There is an absolute obsession in our country with the concept of rights. The securing of our rights was the focal point of our Constitution, and ever since that document was written the national conversation about our rights has only escalated. Unfortunately, most of the conversation is filled with untruths and faulty logic. Most people fall into the errors of the two extremes. Either everything is permitted under the guise of so-called rights, or nothing is permitted because we all apparently lack the capacity to make good decisions. This confusion has created the worst possible mixture of philosophies concerning rights. The problem has clearly manifested in our country where a mother has the “right” to have her child murdered, but our children don’t have the right to pray in school. We have to implement a better system of determining our rights, and that system has to revolve around divine rights.
The reason that there is such confusion with rights in our country is that we are going about the matter in the worst possible way. Our focus is always entirely on human rights and the individual’s rights, but God’s divine rights are almost always completely ignored. We tend to often place ourselves above God, and we like to pretend that our mere human rights supersede His rights. This is a rather silly practice. God’s rights will always be above ours, and we have to realize this if we ever want to bring any clarity to the discussion of rights.
Take the never-ending discussion regarding the First Amendment right of Freedom of Religion. If one takes a purely naturalistic view, then sure, we all do have the right to practice any of our world religions. But if we were to consider things from God’s point of view, there is no such thing as Freedom of Religion. Could anyone really believe that Our Lord and Savior came to Earth to suffer the most terrible torments possible and die the cruelest death imaginable, and then not take offense if we decided to write it all off as some made up fantasy? If God really became man, suffered, and died for us, He obviously had a message to preach, and He obviously wanted us to listen and follow His teachings. So in the end, Freedom of Religion does not really exist. God has a religion that He wants us to follow, and mankind is simply not free to choose their own.
Another situation where our extreme confusion with the concept of rights is manifested revolves around a recent movie. The controversial movie was met with so much contention from a foreign country that many American theaters decided not to show the movie at all. This immediately caused a push-back from people claiming that our rights were being denied. One radio entity even took the initiative to air free-of-charge promotions for the movie because, “We believe in Freedom of Speech, and no one has the right to tell us Americans what movies we can and cannot watch.” The patriotic tone of the commercial is pungent and impressive, but unfortunately way off base. There is actually someone who does have the right to tell us what movies we can and cannot watch. Our Lord and Savior has given us some very clear laws pertaining to morality, and this immoral new movie—which is rated R for pervasive language, crude and sexual humor, nudity, etc.—certainly goes against many of those very grave laws.
There is a plethora of examples that illustrate our confusion with the concept of rights, but the solution is always the same—stop obsessing over our human rights, and focus on God’s rights. We needn’t worry about the denial of our rights if God’s rights are being respected. He set His laws in place because He knew that they would lead us to more happiness than our misguided human intellects ever could. The best way to ensure our happiness and success then is to follow those laws—regardless of how hard it is for us. Any quick look at the story of Israel in the Old Testament clearly shows that the only road to happiness and success is the one where God’s rights are respected. While we all certainly do have inalienable rights given to us by our Creator, we have to remember that God’s divine rights supersede our mere human rights. If we use this as our guiding principle in crafting laws and making decisions for our country, there will be much less confusion, and much more happiness, peace, and success.