Thursday, April 23, 2015

A new national religion?

Excerpted from "The Shifting Definition of Religious Freedom," Breakpoint commentary by Eric Metaxas, April 13, 2015 - Just this month, we watched a family-owned pizzeria close its doors after its owners received hate mail and death threats from around the country. Their offense? Giving the wrong answer to a question about whether they'd cater a gay wedding.

But gay columnist Frank Bruni recently took it to the next level in the New York Times, writing that it's time Christians get with the program and “take homosexuality off the sin list.” The lived experience of same-sex couples ought to trump what he calls the “scattered passages of ancient texts” condemning his lifestyle. Wow.

As for freedom of religion, Bruni suggests a new definition: “freeing ... religious people from prejudices that they ... can indeed jettison, much as they’ve jettisoned other aspects of their faith’s history, rightly bowing to the enlightenments of modernity.”

Writing at National Review, Yuval Levin says what we're witnessing isn't so much the suppression of free exercise of religion as it is the establishment of a new national religion; the religion of secular liberalism. And dissenters must be forced to worship at its altar and affirm its creed of anything-goes sexuality.

Given the likely outcome of this summer's Supreme Court case on same-sex marriage, Rod Dreher asks what will it be like to be a Christian in our brave, new society—and what will become of orthodox Christianity now that the price of professing it could be our credibility and livelihoods.

Friends, the fight for religious liberty is far from over. And as John Stonestreet and I have been saying again and again, it’s time for the Church to wake up, to pray, and to publicly defend our religious rights and our brothers and sisters under assault for their beliefs.


Jonathan ImbodyCMA VP for Government Relations Jonathan Imbody, MEd: “Beyond the significant public policy battle over what marriage means, social issues agitators both inside and outside the church are advancing arguments that try to pry Christians off of our moral foundation, the Scriptures. New York Times commentator Frank Bruni suggests that ‘the continued view of gays, lesbians and bisexuals as sinners is a decision. It’s a choice. It prioritizes scattered passages of ancient texts over all that has been learned since — as if time had stood still, as if the advances of science and knowledge meant nothing.’ Clearly Bruni has little understanding or respect for the divine inspiration, authority, unity, integrity and timelessness of the Scriptures that many of us trust with our lives both here and for eternity.

“Even some within the church are making similar arguments. These arguments seem to boil down to the notions that Bible writers injected personal bias and that science had not yet enlightened the early church. Therefore, Scriptures prohibiting and condemning homosexual behavior (and by extension, it would seem, Scriptures prohibiting any sex outside of marriage) can be thrown out like potshards from an ignorant, ancient culture.

“The trouble is that in the pursuit of social activism, these views undermine Scripture in order to reinterpret Scripture, leaving no real Scriptures at all. For if Bible writers did not actually write God-breathed words but instead injected their own personal bias, why would we elevate the Bible over, say, the Aeneid, or the works of Shakespeare, or the New York Times?

“If today's claims of science trump millennia of biblical truths, why would anyone persist in believing in the miracles described in the Bible or in anything supernatural at all? Following this train of thought, Jesus' virgin birth, healings, miracles, resurrection and promised return become a bunch of bunk to be debunked by science and social activists. Jesus Himself becomes suspect, since He unwaveringly treated Scripture as divinely inspired and authoritative. (What can we expect from an unschooled Galilean?)

“Rejecting this Bible-devaluing approach is not to say that nothing in the Bible is culturally based, but that we must discern between superficial cultural symbols and deep and consistent moral teaching in the Bible. Contrary to the assertions of those who would remake in their own image the Bible's teachings on sexuality, the evidence from Genesis through Revelation is far too compelling, deep and consistent that God clearly designed sex for marriage between one man and one woman in a lifelong relationship uniquely geared to raising children.”


Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) has introduced legislation that would shrink religious freedom and marginalize faith-based organizations simply because they view boys as boys and girls as girls based on biology. By inserting "gender" issues into federal program requirements and by leaving the definition of gender open to liberal interpretation, while also leaving out any exemptions for those who view gender biologically and according to faith tenets, this legislation holds the potential to unfairly discriminate against and exclude faith-based organizations from funding. Click here to learn more and to send your senators an editable pre-written message to oppose S 262.

CMDA’s Same-Sex "Marriage" Public Policy Statement
CMDA’s Marriage Public Policy Statement
CMDA’s group letter supporting Marriage and Religious Freedom Act

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