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Discussion in '2007 Archive' started by hillclimber1, Aug 30, 2007.
from the article:
I don't know American law, but I have nothing but respect for this girl, and her statement. Bravo to her, and I wish her well for taking this stand. Shame on the school district executives who took the initial dastardly steps toward her.
I am glad this came up with someone who will fight against it. The school district will loose. Matt Staver knows his stuff when it comes to these cases.
From the article:
"The law firm said each valedictorian gave a proposed speech to the principal ahead of the graduation."
So she strayed from what she had told the principal that she would say. That was wrong on her part. That stabs her own witness for Christ Jesus right through the heart.
What she did was cowardly. If she was courageous she would have included that paragraph in what she turned into the principal, and if she wasn't allowed to speak, at least she would have been honest about it.
I wonder if those who defend her actions would also defend a Muslim, or a Hindu, or a Jew who acted the same way.
Really. Did Christ submit to authorites who told Him not to claim to be God. Did Paul and Peter submit? Weren't they told not to preach the gospel any more and then rel;eased only to go and do it again?
Paul and Peter were released after being told not to do it agian. if they were held up to your false standard they would have at that point told them they would continue.
There are some huge differences:
1.) They didn't use a compulsary event (graduation) sponsored by their local government to get a platform for their religious perspective. Their lives and their message attracted people and was not entangled in the power structure of the local authorities.
2.) They didn't trick the authorities by telling them they were going to say one thing, and then say something else. They had integrity and didn't hide their message.
3.) Christ, Peter and Paul all willingly faced the consequences of going against the will of the established authorities and didn't hide behind attorneys.
This does not inhibit free speech of the students. And you are wrong. Every time they preached after being told not to they were now entangled in a struggle with the authorities.
And neither did this girl. However she added to her message. And there is no problem with this.
This is incorrect. Paul made an appeal based on the fact that he had a Roman citizenship. And this girl is not hiding but making a stand for free speech.
So it's okay to lie by omission?
I don't recall seeing Jesus, Paul, or anyone else doing that in scripture. Rather, they were pretty straightfoward: "We're going to do this." "You can't." "We're going to anyway."
Acts 4:17-20 (ESV)
But in order that it may spread no further among the people, let us warn them to speak no more to anyone in this name."  So they called them and charged them not to speak or teach at all in the name of Jesus.  But Peter and John answered them, "Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you rather than to God, you must judge,  for we cannot but speak of what we have seen and heard."
Acts 5:27-29 (ESV)
And when they had brought them, they set them before the council. And the high priest questioned them,  saying, "We strictly charged you not to teach in this name, yet here you have filled Jerusalem with your teaching, and you intend to bring this man's blood upon us."  But Peter and the apostles answered, "We must obey God rather than men.
Peter and John did precisely what they were ordered not to do.
The young lady should never have apologized.
As a American you should want the others defended because of free speech. As a Christian you should be against the cults and want to tell them they are incorrect and lead them to Christ.
Sorry, moondg, but I am not going to defend a Christian engaging in a deception of this kind. I don't think that God would lead a child of His to engage in a deception of this kind.
Christians shouldn't lie.
Christians shouldn't sue.
I am not saying you should defend her. I am just saying do not condemn her not knowing what her intent was. I know a lot of times I have had a devotion planed and when I get started the Holy Spirit would lead me some were else altogether.
A wrong action is a wrong action regardless of one's intention.
"The road to Hell is paved with good intentions." - Samuel Johnson
As moondg has suggested, the Holy Spirit sometimes leads us where "human" judgement says not to go.
Regardless of how it came about, she had the nerve to speak the words. She should have stood her ground and never apologized for witnessing for Christ.
There has never been free speech in school during official class or assembly times. I learned this the first day of kindergarten. The teacher told us to stop talking, and I did. The teacher also corrected us when we said things that are inappropriate. However, outside official class and assembly time, students do have a right to speak rather freely between themselves... but this was clearly one of the times they could not.
Saying I am wrong and demonstrating that I am wrong are two very different things. It is clear that you misunderstood my previous point. Here it is again with the important words highlighted:
"Their lives and their message attracted people and was not entangled in the power structure of the local authorities."
They were in a struggle with the authorities, but they were not using the power of the state to gain a captive audience.
Have you even taken part in a graduation ceremony? E V E R Y T H I N G is scripted. The speeches are prepared weeks ahead of time and vetted by one or more school officials. That is very likely what she and her attorney are characterizing as providing “a proposed speech to the principal ahead of the graduation.” Was her faith in Christ something she had no thought or interest in presenting when the speeches were prepared, or did she intentionally not provide that portion of her speech so as to skirt the rules? Unless she normally cares very little about sharing her faith, it seems much more likely that she was avoiding “asking permission” in the hopes that she could “ask forgiveness” after she violated school policy.
Sure there is. Otherwise, why was there a reaction by the school?
Let’s go to the scripture:
23 And as they were crying out and throwing off their cloaks and tossing dust into the air,
24 the commander ordered him to be brought into the barracks, stating that he should be examined by scourging so that he might find out the reason why they were shouting against him that way.
25 But when they stretched him out with thongs, Paul said to the centurion who was standing by, "Is it lawful for you to scourge a man who is a Roman and uncondemned?"
26 When the centurion heard this, he went to the commander and told him, saying, "What are you about to do? For this man is a Roman."
27 The commander came and said to him, "Tell me, are you a Roman?" And he said, "Yes."
28 The commander answered, "I acquired this citizenship with a large sum of money." And Paul said, "But I was actually born a citizen."
29 Therefore those who were about to examine him immediately let go of him; and the commander also was afraid when he found out that he was a Roman, and because he had put him in chains.
30 But on the next day, wishing to know for certain why he had been accused by the Jews, he released him and ordered the chief priests and all the Council to assemble, and brought Paul down and set him before them...
(v.23) The Jews Paul addressed wanted to kill them.
(v.24) The Roman commander had (from his point of view) the instigators of the disturbance taken into custody where he was going to whip them until he found out what they did to cause the disturbance.
(v.25) Paul did not resist, but instead pointed out that they were about to do something illegal to a person who was a Roman citizen. (Please note that a Roman citizenship was something very different than having, let’s say, a U.S. citizenship. It gave citizens some very specific and important privileges that others did not have. The Romans did not consider “all men created equal.”)
(v.26-29) The commander questioned him and investigated his claim.
(v.30) The commander released Paul from formal custody, but continued his investigation.
Now this is a very different situation than “not facing consequences.” Paul faced the consequences of his actions, but his status as a Roman citizen allowed him to get fairer treatment. As far as I remember, this is the only time recorded that Paul used his citizenship in this way, for he was beaten frequently, Peter was persecuted and Jesus did not say a word in His defense.
Nope. We don’t even have free speech on BaptistBoard. What makes you think that students have (or should have) free speech when addressing other students through a microphone at a compulsory meeting of the school?
Do you want Muslim students cursing infidels (an extreme example), a Mormon student testifying that “Joseph Smith, Jr. was a true prophet of God”, an atheist student going off on a rant condemning and ridiculing those who are theists during a graduation ceremony?
Yes, I agree. But the Holy Spirit also does not lead us to deceive others, nor use the power and influence of government (the power of the sword) to spread the gospel.
She has courage. That's great. But does she have courage enough to live her life in such a way that the gospel message has authenticity and demonstrates respect for others?
So what kind of "witness for Christ" was it?
To me, her "witness" is that she either doesn't care enough about Christ to think about bringing him up when she is preparing her speech before the school authorities, or more likely, she engaged in deception to avoid having her message censored.
Her "witness" is that she believes that the gospel of Jesus Christ needs a captive audience in order to be heard and considered... that God needs to "sword" of earthly governments to bring about His kingdom.
I reject her "witness." (And that's a completely different thing than rejecting Christ!)
Instead, I'll go with the witness of centuries of men and women who have committed their lives to Christ and are about the business of transforming the world through the power of the Spirit.
I can speak from personal experience on this subject. I finished 5th in my senior class in 1974. I was asked to lead one of the two prayers during the commencement activities as the highest placing male after the Salutatorian who was also a male. I wrote my prayer out and turned it in to the teacher in charge of this. She brought it back to me and told me that, in order not to offend Jews in the crowd, I could not end my prayer "In Jesus' name we pray" but "In Your name we pray". I complied with her request.
It never entered my mind that I should deceive her by telling her that I would comply with her request and then do something different during the commencement activities.
On that one, I would have refused the prayer. I think public prayer is wrong anyway. Prayer is private, and God's holiness should cause us to go into counsel with him without any outside influences. Submitting a prayer to humans for approval is pretty silly. Prayer for show is an abomination.
I don't see a need for public prayer, and I cringe at most of them.
But this isn't about prayer, it's about submiiting a statement for approval, and deliberately straying from whet you said you would say. To me, that's a lie, and this girl was wrong.