Morality in America
When studying the founding of the United States, you can’t help but encounter the faith of the nation’s forefathers. Time and again they recognized God’s hand in the shaping of America. You will find Him repeatedly mentioned in their words and documents. And you will find Him having an active, vibrant role in the country’s early history.
Today, God continues His work in America – but it’s in a nation that has clearly lost its moral compass. Every week, “Morality in America” will address the myriad of moral concerns facing the United States and undermining its Godly heritage:
- Sanctity of life – abortion and euthanasia.
- Sanctity of marriage – same-sex marriage and gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender issues.
- Sanctity of the family – divorce, spousal and child abuse, out-of-wedlock pregnancies and absentee fathers.
- Judicial activism (Supreme and lower court decisions).
- Revisionist education in the public schools.
- The perceived rise of Socialism and one-world government trends.
- Attacks and media bias against Christianity.
- And much more…
After you read, remember to intercede in prayer for America – that this nation will return to the Christian standards that once defined it.
America’s Declining Religious Freedom
Watch…God may just intervene!
By Nikolas Grosfield
“At what point then is the approach of danger to be expected…It must spring up amongst us. It cannot come from abroad. If destruction be our lot, we must ourselves be its author and finisher. As a nation of freemen, we must live through all time, or die by suicide.”
Abraham Lincoln spoke these provocative words in Springfield, Illinois in 1838 long before becoming president.
Nearly two centuries later, one research organization found in a survey that 70 percent of Protestant senior pastors consider religious liberty to be “on the decline in America.” In the same poll, more than half of Americans in general agreed with the same statement. Do you?
LifeWay Research, which “assists and equips church leaders with insight and advice that will lead to greater levels of church health and effectiveness,” posted the nationwide survey results this past February.
Todd Starnes, host of the Fox News & Commentary daily radio show, wrote an article last month for the Townhall website in which he summarized “hundreds of instances of religious persecution in the United States” over the past few years. “The targets have been exclusively Christians,” he writes:
Some military personnel have called evangelicals and Catholics religious extremists, or domestic hate groups, while a military medical center briefly banned Bibles. The Internal Revenue Service targeted Christian pro-life organizations; other government officials asked a group how it prayed; still others wanted the names of the members of a church in Wyoming. Chaplains have been told not to pray in Jesus’ name; students praying on the Supreme Court steps have been silenced; and, recently, businesses of Christians who oppose homosexual marriage have lost anti-discrimination lawsuits for refusing to cater to same-sex weddings.
Starnes’ last example: A public school teacher in New York was forced to remove a quote about God from her classroom; she was told it was unconstitutional. The quote was by a U.S. president.
Starnes also cites two pastors, Robert Jeffress of Texas and Jim Phillips of Mississippi, on the issue. “Pastors are AWOL when it comes to informing and energizing their congregations,” says Jeffress, who adds, “There are 50 to 80 million evangelicals in America. Only half are registered to vote and only half of those voted in the last election.”
Phillips strikes a similar tone: “Sadly, Christians have often wimped out and grown silent instead of being bolder for the Gospel.” He also wants other pastors to join him in “leading the charge.”
But this is not the whole story. Historical and biblical perspective is vital as Christians look at the future of America. For example, in the 1850s, anti-slavery Americans—Christian or not—could not legally house runaway slaves, Christian or not. Worse, the next decade were the darkest years in U.S. history, when neighbor killed neighbor, brother killed brother, and—often—Christian killed Christian on a scale more horrific than all America’s other war casualties combined.
More importantly, review Israel’s Old Testament history. Their wickedness abounded. After God blessed and forgave them time and again, they turned from Him time and again. (Nehemiah 9) In their darkest days, God sent leaders like Moses, David, Esther, Jeremiah, and ultimately, Jesus Christ. A lack of religious freedom—often self-imposed—surrounded these historical figures, yet God’s faithfulness overwhelmed their faithlessness, except in the case of Jesus, who remained faithful.
God waited at least 800 years after the Exodus before finally destroying the Jewish nation for its innumerable iniquities, and even then He preserved a remnant. This should encourage you as a Christian, no matter where you live or what is happening there.
Now the Bible never equates ancient Israel with America, yet, the Bible shows God’s mercy extending far beyond Israel. In Genesis 15, God let the evil of the Amorites grow for 400 years. God stays His judgment on Sodom in Genesis 18 until it had fewer than ten righteous souls. And, Romans 5 testifies, “While we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of His Son.”
If religious freedom in America dwindles, sin and persecution likely will rise and Satan may use this to dishearten and neutralize Christians throughout the nation. The key to overcoming this is for you and other believers to focus more on God’s power and attributes than on those of Satan or the world (see John 16 and Philippians 2). Pray fervently that this focus happens in your state, your church, your family, and in your own heart.
Nikolas Grosfield is a part-time writer, rancher, and editor. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in history from Cedarville University and has written more than 100 articles for a wide variety of media outlets. A proud Montanan, Nik is a full-time child of God, husband of Elsbeth, and father of Oliver.
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