The reason I find this interesting is because Russia seems to be experiencing a renaissance of sorts. However, the media is demonizing them for many things except this one. Let’s be clear, I am no friend of the former red state or its leader Vladimir Putin yet I find some of his views refreshing and I’ll explain why.
He may be a murderous thug, but at least he is a man about it. The effeminate murderous thugs that populate our government hide behind vacuous slogans and shifty legalese. Our own president is so cowardly I can no longer listen to a single thing he says. In the true form of cowardice, the liberal cannot stand anyone who simply tells them no. The whiny, petulant, fem-bot man-haters in the media hate Putin not because he is a murderous thug, because they actually love those. They hate him because he won’t bow down to the anti-family LGBT sexual deviancy club. He doesn’t even have to use incendiary phrases like “faggot” to tick them off. He just has to stand up and say, this behavior is not in the best interest of Russia and that’s enough to start the foaming of their rabid lips. So I guess I like how Putin ticks off the enemies of my family.
To return to the article I linked, the interesting thing that is a little glossed over is that only churches who are not Russian Orthodox are banned from proselytizing. My first thought is that if the Russian Orthodox church teaches correct doctrine, then what’s the problem? The linked article really cannot take on that question because they assume that religious freedom means that every religion, no matter how stupid, inane, dangerous, or evil is equally protected under American law. This assumption is made by many people who say I have the “right” to do something no matter how stupid, inane, dangerous, or evil. When someone says that, I then ask how do they determine, for themselves and for others, what is the limit. You will get an answer when you ask the question, but the answer is never logically consistent.
You will notice in the article that a Pentecostal, a baptist, and all protestant churches are referred to as “Christian” while then assuming that the Russian Orthodox is not. That’s a little arrogant and slanted. What it ought to say is that the Russian church is playing favorites based on the identity they want their people to embrace. In other words, they want Russians to be part of the Russian church and share Russian values. Does this reduce freedom, absolutely. Will this slow the spread of false teachers and cults that parade as Christians? Yep. Is this restricting the “Christian churches?” Well that depends.
Imagine you are running a city. One weekend you see a tent being erected just inside your city limits so you investigate. Turns out that the man setting up the tent worships Diana and Molech. He wants to coax people into finding salvation through sexual orgies and then sacrifice their children to Molech so the wine will keep flowing. Days, weeks, then months go by and the cult leader has amassed a huge following. Half of the city’s children are dead, leaving a reduced future generation with no workers to support their parents in old age. Therefore you and the city council decide that only the religion that will be allowed is Christianity.
Russia’s circumstance is similar. They wish to eradicate the deleterious effects of Islam, Pseudo-Christianity, and every other anti-Russian marxist leaning church. What the writer at Christianity Today should have done is explain why the Russian Orthodox church leaves its people with a lesser view of salvation, Christ’s atonement, or a watered down gospel. Then the argument would be that the Russians are depriving their people of the gospel. Maybe they are, or maybe they are manning up and telling the other faux-religions to go back home and wreck their own countries.
CT just forgot what it was like to see a little backbone.