According to this report on the BBC website, Sir Elton John has called for a ban on organised religion. I quote
Sir Elton John has said he would like to see all organised religion banned and accused it of trying to “turn hatred towards gay people”.
Organised religion lacked compassion and turned people into “hateful lemmings”, he told the Observer.
But the musician said he loved the idea of the teachings of Jesus Christ and the beautiful stories about it which he had learned at Sunday school.
And he said there were many gays he knew who loved their religion.
According to the singer-songwriter, 59, his solution would be to “ban religion completely, even though there are some wonderful things about it”.
Now hopefully it is still alright for us to strongly disagree with an idea without this being perceived as a hateful attack by a “lemming”. The kind of “love” that calls its opponents “lemmings” itself looks a bit unfriendly to me, but we won’t go into that.
The idea being proposed is NOT that homosexuals not be allowed to organise their efforts, for this they will certainly continue to do – but that Christians, Hindus, Jews and muslims – or any other religious group – be forbidden to organise their efforts, to work together according to their beliefs. In other words, no one should be free to practice their religion if it has an element of community. Presumably then, even “gays who love their religion” should be banned from practicing it.
The communists tried a similar idea and in some places they still do. To enforce this ban, communists threw people into jail, sent them to re-education camps and the like. How would Sir Elton propose that the authorities punish those who persist in religious activities despite the proposed ban on organised religion? How can all these religious people be forced to stop? Confiscate all their property? And then? Throw them in prison? In solitary confinement? I don’t know. How do you force people to stop doing something they really like doing together? If consenting Christians want to worship Christ together in the privacy of their own homes or even in public places for that matter, and they are doing it with some sort of organisation or purpose, what is wrong with that? Is it appropriate for an enlightened society to impose punishment on such a thing?
All communities require organisation to function. Sir Elton is apparently calling in this article for the leaders of religions to get together and work things out for world peace, but it would be a bit hard for them to do it if they were banned by international law from even existing. Recent events in Jerusalem have shown that about the only thing that the leaders of world religions are united on IS their opposition to homosexual practices. Perhaps this is why Sir Elton wants all the religions banned.
If organised religion is banned, we should not be free to gather together and worship the Lord Jesus Christ, we should not be free to build schools, hospitals, orphanages. All this requires organised effort. You cannot be a follower of Jesus Christ without at least seeking to obey the teachings of the New Testament, which include a lot on church life. It won’t matter how much you “love the teachings of Jesus Christ” if you are forbidden by law from putting many of them into practice – such as the one which says, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation. He who believes and is baptised will be saved, but he who does not believe will be damned.” (Mark 16:15,16).
According to this report, the idea has been tabled that organised religion turns people into “hateful lemmings”. By the way, who gets to define the meaning of the word “hate”? I’d like to know if I can declare that everyone hates me who disagrees with what I do. I don’t think its really the same thing. To hate implies to desire evil to come on a person, to desire a person’s destruction. True Christians don’t hate homosexuals. Jesus came to seek and save US ALL. We all broke God’s law, whether we practiced homosexuality or not. Jesus came to bring us back to God. He took the punishment for our sins, and now invites us to forsake our sins and live in purity.
Sir Elton apparently says that organised religion “does not work”. What does that mean? All the schools, all the hospitals, all the orphanages built by Christians over the years “do not work”? All the reformations in society such as the abolition of the practice of throwing the widow on the funeral pyre of her husband and burning her to death – which came about through William Carey in India – these “do not work”. Not work for what, or for whom?
Give me a break.
Dangerous ideas need to be addressed, even if they come from famous musicians, because ideas like this lead to beliefs and can end up further abolishing the freedoms that people fought and died for. And when society persecutes people for seeking to obey Jesus Christ, then that entire society comes under the judgment of God. Just compare North and South Korea if you want to see what I mean. South Korea is an advanced nation, while in the North, where organised religion is banned, well – people are eating grass just to survive.