Fundamentalist Fallacies By Brian Rushfeldt Recently a friend emailed me, deeply hurt and upset over verbal attacks by a business partner. He had accused her of being a “fundamentalist Christian”, comparing Christian fundamentalists to the Taliban. Why? For expressing her support of the biblical definition of marriage. She was challenged to probe her faith, heart attitudes, and position on marriage more deeply than ever before. One of the first questions she asked herself was, “What is a fundamentalist? And is it wrong to be a fundamentalist?” Although she was distressed by the attack on her personal character, she also recognized it as an opportunity to strengthen the foundation of what she believes and why. She looked up “fundamentalist” in the dictionary. Fundamentalist: a religious movement or point of view characterized by a return to fundamental principles (often opposed to secularism). “Okay,” she thought, “I guess I am a fundamentalist.” Why is fundamentalism viewed so negatively in the 21st century? I propose there are two main reasons. First, certain fundamentalists use terrorism, violence and hate to force their views and values on others. The second reason fundamentalism is viewed negatively is, in my view, the most prevalent. It is the delusional view or fallacy that fundamental principles which oppose humanist/ secular views on certain issues are discriminatory and hateful. The secular “spin doctors” in society use the media to define matters to their advantage and portray those who adhere to Christian principles as somehow “bad” and “intolerant” people. What is inherently wrong with upholding fundamental biblical principles that have proven beneficial for humanity over several thousand years? Despite overwhelming evidence of harm resulting from the violation of basic moral principles, today’s so-called modern and progressive society spins the basic view that there is such a thing as right and wrong as hateful and intolerant. They use name-calling and intimidation to try and silence those who disagree with their secularist philosophy. In reality, those who are true biblical “fundamentalists” pose no threat except to challenge the fallacy of the so-called “neutral” secularist view. Secularism is not a neutral belief; in fact, it is a religion. One of the dictionary definitions of religions is: a cause, principle, or activity pursued with zeal or conscientious devotion. Those who attempt to force secularism on society are the truly dangerous fundamentalists, as opposed to God-fearing Christians who simply live out their faith in Christ and walk in love. Christians who do not cave in to every philosophy, theory, poll and demand for “rights” are seen as intolerant, bigoted, and even hateful. What a fallacious argument. As mentioned previously, we are all too aware of a fundamentalist movement today that uses terrorism, threat, violence, and force. But that movement has nothing in common with Christians who adhere to fundamental principles of faith. It is paradoxical that when we take a stand against such behaviours as murder, rape or child abuse we are not called fundamentalist. But should we take a stand or even discuss issues of human sexuality or marriage from a biblical perspective, the fundamentalist secularists attack, threaten, belittle, and accuse. So no, it is not wrong to return to and stand by fundamental biblical principles of morality, decency, fairness, fact and truth. The Christian faith does not teach that we approve or endorse all behaviours, nor does it call for silence when our beliefs are challenged. It does call us to speak the truth in love. If we don’t speak up, society will be ruled by a secular-humanist religious view which has proven a dismal failure in resolving the social and moral challenges that individuals and societies inevitably face.
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