THE DAILY SIGNAL - Gillian Richards - OCT 4, 2022
Americans often hear about “religious extremism,” but rarely hear about “extreme secularism,” commentator and radio host Dennis Prager said Monday night at an event launching his latest book.
Prager spoke about the themes of the book, “The Rational Bible: Deuteronomy,” in an interview format while seated on a stage at the Museum of the Bible in Washington, D.C.
The book, officially available Oct. 11 and part of Prager’s “Rational Bible” commentary series, serves as a defense of the fifth book of the Torah as remaining profoundly relevant to modern society.
The combination of secularism and affluence lead to boredom, Prager told his audience during the event, which also was broadcast live as part of “The Dennis Prager Show.” This, he contended, has let to leftism.
Those who are poor and secular find meaning in the bare necessities of life—food, water, shelter, Prager argued. Those who have religion—whether poor or wealthy—find a more lasting meaning.
Rich secularists are those who are pushing the environmental movement, he said, and the wealthy say the world is doomed because this gives them meaning.
According to Prager, society is seeing in modern culture what 19th-century German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche captured in his infamous statement, “God is dead.”
Secularism is devoid of religion, said Prager, who is Jewish and often writes about modern society as viewed through the Judeo-Christian tradition.
Human beings worship more false gods today than they did in the time of Moses, he argued.
Prager, whose syndicated column appears in The Daily Signal, noted that the secular god of “science” is one such example, remarking: “What the hell does science tell you, if you believe in it?”
If your god doesn’t reveal a moral code, he said, that god is worthless.
Prager also commented on the psychological advantages of religion.
Most people who were afraid of COVID-19 are secular, Prager argued, adding that many houses of worship caved to secularism during the pandemic.
“If you don’t fear God, you’ll fear everything else,” he said. “We’ve raised wimps in secular society.”
The advantage of religion, he said, is that “I fear God and only God.”
Moreover, Prager argued, fear of God gives believers a moral advantage over secularists.
In the Old Testament, the Hebrew midwives fear God more than they fear Egypt’s pharaoh. English translators of the Bible, he said, translated a word meaning “fear” as “revere,” which gave the original meaning less weight.
Other than God, parents are the only creatures we are commanded to fear in the Torah and the Bible, Prager said. Honoring one’s father and mother, he explained, is a vehicle to divine authority.
The breakdown of respect for parents is another aspect of secularism that pervades our culture, he said.