It’s another Orwellian moment where love is hate just like war is peace.
Christian scripture — that’s the religion where love is the central teaching — has been characterized as hate speech by a government prosecutor in Finland, according to Fox News.
Finnish state prosecutor Anu Mantila attempted to punish two Christians for, well, being Christian. Päivi Räsänen — a 62-year-old medical doctor, member of Parliament and grandmother of seven — and Juhana Pohjola — a Luthern Bishop — were charged with the crime of being intolerant of homosexuals. The offense? They shared Romans 1:24-27.
“Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to the dishonoring of their bodies among themselves, because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen,” Paul taught.
“For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error.”
If you’re a Christian, you can’t simply sweep biblical teaching under the rug because it isn’t in vogue. Christians are to stand witness to the word and proclaim the truth of scripture. If a certain portion of the population doesn’t like it, they are free to ignore it. No harm, no foul.
Räsänen and Pohjola were not demanding the LGBT population be locked up. They were doing what they could — according to their faith — to save souls in danger of being lost. They were doing it not out of hate but love.
The prosecution attempted to characterize the defendants’ sharing of scripture along with a 2004 pamphlet titled “Male and Female He Created Them: Homosexual Relations Challenge the Christian Concept of Humanity” as an attempt to spread intolerance of homosexuality, Fox reported. If they succeeded in their diabolical scheme, contempt and hatred toward homosexuals would flourish.
I wonder what Mantila would say if someone asked her if she would admonish someone if it might save their life. Räsänen and Pohjola were trying to save souls. It doesn’t matter if Mantila believes in good or not — Räsänen and Pohjola do.
This was the second time the two Christians were put on trial for being intolerant of homosexuality. They were acquitted for the first time in March 2022, according to Fox.
In the appeals trial, Manitlda said “You can cite the Bible, but it is Räsänen’s interpretation and opinion about the Bible verses that are criminal.”
Huh? Is Mantilda saying the state is in a better position to interpret scripture than a Lutheran Bishop? Is she advocating a state religion? Is she trying to say the state is God? Blasphemy and shame!
The court wasn’t buying what the prosecution was selling. The Christians were once again found not guilty of hate speech by a court of appeals in Helsinki this week. The Court of Appeals concluded it “has no reason, on the basis of the evidence received at the main hearing, to assess the case in any respect differently from the District Court. There is therefore no reason to alter the final result of the District Court’s judgment.”
Free at last. At least for now. Prosecutors may still attempt to take the case to the Supreme Court of Finland, according to Fox.
“I am deeply relieved,” Räsänen said after the verdict. “The court has fully endorsed and upheld the decision of the district court, which recognized everyone’s right to free speech.”
“It isn’t a crime to tweet a Bible verse, or to engage in public discourse with a Christian perspective,” Räsänen continued. “The attempts made to prosecute me for expressing my beliefs have resulted in an immensely trying four years, but my hope is that the result will stand as a key precedent to protect the human right to free speech.”
“If writings based on biblical teachings were to be condemned, that would mean a serious restriction of freedom of religion,” she observed. “It is natural that this would raise concerns among Christians both in Finland and internationally.”
The court’s decision protects Christians from unwarranted political prosecution. Christianity is the foundation of Western civilization. Those who despise the West see Christianity as their great enemy. Räsänen and Pohjola’s victory is a victory for all that is good.
The fact wasn’t lost on Texas GOP Congressman Chip Roy who has worked in the international effort to defend Räsänen and Pohjola, according to Fox. Roy cheered the Finnish court’s decision as a triumph for free expression.
Roy told Fox News Digital, “A guilty verdict would have criminalized Christianity, silenced Christians, stifled religious freedom across Europe, and catalyzed further attacks on the foundations of Western Civilization.”
“I thank God for this verdict,” he continued, “for Päivi Räsänen and Bishop Pohjola’s courage in defense of the Gospel, and the efforts of Alliance Defending Freedom International and other groups like Family Research Council for their hard work and advocacy on this case.”
Thank God indeed. Onward Christian soldiers.
The post Lawmaker Wins ‘Hate Speech’ Case Over Quoting Bible: ‘I Thank God for This Verdict’ appeared first on The Western Journal.