Let us begin with the definition of two words describing who people are using the 1828 Noah Webster dictionary.
Liberal – “”Licentious; free to excess.”
Conservative – “having power to preserve in a safe or entire state, or from loss, waste or injury.”
It is interesting to note one immense difference existing between these 2 words. There are 9 entries in the 1828 Webster’s dictionary for ‘liberal’ indicating the freedom of expressions found therein. However there is but 1 definition for ‘conservative’ indicating the narrow path of expression thereof.
The following definitions come from today’s Meriam-Webster dictionary:
obsolete: lacking moral restraint : LICENTIOUS
: not literal or strict : LOOSE
a person who is liberal: such as a: one who is open-minded or not strict in the observance of orthodox, traditional, or established forms or ways b: a member or supporter of a liberal political party c: an advocate or adherent of liberalism especially in individual rights
1 a: an adherent or advocate of political conservatism b : a member or supporter of a conservative political party
2 a: one who adheres to traditional methods or views b: a cautious or discreet person.
Yes, there is an extreme difference in the meanings and application of these two words in the English language. The word ‘liberal’ is often used to indicate a person who gives freely from the heart and who is loving and adorable.
The word for this discussion can describe a person as being rash and irrational if observed from a conservative point of view. And the same is true for describing a conservative if used by a liberal-minded individual. Personally, I do not view liberals as being totally honest in most things and completely irrational in many. For these individuals normally do not hold to absolute values of any kind, especially morality as observed from biblical standards.
Conservatives know the difference between light and dark for most everything because of absolute values attached to most everything. Conservatives will normally view the U.S. Constitution with absoluteness and will also see the Bible through the same lens. This application may or may not be true in every case, but most likely can be said for most anyone who holds to Conservative values. Perhaps the term used here can be described as being ‘absolutism.’ There is no change of direction because the wind blows from a different direction. A strong wind or water current will not move the foundation upon which Conservatism is constructed. Literal truth can also describe a view of conservatism.
Conservatism will always point to the east and say the sun will rise from there tomorrow morning and will set over in the west this afternoon. This is a fact that has held true from the moment of Creation. God placed everything into motion and nothing has changed. The constant is not variable. Oh, the winds will change, the temperature will change just as the weather changes from one day to the next, for this is a constant in our world. However, climate does change and has forever changed from the beginning of time and mankind has not affected this, either for this is a constant that God set in motion as well.
Absolutes are not variable because these are given by God such as morality. Man has affected and effectually changed these values, but God has stated across the pages of Holy Writ that His values do not change and man is charged to follow them. And if these are not followed God’s justice reigns and there will someday be a final Day of Judgment. These moral absolutes are secured in eternity past, present and future.
For this reason God sent His only-begotten Son, Jesus Christ to live amongst us, to sacrifice Himself for the redemption of mankind, died and buried and after 3 arose from the dead. He established His Church to proclaim His Gospel Message of forgiveness and salvation, and to proclaim that He is one day returning to remove His people from the earth because a terrible time of Tribulation is coming after which time He will judge the earth and on that Day, “Now I saw no temple in the city, because the Lord God—the All-Powerful—and the Lamb are its temple. The city does not need the sun or the moon to shine on it, because the glory of God lights it up, and its lamp is the Lamb. The nations will walk by its light, and the kings of the earth will bring their grandeur into it. Its gates will never be closed during the day (and there will be no night there). They will bring the grandeur and the wealth of the nations into it, but nothing ritually unclean will ever enter into it, nor anyone who does what is detestable or practices falsehood, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb’s book of life.” Revelation 21:22-27 NET2.
All things are constant and secure in conservatism, but liberalism has no provision for absolute values and will suffer the consequences in eternity, and there is a difference: for Jesus is Lord.