Bible in the Dock in Finland

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Bible in the Dock in Finland

The Bible is now in the dock in liberal Finland! The words of the Good Book are being prosecuted in the case launched by the Finnish state against Päivi Räsänen, a former Member of Parliament and committed Christian, who faces a prison term for reading out an allegedly 'homophobic' passage from the Bible. She is accused of spreading 'hatred' against a 'minority community'. Päivi is the wife of an Evangelical pastor, the former interior minister of Finland, a mother of 5 and grandmother of 7.

Templar brethren in Hungary were among three thousand Christians who gathered outside the Finnish Embassy in Budapest on Sunday to protest at the persecution. Nearly a thousand more followed the event online expressing their sympathy for the Finnish lady.

Among the speakers at the demonstration, László István Mészáros, former deputy chairman of the parliamentary committee on human rights, minorities and religion, said:

“Thus, according to the Attorney General, it is a crime to cite Judeo-Christian civilization, the Scriptures that form the basis of European culture, to confess its teachings, and the value judgment formulated on the basis of these. We definitely reject that! ”

The former member of parliament also said there was a historic lawsuit because even the most outspoken dictators had never tried to criminalise biblical principles about the nature of marriage and the family.

Päivi Räsänen sent a voice message to the demonstrators, in which she said that she has tremendous gratitude in her heart for being supported so much, then added:

“Your current position is also a message that the matter is common. I am not alone because we all defend freedom of speech and faith together so that we can trust and speak openly about the holy speech of the Lord Jesus.”

After the message of the Finnish politician, Tamás Márkus, a Reformed church pastor, also spoke. He undertook to stand up for the Finnish politician because the Reformed Church also stands by the things she has said.

After Tamás Márkus' speech, the main organiser of the event, Sára Kulifai, spoke about how she had planned to hand over her open letter to the Finnish ambassador, but he had refused to accept the letter claiming that his office was closed on Sunday. She therefore placed his letter in the embassy mailbox after reading it out aloud. Many of the participants carried placards with messages such as: The Word of the Lord can not be handcuffed! God may bless Europe! Päivi do not feel you are not alone!

Finally, before the musical closing of the event, the participants said the universal prayer of Christians, the Our Father.

The trial of the Finnish politician starts today.The verdict could have  tremendous impact on the future of freedom of religion and speech since it could be precedent for the following lawsuits in Europe. We pray for this brave lady and her family.

 

By dr. Imre TÉGLÁSY

 

 

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