FHU History Professor Discusses Meaning of Liberty
A Freed-Hardeman University history professor delivered the 2012 Anne T. Moore Humanities lecture March 15 at Campbell University in Blues Creek, N.C. Dr. Greg Massey’s lecture was entitled “Past and Present: The Contested Meaning of Liberty in the United States.”
Massey focused on the conflict between American liberty and Christian liberty, using a phrase from the Declaration of Independence and a scripture from the Bible as springboards. For American liberty he relied on the idea that people have an unalienable right to “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” For Christian liberty he utilized Gal. 5:1, 13-14, where the Apostle Paul wrote, “Do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another. For the whole law is fulfilled in one word: ‘You should love your neighbor as yourself.’”
Using historical examples from the American Revolution to the present, Massey demonstrated how these concepts are in tension. He concluded that frequently Christians in the United States are more influenced by American liberty than by Christian liberty.
Campbell University is a Baptist-affiliated university and has an enrollment of more than 3,000 undergraduate students. Approximately 200 students and faculty members attended Massey’s lecture.