Individual Rights and Freedom Used Incorrectly | GR8 Relationships

Individual Rights and Freedom Used Incorrectly

Be careful, if you promote individual rights without humility and, especially without love. When you don't include love, you encourage irresponsible freedom. Your “flashing ME” will always see your rights as more important than theirs!

When you push for your rights and freedoms, you create a structure that demands others give up their freedom in order to get or maintain your freedom. You could say that you want to control people to “make you happy.” They must give up their rights in order for me to flaunt my rights.

Isn't that what is happening within a society that promotes political correctness, safe spaces, and limiting free speech? That is a misuse of individual rights.

Individual Rights and Freedom Used Incorrectly

But Peter and the other apostles answered and said: “We ought to obey God rather than men.” – Acts 5:29

Freedom and Individual Rights Gone Wrong

Dr. Marlin Howe in his “Hope for the Family” video series gave a great example of this bad behavior when he spoke about the laws established about AIDS. The individual rights of gays were elevated above the good of the society. That exposed everyone to the devastating effects of AIDS. If a person had AIDS, the laws prevented others from knowing about it. Therefore, anyone with AIDS could interact with society, potentially spreading AIDS to others. So, the rights of a select group were used to remove the individual rights of the overwhelming majority.

Individual rights by themselves encourage a person to act for their own benefit to the exclusion of anyone else. “It is all about ME. Anyone who disagrees or stands in my way is intolerant and bigoted.” That is the argument of those who claim individual rights that actually harm the whole of society.

An excellent book about a variety of individual rights issues gone wrong is in The Marketing of Evil: How Radicals, Elitists, and Pseudo-Experts Sell Corruption Disguised by Freedom by David Kupelian.

Responsible Freedom

Freedom V Structure In Reverse?

So, in those situations, the Freedom V is used in reverse. Control of people, tightening the boundaries, limiting other people's freedom is the goal. So, the idea would be to push everyone that disagrees with you to the bottom of the Freedom V. Tight boundaries promote control and rule by the elite.

You can also argue the structure works the same, but the difference is the authorities redefine irresponsible freedom as responsible. So, those people that follow the redefined values in those corrupt structures get more "freedom."

those types of situations occur when mankind and governments work against godly values and principles. When a bad value is redefined as good, that is how fools think,  like you see in Romans 1:23-31. God does not prevent using your freedom to foolishly dig your own grave. That foolish behavior is the history of all organizations and societies that stray from God’s transcendent values.

Whether those situations are the Freedom V in reverse or not, the new structure tries to control and punish those who speak up for what is right. That is just like the rulers in Acts 5.

“Did we not strictly command you not to teach in this name? And look, you have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine, and intend to bring this Man’s blood on us!” – Acts 5:28

But Peter and the apostles rejected their redefinition of what is good self-governance.

But Peter and the other apostles answered and said: “We ought to obey God rather than men.” – Acts 5:29

A government built on transcendent values encourages freedom of the individual, but not to the detriment of the society. It initiates consequences on those that cross the boundaries when they exhibit a lack of self-governance and adherence to transcendent values. That is why we see the linking of self-governance with love and all of the other good and godly values.

Self-governance Limits Personal Freedom

Remember, the SOLUTION for all relationship problems is embodied in the definition of love – 

“Pursuing the best for others; patiently, kindly, sacrificially and unconditionally.” 

Let me repeat, freedom is not as important as love. When you love, you are self-governing and will limit your freedoms for the good of others. That is exactly what Jesus did when He came to die for us!

We have the powerful example of Jesus to think about freedom and individual rights. Good thinking about my rights never comes from the sin nature, only from walking with the Lord.

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