's Continent: Christianity, Islam, and Europe's Religious Crisis

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