Democratic presidential candidate, Beto O’Rourke, stated that churches, charities, and other organizations that oppose same-sex marriage should lose their tax-exempt status.
“There can be no reward, no benefit, no tax break for anyone … that denies the full human rights and the full civil rights of every single one of us.” O’Rourke told a cheering audience. “And so as president, we are going to make that a priority, and we are going to stop those who are infringing upon the human rights of our fellow Americans.”
According to the LGBTQ plan on O’Rourke’s website, he promises that if he is elected president this is a policy he will seek to enforce by executive action.
“As the goalposts continue to move,” observed blogger Bob Russell, “it’s obvious the original agenda was not just to curtail discrimination but to eliminate the right to disagree respectfully. The goal is not just fair-minded tolerance but total endorsement. Regardless of the First Amendment guaranteeing religious freedom, anyone who holds to the Biblical view of marriage and morality must be silenced.”
Russell calls for Christians to boldly speak up in defense of their faith, for preachers to preach what the Bible says about marriage and moral issues, and for all of us to ashamedly speak the truth in love.
Yet, all of that may not be enough to reverse the trend that has been occurring in America in the past 50-60 years.
Ironically in the same week, Attorney General William Barr spoke of the subject of religious freedom at the University of Notre Dame. In it he warned of the waning influence of religion in America and the culture wars raging today against Christians.
Barr stated, “The secular project has itself become a religion pursed with religious fervor. It is taking on the trappings of religion, including inquisitions and excommunication. Those who defy the creed risk a figurative burning at the stake– social, educational and professional ostracism and exclusion waged through lawsuits and savage social media campaigns.
Furthermore, Barr asserted, “This is not decay. This is organized destruction. Secularists and their allies have marshaled all the forces of mass communication, popular culture, the entertainment industry, and academia, in an unremitting assault on religion and traditional values.”
So in the 3,000-year-old question raised by the Psalmist, “If the foundations are destroyed, what can the righteous do?” (Ps 11:3)
(1) Trust in God’s sovereignty. (Jer. 18:7-10). He is in control. Governments exist because He allows them to (Rom 13:1-2). When He’s ready to bring a country to its knees, He will. In the meantime, let’s trust in His Supreme power and rule.
(2) Let Your Light Shine. Live in the world. Don’t hide! Don’t become a hermit! Don’t isolate yourself from others. Be salt. Be light. (Matt 5:13-16). Make a difference. There is an old Chinese proverb that says, “Better to light a candle than to curse the darkness.” In your job, social circle, or neighborhood, exalt and exhibit the character of Christ.
(3) Pray for our elected leaders. (1 Tim 2:2) It’s very easy to criticize them. Call names. Hurl insults. Question their integrity. And even demean the office. Let’s pray more and criticize less.
(4) Make your family a Christian home. Men, love your wives. Lead your home. Teach your children. Ladies, be the Christian wife and mother than the Lord expects. You can’t isolate your children from the world, but you can insulate them with divine principles that will fortify their faith (Eph 5:22-6:4).
(5) Speak the Truth in love (Eph. 4:16). Don’t compromise your convictions to gain approval or acceptance of others. Like the apostles, “speak with all boldness.” And stand up when the enemies of Truth assault us.
(6) Be willing to suffer as a Christian that God may be glorified (I Pet. 4:12-16). This may not be physical suffering, but secularists may hit us where it hurts most for many folks–in the pocketbook.
Will you still give to the Lord, when you don’t get a tax deduction? Will churches continue to teach and stand for Truth, when they lose the tax-exempt status? Will we remain committed to supporting Christian education in private colleges, when our contributions are no longer deductible?
“Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you…if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in that name.”
–Ken Weliever, The Preacherman