The American Renewal Project had two great Pastors & Pews events last week in San Diego and Costa Mesa, attended by 420-plus and 500-plus pastors and spouses, respectively. A nationally known Christian leader we spoke to a month earlier about participating in both events—in hedonistic, ungodly, unfettered California—said he didn't want to be "cornered" and labeled as "right wing."
This may at first sound reasonable and rational. Yet, on second thought, it won't hold up, thus requiring a lesson in civics. Christians are not 'housed' in the Democrat Party. Social conservatives do not reside in the Democratic National Committee. The Democratic Platform embraces none of the values that Christians hold dear.
It is as if evangelical and pro-life Catholic Christians are floating along enjoying the scenery, while drifting unawares toward the Niagara Falls.
When Barack Obama was inaugurated in January 2009, Democrat appointee judges controlled just one of the 13 U.S. Courts of Appeals (the feeder system for cases before the Supreme Court). At the end of eight years of Barack Obama, Democrat appointee judges controlled nine of the 13 circuit courts and still do today. Democrat appointee judges espouse the Democrat strong-arm "values" of abortion, same-sex intercourse and marriage, euthanasia, omnipotent and omnipresent government, transgender bathrooms and coercive redistribution of wealth.
Because the left cannot win on social issues at the ballot box, they impose their left-wing ideology through activist Democrat appointee judges in the Courts of Appeals. In line with this, a Mrs. Clinton win in 2016 would have tipped Christian and constitutional conservatives over the edge of the Falls.
The battle for the soul of America has nothing to do with Democrat versus Republican. Nevertheless, the political reality is that Christian voters are "driven" to the ballot box by issues. These issues do not include being a loyal Republican.
So, let's talk politics.
All politics come down to the proficiency and know-how to turn out voters, with voter turnout depending on the verve and vigor of like-minded constituents. The candidate that gets his or her constituency to the ballot box wins on Election Day. Christians staying home and refusing to vote elect in effect those who oppose their values. Thankfully, President Trump has done an outstanding job at motivating the Christian base by upholding religious liberty, standing up for the unborn, defunding Planned Parenthood, appointing conservative jurists to the Supreme Court and federal appeals courts, moving the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem and pledging to sign into law the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act and so on.
Leadership supercharging religious conservative turnout in 2018 will lead to: 1) more campaign volunteers knocking on doors and manning phone banks, 2) increased campaign contributions and 3) more Christian constituents heading to the polls on Nov. 6, 2018.
Pastors will not engage the public square with their parishioners for the Republican National Committee. Such an effort requires a different vehicle. Put into effect by RNC Chairman Reince Priebus in the years 2011-2016, energizing Christian conservatives resulted in a historic evangelical turnout in 2016 but has been largely discarded by today's Republican leadership. Washington Examiner columnist Paul Bedard tweeted on election night '16: "Huge: ABC reporting largest turnout of evangelical vote in history."
Steve Strang, Founder and CEO of Charisma Media, points out in both his new book Trump Aftershock and the cover story of Charisma's November issue that "this is not a struggle between Democrat and Republican. It's not even a struggle between left and right. It's not even really a struggle between globalism and nationalism. It's actually a spiritual struggle."
Vociferous anti-Trump protagonist Brian Krassenstein enlightens us on the organization and funding of left-wing marches and rallies [read: George Soros], saying "Of course there are higher ups that are paying us. They want us to help sow the division."
Deeming it sufficient to depend on press conferences, press releases and getting a shout-out on Fox News in order to instigate change is like bringing a pocketknife to a gunfight. Mere public relations exercises are anemic. If America is to be saved, evangelical leaders are going to have to take their game to the next level, discarding the discredited model that has been tried and failed over the last half-century.
Organizers, not speakers, win campaigns.
It appears that America received mercy in 2016 with the Trump presidency. Had it become a Hillary Clinton administration, the average American would never have perceived or realized the double-dealing and iniquity of Main Street media and the "deep state." There would have been no special counsel investigation, no exposure of the corruption at the highest levels of the FBI and DOJ or recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital.
Although providence intervened, "let it be duly noted that strong faith did not produce either sloth or carelessness [in Absalom's revolt]. [King] David acted with diligence and wisdom: marshaling his forces, putting them in good order, dividing them to best advantage, and placing them under the command of his most experienced generals."
The collapse of biblically-based culture over the last 75 years prompts the urgent question "When the foundations are destroyed what will the righteous do?" Scripture's explicit answer is that the righteous should rebuild. God be thanked that Gideons and Rahabs are beginning to stand.
David Lane is the founder of American Renewal Project.
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