Dan Vinci Code Mob Protest: A Reminder to Christians


While the lack of principles regarding freedom of expression on the part of Government of India and mainstream media saddens our heart, it shatters our heart to see a few fellow Christians demanding for banning of the movie and a few others carrying out undemocratic and anti Christian mob protest: particularly the one carried out by United Christian Front in Hyderabad. We caution the readers that this fringent organization is politically motivated and are anti-Christian and anti constitutional. We must unite to defeat such wolfs in sheep’s clothes, writes Jerry Thomas.

It gives us immense pleasure to know that the Supreme Court refused to ban The Da Vinci Code. Such moments are always instructive for us to have more clarity on the fundamental right – freedom of expression. But it saddens our heart to learn that the arguments chartered out by Apex Court, Government of India (GoI), or even the mainstream media have been weakened by a lack of coherent principles or evident hypocrisy.

We understand the lack of principles and hypocrisy on the part of GoI or mainstream media. The idea of freedom, though a familiar idea now, still remains alien to their worldview. While the lack of principles regarding freedom of expression on the part of Government of India and mainstream media saddens our heart, it shatters our heart to see a few fellow Christians demanding for banning of the movie and a few others carrying out undemocratic and anti Christian mob protest: particularly the one carried out by United Christian Front in Hyderabad. We caution the readers that this fringent organization is politically motivated and are anti-Christian and anti constitutional. We must unite to defeat such wolfs in sheep’s clothes. These so-called Christians forget that freedom is the gift of God given to the world through the Judeo Christian revelation.

There were always thinkers who were ready to compromise freedom on the basis of some virtue. Dinesh D’Souza writing in National Review (Land of free, The Islamic critique cuts deep, but there is an answer) pointed out that the Islamic argument against freedom from the standpoint of virtue had always been supported by classical philosophers like Plato, Aristotle and others. We may add here that similar is the argument against freedom from the perspective of security. In those contexts, it was Apostle Paul who first argued for freedom as an essential condition for true virtue to flourish. This in turn has been derived by the freedom that Christ gives to all who believes in Him. The grace of the God which gives freedom to us expresses itself in society when we extend the same freedom to others. It must be remembered here Apostle Paul defended and answered the critiques of freedom who argued on the basis of virtue (Romans 3: 7,8) or stability (Galatians 5: 1). This freedom is prone to be abused as Dan Brown did. But our commitment to the fundamental message of the Gospel – freedom in Christ that expresses itself society- is being tested on those times.

After the gruesome acts of terrorists on September 11, Ravi Zacharias wrote “The message of the Gospel is not compulsion but freedom. In this lies a crossover between our politics and our faith. Just as the Christian is vulnerable to all kinds of mockery and abuse in the academy and the public square, because there is no compulsion, so also the same possibilities exist for democracy to be abused in a religiously pluralistic society. Is it because democracy and Christianity are identical? Not necessarily. But it is because of a fundamental tenet of self-determination shared by both. With that essential fact, we will always be open to plunder, disrespect, and attack by those who are determined to mock it. It is the price of freedom.”

Jesus Christ has bought us freedom by being vulnerable even to the cross. In that He not only gave us redemptive freedom but also a pattern to live by. Remember, He is the only God who made himself vulnerable compared even to other mythical figures. He died for us yet when we were rebelling against him and abusing our freedom.  Must we not then share our freedom and our life too with those who abuse and mock at us? Or should we resort to Courts and procession which compromises the model that Jesus Christ showed us?

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