(But hey, I figure that I've earned enough cred as both a serious writer and a follower of Christ, that I can open up the proverbial "can o' whup-ass" when the situation demands bringing out the heavy guns. So it is here...)
I wrote here on Saturday about Tyler Frost of Findlay, Ohio, the 17-year old high school senior who was excited about taking his girlfriend to the prom. But alas! Young Master Frost's dear lady is a student at a public high school... while Frost is weeks away from graduating from Heritage Christian School.
And the merciless, soul-less automaton of cultish Churchianity named Tim England - the principal of Heritage Christian - gave Our Hero an ultimatum: deny your girlfriend her senior prom or you don't walk with the other graduates.
Heritage Christian School bans dancing, hand-holding, "rock music" (whatever that means these days), and basically anything else that was verboten in the days of Puritan extremists. And this doesn't mean just on school grounds but everywhere the students might happen to be.
Frost had to get a form signed by England so that he could be a guest at Findlay High School's prom. England signed the form, then told Frost that he would be suspended for the rest of the year if he went.
So what did Tyler Frost do?
Behold the photograph of the beautiful young couple, holding hands and having what Frost called a "great" time!
(Photo credit: KENT TARBOX/ The Courier/AP)
Tyler Frost chose to sacrifice graduation with his classmates (a group that was only going to number four students anyway) so that he could have memories of a wonderful night that would last him and his girlfriend the rest of their lives.
Tyler Frost chose to put the happiness of the one that he loves over the ridiculous and non-biblical rules of Heritage Christian School.
And in doing so, Tyler Frost, as his principal Tim England put it: "In life, we constantly make decisions whether we are going to please self or please God. (Frost) chose one path, and the school committee chose the other." Frost is now suspended, as England had threatened.
But you know what? I think it's very obvious who in this situation is pleasing "self", and who is pleasing God.
We are told in all four Gospels that one of the biggest reasons why the Pharisees sought to have Jesus killed was because He broke "the rules". Jesus healed the sick and lame on the Sabbath, and because He violated "the law" that was enough motivation for His enemies to want to see Him dead.
Someone in the previous post commented an extremely powerful point: "If his girlfriend were in a car accident and lay dying, would Heritage Christian School expel Tyler because he chose to hold her hand in loving compassion?"
Hey, according to "the law" of Heritage Christian School, it would have to expel Tyler or any other student who committed such an act of sympathy... because they broke "the rules" and according to Heritage Christian and Calvary Baptist Church that runs it, such a student would have to suffer the penalty for it.
Tim England and the "school committee" of this so-called "Christian" school are completely ignorant of the fact that the penalty has already been paid for... by the very One that they profess to be followers of!
Jesus came to do away with the rule of law, which had enslaved mankind to ritual and empty "religion". He died so that we might instead live under the rule of love!
And it is love which is completely absent from the actions of Tim England, Heritage Christian School and Calvary Baptist Church of Findlay, Ohio.
Tyler Frost chose to honor Christ in his actions, though he may not realize yet how much so.
And Tim England, his school and his church have chosen to serve themselves!
Mr. England and Calvary Baptist Church turned their stone-cold hearts to glorifying their own understanding (didn't they ever read Proverbs 3:5?). They put the demands of their doctrine above humility and prayer.
Tim England and Calvary Baptist chose to worship their own church... and they are proud to be persecuting Tyler Frost for it.
These people are not practicing Christianity. They are practicing Churchianity.
Look at this picture. Here is Tim England, the principal of Heritage Christian School...
See those heartless, pitiless eyes? I have seen such men too damned many times in my life. That is the look of a man who has no grasp at all of the mercy of Christ... and he probably doesn't want to understand it either. That's the visage of a man who demands that "the rules" be followed without exception, because in his mind that is how "God" is pleased.
"Christians" such as these are the sort that turned on the gas at Bergen-Belsen and then went home to dinner.
Tim England and Calvary Baptist are of the same mindset as the Pharisees that demanded Christ be put to death.
These self-professed "leaders" and "authorities" have set themselves up in the place of God. They and countless more like them across the centuries have caused more suffering and misery to the body of Christ than have the combined efforts of such persecutors as Nero and Stalin.
I will not hate them. But I have no sympathy for such people as these. They are not of Christ, and it's way past time that they be recognized and called out for what they are.
I'm not asking anyone else to hate them either. But I am gonna do everything I can to speak the plain truth...
...that Christ's sacrifice tore the temple curtain in two. People like Tim England are trying to put that curtain back up.
And we as followers of Christ have no business at all following the lead of such "authorities" as Tim England and the leadership of Calvary Baptist Church.
Should we, as followers of Christ, rebel against people like Tim England, Calvary Baptist Church and anyone else who dares lord over us in the name of Christ?
HELL YEAH WE SHOULD!
And people like England oughtta study 1st Corinthians more, if they are going to be in the business of running a "Christian" school.
As for Tyler Frost: my hat's off to ya, good sir! You've already done more with the heart and mind that God gave ya than a lot of people ever do. And so far as this blogger's concerned: you, Tyler Frost, are a real Christian leader!