Christians in Finland are experiencing set-backs to their civil right to exercise their civil liberties.
Family Research Council reported on Monday that ‘Finland’s former Interior Minister and leader of the Christian Democrats, has been criminally charged for posting a picture of the Bible, opened to Romans 1:24-27.’
The Twitter post was a criticism of the ‘(ELFC) Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland joining an LGBTQAAI+ Pride parade.’
It triggered a two-year investigation, and could land the former Finish member of parliament in prison for up to two years, unless she recants.
Prosecutors are arguing that the post citing the Apostle Paul’s words verbatim, ‘violated the equality and dignity of homosexuals.’
One report from Finland added that ‘the charges were filed on three separate issues’, pertaining to Räsänen’s staunch Christian conservative views on marriage, that she’s expressed publicly in writings, and on social media.
Another report cited Räsänen’s 2004 booklet, ‘“Male and Female He Created Them: Homosexual relationships challenge the Christian concept of humanity” as the real centre of the charges.
In it, Räsänen respectfully argues that homosexuality is a ‘sexual anomaly;’ asserts the prudence of the age-old, man for woman, woman for man union; critiques cultural acceptance of “born that way” self-justifications for Same-Sex marriage, and outlines the danger posed by passing oppressive pro-LGBT laws based upon arbitrary propositions.
Such as, said Räsänen, ‘the Swedish act of 2003 concerning the right to teach the portions of Scripture dealing with homosexuality. Those who disseminate statements alleging homosexuality to be a sin can be sentenced up to two years in prison for incitement against a group of people. If the offence were considered minor or if suspects agreed to withdraw their statements, they might get by with only fines or parole.’
In addition, Räsänen writes of the hypocrisy from Same-Sex marriage advocates, stating,
“When the registered same-sex relationships were equated with marriage, a development was started which was difficult to halt. During the processing of this Act, it was affirmed to the Church, and to Christians concerned about the consequences, that the Church could retain its own values and views on homosexuality. Shortly after the Act was passed, a warning was issued to the Church about discriminating against its employees who intended to form homosexual partnerships. This was based on their fundamental rights against discrimination.”
In other words, the promise from Same-Sex marriage advocates that civil rights and civil liberties would be protected for all, not just some, was a blatant lie.
Instead of protecting civil liberties, Same-sex marriage laws created an untouchable, protected political class.
As a result, according to FRC’s Tony Perkins, former M.P. Päivi Räsänen has been charged for “hate speech.”
Räsänen has rejected the charge, telling prosecutors, “I do not see how I would have in any way defamed homosexuals whose human dignity and human rights I have constantly said to respect and defend.”
FRC recounted that Räsänen was determined to see that freedom of speech and religion, ‘both of which are guaranteed in international agreements and in [Finland’s] constitution, are respected.’
With the characteristic PRIDE flair for the melodramatic, Finnish Bishop Elect, Rev. Dr. Juhana Pohjola, has also been charged.
Prosecutors allege that Pohjola, editor-in-chief of Luther Foundation Finland’s publications, is guilty of incitement against a group of people, due to his continuing to support of traditional marriage, and Räsänen’s publication.
Lutheran International said that the 2019 investigation follows, ‘an Helsinki Police investigation which concluded no laws had been broken.’
Finland made Same-Sex marriage legal in 2017, whilst the book was published in 2004.
The Evangelical Lutheran Mission Diocese of Finland (ELMDF) was created as a move away from the State Church – Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland -, due to the ELCF’s distancing of itself from the Bible and the Lutheran Confession.
Rev. Juhana Pohjola was defrocked in 2014 by the ELCF for helping found the ELMDF, which seeks to maintain its Biblical roots due to concerns that about the continuing theological decline of the ELCF.
As a founding member of the ELMDF, Rev. Juhana Pohjola’s conviction, and potential prison time would bolster his opponents in the ELCF. It’s not a stretch to see how they could benefit politically from such a conviction of one of Finland’s high profile Christian leaders.
All of this is eerily similar to 1930s Germany.
The ELMDF appear to be the equivalent of the Confessing Church, which was founded on similar grounds. The Confessing Church was an ecclesiastical protest against nominalist German Christians surrendering Christian theology into the hands, and service of National Socialist ideology.
In its response to the charges against, Räsänen and Pohjola, the International Lutheran Council said,
‘“The implications of the decision to charge Juhana Pohjola and Päivi Räsänen are clear: if the authorities are willing to do this to a respected pastor, reverend doctor, and Bishop Elect, as well as a Member of Parliament and former Minister of the Interior, then that sends a message of fear and intimidation to everyone in Finland who follows the Scripture’s teaching on human sexuality.”
The ILC called on “Christians to demonstrate solidarity with their suffering Finnish Lutheran brothers and sisters.”
In the same response the ILC asserted that Christians,
“We must not be silent but express righteous indignation at the actions of the Finnish authorities and demand an end to the persecution of those who adhere to historic Christian teaching on sexuality. I encourage Christians around the world to pray for Juhana and Päivi, and to follow the example and command of Jesus: ‘Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you’ (Matthew 5:44).”
What can be drawn from all this is that Same-Sex marriage advocates acted deceptively.
Rather than reaffirm the legitimacy of their arguments, I’m more convinced than ever that “love is love”, was, and still is a lie. Their goal was domination, not “equality.”
First published on Caldron Pool, 7th May 2021.
©Rod Lampard, 2021.