Sunday, October 08, 2006

Forum on church and state in Ohio's electoral politics

Here's a link describing the event. Russell Johnson, of the Ohio Restoration Project was the first to speak.

...The people of these shores export hope. Medicine, food. 90% of the bibles and missionaries--cites family members who traveled to other countries to spead the good news.

I think God's given 5% of the world's people 40% of the world's natural resources, and as a country we have a great opportunity to share hope with the rest of the globe.

Our nation's founding documents were woven with principles from God's word. For 175 to 200 years, our children could sing Silent Night, could read the Bible. I think if Johnny can read People Magazine every day, he should be able, with academic freedom, to read his Bible every day if he chooses. Families with faith have been building blocks to a great nation. God raised up our country with the technology and the timing and the resources to make a global difference.

During the past 50 years, there has been a secular bigotry of unheralded proportions against people of faith. And epic strides against people of faith have been made in almost every state. From our country's classrooms to our court houses, from Christmas carols to graduation celebrations, from the pledge of allegiance to our state motto...the forces of darkness, I think have opposed every public expression of allegiance to God. I don't mind at all atheists having their perspective, and they certainly have that freedom. But they should never silence people of faith, and the arteries of our culture, I think have been infected with the toxin of dogmatic secularism which have sought to deny America's Godly heritage.

Will our children be able to say the pledge of allegiance as "one nation under God?"

Is the Biblical definition of marriage going to be exchanged for political correctness?

Will public schools become more antagonistic towards taxpayers of faith?

Can anything be done to stop the harvesting of body parts of unborn children through partial birth abortion?

Will tax-funded universities continue their secular jihad against professors of faith and freedom of speech?

Will Bible-believing ministers be prosecuted under "hate crimes" for teaching the conviction of biblical truth

Should public schools practice academic freedom in teaching all theories of origin, including intelligent design? I think that Americans, and particularly in Ohio, there has been a strident crisis of faith between those from the left and the right. I certainly disagree with brother Eric Williams on several things. The religious left has been very involved in government for fifty years. In fact, if you look downtown in Washington, D.C., many of the religious left own some of the most expensive real estate in Ameria, right across the street from the Capitol, because they've been politically involved for over 50 years. The religious left has enabled the secular left in taking away many of our basic rights.

For 40 years, liberal politicians, Reverend Jesse Jackson, Reverend Al Sharpton have been using liberal pulpits to promote left-of-center world views. When conservative believers began to take seriously the stewardship of our citizenship, and to vote accordingly, the media began to make ridiculous claims like "the integrity of the United States Congress weighs in the balance, the Constitution weighs in the balance". Many of the left feel as if conservatives, if they're demonized enough, the tide of public opinion will turn against them. I think it's an attempt to intimidate and to smear the right for doing what the left has been doing for 50 years--being politically and civically involved. I sense it's time for the right *and* the left to be involved. And civil discourse like today, I think is a great opportunity for us to sit down and talk together and shake hands and work with these folks, even if we disagree, we can share ideas. And I think the religious right is saying, conservatives are saying, we don't want to be muzzled behind stained glass windows, we want to be a part of making a difference.

I sense today that we have an opportunity. The hinges of history *are* moving on our watch and the stewardship of our citizenship is crucial to this hour. The hinges of history are moving in a way that I think there's going to be increasing numbers of Baptists and Catholics and Pentocostals and Methodists who are welding together to say yes to marriage in Ohio, and 62% came out, voted yes. In 11 states, 67 out of 71 newspapers came out against marriage amendments. The average vote of the people who voted was 70% in favor of the traditional definition of marriage. I think it's better to light a candle than to curse the darkness. It's not enough to make pious observations and diagnose the culture. I think the sacred trust of freedom to be involved has been purchased with a high price, and many of our sons and daughters have volunteered to be a part of helping others share in the American dream.

I think it's time for us to stand, to pray, to serve, and engage. The Ohio Restoration Project seeks three things. Pray for the culture, serve the culture, and engage the culture. Get informed, get involved, get registered, and go vote. We do not endorse candidates. We do encourage people to stand for those who *are* standing for life and marriage, which are dear to our heart. We're glad to be a part of this today, and we look forward to the discussions that follow.

Alternate link for comments