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"Now Yahweh said to Abram, 'Leave your country, and your relatives, and your father's house, and go to the land that I will show you. I will make of you a great nation. I will bless you and make your name great. You will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who treats you with contempt. All the families of the earth will be blessed through you," (Gen. 12:1-3).
My friend, Dennis Prager, a son of Abraham according to the flesh, differentiates between those who bless and those who curse: "American Christians are different than European Christians in that they care more about morality and good versus evil.
"I often point out that many American Jews are experiencing cognitive dissonance," Prager says. "The institution Jews most admire—the university—turns out to be the most significant source of Israel hatred in America and the rest of the West. At the same time, the people many Jews most distrust—Christians [especially Evangelical and other conservative Christians]—turn out to be the Jews' and Israel's best friends.
"Meanwhile, the country that has most blessed Israel and the Jews is America. No country in the modern period has treated its Jews as well as America has, and no country has stood by Israel as much as America has. And America has been almost uniquely blessed.
"These American Christians know something that the secular and left-wing elites do not: The day America abandons Israel will be the beginning of the end of America as we know it.
"These people are not fools.
With that said, we were pleased to welcome Yonat Shimron, National Reporter and Senior Editor for RNS Religion News Service, to our North Carolina pastor's luncheon last month featuring NC Lt. Governor Mark Robinson. Yonat, a daughter of Abraham, seemed to be investigating evangelicals and trying to determine what makes them tick.
Her report on the American Renewal Project's activity in North Carolina, though, confirmed her as an objective reporter. She writes:
"North Carolina Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson has a message for the state's evangelical pastors: Run for office.
"Robinson has repeated his message at least eight times over the past few months at church luncheons across North Carolina hosted by the American Renewal Project, a group dedicated to mobilizing evangelical pastors to run for school boards, city councils, county commissions, the state legislature and beyond.
"The project, which has hosted similar events in Iowa, Missouri, South Carolina and Texas, takes the now decades-long effort to get evangelicals engaged in electoral politics one step further. It seeks to bring pastors into elected office.
"Robinson, a 54-year-old Republican and a first-time officeholder himself, said the nation needs pastors willing to fight a spiritual war in the halls of power.
"'Step up,' he thundered to some 200 pastors and their wives munching on boxed lunches of Chick-fil-A chicken sandwiches in Winston-Salem last month. 'Join the fight. Don't join the fight under man's power. Join the fight under God's power. Bring the principles of God, not the principles of politics. Bring His words with you.'
"If Jerry Falwell Sr. founded the Moral Majority to get evangelicals to lobby Congress on issues of morality," continued Ms. Shimron, "and if the Christian Coalition mobilized Christians to cast ballots, then the American Renewal Project wants pastors to run as candidates on the Republican Party ticket up and down the ballot."
Mentioning "the Republican Party ticket" requires a disclaimer: There's nothing intrinsically good or bad about the Democrat or the Republican Party. Both are holding vessels where like-minded constituents are housed. The American Renewal Project is not connected or associated with either.
Yet, it is true that evangelical and pro-life Catholic Christians are generally not housed in a party that believes in taking the life of a baby the day before it is born. Neither will they support a party that revels in homosexual intercourse and marriage, a behavior that God appraises as an "abomination" in Leviticus 18:22 and 1 Corinthians 6:9-11.
Towards the bottom of her article Ms. Shimron notes, "Robinson, who is not a pastor, shares with the American Renewal Project a mythical vision of America's founders ..."
I wrote this to her in response:
I appreciate your desire for excellence in reporting the facts.
You might look a little deeper into "a mythical vision of America's Founders."
There is no such thing as "neutrality" in religion and public education. To believe in God is every bit of a religious choice as to not believe in God. To include the Bible in public education—as America's Founders instituted—was a religious decision.
The 20th-century Supreme Court ruling prohibiting the Bible and prayer in public schools likewise constituted a secular religious decision. It has been asked that if America's Founders wanted to establish Christianity as the official religion of America, why didn't they just say so?
Well, they did. A straight answer to that question can be found in the 13 original States Charters and Constitutions of Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, Connecticut, New York, South Carolina, Georgia, North Carolina, Virginia, Pennsylvania, Delaware, New Jersey and Maryland.
This brings us to last week's election. In light of the facts presented above on the founding, heritage and culture of early America, and the squandering of the Judeo-Christian heritage and the biblically based culture established by the American Founders, we cry unto God for insight into His church and its current moral and spiritual need. 'Modern-day prophet' A.W. Tozer [1897-1963] asked where the prophets with the ability are to appraise the religious scene as viewed from God's position and to tell us what is actually going on.
In his classic "The Life of David," A.W. Pink writes of David and his escape from Keilah in 1 Samuel 23: "Be it carefully noted that this incident furnishes a clear illustration of human responsibility, and is a strong case in point against bald fatalism—taking the passive attitude that what is to be, must be."
"What is to be, must be" seems to sum up the eschatological position employed over the last century of 'Let the culture go to hell because we Christians are raptured out.' This theology runs counter to Jesus' kingdom assignment from Luke 19:13: "And he called his 10 servants, and delivered them 10 pounds, and said unto them, 'Occupy till I come.'"
In 1 Kings 18:44, Elijah's servant saw "a little cloud about the size of a man's hand rising from the sea." He was hopeful of great things to happen.
And so are we, as Gideon's and Rahab's begin entering the public square with a handful of pastors from North Carolina and Iowa winning their campaigns for local offices in the Midterm Elections of Nov. 8. There is going to be a spiritual resurrection in America.
David Lane is the founder of the American Renewal Project.
David Lane is the founder of American Renewal Project.
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