Freedom. The word can suggest a variety of meanings. The past five days have been dedicated to this theme of freedom thanks to the CU’s Free week. So this word freedom, what do we conclude it to mean? […]
Today I made myself a pot of coffee and opened a newspaper for the first time in a while and found myself asking just two questions. The first was, ‘where has all the serious news gone?’ I scanned the pages of the Saturday paper and found some very bizarre, unnecessary stories that have no real impact or influence on anything in the world we live in. The second question arose after I managed to dig deeper into the supplements that inevitably crowd a weekend paper, making it impossible to read without causing a wave of destruction, as pages refuse to be folded in an orderly manner. The column that grabbed my attention was inevitably about freedom. My question formed along the lines of, what is this view of freedom that the world seems to love so much?
The article, when first approached, seemed to be about freedom of speech, but after a careful browse I realized in actual fact it was dealing with the topic of freedom of literature. Examples of the Koran in library’s having to be put on the top shelf and isolated, amplifying its supposed status as the ‘word of God,’ mixed with the feelings of fundamentalism. Now, the article argued, can we have freedom of literature if we ban anything that may cause religious or racial offense. The recent scandal of a Dutch MP being refused entry into the UK due to his anti Islamic views, despite the fact that we live in a democracy, question whether we live in a country of freedom. We can say what we like, or write what we like, as long as no one is offended by what we have to say. This is ridiculous. We will always offend someone. I am sure as I write this entry that someone will read this and be offended. Maybe we should live in a world of isolation to one another, avoiding contact with anyone at all costs.
We will offend because we are sinful. Our hearts are sinful, and what comes out of our mouths is just a portrayal of our hearts. This idea of freedom is impossible to gain by man alone, relying on the works and strength of self leads to failure. This week, during Free week, we have learnt that freedom, true freedom, can only be obtained by Jesus. So let us put our trust in him. So what if the Koran is put on the top shelf? Who cares if a book is banned for incitement of hatred? The Gospel is still the Gospel despite all this. It has lasted this long and will continue to do so. Freedom is possible to obtain, and it costs nothing. It is through Jesus, so let us not forget this.