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The Secular Wolves Close In

Christian Americans must commit to taking an active stand against the galloping secularism of our time

The Secularist Wolves and Religious Freedom

By Peter Marshall

The secularists who constantly attack our religious rights in today’s America remind me of wolves endlessly circling the campfire, just beyond the ring of light, eyes gleaming in the darkness. Periodically, a beleaguered Christian snatches up a First Amendment firebrand and lunges at the wolves with it through a court action that forces them to retreat momentarily. But, the wolves keep returning, each time slinking a little bit closer to the Christians.
 
I’m writing today about the steady erosion of our religious liberties, particularly in regard to the continual chipping away of the First Amendment right to resist being forced to act against one’s religious convictions in public life.
 
* A Montana judge rules that healthcare providers are required to arrange for euthanasia when a patient requests it.
 
* A California court penalizes doctors for referring a patient to another clinic because they did not want to perform in-vitro fertilization for an unmarried couple.
 
* The Equal Employment Commission rules against a Catholic North Carolina college for refusing to provide its employees with health insurance that covers contraception, which is against Catholic doctrine.
 
* Catholic Charities in Boston is forced to shut down its adoption services because the Massachusetts court decrees that it will have to place babies with homosexual couples, in contradiction of Catholic doctrine.
 
* The Ninth Circuit court seeks to compel a park on CaliforniaState land to remove a long-standing memorial cross, rather than trade the land with the cross into private hands.
 
* A New Hampshire divorce court orders a Christian mother to stop homeschooling because her daughter “appeared to reflect her mother’s rigidity on questions of faith” — (which translated merely means, I suspect, that she is a committed Christian like her mother).
 
* Virginia mother Lisa Miller has defied a Vermont court order of January 1 to deliver her beautiful seven-year-old biological daughter Isabella to her former lesbian partner, Janet Jenkins. Lisa became a Christian, got out of lesbianism, and does not want to expose Isabella to Janet Jenkins and her lifestyle. Lisa has taken her daughter and disappeared, forced into hiding to protect her child from the monstrosities of modern secular sexuality.
 
Even in the face of these developments there is no reason for panic. None of these incidents by itself spells a crisis in the practice of American Christianity. None of them in itself presages the end of the freedom of religion in our country. Even all added up together they do not indicate that Christians are being thrown to the wolves by the courts — at least not yet. But the courts are allowing the secularist wolves to creep ever closer. And, to continue employing the allegory, the courts are shrinking the size of the First Amendment fires that our Founding Fathers bravely lit against the world’s darkness. Every judicial ruling against someone attempting to stand on his or her First Amendment religious freedom rights sets a precedent for the denial of those rights in the next court case.
 
What are Christians to do?
 
The choice of many, if not most of us, seems to be accommodation and appeasement. Or, what I call the Rodney King plea: “Can’t we all just get along?” The underlying motive here is invariably one of currying favor — trying to gain acceptance from the secular world around us. One of the most egregious examples of this comes from storied Notre DameUniversity’s President, Father John Jenkins. Last year, he invited President Obama, a notoriously pro-abortion politician, to deliver the commencement address at Notre Dame’s graduation. Here, at one of the great bastions of the American Catholic Church was an open, deliberate, highly visible rejection of the Catholic (and of course Christian) teaching that abortion is sinful and wrong. For a supposedly Christian university to so publicly honor a man who, throughout his public career has bent over backwards to support the slaughter of unborn babies, is to dishonor the Christian faith. Jenkins tried the nakedly political ploy of supposedly balancing the scales by inviting Harvard Law Professor Mary Ann Glendon to receive the prestigious Laetare Medal at the same time. To her everlasting credit, Ms. Glendon, a conscientious Catholic, refused the honor. In an open letter to Father Jenkins she explained that in honoring Obama the university was acting in express defiance of the U.S. Catholic Bishops’ request of 2004 that Catholic institutions “should not honor those who act in defiance of our fundamental moral principles” and that such persons “should not be given awards, honors or platforms which would suggest support for their actions.”
 
Appeasement never works. Whether it’s Father Jenkins trying to be Catholic and at the same time currying favor with the secular academic world, or Neville Chamberlain throwing Czechoslovakia to Hitler at Munich in 1938 in an attempt to make him stop bullying Europe, you cannot make a bully change his behavior by trying to curry favor with him. We conservative Christians can never succeed in holding on to our shrinking religious rights by “making nice” with the militant secularists. That will not work.
 
Another option open to us is to simply withdraw from the culture and adopt a ghetto mentality that concentrates on huddling in our local churches while decrying the sad state of things in society. This is what one columnist termed “the Amish option.” This, of course, is exactly what the militant secularists want us to do. “You Christians can believe anything you please, as long as you keep it to yourselves.” To a great extent, this is the posture adopted by British Christians, and to a slightly lesser degree, by Canadian ones as well. But, the Gospel of Jesus Christ is not, by definition, able to be kept to oneself. “Go into all the world and proclaim,” our Lord said. Christianity demands involvement with our neighbors. Further, since Satan hates all things Christian, and seeks to destroy Christians altogether instead of being satisfied to make them merely less influential, he will not allow an increasingly secular society to leave Christians alone to mind their own business. The Neronian persecution of the Early Church teaches us that the great Enemy of our souls will cause his secular minions to actively pursue and hunt down the people of God.
 
And, speaking of minding your own business, it is becoming much more difficult for Christians to do that. To be an evangelical Christian and also a pharmacist is becoming a contradiction in terms. Refusing to sell a prescription for the “morning after” abortifaciant can cost a pharmacist his job these days, if the customer sues. In Canada, preaching against homosexuality can cause a pastor to be convicted of hate-crimes speech. And if Canada is there already, can America be far behind? We may well see the day in the not too distant future when clergy that refuse to perform same-sex marraiges will be stripped of their right to perform marriages recognized by the state. The wolves are not inclined to leave us alone.
 
Withdrawal is really not a viable option.
 
Two religious freedoms are at stake here: the freedom of conscience for the individual, and the freedom of religion for churches. The loss of either is severely damaging for America; the loss of both is devastating. As the secularists seek to strip the public square of all religious influence, they seek to shame Christians’ beliefs, silence public Christian speech, abolish Christian teaching from education, and prohibit Christian argument against any sinful and immoral elements of modern life.
 
But, if religious speech and Christian involvement in society is gradually eliminated, if Christians are intimidated by suppression or refused participation in society because of their Christian faith, then society will be the loser. Consider the sad outcome of the State of Massachusetts’ insistence that  Catholic Charities of Boston must place babies with homosexual couples. That Catholic organization could not abide by the court’s ruling without violating the Church’s (and Holy Scripture’s) stance on homosexuality. So, it closed its adoption agency, depriving the people of Massachusetts of one of the best social service organizations in the state. A sad thing indeed.
 
Note that as a society becomes increasingly secular, than the compassion and caring will disappear, because Christians are far more motivated to help the poor, hurting, and needy than secularists are. But, of course, the secularists will never admit that. They can’t afford to believe that they fall short of Christians in charity and at the same time maintain their smug superiority, which may be the only thing preventing them from becoming Christian.
 
The Church of Jesus Christ cannot shrink from the duty to which its Lord has called it: to stand up to the wolves and proclaim that Jesus Christ is the only cure for all of society’s ills; that every human being is made in the image of God and valued by Him, and therefore is worthy of our protection and care; and that the eternal truths proclaimed by Holy Scripture from ancient days are still the truths which give purpose and meaning to life today.
 
In a democratic, open, and free society, all religious believers must be free to live publicly according to their consciences. Correspondingly, all churches must be free to publicly proclaim the Gospel of Christ, administer programs of charity, denounce sinful aspects of society, and defend the dignity and life of those unable to defend themselves.
 
To this end, we Christian Americans must commit to taking an active stand against the galloping secularism of our time. Pastors and churches must throw off their reluctance to speak out against the evils of our time because of their fear of losing their 501 C-3 status, or incurring the disapproval of the local newspaper, or their denomination, or their friends, or the deacons, or whomever.
 
Against the encroaching wolves, we must be willing to fight for genuine religious freedom for all Christian believers (and others, too): the freedom to earn a living as Christians, the freedom to educate our children as Christians, the freedom as Christians to minister to the poor and needy, the freedom to participate as Christians in the debate of public policy, and most important of all, the freedom to proclaim the Gospel that Jesus Christ is the Resurrection and the Life into every corner of an American culture that is more and more captive to a spirit of death.
 
Stand. And proclaim the truth of Christ, my friends.
 
Thrust the burning light of Christ’s truth at the wolves.
 
“The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.”
 
It never will. 

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Ex-Hitler Youth’s Warning To America

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What Happens When Christianity Fails To Uphold The Foundations of the Nation

In the 1920’s, for over a decade, The Munich Post tried to warn Germany of the dangers of a little man called Adolf Hitler whom the public ignored as nothing but a “hot headed (Community Activist) rabble rouser from Bavaria”.  In their reporting, commentary and cartoons, the paper relentlessly cataloged the ideas and criminal underpinnings of a man they insisted would be Germany’s undoing.  Much of their criticisms founded in the writings, speeches and criminal actions of the Nazi thugs and party itself that the rest of Germany’s newspapers refused to report.

The Munich Post was a lone voice in the wilderness crying aloud the warnings.  The other newspapers in Germany were already beholden to the Nazi Party and to Hitler who had a controlling stake in The Volkischer Beobachter – part of Germany’s mainstream media in whom Hitler remarked had the purpose of giving “ideological clarification and interpretation to current political issues.”

But the Munich Post remained steadfast in opposition to the rise of Hitler and the Nazi Party. For twelve years they focused sustained critical attention on Hitler, from the time he emerged from the beer-halls to take to the streets of Munich in the early 1920s to the massacres and political assassinations that the Nazis carried out against their opponents in the early 1930’s.  They were the equivalent of today’s Talk Radio hosts like Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck and Mark Levin; who were ideologically opposed to a movement they saw as a direct threat to the freedoms of the nation itself.  Ultimately the battle between ideologies became more personal and vicious as the Nazis solidified their power and began to purge their opposition.

Hitler called The Munich Post “The poison kitchen” – asserting that the paper did nothing but “cook up poisonous slanders” against the Nazi Party. I cannot help but notice the striking parallels when prominent Democrat leaders in America today refer to Talk Radio as “verbal pornography” engaged in “distorting the truth” about the Democrats and their ideology.

Ultimately, The Munich Post along with any media opposition was taken over and physically destroyed, it’s editors, reports and owners taken to concentration camps and killed.  It’s offices were turned over to loyal mobs of Hitler and they were gutted and burned on March 9, 1933.

The last media warning and opposition to Hitler’s plans for Germany, the Jews and Europe was swept away.

History repeats itself, sometimes in strikingly similar fashion.

Hilmar von Campe sees these similarities.

He should know.  He lived it.

As a former Hitler Youth, he sees the same warning signs that The Munich Post saw all those years ago, and he now cries aloud a warning to America – and beseeches us to heed what will be our national undoing if we fail to do something now.

Ex-Hitler youth’s warning to America
‘Every day brings this nation closer to Nazi-style totalitarian abyss’

© 2008 WorldNetDaily 

 

 

WASHINGTON – Because it has abandoned moral absolutes and its historic Christian faith, the U.S. is moving closer to a Nazi-style totalitarianism, warns a former German member of the Hitler Youth in a new book.

“Every day brings this nation closer to a Nazi-style totalitarian abyss,” writes Hilmar von Campe, now a U.S. citizen, and author of“Defeating the Totalitarian Lie: A Former Hitler Youth Warns America.”

Von Campe has founded the national Institute for Truth and Freedom to fight for a return to constitutional government in the U.S. – a key, he believes, to keeping America free.

“I lived the Nazi nightmare, and, as the old saying goes, ‘A man with an experience is never at the mercy of a man with an argument,'” writes von Campe. “Everything I write is based on my personal experience in Nazi Germany. There is nothing theoretical about my description of what happens when a nation throws God out of government and society, and Christians become religious bystanders. I don’t want to see a repetition. The role of God in human society is the decisive issue for this generation. My writing is part of my life of restitution for the crimes of a godless government, of the evil of which I was a part.”

Von Campe grew up under the Nazis, served in the Hitler Youth and fought against the Red Army in the Yugoslavian theater as a tank gunner in the German army. He was captured at the end of the war and escaped five months later from a prisoner of war camp in Communist Yugoslavia.

“It took me a long time to understand and define the nature of National Socialism,” says von Campe. “And, unfortunately, their philosophy continues to flourish under different labels remaining a menace to America and free human society.”

He writes: “The most painful part of defining National Socialism was to recognize my own moral responsibility for the Nazi disaster and their crimes against humanity. It boiled down to accepting the truth that ‘as I am, so is my nation,’ and realizing that if every German was like me, it was no wonder that the nation became a cesspool of gangsters. This realization is as valid today for any person in any nation as it was then, and it is true for America and every American now.”

Von Campe’s message is that political freedom and democratic rules alone are not sufficient to govern humanity justly.

“Democratic procedures can be subverted and dishonest politicians are like sand in the gearbox, abundant, everywhere and destructive,” he writes. “What I see in America today is people painting their cabins while the ship goes down. Today in America we are witnessing a repeat performance of the tragedy of 1933 when an entire nation let itself be led like a lamb to the Socialist slaughterhouse. This time, the end of freedom is inevitable unless America rises to her mission and destiny.

Von Campe says he sees spiritual parallels among Americans and his childhood Germany.

The silence from our pulpits regarding the moral collapse of American society from within is not very different from the silence that echoed from the pulpits in Germany toward Nazi policies,” he explains. “Our family lived through the Nazi years in Germany, an experience typical of millions of Europeans regardless of what side they were on. We paid a high price for the moral perversions of a German government, which excluded God and His Commandments from their policies. America must not continue following the same path to destruction, but instead heed the lessons of history and the warning I am giving.”

Specifically, von Campe warns Americans their political leaders are on the wrong footing, “denying our cultural and traditional roots based on our unique Constitution and Christian orientation as a nation. Christians don’t understand their mission.”

 




 

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Surrendering The Culture Because Of Milquetoast Christianity

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I recall reading Doug Giles before, and I can honestly say that we are kindred spirits. He addresses this issue superbly, and I would only add a #11 to his list which I posted after the column below.

10 Reasons Why Pastors Avoid the Culture War.
By Doug Giles

As far as I’m concerned, a silent or waffling pastor in today’s paranormal climate is about as necessary as Rosie O’Donnell is to CPAC. I don’t care how much the minister likes kitty cats, candy canes and if he cries at Celine Dion concerts. Look, voiceless vicar, if you’re not currently in the big middle of this crucial cultural squabble, pointing out what’s putrid and cheering on what’s proper, then you’re Dr. Evil in my book.

Given that this is an upcoming election year and that the culture-dividing issues are more obvious than Joan River’s last lip implants, it is mind-boggling to me that many ministers are mute or side with parties, policies and principles that are antithetical to the Christian worldview. I don’t know if you got this memo in seminary or not but pastors are supposed to not only salvage souls but also build the good society.

In some kind of ascending order, it seems to me there are 10 reasons why pastors and priests avoid political and intense cultural issues and thus aid and abet evil.

1. Fear of man. If you purport to be a man of God, then your regard for God and His opinion must trump the trepidation of the creature God created from spit and mud. Come on, man of God, don’t fear the crowd … we’re ants with cell phones that’ll shoot Botox into our foreheads. We’re weird and fickle weather vanes of what’s en vogue. You’ve got lead us. Therefore, go to the mountain … get a fresh dose holy terror and move into the Moses mode and command us to be and do what is holy, just and good. The grinning mild subtle Oprah approach doesn’t seem to be stemming the current flood of filth.

2. Ignorance. Most people are not bold in areas where they are ignorant . . . always excepting Britney Spears, of course. I know keeping up with all the pressing political issues is maddening, but that’s life, brother; and if you want to be a voice in society and not just an echo, you have got to be in the know. Staying briefed, running each political issue through the gauntlet of Scripture and determining God’s mind on a certain subject are par for the course for the hardy world changer.

3. Division. Y’know, I hate the current non-essential divisions in the church as much as the next acerbic Christian columnist. Squabbling over the color of the carpet, who’ll play the organ next Sunday or who is the Beast of Revelation, is stupidity squared. Hey, divisive Christian rebel without a clue-get a life, por favor! Or become a Satanist and go screw up their church. Do something other than make mountains out of your little molehill. That being said, there’s a time and place for a biblical throw-down and an ecclesiastical split from political policies and parties.

For a minister to seek unity with secularists when they are trashing and rewriting scripture with impunity is to side with vice and to allow darkness to succeed. On these kinds of issues, the minister cannot group hug or sing a James Blunt song to the secularist or the apostate Christian.

4. Last Days Madness. Many ministers do not get involved in political issues because they believe that “it simply doesn’t matter” since “the end has come,” and Jehovah is about to run the credits on this failed earth flick. These defeatists believe that any change in the jet stream, war, earthquakes, a warming globe, the success of a corrupt politician-even a new Shakira video-are “proof” that God is getting really, really ticked off, and that His only recourse is to have Christ physically return and kick some major butt.

They see the church and themselves as impotent and having no real ability to change things culturally with any long range ramifications. Thus, any stab at a better tomorrow is simply an exercise in futility for this rapture crew. Attempting to right culture is, in their eyes, equivalent to polishing brass on a sinking ship; therefore, they are content to simply pass out tracts, tramp from Christian rock concert to Christian rock concert, eat fatty foods and stare at Christian TV.

5. Sloth. Classically defined, sloth is lethargy stemming from a sense of hopelessness. Viewing our nation and the world as an irreparable disaster, where our exhortations, prayers, votes and labors will not produce any temporal fruit, leaves one with all the fervor of a normal guy who’s forced to French kiss his sister.

If you’re wondering why your flock is so apathetic, Pastor Eeyor, ask yourself if you have stolen their earthly hope that their valiant efforts can actually prevail in time, and not just in eternity. If you constantly pump the doom and gloom message, if you teach them that evil will ultimately triumph on our terra firma, if you spew messages that consciously or unconsciously convey “big devil” and “little God,” then you have effectively zapped what’s left of your parishioners’ passion.

6. They don’t want to lose their Tax Exempt status. Many pastors, priests and parishioners have been cowed into inactivity by the threatened loss of their tax-exempt status if they say anything remotely political. This can make pastors who don’t, or won’t, get good legal advice about as politically active as Howard Hughes was during the flu season.

The church may, among other things, register their members to vote, pass out voter guides, invite all candidates in a race to speak (even if only one of them shows up) and speak directly about specific issues.

Off the clock, in his personal capacity, the pastor or priest can endorse and support (or oppose) whomever or whatever he wishes-like any other citizen. There are no limitations to the individual; the ones that do exist under the 501(c)(3) statute are only for the church entity and/or the pastor in his official capacity, not for the pastor or the members who make up the church.

7. They bathe in paltry pietism. Pastors avoid politics because such concerns are “unspiritual,” and their focus is on the “spirit world.” Yes, to such imbalanced ministers, political affairs are seen as “temporal and carnal,” and since they trade in the “eternal and spiritual,” such “worldly” issues get nada.

This bunch is primarily into heavenly emotions and personal Bible study, and they stay safely tucked away from society and its complicated issues. How sweet. They forget that they are commanded to be seriously engaged with our culture and or fall into the worthless category Christ warned them of (Mt.5.13). Snap.

8. They have bought into the Taliban comparison. Pastors have muffled their political/ cultural voices because they fear being lumped in with Islam by the politically correct thought police. The correlation made between Christians’ non-violent attempts at policy persuasion and the Taliban’s kill-you-in-your-sleep campaigns is nothing more than pure, uncut crapola.

Ministers, please blow off the tongue-wagging blowhards who try to intimidate you into silence by making quantum, ludicrous, scat-laden and analogous leaps in equating the implementation of a gracious, Biblical worldview with the Islam-o-fascists cross-eyed wet dream.

9. They can’t say, “No” to minutiae. Some ministers can’t get involved in studying or speaking out regarding pressing issues simply because of the ten tons of junk they are forced to field within their congregations. Spending time wet nursing 30-year-olds without a life and being bogged down in committee meetings over which shade of pink paint should be used for the women’s ministerial wing of their church, ministers are lucky if they get to study the Bible nowadays-much less anything else.

This is the fault of both the ministers with their messiah complexes and the congregants with their me-monkey syndromes, and they must all have their foreheads thumped if the church is going to tackle cultural issues.

10. They likey the money. The creepy thing about a lot of ministers is their unwillingness to give political or cultural offense when offense is needed, simply because taking a biblical stand on a political issue might cost them their mega-church, which means their seven homes, their Bentley and their private jet. Oh well, what do you expect? Christ had His Judas, and evangelicalism has it money loving hookers.

If the ministers within the good old US of A would crucify their fear of man, get solidly briefed regarding the chief political issues, not sweat necessary division, not get caught up in last days madness, maintain their hope for tomorrow, understand their liberties under God and our Constitution, not become so heavenly minded that they’re no earthly good, focus on the majors and blow off bowing to cash instead of convictions, then maybe . . . just maybe . . . we will see their righteous influence cause our nation to take the needed sharp turn away from the secularist progressives’ speedily approaching putrid pit.

I think Mr. Giles could add this #11 here:

11. They bought into the Politically-Correct Jesus. Yes, American liberalism has constructed a whole new Jesus for this generation that pastors have either been forced or are forcing acceptance of. Whether it’s Global Warming Evangelism, or Anti-war Pacifism – the Secular Left is laying claim that Christianity has been hijacked from it’s Socialist roots and that the REAL JESUS, stands for the values of the Democrat party in terms of a pro-union/pro-choice liturgy; a Jesus that preaches the Judge Not Sin Doctrine and Good Christians support bureaucratic charity in big government and Free Healthcare compassions.

Clearly this requires the accepting Christian viewpoint that all religions are equal, lead to the same place and that there is no sin, except ‘intolerance’, which is really nothing more than pointing out bad behavior. Celebrating bad behavior and sin is good, and demanding good behavior is intolerance.

As Mr. Gile alluded, pastors need to get God out of their boxes, and realise the fact that Jesus did not call us to be taken out of this world, but to impact this world, to fulfill Matthew 28:19 – and that requires ENGAGING the culture – not running from it.

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