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Op-ed: Vote to defend faith, family, life and freedom


By James Dobson and Gary Bauer | Monday, September 26, 2022

Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/voices/vote-to-defend-faith-family-life-and-freedom.html/

Voters cast ballots at the Fairfax County Government Center on November 02, 2021 in Fairfax, Virginia. | Getty Images/Chip Somodevilla

I’ve asked my colleague, Gary Bauer, to write the following letter to our constituents in these final days before the midterm elections. I consider this to be one of the most important votes in American history. It may be our last opportunity to restore a balance of power to the three branches of government in time to save us from tyranny and moral collapse. Does that sound alarmist to you? I think not. I believe the danger facing this country cannot be overstated. Read on to understand the peril we are facing and what God-fearing citizens can do to help save this nation, the greatest in the history of the world.

America is in deep trouble. Our country is experiencing skyrocketing crime, racial division, political and economic corruption, disrespect for life, failing schools, and a growing drug epidemic. Many of our problems are a reflection of growing moral relativism and the breakdown of reliable standards of right and wrong. Our founders believed that only virtuous people could remain free. We appear to be intent on testing that proposition.

The only hope for our country is for Christians to rise up and let our voices be heard. To save the country, America’s churches must boldly speak the truth to a hurting nation. Millions of individual Christians, like you, must fulfill their responsibilities of Christian citizenship.

We are blessed to live in a country where we have enjoyed a level of religious liberty that’s rare in human history. But now powerful forces in government, the universities, and mass media are threatening religious liberty as well as our other freedoms. No solutions to the American crisis are possible without the participation of millions of American Christians leading the way. We must participate in the halls of government, in the public square, and lead the national debate. It is essential that we are in the pews on Sunday and first in line to cast our votes on Election Day.

At the federal level, this election will determine who has the majority in the U.S. Senate and the House of Representatives. At the state level, dozens of governorships and state legislatures are at stake. At the local level, new mayors, city councils, and school boards will be elected. At all three levels of government, the men and women we elect will pass laws that will determine the kind of country we pass on to our children and grandchildren.

The U.S. Senate is divided today 50 to 50. Tie-breaking votes are cast by Vice President Kamala Harris. Thirty-five of these U.S. Senators are up for election. The new Senate that takes office in January will confirm hundreds of new judges to all the federal courts during the next two years. They will also fill any Supreme Court vacancy that may occur. The sanctity of life, religious liberty, your Second Amendment rights, freedom of speech, and much more will all be at risk if a new Senate majority rejects the Judeo-Christian values that are the foundation of the United States. Polling indicates over a dozen of the Senate races are so close that the winner may very well be determined by only a few percentage points. Think of the impact we can have on Election Day if just a few more Christians will vote in each precinct in America.

Not all issues in an election are of equal importance. As a Christian voter, it is imperative that you zero in on those matters with a moral basis and give them the highest priority. And remember this: behind every candidate is the party platform that he or she stands on and the policies he or she will promote.

Here are three of the key issues every Christian voter must consider when supporting or opposing a candidate this November.

The right to life

After years of prayer and hard work, the Supreme Court decided this year that there is no constitutional right to abortion. This is a tremendous victory that could save countless lives. The court sent the abortion issue back to the people of each state to debate and reach a consensus.

Planned Parenthood and radical pro-abortion forces have launched an all-out multi-million-dollar campaign to defeat pro-life members of Congress, state legislators, and governors. A recent effort in Congress to make abortion on demand, without any restrictions, the law of the land actually passed the House 219 to 210. Thankfully, it failed in the Senate, as it could not clear the chamber’s 60-vote filibuster threshold.

The vote was strictly along party lines. All but two Democrats voted pro-abortion. All Republicans voted pro-life. In both cases, this reflected the position of each party’s platforms.

Religious liberty

Our fundamental right to the “free exercise of religion” in the First Amendment of the Constitution has recently come under sustained legal and political attacks. Thankfully, this year we scored another major victory in the Supreme Court when Justices Brett Kavanaugh, Amy Coney Barrett, and Neil Gorsuch, all appointed by then-President Donald Trump, voted in the majority to strengthen the guarantee of religious liberty.

The battle rages on, however. At every level of government, we must elect men and women who unambiguously support religious freedom. Because the Senate confirms nominees to the Supreme Court, it is particularly important to elect senators who strongly support this basic constitutional liberty.

Protecting children

All candidates claim they are pro-child. But the devil is in the details. There is a well-financed powerful movement dedicated to exposing America’s children in the classroom to the radical LGBT agenda, inappropriate explicit sexual education material, and transgender ideology at the earliest ages.

In some schools, so-called “critical race theory” is dividing our children by race. It teaches white children that they are genetically racist and tells minority children they are oppressed and cannot accomplish their dreams. These are unfounded and deeply damaging doctrines.

Even in more traditional, conservative areas of the country, parents have been shocked to find out their child’s school may be promoting these corrupt agendas. Make sure local school board candidates, from rural communities to Washington D.C., support parental rights in the education and upbringing of our children. Look for candidates who are also pro-school choice and support faith-based Christian schools. Elect candidates who are willing to stand with you against the transgender agenda that is deceiving and harming an increasing number of our children. Parents have the divine calling to raise their kids, not the government or some radical agency that has no regard for the welfare of our youth.

The sanctity of life, religious liberty, and protecting children are all issues that should guide the vote you cast. But there are many more policies to also consider. Our southern border is being overwhelmed with millions of people entering illegally. Among them are drug smugglers, human traffickers, and even some on the terrorist watch list. Vote for candidates who will restore the rule of law at the border. Vote for candidates who support racial unity, stand with law enforcement, and are committed to helping our veterans. Vote for candidates who support the Second Amendment and who are working against voter fraud.

Our country desperately needs Christian men and women to stand up now for faith, family, life, and freedom. Please join us in praying for a revival to sweep our land and for God to bless us with courageous leaders. And pray that millions of Christians will fulfill their civic and moral responsibility to vote on November 8th to restore our sweet land of liberty before it’s too late.

Dr. James Dobson is a celebrated psychologist, Christian leader, and founder and president of the Dr. James Dobson Family Institute (JDFI), which is dedicated to preserving the biblical institutions of marriage and family by encouraging, inspiring, supporting, and leading parents and children to build their lives on God’s Word.

Gary Bauer is Senior Vice President of Public Policy at the Dr. James Dobson Family Institute and President of American Values, a public policy organization promoting Judeo-Christian values.

Trans care group removes age guidelines for puberty blockers, disfiguring sex change surgeries


By Samantha Kamman, Christian Post Reporter | Monday, September 19, 2022

Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/news/trans-group-removes-age-limits-for-kids-seeking-puberty-blockers.html/

A hand holds up a small transgender pride flag. The blue and pink stripes represent the colors for a boy and girl, while the white stripe represents self-declared gender identities, such as transitioning, intersex, neutral and undefined gender. | Getty Images

A leading trans health association’s latest guidelines omitted minimum age requirements for gender-confused youth to obtain puberty blockers, cross-sex hormones or genital mutilating surgeries, a major change from earlier editions.  

The World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH) released its Standards of Care 8th Edition in the International Journal of Transgender Health earlier this month. The journal published a correction on Thursday, removing sections related to “suggested minimal ages” for offering so-called “gender-affirming care” or “surgical treatment,” such as experimental puberty-blocking drugs and performing operations such as breast amputations on girls and removing boys’ genitals. 

WPATH did not respond to The Christian Post’s request for comment about the changes. 

In Chapter 6, the new guidelines claim that “chest masculinization surgery,” better known as a double mastectomy, can alleviate “chest dysphoria” in girls who are led to believe that in order to be happy, they must remove their beasts. 

The guidelines further argue that boys suffering from gender dysphoria can obtain “improved psychosocial functioning” if they allow a surgeon to perform a vaginoplasty by removing penis tissue to create a fake vagina. 

“While the sample sizes are small, these studies suggest there may be a benefit for some adolescents to having these procedures performed before the age of 18,” the new guidelines claim.

Among 20 surgeons affiliated with WPATH, more than half said they have “performed vaginoplasty [on] minors,” according to a 2017 study titled “Age is Just a Number” that was published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine. One surgeon said he had performed the surgery on a boy as young as 16.   

The new guidelines also suggest that obtaining parental consent should not be a requirement before minors undergo disfiguring surgeries or obtain cross-sex hormones or puberty blockers that stop their natural development. 

“We recommend when gender-affirming medical or surgical treatments are indicated for adolescents, health care professionals working with transgender and gender diverse adolescents involve parent(s)/guardian(s) in the assessment and treatment process, unless their involvement is determined to be harmful to the adolescent or not feasible,” the guidelines state.

The trans health group claims that the “primary goal” is to help youth work alongside their parents or caregivers regarding “important gender care decisions.” It adds, however, that the “critical evaluation process” must determine if there are cases where parents have rejected their “child’s gender needs.”

“In these situations, youth may require the engagement of larger systems of advocacy and support to move forward with the necessary support and care,” the new guide advises.

In an opinion piece published in The Christian Post earlier this month, Brandon Showalter noted that “minors are being surgically disfigured under the banner of a non-existent “gender identity” in clinics and hospitals around the country.

He added that the corporate press that has largely supported the movement to halt puberty and give children puberty blockers will not be able to “feign ignorance” … as more and more de-transitioners who were sterilized and disfigured as minors start to raise their voices and as others around the world begin filing lawsuits against the medical institutions that harmed them.”

The Left’s War On History Is Really A War On The God Of The Bible


BY: JOSH HAWLEY | SEPTEMBER 15, 2022

Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/09/15/the-lefts-war-on-history-is-really-a-war-on-the-god-of-the-bible/

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JOSH HAWLEY

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The following remarks were given at the National Conservative Conference on Sept. 12, 2022.

It is a pleasure to be with you once again.

At the first National Conservatism conference, I spoke about the left’s goal of unmaking American culture and community. Last year, I spoke about their goal of unmaking manhood.

This year, I want to talk about their efforts to unmake history. Specifically, the history of our country and our founding — and the revolution on which both were based.

I take as my point of departure the words of John F. Kennedy at his inaugural address in 1961, when he famously reminded his generation: “We dare not forget that we are the heirs of that first revolution.” He meant, of course, the Revolution of 1776, which he described as grounded in the “the belief – that the rights of man come not from the generosity of the state but from the hand of God.”

Now, that is an interesting contention. And Kennedy was not alone in making it. But where did it come from? Where did the idea that the rights of man come from God, not the generosity of the state, originate?

The answer is clear, if often and deliberately overlooked in our day: that idea came from the Bible. And that brings me to my contention to you today. We are a revolutionary nation precisely because we are the heirs of the revolution of the Bible.

This was a revolution that began with the founding of the nation of Israel at Sinai; that gathered pace with the teachings of Jesus of Nazareth in the days of ancient Rome. This was a revolution of ideas and culture, of society and government and faith – it was truly, to quote the Bible itself, a revolution that turned the world upside down.

Let me be more specific. To a world composed of clans and tribes, the Bible introduced the very idea of the individual. To a world that valued the wealthy and well-born before all others, the Bible taught the dignity of the common man. To a world that prized order and control, the Bible spoke of liberty.

Without the Bible, there is no modernity. Without the Bible, there is no America. And now our biblical inheritance is again at the center of our politics. It is the question of the age. 

The woke left that controls today’s Democrat Party is on a campaign to remake this nation. They want us to believe this country is irredeemably racist and oppressive. They tell us our true founding came with the advent of the slave trade on this continent.

They reject our history and our traditions. They say sex is merely a social construct. That men can get pregnant. That women can be men. That the nuclear family is a repressive institution.

And their real target in all this is the inheritance of the Bible. What they particularly dislike about America is our dependence on biblical teaching and tradition. What they particularly dislike about our culture is the Bible’s influence on it. And now they want to break that influence for good. 

My argument is simple: They’re wrong.

Whatever your own beliefs, whatever your background, the revolution of the Bible is worth defending. It is worth preserving. It is the true source of the rights of man and the liberties we cherish. It has taught us what we know of dignity and equality.

The Bible has made us who we are. And it is critical to our future.

Individual Agents of God’s Purpose

Let me start with what is perhaps our most cherished ideal as Americans, the ideal of the individual.

There is a myth long loved by certain leftists that the ancient world was a free, secular place where people believed as they wanted and lived lives of their own making. We know from historians that nothing could be further from the truth. In the ancient world, the individual as such hardly existed. There was no such thing as individualism.

The ancient world was a place of hierarchy. Every thing, every person, had a place, fixed and unchanging, bound to where it was by the order of the cosmos. Some were born to rule, most were born to follow, many were born to be slaves — that was the belief.

Every family had its ancestral gods, and the family head alone had the right to rule the household in the gods’ name. Every city had its patron deity, which every citizen was bound to worship. In fact, to be a citizen was to be a member of a particular city and a worshiper of a particular god or gods.

There was no such thing as freedom of conscience in this world, no such thing as individual decision. As the nineteenth-century historian Fustel de Coulanges put it, “The human person counted for very little against that holy and almost divine authority which was called country or state.”

As for history — well, history was made by those few the “order of nature” designated to rule. Always men of social standing. Usually wealthy. The natural elite.

The Bible challenged all of this, and right from the very beginning. In Genesis 12, God calls Abraham, a nobody from nowhere — no social standing, no claim to power or rule — God calls this man to leave his father’s house and his father’s gods, to leave the markers of meaning and identity in the ancient world, and to serve him — the one true God, Scripture claims.

God calls Abraham to stand before him as an individual. God’s gaze rests on him personally.

Or as Rabbi Joseph Soloveitchik writes, Abraham “could not find solace in the silent companionship of God whose image was reflected in the boundless stretches of the cosmos. Only when he met God … as Father, Brother, and Friend … did he feel redeemed.”

God tells Abraham that as an individual he — he personally — will be God’s agent of blessing and renewal for all the world. We see the same pattern repeated in the New Testament. Jesus says salvation is available to all who will come to him, and that those who follow him will be called “sons of God.”

Meaning: shapers of history. World changers. People through whom God himself will act.

And with this, the idea of the individual is born. One need not be a member of this family or that to be significant. One need not have wealth or social standing. One need only heed the call of God.

In the words of historian Larry Siedentop, “Christ reveals a God who is potentially present in every believer…. Through an act of faith in Christ, human agency can become the medium for God’s love.” Or to say it another way, every person can become an agent of God’s purpose—as an individual.

Where does this leave the old idea of fate and controlling destiny? Done away with. Where does leave the notion that one’s place in the world is fixed and cannot be changed? Abolished.

Now the individual person becomes an agent of change. Now he or she becomes a maker of history.

The Bible invents this kind of individual. And the Bible reveals the dignity of the common man.

Read the Bible through and you will find across its pages a decided preference for the common, the ordinary, the overlooked—as opposed to the elite, the wealthy, and the socially powerful. God chooses Abraham from nowhere. He famously prioritizes Jacob, who was the second son. King David, before he was king, was the least of his brothers and the least likely to rule.

This same theme finds equally pointed expression in the New Testament. The Apostle Peter preaches in his first sermon that God’s spirit — his very presence — is now available for all people, as the ancient prophets had foretold — men and women, old and young.

Then there is the Apostle Paul, who said, “God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong.”

To a society that privileged wealth and status, a society that disdained workers and mothers and children and common folk, the Bible says: each has dignity. The common things of life have dignity. Motherhood. Home. Labor.

It has hard to overstate the disdain the world of Greece and Rome held for common laborers, people who worked with their hands. Not in the Bible. The patriarchs raised livestock. Jesus was a carpenter and his disciples fishermen. Paul made tents.

And the Bible emphasizes over and again the power of labor that is offered to God. Work unto God, Scripture says, and God will use that work to further his good purposes in the world. He will make the work matter. He will make it last, however common or mundane.

The ancient world honored the high and mighty. The Bible, to paraphrase the Canadian theorist Charles Taylor, affirmed the significance of ordinary life.

I have two small boys at home and I love to read to them. Among their favorites is Tolkien, who captures this theme beautifully in “The Lord of the Rings.” “Such is oft the course of deeds that move the wheels of the world: small hands do them because they must, while the eyes of the great are elsewhere.”

There is no ideal more central to American life than the dignity of the common man. And it is an ideal given to us by the Bible. The biblical tradition also gave us a new concept of liberty.

It’s interesting: in the ancient near east, Mesopotamia, the creation stories often involved the gods founding primordial cities, and then when humans came along designating human kings to rule the cities on the gods’ behalf.

Not in the Bible. Oh God does indeed designate someone to exercise his authority and carry forward his purposes. Genesis makes much of that. But it’s not a king. It’s Adam and Eve, on behalf of all humanity. From the first, the Bible pictures individuals as capable of self-rule.

For the early Christian philosopher Tertullian, Jesus’s maxim to “render to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and to God what is God’s” had clear political implications: offer to Caesar your money, Tertullian said, but offer “to God your self.”

The point was, individuals, as God’s image-bearers, belonged to God and to him alone, not to the emperor or some far-away king. God and God alone had the right to claim the individual’s obedience: no one else. No government. No king.

The individual deserved liberty to respond to God’s call on his or her life. It’s right there in the Exodus, the story of God calling a people to follow him by liberating them from oppression. It’s there in the Apostle Paul, who wrote that it is for liberty that we have been set free.

This is a concept of liberty virtually unknown to the ancient world. The Greeks spoke of liberty from time to time, but for them and their philosophers, liberty meant mainly life in accordance with the order of nature. Which meant hierarchy.

Plato and Aristotle, for example, both assumed “freedom” for most individuals meant obeying their moral and social betters. The Romans famously valued self-government, at least for part of their history. But they too saw the right to self-rule as confined to the small class of individuals fit by nature to be citizens. Everybody else was a dependent.

And neither Romans nor Greek recognized significant limits on government power.

But if God’s spirit can be poured out on all people, if God has called each person to be his delegate and exercise his authority, surely that has political implications. Surely that means citizenship cannot be confined to the elite. Surely it means even the common man has the right to self-rule. Surely it says even the common man has the right to liberty.

And as I once heard the late Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks say, surely God’s call to the individual sets a limit on the state. It draws a boundary on the exercise of government power and says, “No further.” And there we have it: Individualism, the dignity of the common person, liberty. This is our biblical inheritance.

I could go on. The Bible gave us also the idea of a state ruled by men, not by gods. It gave us the distinction between church and state. It gave us equality between men and women. And more, much more. But you get the idea.

These were revolutionary notions that upended the ancient world. And they found their purest political expression in the United States of America.

The biblical revolution is right there in the Declaration of Independence, which proclaims that “all men are created equal,” that we are endowed by our Creator with “unalienable” rights. These confessions would take centuries to realize in this country, but we recognized them as true from the first.

The biblical revolution is there in our Constitution, which separates powers among offices and stations to ensure the common person can rule, and no clique or elite.

It is there in the Bill of Rights that guarantees freedom to worship, to speak, to assemble, and to exercise one’s faith free from government interference.

The biblical tradition echoes in the great tent revivals of the frontier, where hardscrabble folks with little to their name heard from the itinerant preachers that they too were called by God. They too could be God’s servants. You didn’t need a fancy education or a landed estate to be God’s child. And those revivals helped spawn a populist political movement that reverberates to this day.

America as we know it, America as we love it, is the product of the revolution of the Bible. But now that biblical inheritance is under siege.

A Cultural Revolution

Today’s woke left is frantically engaged in a campaign of political nihilism. This is the sum and substance of their program. They want to level the institutions of American society—the family, schools, church and synagogue, our judicial system. They say the country is structurally warped and must be remade top to bottom. But what they reject, at bottom, is our biblical inheritance.

I mentioned in my remarks last year the mid-century thinker Herbert Marcuse. Marcuse was a great advocate of the `60s-era student radicalism and of the nihilist attitude toward American society that dominates the left today. In a word, he was woke.

He was also honest. Marcuse was an atheist and a Marxist and he spent a good deal of time wondering why Marx’s long-looked-for end of history had never arrived. He decided one major reason was Christianity.

Like Marx, Marcuse believed biblical faith was an opiate, a form of false consciousness. And he worried that it saturated American society. So in a break with Marx’s economic determinism, Marcuse decided culture was king. And America’s Christian culture was preventing the Marxist revolution the world needed.

Even worse, the working class, the proletariat, embraced that culture more than anyone. 

For that reason, Marcuse concluded revolution wouldn’t come from working people. The Christian hold was too strong. Instead, he placed his faith elsewhere—and this is key. He placed his faith in the educated elite.

America needed a cultural revolution to rid itself of the Bible’s taint. And the elite were just the people to deliver it. Sound familiar? That’s today’s politics in a nutshell.

Today’s woke left is carrying out a Marcuse-style kulturkampf. They increasingly insist that individuals don’t matter. They say society isn’t composed of equal individuals standing before a sovereign God, but of warring racial and economic groups vying for power.

The woke theorists at the Smithsonian tell us that “individualism” itself is racist, nothing more than an artifact of “white culture.” In the last few years, two separate woke theorists have argued—in The Nation and The Washington Post—that Americans’ votes should be weighted on the basis of race. In the name of democracy, “one person, one vote” is out.

The woke left dislikes the notion of the common man. They reject the biblical idea that all men and women are equally valuable and equally worthy of participating in political life. They call working people “deplorables,” and they regard working culture as uncouth and backward—characterized by the sort of people who cling to “guns and religion,” as someone once said.

No, the woke think the educated elite know best. By which they mean, naturally, themselves. And they are not afraid to use power.

If the Big Tech oligarchs decide that reporting on Hunter Biden is too dangerous to their interests, they simply erase the story from the public square. If they decide questioning Anthony Fauci is too threatening to their priorities, they prevent it by their own fiat.

That’s only the beginning.

If the reigning political class decides a former president poses too much trouble to their plans, they order a raid on his house and threaten to jail him. If they conclude too many Americans are complaining online, they create a Disinformation Board to shut them down. Any disagreement is called “violence” and any dissent “insurrection.”

Marcuse pioneered the concept of “repressive tolerance”—that is, free speech for me but not for thee. He would be proud of today’s liberals.

Finally, the left rejects the biblical idea of conscience and the liberty that comes with it. Attacks on religious freedom and intellectual inquiry are commonplace now. The woke insist on targeting citizens engaged in works of mercy, like the Little Sisters of the Poor, because they have the audacity to disregard elite preferences and serve a God beyond the state.

The woke insist that nobody, and especially not parents, may ask questions about what children are being taught in schools. To do otherwise is to be a “domestic terrorist.”

To them, liberty means falling in line with the norms they prescribe. It means following the social rules they had down.

They will decide what speech is acceptable.

They will decide which religious beliefs may be acted upon, and how.

They will determine what is true and what is not, what is fact and what is “disinformation.”

They will run the country.

The left say they want to lead us to a new era. But where they would take us is no age of enlightenment. It is not someplace new at all. It is backwards, to an old age of darkness and hierarchy and repression.

And that brings us to the task before us.

The Truth Is Their Stumbling Block

The woke left now controls the commanding heights of American culture: the media, the entertainment industry, the corporations, academia, and government. They seek to marshal their combined cultural power against those who disagree.

They seek to shame us, to isolate us—to silence us, if they can. They seek to protect their power. And they can succeed—but only if we allow them.

In truth, their vision is bleak and their ideology is brittle. They do not understand the deep strength of the American people, because they do not understand the deep goodness of their character. They see only deplorables who must be re-educated.

They do not understand our history and our ideals because they do not appreciate the truths on which this nation is based. They do not realize these truths have made us good and made us strong. And truth is their problem. The woke ideology, this warmed-over cultural Marxism, is not true.

Race and class do not define all that we are. Society is not an unending struggle for power and domination. And America is not structurally defective. America is the best and freest nation in the history of the world. And it is so largely because of the biblical revolution that made us what we are.

And now we need that inheritance again. In this time of fear and despair, we need to hear again that our lives matter—that we are loved by God—that we are called by God to great purpose—and that eternity beckons. What we do now can last. What we do here can matter.

We need to hear again of the dignity of ordinary life, of work and hearth and home, of the joys of marriage and family, and the power of these things to shape the future.

I slightly misspoke earlier, in this connection, when I said God called Abraham as an individual. That much is true, but God said it was Abraham’s family he would use to change the world. Abraham became a blessing to mankind when he became a husband and father. The same is true for us and true for today. 

In the final analysis, the woke ideology has more in common with the ancient world than it does with America. And it will not prevail in the end.

Whether it prevails in our time is up to us. That will depend on our courage.

To Strike a Blow for Truth

I close with this.

In A.D. 390, a crowd of Christians gathered at a pagan temple known as the Serapeum, in the city of Alexandria. It was a shrine to the god Serapis.

A few years before, the virulently anti-Christian emperor Julian had attempted to throttle Christianity and purge Rome of Christian influence. Among other measures, he seized control of the education system and barred Christians from teaching. He demanded all students study in ways he approved. He commanded worship of the Roman gods. 

One of those gods was Serapis. And now on this day in 390, in the shadow of the state’s recent persecution, a group of Christians gathered at the temple to take a stand.

In the center of the temple was a statue of the god, clutching in his hands a three-headed serpent. The legend went that “if any impious hand should dare to violate the majesty of the god, the heavens and earth would instantly return to their original chaos.”

One soldier stepped forward, carrying an axe. His name is lost to history. All we know of him is what the historian Rufinus tells us, that he was “better protected by faith than by his weapon.”

And there, in that moment, this one man made a choice. He made a choice to live free from the powers and principalities of his age. A choice to reject the dictates of emperors. A choice to strike a blow for truth. 

The lone soldier climbed a ladder to the top of the statue and raised his battle-axe. Then, with all his might, he drove it home.

Onlookers reported that as the blow fell, the god’s jaw broke away. And as it did, thousands of rats came surging out of its rotten inside.

The woke left may seem powerful. And indeed they are.

Opposing them may cost us much. But the truth is worth any cost. And that’s what courage is, in the end. It is paying the cost, no matter how high, for the truth.

And remember the teaching of scripture, the one that runs from first to end: that though the God of the universe could have accomplished his purposes entirely on his own, he chose instead to call us. He invites us to do his work and to follow him.

And so let us count the cost, and take our stand. For when we do, we shall turn the tide.


Josh Hawley is a U.S. senator from Missouri and former Missouri attorney general.

    Christians could lose majority status in America by 2045: study


    By Leonardo Blair, Senior Features Reporter | Thursday, September 15, 2022

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/news/christians-could-no-longer-be-the-majority-in-america-by-2045.html/

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    Barring any limiting event such as war or economic depression, if the pace at which Christians abandon their faith before the age of 30 were to accelerate beyond its current pace, America could no longer be a majority Christian nation by as early as 2045. And Christians wouldn’t just lose their majority status in America in this scenario. They would also be outnumbered by the religiously unaffiliated, also known as “nones,” according to the findings of a new analysis by the Pew Research Center. The findings are based on work from the Pew Research Center which projects religious composition in the United States under multiple switching scenarios for the first time, as part of the Pew-Templeton Global Religious Futures project. The project analyzes religious change and its impact on societies around the world.

    In the study, Pew highlights four hypothetical scenarios out of several possibilities to demonstrate how the U.S. religious landscape might change over the next half century. The impact of younger Christian adults abandoning their faith without limitation was modeled in one of those scenarios. While the other three scenarios reflect varying degrees of religious disaffiliation, “they all show Christians continuing to shrink as a share of the U.S. population, even under the counterfactual assumption that all switching came to a complete stop in 2020.” The ranks of the unaffiliated, however, are projected to grow under all four scenarios.

    “Of course, it is possible that events outside the study’s model — such as war, economic depression, climate crisis, changing immigration patterns or religious innovations — could reverse current religious switching trends, leading to a revival of Christianity in the United States,” the researchers noted. “But there are no current switching patterns in the U.S. that can be factored into the mathematical models to project such a result.”

    Data highlighted in the research show that while Christianity remains the “stickier” religious affiliation for older Americans, among younger adults it is the religiously unaffiliated identity that is enduring. If that trend is sped up with nothing to stop it, according to projections of the third of the four main models, the number of Christian adherents in the U.S. is likely to decline at a much faster rate.

    “If the pace of switching before the age of 30 were to speed up throughout the projection period without any brakes, Christians would no longer be a majority by 2045,” Pew researchers said.

    In this model, the religiously unaffiliated would be America’s most dominant faith expression by 2055, with about 46% of the population claiming that identify. Christians would represent just a 43% share of the population. By 2070, 52% of Americans would be unaffiliated, while only 35% would be Christian.

    In 2020, the Pew Research Center estimated that about 64% of Americans, including children, were Christian. The religiously unaffiliated accounted for 30% of the U.S. population, while all other religions — including Jews, Muslims, Hindus and Buddhists — totaled about 6%.

    While rising disaffiliation among younger adults “assumes there is a kind of ever-increasing momentum behind religious switching” among that cohort under 30, researchers suggested that trend isn’t plausible as “highly religious parents tend to raise highly religious children who are less likely than children of less religious parents to disaffiliate in young adulthood.”

    “As a result, there may continue to be a self-perpetuating core of committed Christians who retain their religion and raise new generations of Christians,” researchers said.

    Of the four models presented, researchers selected the second which projects that rising disaffiliation from Christianity with limits could lead to “nones” becoming the largest religious identity in America by 2070 but not the majority identity.

    The projected outcome for that model suggests that if the pace of disaffiliation before the age of 30 were to speed up initially but then hold steady, Christians would lose their majority status by 2050, when they would be 47% of the U.S. population compared to 42% for the unaffiliated. In 2070, “nones” would constitute a plurality of 48%, in this scenario while Christians would account for 39% of Americans.

    Contact: leonardo.blair@christianpost.com Follow Leonardo Blair on Twitter: @leoblair Follow Leonardo Blair on Facebook: LeoBlairChristianPost

    Being a patriotic American doesn’t make you a ‘Christian nationalist’: Dr. Richard Land weighs in on the debate


    By Ian M. Giatti, Christian Post Reporter | Thursday, September 8, 2022

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/news/being-a-patriotic-american-doesnt-make-you-a-christian-nationalist.html/

    Courtesy of Mark Creech

    When it comes to history, and American history in particular, definitions matter. In 2006, before becoming the leader of the free world, former President Barack Obama famously said, “Whatever we once were, we are no longer a Christian nation — at least, not just. We are also a Jewish nation, a Muslim nation, a Buddhist nation, and a Hindu nation, and a nation of nonbelievers.”

    It wouldn’t be the last time the 44th president would suggest America once held to an exclusivist Christian identity, but the claim begged a larger question: did it ever? By the end of Obama’s first term, most Evangelical leaders seemed to say “no.” A 2012 survey conducted by the National Association of Evangelicals found less than a third of American Evangelicals believed the U.S. is a “Christian nation,” though there was considerable debate over exactly what that looks like. A decade later, not much has changed.

    In a wide-ranging interview, Dr. Richard Land, executive editor of The Christian Post, urged American Christians, regardless of their political persuasion, not to allow the Left to define how they see the United States.

    According to Land, the Left-leaning American media invented the hot-button phrase “Christian nationalism” as a pejorative term that serves to undermine the fundamental relationship between Christians and this nation as defined in the U.S. Constitution. 

    “I’m not a Christian nationalist,” Land said. “I’ve read about some, but I don’t know any.”

    “I think it is a tactic by the Left and their toadies in the media to suppress patriotic beliefs and to suppress the idea that America is a unique country,” added Land.

    “They hate that, they don’t believe it themselves.”

    The notion of Christian nationalism has a contentious history, one that some commentators say stretches back at least as far as the dawn of the New Deal, when Christian leaders rallied around the Cross of Christ in response to what they saw as government encroachment.

    For others, the phrase conjures up images of Jerry Falwell Sr. and the Religious Right of the 1970s and early 1980s, or former President Donald Trump and his Make America Great Again movement — and, for some, its alleged corollary, the riot at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, which The Washington Post headlined as a “kind of Christian revolt.”

    Andrew Whitehead and Samuel Perry, authors of the bookTaking America Back for God: Christian Nationalism in the United States, defined the term as the belief that the “United States is and should be a Christian nation.”

    Whitehead and Perry wrote: “Christian nationalism merely uses the Bible to impose its conservative political agenda. By asserting that they are true followers of Christ in a country that is founded on Christian principles, adherents of Christian nationalism can brand their political opponents as both ungodly and un-American.”

    But Land, who also serves as president emeritus and adjunct professor of theology and ethics at Southern Evangelical Seminary,  rejects the term.

    “To be a patriotic American does not make you a Christian nationalist,” he said. “To believe God has played a unique role in our history, or that America is a unique nation, does not make us Christian nationalists.’

    “Pejoratively, they want to tie Christian nationalism to racism and to prejudice, and I reject those labels.”

    In celebration of the nation’s independence back in July, Robert Jeffress, senior pastor of First Baptist Dallas, told his congregation that while he doesn’t consider himself a “Christian nationalist,” he does believe the United States was founded as a “Christian nation.”

    In his message, Jeffress said that anyone listening to “left-wing” organizations like the American Civil Liberties Union or the Freedom From Religion Foundation “will come to believe that America was founded by men with a wide diversity of religious beliefs.” That couldn’t be further from the truth, according to Jeffress, who added, “that version of American history belongs in the same category as the story of George Washington and the cherry tree: it is a complete myth.”

    While Land conceded that Jeffress was making a “valid point,” he said he disagrees with him when it comes to the question of whether we were founded as a Christian nation. Instead, Land believes America is “an experiment combining Judeo-Christian values with Enlightenment ideas,” but warned that it “doesn’t work unless the majority of the people are aware of being subject to a higher authority.”

    Land said, “Jeffress and I, because we’re both Baptists, believe in separation of both Church and State, and thus believe the freedoms guaranteed to us in the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution belong to everyone, regardless of their faith.”

    He further noted that the Declaration of Independence makes reference to God numerous times, perhaps most famously in its conclusion in which the Founders wrote: “For the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the Protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.”

    Still, Land said, that’s a far cry from declaring America to be a Christian nation.

    “I don’t believe we were founded as a Christian nation,” he said. “I believe we were founded by people who were Christians or were operating out of a Christian worldview. 

    “In the Declaration of Independence, they do not declare their independence from God, they’re just declaring their independence from Great Britain.”

    Twelve of the 56 signers of the Declaration of Independence, for instance, were Presbyterian — including the sole clergyman signer, John Witherspoon — for which reason many Presbyterians today claim loyalists to King George III saw the American Revolution as a largely “Presbyterian Rebellion.”

    Witherspoon himself went on to help formalize the Articles of Confederation and the U.S. Constitution, paving the way for the birth of the U.S. federal government.

    The Establishment Clause of the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution “prohibits the government from making any law respecting an establishment of religion” and “government actions that unduly favor one religion over another.” It also prohibits the government from “unduly preferring religion over non-religion, or non-religion over religion.”

    More than two centuries after an 1802 letter from President Thomas Jefferson to the Danbury Baptist Association in Connecticut in which Jefferson famously described the First Amendment as “a wall of separation between Church and State,” Land and others contend that all the limitations in the First Amendment are on the State, not the people.

    The amendment was intended, Land added, to protect “the church” from “the state.”

    Two days after he sent the letter, Jefferson attended a church service conducted in the House of Representatives.

    Five years before the first Congress convened, the Capitol building was used as a church, according to the Library of Congress. The first services were held in the fall of 1800 in the north wing of the House. Within a year of his inauguration, Jefferson himself began attending church services at the Capitol, before he later famously created his own version of Scripture to omit fundamental tenets of the faith, including the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

    In what might be the judiciary’s most overt reference to America as a Christian nation, U.S. Supreme Court Justice David Brewer, writing the majority decision in the 1892 case Church of the Holy Trinity v. United States, noted the observance of the Sabbath and other traditions as a “clear recognition” of faith in civic life.

    “These, and many other matters which might be noticed, add a volume of unofficial declarations to the mass of organic utterances that this is a Christian nation,” wrote Brewer.

    It’s that extensive confluence of Christian faith and American history that, according to Land, raises the question of defining exactly what is meant by phrases such as Christian nationalist.

    “When people who are liberal try to label a Christian nationalist as anybody who believes America has anything to do with God or that God has anything to do with America, they’re denying most of American history,” he said.

    Many of the Founding Fathers, added Land, “believed that God, for some reason, had a special interest in the United States of America.”

    John Adams, the country’s second president, who, according to Land, “had more to do with the Constitution than anybody except James Madison,” said in 1798: “We have a government designed only for a moral and religious people. It is insufficient for any other.”

    “What he meant by that was, if you’re going to have limited government … you’ve got to have a majority of the population who are voluntarily obeying the law when nobody else is around because they are aware that they are accountable to a higher authority,” Land said.

    He pointed to Puritan founder John Winthrop, who spoke about America as “a city upon a hill,” a phrase echoed over 300 years later by President Ronald Reagan.

    “Was [Winthrop] a Christian nationalist?” Land asked.

    Abraham Lincoln once called America the “last best hope of Earth,” one that “the world will forever applaud, and God must forever bless.”

    “Was he a Christian nationalist?” again asked Land.

    As the U.S. lurched toward World War I, Woodrow Wilson, the son of a Presbyterian minister, spoke about fighting “the war to end all wars.”

    “Was he a Christian nationalist?” Land asked rhetorically.

    Pointing to John F. Kennedy’s inaugural address, Land said while the speech became well-known for a number of reasons, many overlook what Kennedy said was the driving force behind our nation: “For man holds in his mortal hands the power to abolish all forms of human poverty and all forms of human life. And yet the same revolutionary beliefs for which our forebears fought are still at issue around the globe — the belief that the rights of man come not from the generosity of the state, but from the hand of God.”

    “That’s pretty clear,” said Land.

    In fact, with a handful of exceptions, nearly every president in American history has been identified with Protestant Christianity. Yet with the exception of Trump, none of them have been historically accused of appealing to Christian nationalist ideology.

    2016 presidential election 

    When it comes to global use, the term Christian nationalism was relatively — though not completely — nonexistent for the first two decades of this millennium, seeing only slight bumps during the George W. Bush administration. Part of that, according to Google, is due to a lack of search engine data.

    Around the time of Trump’s election in November 2016, the term “white nationalism” — a much more pejorative precursor to the more narrow Christian nationalism — saw a sharp rise in searches, fueled in part by allegations of Trump’s support from white nationalist figures like David Duke and William Johnson.

    The first significant spike in searches for Christian nationalism came in August 2019 following a pair of mass shootings in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio. But it wasn’t until the U.S. Capitol riot on Jan. 6, 2021, that both search terms were seemingly conflated and the contemporary notion of Christian nationalism seeped into the national consciousness.

    Outlets like HuffPost ran articles suggesting the events of Jan. 6 — which it described as “an episode that was permeated with the symbols of Christian nationalism” — were directly tied to the government allowing and even funding conservative Christian education in the United States.

    Even more left-leaning media sites such as Vice reported hearing from Christians around the country who “said they’ve witnessed their congregations lose focus and slide into Christian nationalism” even as churches grow “older and whiter than before.”

    During a 2021 webinar hosted by Christians Against Christian Nationalism, a coalition of faith leaders and organizations, the progressive Rev. Michael Curry, presiding bishop of The Episcopal Church, said while he believes that there are “innocent forms of Christian nationalism,” he warned of a “more virulent or dangerous kind” that involves people viewing their country as “God’s favorite.”

    “That borders on blasphemy, idolatry,” argued Curry. “That kind of nationalism is dangerous. It is dangerous to civic health; it is dangerous to the health of a Christian.”

    Progressive Christian activist and author Shane Claiborne, who is listed as one of the endorsers of Christians Against Christian Nationalism, called on churches to remove the U.S. flag from their altars or consider adding the banners of other nations following the Jan. 6 violence. 

    “To be part of the Body of Christ is to transcend nationality,” the Red Letter Christians co-founder and leading figure in the New Monasticism movement argued. “That’s part of what it means to be ‘born again.’”

    But Land said while he’s personally faced criticism for churches he’s attended where both the American and Christian flags were displayed, there’s never been any doubt about which one comes first.

    “Every church I’ve been in, we understand the pecking order: the ultimate flag is the Christian flag,” he said.

    Land recalled memories of being a young boy in Houston, Texas, and being led to recite a Pledge of Allegiance to the U.S. flag, the Christian flag and the Bible. So, why then do we have the American flag in church when there are so many people who come from other countries to our churches?

    “The reason is, the American flag has never tried to persecute Christians,” Land said. “Almost all of the other countries in the world at some point in time, they have persecuted some kind of Christians.’ 

    “But in America, the American flag has been the symbol of the First Amendment, which is about religious freedom. And it’s the First Amendment for a reason. All the other freedoms protect the ‘first’ freedom, which is the right to worship God as we please or not to worship Him at all.’ 

    “So I have no problem with the American flag being in churches. The American flag is a symbol of soul freedom.”

    The corporate press 

    Since the events of Jan. 6, some of America’s best-known media outlets have published a number of stories referring to Christian nationalism in relatively stark headlines, including: 

    • “The Far-Right Christian Quest for Power” – The New York Times
    • “Christian nationalism is surging. It wasn’t inevitable” – The Washington Post
    • “Christian nationalism is a threat, and not just from Capitol attackers invoking Jesus” – USA Today
    • ‘Lynchburg Revival’ Activists Warn Of Rising ‘Christian Nationalism’ – NPR
    • “White Christian Nationalism is the Most Dangerous Weapon in America” – Newsweek
    • “Trump’s army of God: Doug Mastriano and the Christian nationalist attack on democracy” – Salon

    While by no means a comprehensive list, even such a relatively small sample of headlines underscore what Land described as a “Southern Poverty Law Center kind of attitude” among the American media establishment toward patriotic Christians.

    Land said the use of Christian nationalist and nationalism is merely another attempt by the political Left to “label Christians with what they see as a negative label … the same way they tried to make cisgender a negative label.”

    “Basically, if you believe in any sense that America has a unique role to play in the world, and that God in His providence has had something to do with the United States, then you’re a Christian nationalist.’ 

    “Then they start saying, ‘This is just for white people.’’”

    For Land, such a view, both secular and otherwise, is incompatible with American history.

    He recalled one episode where our first President George Washington wrote a letter to a Jewish congregation in Rhode Island, welcoming them not as guests, but as fellow Americans.  

    “May the Children of the Stock of Abraham, who dwell in this land, continue to merit and enjoy the good will of the other Inhabitants,” Washington wrote.

    Land said that sentiment is intrinsic to the fabric of our country.

    “We believe in religious freedom,” Land said. “You’re free to have your mosque, you’re free to have your Shinto temple, you’re free to have your synagogue.”

    He pointed to a 2015 poll that found 62% of American adults believe in the notion of American exceptionalism, that God has granted America a “special role” on the world stage.

    “We are not [a] chosen nation, but America is exceptional, and God has blessed us in unique ways,” he said. “We are the recipients of divine providence, divine blessing, and blessing, by definition, is undeserved. Otherwise, it would be called a reward.’

    “No nation has been blessed by God more than the United States of America, and that incurs certain obligations.”

    For Land, understanding Christian nationalism or any other intended pejorative involving patriotism and faith should be viewed not through the lens of social media tribalism, but in its historical context.

    “On the whole, and it is on the whole that such questions must be answered, American influence in the world has been a positive influence and not a negative influence. Wherever America’s gone, there’s been more freedom, been more respect for minorities, more respect for women.’

    “That’s why so many people want to come here.”

    In fact, Land said, it’s the continued desire of people from all over the world trying to make their way to the U.S. that speaks to America’s decidedly remarkable place in history.

    “I don’t think it’s Christian nationalism to say America is a unique country,” he said. “Every other country in the world is founded on blood and soil. People of certain ethnicities, people of a certain geographic location. Not the United States.’ 

    “The United States is based upon an idea: anybody can become an American.”

    Facing opposition from ideological movements like critical race theory (CRT) — which, according to Land, seeks to “deconstruct American history and make America out to be an awful place” — Land said now more than ever, it’s important for Christians to push back against blanket descriptors like “Christian nationalism.”

    “They should reject the term and replace it with things like ‘patriotic American’ or ‘someone who understands how unique the Declaration of Independence is,’” he said. 

    “It’s not racist. Anybody can become an American, and we’ve demonstrated that by our history.”

    Prosecuting Paivi Rasanen for Quoting the Bible Is Making Her an International Star


    BY: JOY PULLMANN | AUGUST 15, 2022

    Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/08/15/prosecuting-paivi-rasanen-for-quoting-the-bible-is-making-her-an-international-star/

    Paivi Rasanen speaking at the Issues Etc. conference

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    Paivi Rasanen must make God laugh. The 27-year member of Finland’s Parliament on trial for tweeting a Bible verse confounds so many pagan slogans.

    She’s a mother of five children and grandmother of 10 who didn’t need abortion to simultaneously pull off two demanding careers: medicine and politics. An empathetic woman who eagerly shows pictures of grandbabies on her phone and expresses concern for strangers’ travel plans, Paivi (pie-EE-vee) also refuses to subjugate her reason to emotional manipulation.

    She holds fast to Christian teachings about sex as reserved exclusively for lifelong marriage between one man and one woman, for which she’s been prosecuted and investigated now for three years and will be in court again this November. Her case could affect international law and is a foreboding example of where identity politics policies are quickly heading across the world.

    “If we break the gender system and if we break the natural marriage system between one man and one woman, then we have dangerous consequences, especially to children,” Paivi told The Federalist in person this summer in Chicago.

    This woman of science also firmly believes in supernatural revelation. In her pamphlet on Christian marriage that Finland’s top prosecutor is seeking to ban as “hate speech,” Paivi writes that “Jesus’s death and resurrection is the core of the entire Christian faith. On this the Bible stands or falls. If one does not believe it, there is nothing left of Christianity. And … if I believe this, it follows logically that I must believe everything else Christ teaches in the Bible through the Apostles and Prophets.”

    Paivi speaking to a sold-out audience of Christians in Chicago, Illinois, this summer. (Joy Pullmann / The Federalist)

    Persecution Spreads the Gospel

    As it has often in history, persecution has created global opportunities for Paivi to spread Christian theology: about sex, its design for lasting human happiness, and Christianity’s warm welcome to those struggling with every kind of sin from the God “who hates nothing He has made.” The 2004 booklet “Male and Female He Created Them,” which prosecutors want to ban entirely and fine Paivi for writing, has gone from a few copies in a few conservative Lutheran churches to translated into half a dozen languages and read all over the world.

    Rasanen’s 2004 booklet, printed from the online PDF and in its new second edition distributed worldwide.

    Paivi and her husband Niilo (nee-loh) spoke this June in Budapest alongside megastar Canadian psychologist Jordan Peterson and his wife. Paivi said she’s seen especially strong support from Eastern European countries because many there still remember the Communists interrogating people about the Bible, as Finnish police did to Paivi three times for a total of 13 hours.

    The Rasanens flew to Chicago right after Budapest so Paivi could speak at the sold-out Christian “Issues, Etc.” conference on June 25. In pearls, a flowered dress, and silvered golden hair, the petite 62-year-old asked the American crowd to pray that her case would “allow for more chances to preach the gospel in public.”

    Rasanen’s case is on appeal in Finland and may end up in the European Court of Human Rights, developing precedents that could affect the world. If she loses in court, Paivi told a Christian outlet last year, “It will also affect religious freedom in other Western countries. LGBT groups have a very good network across national borders. They will try to achieve the same in other countries in Europe.”

    In Q&A after her talk, Paivi said Finnish Prosecutor General Raija Toiviainen is expected to push the case as far as possible because Toiviainen has said identity politics is her top priority. Paivi’s legal help from Alliance Defending Freedom International has told The Federalist they are also prepared to appeal her case as far as possible should she lose.

    Paivi Rasanen speaking at the Issues Etc. conference
    Image courtesy Issues, Etc.

    Persecution Amplifies Word of God’s Mercy for Sinners

    Toiviainen claims agreeing with the Bible that sodomy is a sin is a criminal expression of hatred toward homosexuals. Paivi and her legal team have pointed out that if the court interprets the law this way, it will effectively outlaw Christianity and free speech in Finland.

    Rather than rejecting homosexuals, as she’s been accused in court, Paivi glows with happiness when relating that gay people have disclosed her “Bible trial” has brought them to faith. In speeches and court testimony, Paivi has emphasized she not only bears no animosity toward homosexuals or transsexuals, she earnestly desires them to join her Christian family by receiving the eternal life that Jesus Christ offers freely to every person.

    Paivi has been dragged into European courts and smeared in the press for years as a spewer of “hate speech.” Yet while battling severe jet lag that her husband said often gives her migraines, Paivi expressed not even a flicker of animosity toward her persecutors in Chicago.

    Instead, when The Federalist asked if her three-year-and-counting prosecution might be orchestrated by political enemies, she seemed stumped. She conferred with her husband and finally suggested she was simply an easy target as a well-known figure in Finland.

    “In all my career I have been known as a Christian and as a biblical Christian who doesn’t accept abortion and homosexual acts and so on,” Paivi told The Federalist. “And that’s why I think that perhaps it is the reason why the prosecutor has targeted just me.”

    Family Unites to Fight for Other Families

    Acknowledging the Biblical directive that only men serve as pastors has never tied Paivi to the kitchen — although perhaps she’d like to retire there given the suffering her political career has inflicted. Niilo prodded Paivi into running for office nearly three decades ago to try to stop Finland from forcing doctors like her to perform abortions, they told The Federalist.

    Niilo Rasanen is a pastor and theology professor at a Lutheran Bible college. Niilo’s widowed mother lived with the couple while their children were young, and Paivi’s parents moved nearby and “helped a lot,” Paivi said. That, with Niilo’s flexibility while earning his doctorate, allowed Paivi to enter public service without sacrificing their children’s needs, they said.

    During the five years when Niilo was writing his dissertation, “he was always at home when the children came home” from school, Paivi noted. Paivi and Niilo occasionally pulled out their phones to translate Finnish words into English or check they were using the right words, but Finns learn at least two foreign languages in school, Swedish and English.

    Niilo and Paivi Rasanen in Chicago, Illinois, in June 2022. (Joy Pullmann / The Federalist)

    In response to a question from the Chicago audience, Paivi revealed threats against her family. When she campaigned against child pornography, she said, a convicted pedophile entered their front yard and threatened their children: “It was quite a difficult time because we had to keep safe our children and they were a little bit afraid many years after that.” The most violent of the recent threats include a rape threat against her son, she said.

    These external threats may have helped strengthen family bonds. Paivi and Niilo’s faces light up when they talk about their now-grown children, whom the Rasanens say are a great joy and regularly text their parents Bible verses and prayers.

    “The task is communal, we do it together,” Niilo said of their marriage and family. “It has been so busy and hard time in this politic area — very, very busy, very long days. If you are not doing it together, it will not work.”

    “I think what has been a great power in our life is that we have felt that these callings and tasks that we have, that they are common,” Paivi added.

    From Church Only at Christmas to Global Witness

    Born in 1959, Paivi grew up in a remote area near Finland’s border with Sweden, in the village of Konnunsuo. Her father was the agricultural director for a prison there. He oversaw the prisoners raising vegetables and animals to feed and support themselves. Paivi remembers as a girl watching piglets being born.

    Her parents went to church only at Christmas, she said, but she learned the Bible from Sunday School and at prison church services. Her family also hosted missionaries to the prison, and they explained Christianity to Paivi and her two younger siblings.

    A skilled student, especially in mathematics, young Paivi read all the books in her tiny village library that was open only two hours per week, she said. An adult biography of Nobel Prize-winning Polish scientist Marie Curie particularly inspired Paivi: “I admired her. I thought that I would like to be like her, to do something great.”

    At the University of Helsinki, she studied both mathematics and medicine for a half year, but it was too much. So Paivi decided to focus on medicine because “I wanted to work with people.”

    Organizing up to 70 Christian students for five years of weekly door-to-door evangelism in university deepened her faith, Paivi told The Federalist: “It was a very important time for me because there were students from different faculties and I had to defend my views, and I had to know [the] Bible because they asked difficult questions.”

    She met Niilo doing summer missionary work among immigrants in London, and they married in February 1985, a year after Paivi started working as a doctor. They welcomed their children in 1988, 1990, 1992, 1994, and 1996.

    Because Paivi kept organizing debates and speakers about abortion among fellow medical students and doctors, the Christian Democrat political party asked her to run for office. The Christian Democrats are a small party that focuses on faith and family. From 2011 to 2015, Paivi served as Finland’s Minister of the Interior as part of a coalition government.

    She Fights Like a Woman

    Paivi has fought steadfastly not by disposition, but by compunction. She and Niilo chuckled quietly when noting that in university, she flatly refused all public speaking offers and leadership positions.

    In person, the two Finns are true to type and their “Minnesota nice” American cousins: polite, soft-spoken, and deferential. In Chicago, Paivi and Niilo attempted for some 15 minutes to get the Uber app to work on their Finnish cell phones before they could be prevailed upon by this journalist to accept a ride.

    She would have walked the mile to the conference, Paivi assured, as they had the day before, but that morning’s rain would bedraggle her hair and dress right before her speech. After a bit of emotional discomfort at allegedly imposing, followed by a quick, rain-unaffected arrival, Paivi laughed softly, expressed thanks, and commented that this would be a good anecdote for The Federalist profile.

    Paivi Rasanen during audience Q&A in Chicago. Because English is a second language for Paivi, she was given the written questions in advance.

    Although she’s a public figure who regularly appears on TV, including a variety show that dressed her in a bear costume to sing to her grandchildren (she showed photographic evidence), Paivi habitually asks for others’ thoughts rather than discussing her own. It’s yet another contradiction to women’s mag-celebrated attributes: expressing her femininity not only doesn’t abrade Paivi’s character, it complements it.

    Paivi doesn’t assert herself as a “girl boss” who assumes masculine prosthetics, despite years of public leadership that could have taught her to do so. Her apparent emotional security in being the woman God made her bestows its own authority and charm.

    Only Men and Women Fit Perfectly Together

    That acceptance of one’s sex as a gift from God is also a foundation of the theological booklet that helped land Paivi in court indefinitely. Cultural Marxism foments a war between the sexes, but the Bible teaches that love means total self-giving: Husbands sacrifice everything to love their wives, and wives submit to their husbands as they do to God. The true war is not between the sexes, but against them, and in war clear chains of command are necessary to protect everyone.

    The 1960s feminist war fomented between the sexes has now expanded into a war on sex itself. Now even recognizing the differences between men and women and the exclusive fertility of natural marriage is heading toward being criminalized across the West, and with it the Christianity that protects and celebrates these natural realities.

    When she wrote the booklet, Paivi was already well-known as a Christian member of Parliament representing Hame, a rural Finnish province about an hour north of Helsinki. Pastor Juhana Pohjola, elected bishop of Finland’s non-state Lutheran church in 2021, had asked Rasanen to respond to proposals for government licensing of homosexual relationships. Here was a government endorsement of severing natural biological bonds between parents and children that raised both political and theological concerns.

    Rasanen’s resulting 24-page booklet is a succinct summary of Christian sexual ethics. “People who submit themselves to God’s guidance in the Bible are repeatedly amazed at how the very Bible teachings hardest to understand contain God’s deep wisdoms,” Rasanen writes in the English translation.

    “No choice of policies is ethically neutral,” she notes. “…In actuality, the acceptance of homosexual partnerships meant a more profound change in values than was willingly acknowledged at the time.” For example, she notes, in Finland, those proposing a homosexual partnerships act promised it would affect adults only. Yet immediately after the act passed, the proponents moved to make taxpayers pay for lesbians to be artificially inseminated and for homosexual couples to adopt children who could never know either a father or mother.

    The act’s proponents also promised that Finland’s state church could maintain Christianity’s historic teachings if state recognition of homosexual couples passed. Paivi’s trial today, under a law passed seven years after the booklet was published, directly refutes that claim. It also highlights how impossible it is to reconcile the hard-won natural law framework that protects everyone equally with the identity politics that provides special rights to only government-favored groups.

    Seeking an Internet Interdiction

    Writing the booklet is one of three charges Toiviainen has filed against Paivi. It forms the sole count against Pohjola, the pastor who published the booklet. The two other counts against Paivi relate to her tweet of a Bible verse at the nominally Lutheran state church for sponsoring a homosexual pride parade and comments in a public radio debate she participated in years ago.

    How can the #church ’s doctrinal foundation, the #bible, be compatible with the lifting up of shame and sin as a subject of #pride ?” #lgbt #helsinkipride2019
    Finnish Christian MP under hate crime investigation for quoting scripture – Premier

    In 2019, several Finns lodged complaints against Paivi’s tweet. Police investigated, interrogating Paivi about her beliefs three times. Although the police ultimately recommended against prosecuting Paivi, prosecutors sifted through her three-decade public record. They dug up the three alleged hate crimes and charged her.

    The charges against Paivi fall under the legal category of “war crimes and crimes against humanity.” The prosecutors have asked for Paivi’s writings and audio clips to be completely banned from the internet and for her, Pohjola, and his church to be fined up to a third of their annual incomes, but courts could put Paivi in prison for up to six years if she’s found guilty. Pohjola could be imprisoned for up to two years.

    During Paivi and Pohjola’s trial in early 2022, thousands of Finnish supporters gathered in Helsinki outside the court. Free speech supporters in other countries rallied at Finnish embassies. The American Family Research Council sent Pastor Andrew Brunson, whom Turkey detained for two years for preaching Christianity, to give Paivi a pledge of prayers from Christians around the world. U.S. members of Congress, international human rights groups, and coalitions of religious believers have also petitioned the Finnish government to stop prosecuting Rasanen and Pohjola’s human rights to free speech and religious exercise.

    “It is important that we have the freedom of speech and freedom of religion,” Paivi told The Federalist in Chicago. “Freedom of speech because it is important for everyone. It is important for every minority and majority. For Christians, it is crucial because we have the commandments of Jesus to tell the good gospel to all people…”

    “Also I think that it is important to respect in society also everyone’s right to speak and argue and oppose you,” she continued. “So this is [a] fundamental issue.”

    For more on this case, read this profile of Bishop Pohjola, who spoke to The Federalist in person in November 2021.


    Joy Pullmann is executive editor of The Federalist, a happy wife, and the mother of six children. Sign up here to get early access to her next ebook, “101 Strategies For Living Well Amid Inflation.” Her bestselling ebook is “Classic Books for Young Children.” Mrs. Pullmann identifies as native American and gender natural. She is also the author of “The Education Invasion: How Common Core Fights Parents for Control of American Kids,” from Encounter Books. In 2013-14 she won a Robert Novak journalism fellowship for in-depth reporting on Common Core national education mandates. Joy is a grateful graduate of the Hillsdale College honors and journalism programs.

    Iranian propaganda turning public against Evangelical Christians, religious minorities: USCIRF


    By Ian M. Giatti, Christian Post Reporter | August 4, 2022

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/news/iran-fomenting-public-disapproval-of-evangelicals-uscirf.html/

    A stranded Iranian Christian migrant holds the Bible as he prays at dawn in front of a fence reinforced by barbed wire and a wooden barricade at the Greek-Macedonian border near to the Greek village of Idomeni November 30, 2015. | REUTERS/Yannis Behrakis

    The Iranian government is actively inciting “derogatory public opinion” against Christianity and other faiths by using Iranian media outlets to spread religious propaganda, according to the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom.

    A new report from the bipartisan federal advisory committee says Iran’s government uses official media, government-linked media and social media to spread “falsehoods and misconceptions” about religious minorities to turn public opinion against these communities. 

    The report “Religious Propaganda in Iran” attributes the effort to a “systematic campaign to deny freedom of religion or belief to groups that do not conform to the government’s singular interpretation of Ja’afri Shi’a Islam.”

    For instance, the government describes some Christians as belonging to an “Evangelical Zionist cult” and uses vague national security accusations to target Christian converts. 

    The phrase was referenced in the Nov. 3, 2021 ruling by Iran’s Supreme Court, declaring that promoting Christianity and establishing home churches are not crimes and do not amount to national security crimes.

    The court’s opinion used the phrase “Evangelical Zionist cult” to refer to the Christian converts whose case it was addressing. 

    Under Iran’s legal system, a ruling by a Supreme Court branch is not necessarily binding on lower courts. 

    “This misinformation campaign restricts freedom of religion or belief for religious minorities in Iran,” USCIRF Commissioner Sharon Kleinbaum told The Christian Post.

    According to USCIRF, Iranian state propaganda against Christian converts is often disguised as anti-Zionism, and Christian converts are regularly referred to as members of a “Zionist” network. 

    Officials say the reference to Zionism in this context does not refer to specific allegations of links between Christian converts in Iran and the state of Israel but rather “a broad conspiracy in which Evangelical Christians across the world promote political viewpoints that serve Zionist ideology.”

    The report also cites what USCIRF called “Iran’s misinformation campaign against Christian converts,” which officials say seeks to differentiate Christian converts from Armenians and Assyrians as recognized religious minority groups. 

    Hojjat al-Islam Kashani, a Muslim cleric who serves as the secretary of the Islam-Christianity Dialog Association, told an Iranian media outlet, “What is being promoted today as Christianity is not traditional Christianity, but rather it is Evangelical and colonial Christianity.

    “Evangelical Christianity is not a religion. It is a policy-oriented towards colonialism.”

    According to the report, Kashani accused Evangelical Christian Iranians of pursuing a political agenda of expansion designed to undermine Iran’s government.

    Those political aims of Evangelical Christians have “resulted in their alienation from other Christians, and that Iranian Armenians are opposed to Evangelical Christians,” Kashani said.

    Iran’s history is replete with examples of outside intervention by colonial powers in its domestic affairs, so this comment appeals to the sense of injustice some Iranians may feel about foreign meddling in Iranian politics, Kleinbaum said.

    “The impact on Iranian Christians is that they cannot rely on the government to uphold its obligations under international law to protect freedom of religion or belief, and are more likely to face discrimination from Iranians who internalize the government’s false messaging,” she added.

    In addition to Christian converts, the USCIRF report identifies and reviews the significant themes Iran’s government deploys against Jews, Sunni Muslims, Gonabadi Sufis and Baha’is.

    Besides providing data and analysis on religious freedom abroad, USCIRF also provides foreign policy recommendations to the president, secretary of state and U.S. Congress to fight religious persecution and promote freedom of religion and belief. Iran is one of 10 countries recognized by the U.S. State Department as a country of particular concern for tolerating and engaging in religious freedom abuses. 

    Just one year after Iran signed a historic nuclear deal with the U.S. and other Western nations in 2015, USCIRF reported that religious minorities in Iran, including Christians, continue experiencing severe human rights abuses.

    The report found that religious freedom conditions “continued to deteriorate,” with Christians, Baha’is and the minority Sunni Muslims facing the most persecution in the form of harassment, arrests and imprisonment.

    Open Doors USA, a watchdog group that monitors religious freedom abuses in over 60 countries, ranks Iran as the ninth-worst country regarding Christian persecution. 

    SPLC accused of pushing kids book that says kids can trans identify at age 2, sexualizes children


    By Michael Gryboski, Mainline Church Editor 

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/news/splc-accused-of-pushing-kids-book-that-sexualizes-children.html/

    Unsplash/Kimberly Farmer

    The Southern Poverty Law Center is facing allegations that the group is promoting a book for elementary school students that normalizes sexual behavior among children, drawing criticism from conservative Christian groups. Conservative news website Breitbart published a report last week about the SPLC’s “Learning for Justice” project, which includes an “LGBTQ Library” with a list of recommended books and practices that are controversial.

    Jeff Johnston, the culture and policy analyst for the Colorado Springs, Colorado-based Focus on the Family, denounced the guide as promoting “false ideologies and damaging behaviors for children of all ages.” 

    “It promotes the false idea that there are not two sexes — male and female — but a variety of ‘gender identities,'” said Johnston in a statement emailed to The Christian Post on Monday.

    “It encourages schools to violate privacy and safety in restrooms, locker rooms and showers by allowing students who ‘identify’ as the opposite sex into those spaces. And it urges schools to use curriculums that are radical and sexualized. This is ideology masquerading as education.”

    Senior Fellow for Education Studies at the Christian conservative activist organization Family Research Council Meg Kilgannon also took issue with the guide, telling CP that the SPLC “has been in the business of sexualizing children in the name of ‘diversity’ for years.”

    Kilgannon directed CP to a 2019 paper by the FRC, updated last year, which documented examples of the SPLC’s “Learning for Justice” program engaging in controversial practices. 

    “When sexual progressives want to teach children with ‘no normative pressures around sex,’ parents should know that kind of thinking can include the idea that age restrictions on sexual behavior adults and children is a ‘normative pressure,'” she explained. 

    “SPLC isn’t interested in preserving childhood innocence when they train teachers to implement Queer Theory in classrooms in California and around the country. School systems that rely on teacher training materials from SPLC should be aware of the dangerous political and sexual ideologies SPLC’s ‘free materials’ include.” 

    One of the recommended books in the guide, which received considerable attention from Breitbart, is Sex is a Funny Word by Cory Silverberg, which is aimed at younger readers. 

    “Less controversial than its title suggests, this comic book for kids includes children and families of all makeups, orientations and gender identities, providing an essential resource about bodies, gender and sexuality for young children that will help caregivers guide difficult conversations,” claims the guide.

    The comic book features an illustration of a girl having an orgasm, with its author being quoted as wanting “a world with no normative pressures around sex.”

    Elsewhere, the guide claimed that “children often know their gender as early as 2 or 3 years old” and that they “do not need to be pubescent or sexually active to ‘truly know’ their gender identity or sexual orientation.”

    CP reached out to the SPLC for a response to the book, but a response wasn’t received by press time.

    Under the category of “Classroom Culture,” the guide encouraged teachers to wear nametags indicating their chosen pronouns and encouraged the conducting of “pronoun check-ins.” “Collective pronoun check-ins help students learn peers’ pronouns without forcing nonbinary students to come out repeatedly,” the guide continued. “You may say, ‘To make sure we’re referring to each other accurately, let’s go around so everyone can share their name and pronoun.’ This process can help transgender and nonbinary students feel seen, not singled out.”

    Launched in 1991 and originally named “Teaching Tolerance,” “Learning for Justice” describes itself as an educational resource project helping schools combat discrimination and celebrate diversity.

    “Our free educational resources — articles, guides, lessons, films, webinars, frameworks and more — help foster shared learning and reflection for educators, young people, caregivers and all community members. Our engagement opportunities — conferences, workshops, and school and community partnerships — provide space where people can harness collective power and take action,” its website states.

    “Through this continual cycle of education and engagement, we hope that we can build and maintain meaningful relationships with communities and we can all move from learning for justice to creating it.”  

    A far-left civil rights group, SPLC has garnered much controversy and backlash over its labeling of several conservative Christian organizations, including FRC, as “hate groups.” This became a major point of contention in 2012 when a gay rights activist inspired by the SPLC entered FRC’s Washington, D.C. headquarters and attempted to kill the staff. The SPLC apologized to ex-Muslim activist Maajid Nawaz in June 2018 and paid him $3.3 million in a settlement after wrongfully including him in a report on anti-Muslim activity.

    In March 2019, the SPLC fired its founder, Morris Dees, in response to several allegations of sexual misconduct, as well as claims of racist behavior within the progressive group.

    Michael Gryboski released the novel “The Enigma of Father Vera Daniel.” For more information, click here.

    Massachusetts establishes constitutional rights to abortion, ‘gender-affirming’ care


    By Ryan Foley, Christian Post Reporter

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/news/mass-enshrines-right-to-abortion-gender-affirming-care.html/

    The Massachusetts State House in Boston, Massachusetts. | Wikipedia/Ajay Suresh licensed under CC BY 2.0

    Massachusetts Republican Gov. Charlie Baker has signed into law a measure establishing abortion and “gender-affirming care” as constitutional rights, a move pro-life activists contend will turn the state into an “abortion sanctuary.”

    Baker approved Bill H.4930, “an Act expanding protections for reproductive rights,” Friday. The bill’s approval follows the U.S. Supreme Court’s June 24 ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health, which reversed the Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion nationwide.

    The bill passed in the Democrat-controlled House of Representatives on June 29. The House voted 136-17 to advance the legislation, with 119 Democrats, 16 Republicans and an independent supporting it, while six Democrats and 11 Republicans voted in opposition to the bill. The Senate approved H.4930 in a unanimous vote of 40-0 on July 25. 

    “Access to reproductive health care services and gender-affirming health care services is recognized and declared to be a right secured by the constitution or laws of the commonwealth,” the bill declares. “Interference with this right, whether or not under the color of law, is against the public policy of the commonwealth.” 

    The social conservative advocacy group Massachusetts Family Institute claims the legislation ensures the state will protect “abortionists who perform abortions out-of-state, even if they violate other states’ laws.” The group contends the bill will lower or eliminate “safety requirements for pharmacies to dispense abortion pills” and “force[s] state universities to provide the abortion pill to students.”

    The group stresses that the bill will also force insurance companies to cover abortion “even if they have religious objections” and prohibits insurance companies “from charging deductibles or copays for abortions but allows them to do so for all other pregnancy-related services.” 

    “[The bill allows] late-term abortions when a doctor deems a baby ‘incompatible with sustained life’ outside of the womb, which decision is not subject to review by any medical board,” the group stated in a statement

    “This is also an ‘intersectional’ bill, as its legal protections for abortionists extend to organizations who distribute puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones, even in states where they have been criminalized for use on children. You might not have realized that Planned Parenthood was also in the transgender hormone business, but they are… aggressively so.”

    Baker signed an executive order on the day of the Dobbs decision proclaiming that the state government agencies may not assist other states seeking to impose civil or criminal liability against anyone who performs an abortion in Massachusetts. The governor cited concerns that other states would “impose civil or criminal liability or professional sanctions on health care professionals who provide and persons who seek and obtain reproductive health care services in the Commonwealth as permitted by the laws of the Commonwealth.” He maintained that “health care professionals lawfully providing and persons lawfully seeking and obtaining reproductive health services in the Commonwealth should be protected from legal liability premised on and professional sanctions issued under the laws of other States.”

    “Massachusetts remains steadfast in its commitment to protect access to reproductive health care services, especially in the aftermath of the Supreme Court’s decision overturning Roe v. Wade,” Baker said in a statement

    “The Court’s decision has major consequences for women across the country who live in states with limited access to these services, and our administration took quick action in the hours following that decision by issuing an executive order to protect access here in the Commonwealth,” he added. “This new legislation signed today builds on that action by protecting patients and providers from legal interference from more restrictive laws in other states.”

    H.4930 contains language stating that “no person shall be subject to discipline by the board, including the revocation, suspension or cancellation of the certificate of registration or reprimand, censure or monetary fine, for providing or assisting in the provision of reproductive health care services or gender-affirming health care services.” 

    The enactment of H.4930 occurred in the aftermath of failed efforts to pass the Women’s Health Protection Act in U.S. Congress. The bill would codify the right to abortion into federal law and limit the ability of states to implement pro-life laws. The Women’s Health Protection Act passed the Democrat-controlled House multiple times, most recently on July 15, three weeks after the Dobbs decision. However, the bill failed to gain traction in the evenly divided U.S. Senate, where most legislation requires 60 votes to pass. On May 11, 51 of 100 senators voted against invoking cloture, a procedural step that would enable debate to begin on the Women’s Health Protection Act. The Senate previously rejected the Women’s Health Protection Act in a 48-46 vote on Feb. 28. 

    Even before Baker signed Bill H.4930 into law, Massachusetts had some of the most permissive abortion laws in the U.S. In late 2020, the ROE Act became law over Baker’s veto. The law codifies the right to an abortion into state law, allows abortions to take place after 24 weeks gestation in the case of a fetal anomaly and permits minors between the ages of 16 and 17 to obtain an abortion without parental consent. The pro-abortion Guttmacher Institute has identified Massachusetts as one of 16 states with laws protecting the right to abortion.

    Massachusetts’ establishment of a right to “gender-affirming health care” comes after a handful of states have passed laws restricting the ability of minors to obtain puberty blockers and gender transition surgeries. AlabamaArizona and Arkansas have implemented such laws while the head of the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services Commissioner Jaime Masters has classified gender transition surgeries for minors as child abuse. The state’s Attorney General Ken Paxton issued an advisory opinion saying the same. 

    Ryan Foley is a reporter for The Christian Post. He can be reached at: ryan.foley@christianpost.com

    5 factors Christians should consider when casting their vote


    By Jason Mattera, Op-ed contributor| Monday, August 01, 2022

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/voices/5-factors-christians-should-consider-when-casting-their-vote.html/

    Voters leave a polling station after casting their votes during the U.S. presidential election in Olmsted Falls, Ohio, November 8, 2016. | Reuters/Aaron Josefczyk

    Politics can be a messy business.

    From the varied special interests wielding influence behind the scenes to the undeniable fact that we’re often left with candidates who exhibit demonstrable character defects, the idea of voting our values as Christians can seem like a daunting enterprise.

    This reality is one reason why the proverbial phrase “the lesser of two evils” has become a go-to expression each election cycle. It’s an acknowledgment that both political parties fall short of our biblical standards in some way — embodying worrying degrees of corruption, bad ideas, and problematic leadership.

    But that phrase is also an acknowledgment that Christians shouldn’t just throw up their hands in surrender, even if our choices are less than ideal. As best we can, we should pursue the application of biblical principles to every area of life, which includes the domain of politics.

    How, then, should Christians weigh upcoming elections as they assess who to support at the ballot box?

    Thanks to the recent slate of excellent Supreme Court rulings, we at least have a practical blueprint to help inform us as we make our decision.

    Here are five areas to sharpen our focus during election season.

    Ally to the pro-life community

    Protecting unborn life in the womb should be one of the primary motivating factors for any serious Christian. The ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization undid the horrors of Roe v. Wadeturning the abortion battle from the national to the state level.

    Which politician, Christian or not, will be an ally to the pro-life community?

    That’s the question we must ask.

    The ones who are hostile to the pro-life community will make it obvious.

    Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., for instance, demanded that the feds shut down crisis pregnancy centers by force while her colleagues in the House blocked a congressional resolution to condemn the violence and vandalism directed at faith-based organizations in the aftermath of Dobbs.

    Meanwhile, abortion fanatic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, D, ghoulishly vetoed millions of dollars from the budget that was allocated by the Michigan legislature to “encourage adoption and support pro-life pregnancy facilities.”

    Like I said, they make it obvious.

    Religious liberty

    What good is religious liberty if you can’t exercise it in a public place? Not good at all, the Supreme Court concluded in Kennedy v. Bremerton School District.

    Coach Joe Kennedy, if you’ll recall, was canned by his employer, a public school district, for leading a voluntary prayer on the field after each game. The district ridiculously argued that this voluntary prayer, which players from both teams participated in, was a de facto establishment of religion by the school.

    It was not.

    It was an American citizen exercising his God-given right to praise his Creator free from government interference.

    Which politician will rigorously protect the First Amendment’s guarantee of religious liberty and free speech?

    This question is all the more important to sort out after we witnessed megalomaniac governors and local officials exploit the coronavirus pandemic to shutter churches and limit attendance capacity for almost a year, even as they allowed abortion clinics and pot shops to remain open and accessible.

    Put differently, will the politician be a friend or foe to the Church?

    Lest you think such a query is too abstract, remember that Beto O’Rourke, who is currently running for governor in Texas, previously told a CNN townhall audience in 2019 that, if elected president, he would rescind the tax-exemption status of any Christian nonprofit that opposed same-sex marriage.

    School choice

    In Carson v. Makin, the Supreme Court ruled that the state of Maine, if it is going to subsidize tuition costs for private schools, cannot freeze out faith-based schools from receiving funds as well.

    “That is discrimination against religion,” Chief Justice John Roberts wrote.

    Three of Roberts’s colleagues objected to the decision, which means three Supreme Court justices believed that Maine was justified in explicitly barring tax dollars from going toward religious instruction even as the State made tax dollars available to other private institutions.

    “Discrimination” is the right word choice.

    For voting purposes, any program or law — charters, vouchers, home school protections — that aids Christians in removing their children from the public school system is a win.

    Government schools are not values-neutral venues for education. They are temples of worship for humanism, where a secular worldview is at the core of what is taught. If that agenda wasn’t evident already, the relentless reporting by Christopher Rufo exposing the radical gender ideology showcased in the classroom should leave no doubts.

    Separation of powers

    Civil government isn’t the only form of government, biblically speaking. It’s one form among many.

    God also instituted self-government (Proverbs 16:32), family government (Genesis 2:23-24), and church government (1 Timothy 3:1-15), along with civil government (Romans 13:1-6).

    And throughout Scripture He places different emphases and assigns different roles to each of these jurisdictions. Under this design, tyranny is averted because power is not centralized in any one form of government; it’s decentralized, or it should be anyway.

    That’s the road to freedom. But that’s not how Washington, D.C., has functioned lately.

    Americans have lost a great deal of their freedoms to unelected bureaucrats who populate the administrative state. No-name pencil pushers are imposing vast regulations on American society by decree, making a mockery of our Constitution’s commitment to “checks and balances.”

    A seismic correction, however, could be in the works, thanks to the ruling in West Virginia v. EPA. Here the Supreme Court blocked the Environmental Protection Agency, and, by extension, other government agencies, from snatching power that was never delegated to them by Congress in the first place. As Neil Gorsuch underscored in a concurring opinion, any federal agency endeavoring to regulate “‘a significant portion of the American economy’” must be given an overt mandate by the legislative body. The same determination applies if an agency is trying to “require ‘billions of dollars in spending’ by private persons or entities,” the justice added.

    It’ll now be more difficult for some Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez fanboy you’ve never heard of to micromanage your life from the windowless office of his D.C. cubicle.

    While defanging the administrative state may not be as flashy as the other Supreme Court opinions handed down this term, West Virginia v. EPA is nonetheless a crucial part in upholding the biblical precept of separation of powers. Christians should be suspicious of any politician who doesn’t respect these constitutional boundaries.

    One last thing…

    This next topic wasn’t addressed in the Supreme Court’s most recent docket, but it remains an indispensable part of how Christians should assess who to back for political office. And that topic surrounds this question: What kind of people will the candidate staff his administration with?

    That question is critical because who an elected leader hires to implement his policies reflects that administration’s beliefs and priorities. It’s not a one-man operation, after all.

    Which brings us to President Joe Biden.

    He appointed a man pretending to be a woman to a key healthcare role at the White House. Admiral “Rachel” Levine, formerly known as Richard Levine, is the assistant secretary for health at the Department of Health and Human Services. During an MSNBC interview not too long ago, Mr. Levine said he remains dedicated to empowering “trans youth” to get “gender-affirmation treatment in their state,” which is the euphemistic way of saying he supports pumping adolescents full of puberty blockers and recommending “sex” reassignment surgery if these “youth” convey discontentment about their gender.

    Any politician or party who defends mutilating children over feelings they’ll eventually grow out of has tilted the “evil” in “the lesser of two evils” balancing act unequivocally to one side of the electoral scale … which means that balancing act no longer exists.

    The Biden administration has similarly made news by hiring a guy at the Department of Energy’s nuclear waste division who shows up to work in stilettos, a dress, lipstick, and goes by the pronoun “they.” The same dude reportedly brags about his bizarre sexual fetish that involves animal role-playing. It’s called “pup-play,” if you’re interested.

    What this means in the context of voting is that we may not like the candidate at the top of the ticket and may even find his personality obnoxious, but that should not automatically be a dealbreaker.

    If the candidate is going to hire personnel who champion the unborn, who respect religious liberty and Christian education, who seek to scale back the size and scope of civil government, and who aren’t trying to subvert the biological differences between men and women and castrate kids in the process, then these are all strong factors to consider before casting a ballot.

    In other words: Personnel is policy.

    Remember that when Election Day rolls around.


    Originally published at Standing for Freedom Center. 

    Jason Mattera is a New York Times bestselling author and Emmy-nominated journalist. Follow him on TwitterFacebook, or Instagram.

    Survey says: You can’t replace dad


    By John StonestreetMaria Baer

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/voices/survey-says-you-cant-replace-dad.html/

    Unsplash/Brett Jordan

    In 2016, psychologist Dr. Peter Langman compiled biographical data on 56 American school shooters. He found that 82% had grown up in dysfunctional family situations, usually without two biological parents at home. The trend has sadly continued. The shooter in Uvalde, Texas, hadn’t lived with his father in years. The Sandy Hook shooter hadn’t seen his father in the two years leading up to that massacre. 

    Last month, new research from the Institute for Family Studies demonstrated, once again, how important fathers are, especially for boys. For example, boys growing up without their dads are only half as likely to graduate from college as their peers who live with their dad at home. Strikingly, those numbers remain steady even after controlling for other factors such as race, income, and general IQ. Boys without a dad at home are also almost twice as likely to be “idle” in their late twenties, defined as neither working nor in school, and are significantly more likely to have been arrested or incarcerated by the time they turn 35. 

    These are only a few of the data points which demonstrate that fatherlessness is one of the most pressing crises our culture is facing. Why doesn’t our culture talk more about this? 

    One reason is that this crisis intersects other “third rails.” Our culture got to this point via the sexual revolution, which encouraged promiscuity by redefining freedom and prioritizing autonomy over responsibility. When sex outside of marriage becomes normal, it is mostly women who are left on their own to raise the resulting children. 

    There are other contributing factors as well, many of which were made possible by legislation. Divorce has been largely destigmatized, not in small part by making it legally easier. The legal demand for same-sex “marriage” brought with it the demand for same-sex parenting, which by definition asserts that kids do not need both a mother and a father. Certain forms of assisted reproduction likewise assert that children are less the fruit of a committed marriage than they are a commercial process. 

    And now here we are, with 32% of American boys growing up in homes without their biological dads. If there’s anything that we should learn from the grim outcomes of this social experiment, it is that dads aren’t replaceable. This was true from creation, but even more so in a fallen world with each of us born with a fallen human nature. We only learn to grow from socially, emotionally, and spiritually immature children into adults so that we can live together in a healthy way by seeing healthy behavior modeled and by having unhealthy behavior corrected.  

    Scripture passages affirm that mentoring in righteousness requires demonstration, as much or more than just explanation. Christ repeatedly told his followers to “do as He did.” When He washed His disciples’ feet, He offered it as an object lesson: “I give you an example, that you also should do as I did to you.” Paul told believers in Corinth and Ephesus to be “imitators” of him, just as he was an “imitator of Christ.” 

    In other places, Scripture even points to modeling and mimicry in sex-specific ways. In his letter to Titus, Paul instructed men to be “dignified” and “self-controlled” and to “urge the younger men to be self-controlled.” He also told the older women to “teach what is good” and to “train the younger women” to be “self-controlled,” “pure” and “kind.”  

    That, of course, is another cultural third rail. We are so desperate to pretend sexual difference isn’t built into our biological reality, we simply cannot abide the suggestion that our genders are critically important in parenting. But the numbers don’t lie. As Dr. Ryan Anderson, president of the Ethics and Public Policy Center, puts it, “[T]here is no such thing as ‘parenting.’ There is mothering, and there is fathering—children do best with both.” 

    Christians can challenge the growing public safety crisis that is fatherlessness, and we must start in the Church. We must affirm, in word and in action, that there are men and there are women and that both matter in parenting. We have to de-normalize absent dads, challenge men to take responsibility for their sexual choices and for their children and fill in the gaps whenever and however necessary. 

    No matter if our technologies and cultural dogmas pretend otherwise, every child has a father. These new statistics show, again, that every child needs their father. We have no right to deprive them of

    John Stonestreet serves as president of the Colson Center for Christian Worldview. He’s a sought-after author and speaker on areas of faith and culture, theology, worldview, education and apologetics.  

    The new world order and the whiff of the apocalyptic


    By Wallace B. Henley, Exclusive Columnist | July 20, 2022

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/news/the-new-world-order-and-the-whiff-of-the-apocalyptic.html/

    Unsplash/Joseph Chan

    The world under the dictatorship of the global elite… new messiahs who will try to raise up the Millennial kingdom without the King… the linkage of world economies into one tight unit so vulnerable it all could collapse in a mere hour… the raising up of an entire world order that is strictly secular: all this is almost a parody of the book of Revelation.

    The whiff of the apocalyptic is all around it.

    Maybe this scenario is a stretch, but the Great Reset is turning out to be the Great Upset, caused by government manipulation, with the encouragement of the World Economic Forum (WEF), the United Nations, and other elites who believe they have the right to steer nations and economies into a new “liberal world order” fueled by green energy policies.

    The Apostle John on Patmos would not be surprised. Things are possible on a global scale now that could not have happened when elderly John, exiled to the Isle of Patmos, was in a cave seeing the Revelation visions. For example, even in recent times, people could have sneered at the possibility of a one-hour disintegration of world commerce, but in this internet age for the first time in history it is now possible, and the vulnerability is increasing. (Revelation 18:17)

    Into this troubling panorama come the elites who want to manipulate into existence a new world order.

    To say nothing of the technologically “developed” nations, how does this play out in the dark alleys of India, dry stretches of Burkina Faso, deep jungles of Brazil, and all the other countries where people barely survive?

    Who gave President Joe Biden and the financial giants of the WEF and bureaucrats at the U.N. the authority to declare and engineer a new world order?

    The hubris of such an assumption is dizzying. It is distressing to realize that hubris is often followed by humiliation when grand reordering schemes shatter. As a former White House aide, I have seen the disastrous outcomes of the excesses of power.

    Previous generations of world orderers have tried global reordering and perished in the process as their hubristic goals collapsed on them and their citizens. I once lived in Nuremberg and drove through the ruins of the great marching field where Hitler waved at his admirers in Wagnerian triumph. I have strolled through the grandeur of Russia’s St. Petersburg but have also seen the decay left on the back streets after the communists tried to impose their new order on the world.

    Biden and his fellow world arrangers will also discover that the Great Reset depends upon a lot of manipulating of everything from fuel to food to finance and much more. Hence, the shutting down of a sizable portion of the United States’ energy-producing sector, resulting in high consumer prices, along with an increase in all other commodities that must be transported by gas-dependent vehicles.

    And from the power centers that structure the new order one can hear the promise: “Don’t worry… this is good for you.”

    Monarchs and oligarchs across history have chanted that line as they crafted their new worlds. Whether from the Right or the Left, ultimately the whiff of apocalypse slithers through it all.

    The only global system that will be a truly blessed “re-ordering” is that of the Kingdom of Heaven whose governance is on the shoulders of the Prince of Peace. (Isaiah 9:6) Until then, well-meaning leaders, as well as the more sinister varieties, will keep storming the Throne of the Kingdom, hoping to get a new world order in place with themselves overseeing and manipulating it all from lofty perches.

    “Now is the time when things are shifting,” President Biden told a group of elite business leaders recently. “There’s going to be a new world order out there, and we’ve got to lead it, and we’ve got to unite the rest of the free world in doing it.”

    Biden may not see himself as initiating the Great Reset, but he does see himself and his allies as shaping it. To do that, as the president has pointed out, the people must pay the price. Hence inflation-bound money and uncertain alliances and greater government control in every sector of society.

    So, Pete Buttigieg, secretary of Transportation in the Biden administration, voiced and celebrated the hope that higher prices at the pump will compel drivers to replace gas-guzzlers with electric vehicles.[1] Americans will have to endure pain at the pump indefinitely in the name of the “liberal world order.”

    Who gave Biden or any chief of state and his or her aides and elitists the authority to foster a new order for the entire world and establish policies that will impact other sovereign states? Is this a form of colonialism by a more acceptable label? How many more Sri Lankas will have to collapse under this load imposed through the richer nations for the sake of the green agenda?

    What kinds of systems will emerge when human leaders try to steer history by their conjured visions, blurry assumptions, hubristic presumptions, skewered world views, and shifting value-sets?

    The quest for a more livable environment for all in the present as well as the future is certainly important. However, if that means chiefs of state have the right to impose the new order globally through manipulation, then there is much about which to be concerned.

    Anyone who has read the book of Revelation might conclude that there is the whiff of the apocalyptic here.


    [1] Buttigieg Boasts Gas Prices Are Forcing Americans Towards EVs (breitbart.com)

    Wallace B. Henley is a former pastor, daily newspaper editor, White House and Congressional aide. He served 18 years as a teaching pastor at Houston’s Second Baptist Church. Henley is author or co-author of more than 25 books, including God and Churchill, co-authored with Sir Winston Churchill’s great grandson, Jonathan Sandys. Henley’s latest  book is Who will rule the coming ‘gods’? The looming  spiritual crisis of artificial intelligence.

    Most Americans believe religious freedom is in decline; a third says Christians complain too much: poll


    Reported By Ian M. Giatti, Christian Post Reporter | Friday, July 15, 2022

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/news/most-americans-believe-religious-freedom-is-in-decline-survey.html/

    Religious freedom supporters hold a rally to praise the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in the Hobby Lobby case on June 30, 2014, in Chicago, Illinois. | Scott Olson/Getty Images

    More than half of all Americans say religious tolerance for Christians is on the decline, even as more than a third also believes Christians complain too much about how they are treated in society, a newly released Lifeway Research survey suggests.

    In a study of just over 1,000 Americans conducted last September, 54% said religious liberty in the United States is in decline, including around a quarter (24%) who strongly agree with that statement. Almost a third (32%) of respondents disagreed, while 14% said they weren’t sure.

    An even greater percentage of Americans believe religious tolerance for Christians in America is in decline, with 59% agreeing that “Christians increasingly are confronted by intolerance in America today.” Less than a quarter (24%) disagreed, and another 18% said they were unsure if intolerance for Christians is increasing in America. African Americans (68%) and white Americans (59%) were more likely to agree than people of other ethnicities (47%).

    Protestants (69%) and Catholics (59%) were most likely to agree that Christians are facing increasing intolerance. Fifty-three percent of respondents of other religions and 41% of religiously unaffiliated respondents said the same. Those who attend a worship service at least four times a month (64%) are more likely to believe religious liberty is on the decline in America than those who attend less than once a month (53%).

    The religiously unaffiliated, or “nones,” were the least likely (40%) to agree religious liberty is on the decline. 

    “Freedoms are not limitless,” said Scott McConnell, executive director of Lifeway Research. “As some groups seek more freedom, it often encroaches on another’s freedom. It’s not surprising those who are more religiously active are the ones noticing reductions in religious freedom compared to those who don’t practice religion.” 

    The survey also found an interesting corollary to the perceived decline in religious liberty: more than a third (36%) of all Americans say Christians in the U.S. “complain too much about how they are treated,” including 14% who strongly agree. Nearly half (49%) of respondents disagreed, while another 15% weren’t sure. Males (40%) were more likely to agree than women (32%) that Christians complain too much about how they are treated. Respondents over 65 were the most likely to disagree that Christians complain too much (64%). The survey found that those who hold Evangelical beliefs are more likely to disagree that Christians complain too much (61%) than those who don’t have Evangelical beliefs (45%). 

    The religiously unaffiliated (53%) were more likely to agree than either Protestants (27%) or Catholics (34%) that Christians complain too much. 

    “Intolerance is about cultural pushback,” McConnell said. “In the American marketplace of ideas, not all systems of thought are welcomed. The majority of all religions notice this pushback against Christians today.”

    The survey was conducted online with over 1,005 respondents and has an error margin of plus or minus 3.3 percentage points, with error margins being higher among subgroups. Quotas and slight weights were used to balance gender, age, region, ethnicity, education and religion to more accurately reflect the U.S. population.

    Ammy Lowe Op-ed: Want to raise strong, confident girls?


    By Amy Lowe, Op-ed contributor | Tuesday, July 12, 2022

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/voices/want-to-raise-strong-confident-girls.html/

    Overcoming any fear of heights, 4 girls at WinShape Camps in Crandall, GA prepare to be raised up on the big swing. | Courtesy of WinShape Camps

    My pre-teen daughter climbed into our car one night at the end of this school year and burst into tears. She had been struggling with some friendships. On that drive back from Wednesday night church, she just finally broke down and let it all out. She cried the whole way home.

    I didn’t say much at the time, as I’ve learned that sometimes the best thing you can do as a parent is to allow your child to just get it all out before receiving any advice or opinions. What immediately came to mind, though, was how grateful I was that I would be sending her to camp in two weeks.  And not just any camp — a Christian camp — and, candidly, the one where I serve as a director.  I objectively knew she would be surrounded by young women and girls who would call out the best in her and cheer her on.

    I also marveled at how different her childhood was from my own. When I was in sixth grade, “stressed” wasn’t even part of my vocabulary. I wasn’t struggling with anxiety or depression. I wasn’t online, checking to see how many likes a photo had received. I was riding my bike and hanging out with the neighborhood kids. No doubt, things were simpler then.

    But today, over half of teen girls say they have persistent feelings of sadness and hopelessness, according to CDC research. In 2020 alone, the National Center for Health Statistics found that there were more than 6,600 deaths by suicide among the 10 to 24 age group. That same study also revealed that early last year, emergency department visits for suicide attempts were 51% higher for young girls.

    The widespread and disheartening effects of social media on girls have been thoroughly documented: Depression, anxiety, suicidal ideation, eating disorders, and body dysmorphia. And even when it doesn’t manifest in diagnosable disorders, our girls are saturated day in and day out with internet media that is proven to harm their emotional and mental health. In fact, a recent study found that social media largely worsens mental health during sensitive life periods, particularly for girls ages 11 to 13.

    It’s scary for young girls to have to face these sad influences — and it’s scary for me as the mom to one of those young girls, too. But I do find comfort knowing that it’s possible to still build resilient, confident girls in this day and age, albeit determination, intentionality, wisdom, grace, and a strong community are required to do so. This is why I personally send my daughter to a Christian camp every summer.

    I know that when I drop her off, she will be championed by the counselors and staff. She will be listened to and encouraged by people who genuinely care for her. She will learn to navigate the world around her from a biblical perspective. And most importantly, she will be taught that her identity and self-worth are not determined by how many “likes” she receives or how many “followers” she attains but by her Creator alone.

    This type of environment is essential to helping our girls build the spiritual, social, and emotional tools they need to stay grounded in a world that is constantly bombarding them with the message that they are not enough — but it’s rare to find these days. This is why WinShape Camps is so explicit about intentionality and purpose being the core of the camp experience.

    If we want to raise strong, healthy, confident girls, we need to provide them with opportunities to unplug. At WinShape, campers are asked to give up their phones for the duration of camp, and guess what? They gladly comply.

    Throughout the week, they are intentionally integrated into small groups of supportive peers and spend time connecting in meaningful ways. They’re reminded every day how much they are valued and are taught to recognize the value of their peers. They’re also stretched in healthy ways through choosing new hobbies to learn and activities to participate in.

    For instance, my little bookworm daughter chose to learn how to mountain bike last summer. She learned to rock climb and participated in musical theater. She stepped outside her comfort zone and was cheered on by fellow campers and her counselors as she did so. And she came home with more confidence because of it. I know firsthand that so many other summer campers have the same experience, and I’m so grateful that they do.

    The reality is that raising children isn’t just about helping them cope with their stress, anxiety, or suffering: It’s about raising them to flourish, overcome obstacles and grow because of them. It’s about raising them to see the best in others and cultivate the best in themselves. Most importantly, it’s about raising them to know that God loves them deeply, that they are precious in His sight, and that He has a purpose and a unique plan for each of their lives — despite how they may feel at times.

    No mom is ever alone in trying to raise strong, healthy girls. And no girl is ever alone in trying to grow up with self-confidence. Sometimes, we just need a summer at camp to remind us that it canhappen. 

    Amy Lowe is the director of WinShape Camps for Girls and oversees WinShape Camps for Families. She has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Samford University and a Master of Arts in Theology from Fuller Theological Seminary. Like most other moms, her hobbies include laundry, running the robot vacuum, and unloading the dishwasher.

    Jennifer Bauwens Op-ed: The ideology of relativism is unraveling


    By Jennifer Bauwens, Op-ed contributor | Monday, July 11, 2022

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/voices/the-ideology-of-relativism-is-unraveling.html/

    Premature baby | Getty Images

    What is truth? This is the question that Pilate, a leader in the first century, asked Jesus. As a government leader, Pilate had authority (or at least he thought) to give consent for Jesus to be condemned or released from a death sentence. While the populace was hungry for an execution, Pilate was confronted with the reality that he could find no fault in Jesus.

    To make matters worse, his wife wakes up from a disturbing dream and demands her husband should have nothing to do with this innocent man, Jesus. Confronted with his wife and his own conscience that testified to the innocence of Jesus, he decides to ignore these witnesses, and instead, he allows the desire to be accepted by the crowd counsel him rather than the voice of truth.

    It’s here that Pilate becomes the first social constructivist by asking the question, “What is truth?” Questioning the absolute nature of truth is what allowed Pilate to violate his conscience and participate in handing Jesus off to those who would murder and torture a blameless person, God Himself. I’m sure Pilate said to himself something like, “Jesus says he’s innocent, but who is he to say what innocence really means?”

    This same question, “What is truth?” has given rise to many of our contemporary debates. Behind this age-old question lurks the ideology we currently term social constructivism or relativism.

    Relativism is the notion that reality is a result of human interactions and cultural interpretations — in other words, reality is subjective. This ideology is clearly evidenced in the debate regarding abortion and human sexuality. Truth and the debate about it is what frames the questions: What is a baby? What is a woman? What is a child? What does consent really mean?

    First, the abortion issue, which we can’t forget largely owes its commercialized nature to the 20th century American eugenics movement. Planned Parenthood founder Margaret Sanger once described her goal as reducing “the ever increasing, unceasingly spawning class of human beings who never should have been born at all.” Although Sanger herself disliked abortion, her love affair with eugenics inspired those who held no qualms with the procedure. Alan Guttmacher, a subsequent president of Planned Parenthood, emphasized that “emotional, moral, and religious concepts” must be separated from abortion. In other words, truth must be separated from abortion.

    This is not to say proponents of abortion are in conscious agreement with eugenics. Rather, it is to illustrate the nefarious origins aimed at erasing certain people and human characteristics. Ultimately, the result of the abortion movement promotes parents, who are often struck by hardship or crisis, to turn away from their conscience and ask that age-old question, “What is truth?”

    Once this question has been injected into the process, the unborn child can be rebranded as just a “bunch of cells.” On the other hand, if the child is wanted by the parents, it is conveniently termed a human being. This strikes at the heart of social constructivism where the “truth” is dependent on the situation.

    Thankfully, with advances in medical science and ultrasound technology, it has become increasingly more difficult to deny the humanity of a baby inside the womb. Now, with the decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, we will continue to see an unraveling of the threads that have been used to weave together the social constructionist arguments for abortion which have gripped swaths of our society.

    But the abortion issue isn’t the only domain plagued by the constructivist ideology. More recently, if our children have been able to make it to full term in the womb, then proponents of gender ideology have come to legislate, teach, and counsel children into questioning the truth about their biology. The question, “What is truth?” hasn’t changed, it’s just dressed differently than with abortion proponents. Here, the ideology tells children that there’s no limit to how they can identify themselves, be it with a sex, an animal, and/or whatever aligns with their “true self.”

    As we see with the Dobbs decision that overturned Roe v. Wade, only the truth endures. Sometimes we must wait for truth to prevail, but in the end, the Truth isn’t just a concept — it is a person, Jesus. He outlasts every social and ideological trend. In this, we can also be assured that the Truth can set our children free who have been fed a lie.

    We can also take comfort as we watch the hold that constructivism has had on our society begin to further splinter with our highest court’s recent ruling. The Truth is winning. This is cause for celebration!


    Originally published at The Washington Stand. 

    Dr. Jennifer Bauwens serves as Director of the Center for Family Studies at Family Research Council. In her role, she researches and advocates for policies that will best serve the health and well-being of families and communities.

    The Epidemic of Fatherless Boys Is Unraveling Our Society


    BY: TIM GOEGLEIN | JULY 07, 2022

    Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/07/07/the-epidemic-of-fatherless-boys-is-unraveling-our-society/

    boy alone in shadows facing window

    New report finds that boys who have an absent father are less likely to graduate college, more likely to idle in their 20s, and more likely to go to jail.

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    Roland Warren, the former head of the National Fatherhood Initiative, when delivering the eulogy for his late father, said about the distant relationship he had with him as a child, “I was a little boy with a hole in my soul in the shape of my dad with unhealed wounds from years of feeling neglected and less than worthy.”

    A recent research brief by Brad Wilcox and his colleagues at the Institute for Family Studies (IFS) on how the lack of an involved father impacts boys verifies the effects of that “dad-shaped” hole on boys.

    In the brief, Wilcox reports that the percentage of boys living in homes without a biological father has almost doubled since 1960 – from 17 percent to 32 percent – resulting in an estimated 12 million boys growing up without a biological dad.

    Wilcox writes, “Lacking the day-to-day involvement, guidance, and positive example of their father in the home, and the financial advantages associated with having him in the household, these boys are more likely to act up, lash out, flounder in school, and fail at work as they move into adolescence and adulthood.”

    Thus, it quickly becomes evident how big that dad-sized hole can be and that hole can have lifelong implications, and often determines whether a boy will be a success or failure in life.

    For example, Wilcox and his colleagues report that 35 percent of boys with a present biological father obtain a college degree, compared to just 14 percent of boys who do not have a present biological father.

    While obtaining a college degree is not the only way to avoid poverty, a certain level of educational attainment is required if one wants to avoid poverty. But, according to the report, many fatherless boys are even struggling to achieve the most minimal level of educational attainment – a high school degree – which allows them to enter equipped for the workforce.

    These young men are directionless, or as Wilcox and his colleagues write, “The daily life of these men is often marked by hours in front of a screen, vaping, smoking marijuana, or under the influence of some other kind of substance.” They are not contributors, but instead bystanders.

    Secondly, our society plays a tragic price. According to the IFS brief, young men who grew up without a biological father are nearly twice as likely to be idle compared to those who grew up with an actively involved dad. In addition, they have significant anger issues which leads to legal problems as fatherless boys are about twice as likely to have spent some time in jail before they reach the age of 30.

    It is not a coincidence that the tragedies of Columbine, Sandy Hook, Buffalo, and Uvalde are all tied to angry young men.

    All of this is sobering enough. But there is another related problem. Growing up fatherless often makes young men poor candidates for marriage. Many women are aware of this. They can see the “holes in their soul” of the young men in their lives.

    So often we hear from women – where are the good men who have a purpose in life, who want to be successful at work and in the home? Instead, they see a lack of emotionally mature and stable men who are stuck in perpetual adolescence because they lack the role model of a biological father to guide them.

    Is it any wonder then that the average age of women getting married continues to climb as they see young men in their 20s still stumbling around directionless? It is a common lament we hear from so many young women, “I want to get married, but there are no men to marry.” 

    While not all dads are perfect, and there are some that are far from perfect, a father in the home still makes a major difference in the development of a boy into a man. A good father, in most cases, who invests in his son, ends up developing a successful man.

    As Wilcox and his colleagues write, “If we wish to revive the fortunes of today’s young men, we must help fathers teach their sons how to prepare better for adulthood, relationships, and marriage … These steps matter, not just for renewing the fortunes of young men, but also for the sake of women for good partners to love, marry, and start families in the future.”

    If we want a society of successful men who do not lash out in anger, who love and cherish their families, and are good citizens, those who are fathers must realize that it is our responsibility to pass those values on to our sons. If we are absent or distant, we do not only a disservice to these boys, but also to women, and society. If we take fatherhood seriously, we can raise a generation of boys with no “holes” in their soul and future generations will be better off for it.


    Tim Goeglein is the Vice President of Government and External Relations at Focus on the Family in Washington DC.

    Veteran-owned business announces it will cover employees’ parental leave, adoption costs


    Reported By Samantha Kamman, Christian Post Reporter

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/news/veteran-owned-business-covering-employees-pregnancy-adoption-costs.html/

    Father reading a book on the sofa with his baby daughter sleeping on his lap on the sofa. | Getty Images/ pabst_ell

    After corporations across the nation announced they would cover employees’ travel expenses to get abortions in other states following the U.S. Supreme Court decision overturning Roe v. Wade, a veteran-owned business in Texas has responded by offering to pay for employees’ parental leave and adoption costs. 

    The U.S. Supreme Court’s 6-3 ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, a case involving Mississippi’s 15-week abortion ban, stated that the Constitution does not confer a right to abortion, leaving individual states to determine its legality.

    In response, over 60 major companies stated their intentions to reimburse employees traveling for an abortion if they live in states that ban the practice, according to a list compiled by Reuters

    Instead of covering employees’ abortion-related travel expenses, Buffer Insurance announced in a June 27 post on its Facebook page that the company would provide benefits for employees who are giving birth to or adopting a baby. The company plans to cover the medical costs of childbirth or adoption and offer paid maternity or paternity leave.

    “After the overturn of Roe v. Wade, we took the opposite stance that these big corporations are making, and they’re making it easier for people to abort their babies. We want to make it easy for employees to grow their families,” Buffer Insurance President Sean Turner told The Christian Post in an interview. 

    “And then if employees want to grow their families through adoption, we want to pay towards those expenses as well,” he added. 

    Turner added that Buffer Insurance is working with “any and all” employers to help them implement the same benefits and offer them to their employees.

    “We realize that a lot of large corporations have some of these policies in place. But specifically, we’re a small and young company, so we really want to activate the majority of people who work for other small, midsize organizations,” he said. “So those are the ones that we think are going to have the most impact by implementing these types of policies of generosity in their own business.” 

    One of the ready-to-use policies Buffer Insurance promotes to other employers includes a lactation policy. Turner explained that this policy offers lactating mothers time to pump breast milk for their babies while they’re at work.

    In addition, Turner said that Buffer Insurance is working with employers to help them maximize the benefits and minimize the taxes associated with providing employees with bonuses. He explained that the idea is to offer employees resources and “avoid a lot of waste.” 

    “Let’s say, for example, an employer is saying, I want to give $5,000 to an employee’s birth. If they were just adding that to their employees’ check as a bonus, there are taxes that employers pay as well as the employee,” Turner said.

    “So maybe by the time they receive that, it’s only $4,200 or $3,200. So there are ways that we talk about in these resources to avoid those taxes, and it still is a 100% tax-deductible item for the employer.”

    “We really encourage business owners and business leaders in different communities to implement something like this that includes a lot of generosity towards their employees,” he concluded. 

    Earlier this month, The Walt Disney Co. promised in an internal memo obtained by CNBC that it would pay for employees to travel out of state for abortions. In addition to “family planning (including pregnancy-related decisions),” the coverage extends to non-pregnancy situations, including cancer treatments, transplants and rare disease treatment. 

    “Our company remains committed to removing barriers and providing comprehensive access to quality and affordable care for all of our employees, cast members and their families, including family planning and reproductive care, no matter where they live,” the memo reads. 

    Dozens of other companies, including DICK’S Sporting Goods, Goldman Sachs, Apple and Nike have also announced plans to reimburse employees traveling out of state for abortions.  

    Alan Cross Op-ed: America can — and must — be more American


    Commentary By Alan Cross| Tuesday, June 28, 2022

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/voices/america-can-and-must-be-more-american.html/

    Activists hold a banner in front of the US Supreme Court in Washington, DC, on June 18, 2020. The U.S. Supreme Court rejected President Donald Trump’s move to rescind the DACA program that offers protections to 700,000 undocumented migrants brought to the US as children. | NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP via Getty Images

    For the majority of my life, I held fairly traditional views on illegal immigration. It was based in my trust that America’s democratic political systems are rooted in liberty, justice, and fairness. 

    However, meeting Jose changed me. 

    Like me, Jose is a Baptist minister and fellow believer in Jesus Christ. We both were raised in America, graduated from an American education system, and have a family and community we love. Where we are different is that as a teenager, Jose became aware that he wasn’t an American citizen but instead an undocumented immigrant, limiting his opportunities and delivering uncertainty around his future in the only country he knew as home. 

    Jose exposed me to the fact that there are millions of people like him who are deemed illegal immigrants and did not choose this status when they first arrived in America at the age of 2 or even 11. In fact, many did not learn until later that they were not born in the U.S. Our society has labeled this population as “Dreamers,” and despite our American value of fairness, there is no path for them to make the right choice someone else made on their behalf. 

    Imagine celebrating your high school graduation only to be blindsided with new information that you don’t have legal government documents and there is no solution to fix it. You can’t pursue the careers you were taught to aspire to while in high school. You can’t leave the country for a mission trip overseas. You can’t get caught with a broken car light while driving to the grocery store. 

    In 2012, after years of Congress debating and failing to create an earned path to legal status for Dreamers, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) was introduced as a presidential executive order. 

    This policy created a special opportunity for Jose and roughly 600,000 other individuals to work legally, pursue college, buy a house and not fear deportation. 

    But as we approach the 10-year anniversary of DACA, the limited administrative policy stopped receiving new applicants, leaving millions more in limbo, including the 100,000 Dreamers who graduated from high schools across America this past May

    DACA also continues to face legal challenges and could be struck down by the courts at any moment this year. Jose would be faced with renewed risks of deportation and removal from his church, his family, and his community. 

    Americans are faced with a moral gravity to make things right for our neighbors like Jose. But fairness and justice for this unique population can only be permanently secured by Congress. 

    Voters are calling out for it and don’t want to wait until after the midterm elections. The National Immigration Forum published a poll in February that shows 8 in 10 voters support a pathway for legal status for Dreamers coupled with border security policies and smart visa reform to deliver a reliable workforce for farmers and ranchers. 

    In my home state, I find hope in U.S. Senator Alex Padilla’s (D-CA) promotion of the “Citizenship for Essential Workers Act” and in Congressman David Valadeo’s (R-CA-21) political courage to vote for the 2021 American Dream and Promise Act. Both sides can come together and show us how to live up to our own ideals as a nation. This is the year to get the right decisions across the finish line for Dreamers and for our country. 

    Alan Cross is the pastor of Petaluma Valley Baptist Church in Petaluma, California.

    Christian football coach wins Supreme Court case over being fired for praying on field after games


    Reported By Michael Gryboski, Mainline Church Editor 

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/news/supreme-court-sides-with-christian-coach-punished-for-praying-after-football-games.html/

    Coach Joe Kennedy at the Bremerton High School football field. | Courtesy of First Liberty Institute

    The United States Supreme Court has ruled that a Washington school district was wrong to punish a high school football coach for praying on the field after games. In a decision released Monday morning, the Supreme Court ruled 6-3 that the Bremerton School District discriminated against Coach Joe Kennedy. 

    Justice Neil Gorsuch delivered the court’s opinion, being joined by Chief Justice John Roberts and Justices Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito, Amy Coney Barrett and Brett Kavanaugh. 

    “Kennedy prayed during a period when school employees were free to speak with a friend, call for a reservation at a restaurant, check email, or attend to other personal matters. He offered his prayers quietly while his students were otherwise occupied. Still, the Bremerton School District disciplined him anyway,” wrote Gorsuch. 

    “Both the Free Exercise and Free Speech Clauses of the First Amendment protect expressions like Mr. Kennedy’s … The Constitution and the best of our traditions counsel mutual respect and tolerance, not censorship and suppression, for religious and nonreligious views alike.”

    In response to today’s opinion, Kennedy said, “This is just so awesome. All I’ve ever wanted was to be back on the field with my guys. I am incredibly grateful to the Supreme Court, my fantastic legal team, and everyone who has supported us. I thank God for answering our prayers and sustaining my family through this long battle.”

    Kelly Shackelford, president, CEO and chief counsel for First Liberty, a religious liberty law firm based in Plano, Texas, which represented Kennedy, hailed the court’s decision as a “tremendous victory for Coach Kennedy and religious liberty for all Americans.”  

    “Our Constitution protects the right of every American to engage in private religious expression, including praying in public, without fear of getting fired,” she added. “We are grateful that the Supreme Court recognized what the Constitution and law have always said — Americans are free to live out their faith in public.”

    Justice Sonia Sotomayor wrote a dissent, joined by Justices Stephen Breyer and Elena Kagan, in which she argued that “this Court consistently has recognized that school officials leading prayer is constitutionally impermissible.”

    “Official-led prayer strikes at the core of our constitutional protections for the religious liberty of students and their parents, as embodied in both the Establishment Clause and the Free
    Exercise Clause of the First Amendment,”
    she wrote. 

    “This decision does a disservice to schools and the young citizens they serve, as well as to our Nation’s longstanding commitment to the separation of church and state.”

    Paul Cement, former U.S. Solicitor General and First Liberty network attorney who argued Kennedy’s case before the Justices, said, “After seven long years, Coach Kennedy can finally return to the place he belongs — coaching football and quietly praying by himself after the game. This is a great victory for Coach Kennedy and the First Amendment.”

    A devout Christian, Kennedy had a practice of going to the 50-yard line after high school football games and praying, often with fans and students joining him. In 2015, the school district suspended Kennedy for praying on the field after games and later decided not to renew his contract because of his refusal to stop praying on the field. Kennedy sued the school district in 2016, accusing them of violating his religious freedom. 

    Earlier this year, Shackelford said First Liberty was representing Kennedy because “No teacher or coach should lose their job for simply expressing their faith while in public.”

    A three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruled against the coach in 2017, while the Supreme Court initially refused to hear his case in 2019. In March of last year, a three-judge panel of the Ninth Circuit again ruled against Kennedy, with Judge Milan D. Smith Jr. authoring the unanimous opinion.

    “[T]here is no doubt that an objective observer, familiar with the history of Kennedy’s practice, would view his demonstrations as BSD’s endorsement of a particular faith. For that reason, BSD had adequate justification for its treatment of Kennedy,” wrote Smith.

    “BSD had a compelling state interest to avoid violating the Establishment Clause, and it tried repeatedly to work with Kennedy to develop an accommodation for him that would avoid violating the Establishment Clause while nevertheless offering him options that were narrowly tailored to protect his rights …”

    In January, the Supreme Court agreed to hear an appeal in the case and heard oral arguments in late April, with the justices debating whether Kennedy’s prayer practice was coercive.

    Follow Michael Gryboski on Twitter or Facebook

    Michael Brown Op-ed: No matter what the midterms bring, it is still revival, or we die


    Commentary By Michael Brown, CP Op-Ed Contributor | Monday, June 13, 2022

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/voices/no-matter-what-the-midterms-bring-it-is-still-revival-or-we-die.html/

    Carol Braddock of Los Angeles casts a vote to take advantage of early voting at the Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk’s office in Norwalk, California October 25, 2012. | (Photo: Reuters/Alex Gallardo)

    Every day, there are examples of Americans pushing back against the agenda of the radical left. And every day, there are more signs that there could be a major political reaction against the leftist agenda in the midterm elections. But even with the best possible electoral outcome, without a sweeping revival in the church, America could still collapse.

    That’s because America’s greatest problems are spiritual and moral first, leading to the larger societal, political, and economic challenges we face. But unless the heart is cured, the body will die.

    One of my colleagues is an astute Christian attorney who has been on the front lines of the culture wars for decades, from the local courthouse to the Supreme Court.

    He recently tweeted this to a small group of leaders: “Unless something dramatic happens, the midterms will be a blood bath for progressives. VA was the first canary in the coal mine. The San Fran recall shows the train is picking up steam. Biden’s appearance on J Kimmel was an embarrassment, and Kimmel had to intervene to rescue him from rambling and losing his train of thought.”

    He continued, “A poll released today had his approval at 35% – lowest I’ve seen yet. If either chamber flips (and it likely will be both), it limits the harm he can do the last two years.”

    But then, the major caveat – and the real thrust behind his text.

    He wrote, “I think our biggest challenge may be communicating that a political reprieve is insufficient, and maybe even a distraction as a false sense of security; only a revival will save the nation. We’re fighting human nature. People are angry and frustrated. They will express it on Election Day and then settle back to life as usual, unaware the declining trend will continue. I’ve never seen so much focus on pride month as in this year, and the culture has largely caved into joining the celebration of sin. The election won’t do much to change that if there is not spiritual renewal.”

    I could not agree more, both in terms of his diagnosis of the problem and his warning about the danger.

    Bear in mind that this attorney has been politically active for years. In fact, I remember him speaking for our school and congregation back in the summer of 2009 when he told us about a major case that would make its way to the Supreme Court regarding same-sex “marriage.” He spoke of it as if it were a fait accompli, explaining that the deciding vote would be cast by Justice Anthony Kennedy.

    That is exactly how it played out, with Kennedy making the infamous choice to be the swing vote that redefined marriage in America.

    The organization that my colleague served for many years provides legal support for Christians and others whose rights are being challenged, helping them to fight back in their schools and places of business and churches. Their winning percentage is incredibly high, and to this day, I refer my friends to this organization when they come under attack for their religious beliefs and convictions.

    All that to say that my colleague is not encouraging political passivity. Quite the contrary.

    But he is reminding us that, even with a major shift towards the right and even with the potential of a Republican president and Congress by 2024, we will still have a massive amount of moral and cultural and spiritual rot at the core of America. Only a massive revival and awakening can turn the tide.

    That’s why, when I wrote Revival Or We Die in 2021, there was not an ounce of hyperbole in the title. (The subtitle was A Great Awakening Is Our Only Hope, also without any hyperbole.)

    That’s why it is imperative that we continue to emphasize the importance of personal and corporate repentance. And the centrality of prayer. And the priority of evangelism and disciple-making and church planting. And the ongoing need to build healthy bridges of reconciliation.

    That’s why we must keep the main things the main things. Otherwise, if we take our foot off the gas pedal of spiritual urgency, we will quickly find ourselves sliding further backward.

    Put another way, and to use a medical analogy, it is true that the patient is suffering from a host of ailments and sicknesses. But unless the doctors can stop his heart from failing, he will not be long on this earth.

    First, get the heart pumping blood and out of danger. Then, address the other ailments and sicknesses.

    Or, from another angle, it’s great that the other conditions are getting better, but it will be lost if the heart fails.

    On January 4 of this year, I posted an article titled, “2022: The Year to Take Back Ground!

    Since then, I have filed scores of articles and stories detailing that very trend. Americans are saying enough is enough on many fronts, and they are pushing back.

    This is all encouraging and positive, and some of it is the direct result of men and women standing up for their spiritual and moral principles.

    But, as we move closer to the midterm elections, we do well to heed my colleague’s concerns. To that end, you might want to bookmark this article and refer back to it from time to time.

    Dr. Michael Brown(www.askdrbrown.org) is the host of the nationally syndicated Line of Fire radio program. His latest book is Revival Or We Die: A Great Awakening Is Our Only Hope. Connect with him on FacebookTwitter, or YouTube.

    Secular intolerance of Christians’ views is leading to self-censorship, report warns


    Posted By Anugrah Kumar, Christian Post Contributor | June 13, 2022

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/news/secular-intolerance-of-christians-is-leading-to-self-censorship-report.html/

    Getty Images

    Secular intolerance has a “chilling effect” on Christians who are having to practice “various forms of self-censorship” as they’re finding it difficult to express their faith freely in society, according to a new report detailing accounts from four countries.

    “Secular intolerance has a chilling effect on Christians, which directly affects their capacity to express their faith freely in society and is leading to various forms of self-censorship,” says the report, titled “Perceptions on Self-Censorship: Confirming and Understanding the ‘Chilling Effect,’” which includes case studies from France, Germany, Colombia and Mexico.

    “Some people do indeed fear being subjected to legal proceedings or being criminally sanctioned on charges of discrimination, while others fear being subjected to disciplinary proceedings in their work or places,” notes the study, compiled by the Observatory on Intolerance and Discrimination Against Christians in Europe, the Observatory of Religious Freedom in Latin America and the International Institute for Religious Freedom.

    “With some exceptions, the majority chose to keep its expressions of faith or its opinions on issues related to life, marriage and the family from a Christian doctrine perspective private because they had witnessed sanctions or prosecutions to which colleagues or peers had been subjected,” it adds.

    Many incidents cited in the report might seem insignificant, the authors say, but “these many small things together cause ‘death by a thousand cuts.’”

    “A few cuts do not kill you and barely hurt. But continuous small strikes eventually have an impact. We posit that the accumulation of seemingly insignificant incidents creates an environment in which Christians do not feel comfortable — to some degree — to live their faith freely. Indeed, Western Christians experience a ‘chilling effect’ resulting from perceived pressures in their cultural environment, related to widely mediatized court cases.”

    Further, the study observes, “Because of the subtle and generally non-physically violent nature of the chilling effect, it is often misunderstood or even ignored and therefore largely remains invisible.”

    “This is the main reason why the phenomenon is not recognized in religious freedom datasets such as the Pew Research Center indexes,” the authors add. 

    The report also warns this form of censorship is not only limiting people’s exercise of religion or their right to manifest their convictions, “but also that these violations to the right to religious freedom can cause the disappearance of religion in a given context.”

    Madeleine Enzelberger, executive director of OIDAC Europe, said the study “raises the legitimate question of: how is it possible in a mature, liberal democratic society that stands for tolerance, diversity, and inclusive and open discourse, that people are frightened to freely speak their minds?” according to Christian Today.

    Many Christians interviewed as part of the study did not realize they were self-censoring. In some cases, they had self-censored to the extent that they now “stop seeing the characteristics related to self-censorship as a problem.”

    As one of its conclusions, the study laments that “the Church has allowed itself to be self-censored … Christian religious leaders have more freedom to express themselves freely (but they do not always take advantage of it).”

    To remedy this form of censorship, the authors suggest there’s “an urgent need to educate policymakers, public servants (including the police) and judges about religion to increase their religious literacy.”

    “We have seen that a high degree of religious illiteracy leads to misunderstanding of how religion informs behavior in different spheres of society and what the legitimate role of religion in the public domain is. Illiteracy therefore can consequently be the cause of ‘practical intolerance’ against Christians.”

    Shane Idleman Op-ed: America — weak and woke. We need more prophets, not puppets.


    Commentary By Shane Idleman, CP Guest Contributor | Tuesday, June 07, 2022

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/voices/america-weak-and-woke-we-need-more-prophets-not-puppets.html/

    Repentance from sin plus faith in Christ equals a new life. | Pixabay

    In a recent documentary, I discussed the rapid decline of America and the desperate need for serious prayer and fasting. To say that we are at a crossroads is an understatement — we are in the crosshairs.

    This is an urgent call to the pulpits of America. America’s lukewarm temperature is caused by a lack of fire in the pulpit and apathy in the pew. Leonard Ravenhill once lamented, “We need more prophets in our pulpits and less puppets.” That same cry goes out today. We simply cannot remain silent.   

    Is saving America the mission of the Church? 

    CNN recently released an article quoting pastor Andy Stanley who said, “saving America is not the mission of the church.” 

    I don’t know Pastor Stanley, nor do I know his heart, but he highlights a real dilemma in our nation — prophetic voices who lack humilityIn short, many bold preachers don’t weep before they whip (cf. John 2:13-16). But balancing love with anger over the condition of our nation, families, and churches is a hard balance to find. 

    People who say things such as, “Saving America is not the mission of the Church,” often use this phrase to justify their silence on important issues. Biblically speaking, it’s impossible to be non-confrontational to a culture hell-bent on rejecting God. We can’t be “unhitched” from God’s Word. 

    But Shane, can you answer the question? 

    Back to the question, “is saving America the mission of the Church?” Of course not, but shouldn’t we desire godly leaders and laws that align with God’s Word and not be shamed for it? Shouldn’t we want to protect our borders and our children without being chastised? Shouldn’t we be a voice to those who have no voice and stop the slaughtering of the innocent? 

    The dilemma Pastor Stanley and others face is that they can’t have their cake and eat it, too. They can’t avoid controversial topics in the hopes of not offending. Watering down difficult topics is exactly why America is drowning in a cesspool of moral relativism.  

    CNN quotes Stanley because, in their eyes, he supports their narrative. You won’t find secular news outlets quoting and supporting bold preachers. Why? Because bold, Christ-centered, truth elevating preaching exposes and dismantles their agenda. If secular news outlets are on your side, are you sure that you’re on the right side?

    Weak and woke won’t awaken 

    My goal isn’t to divide the Body of Christ, but to convict it. I don’t have a beef against Pastor Stanley (I’m sure he’s a great guy), but if a Christian leader says controversial things, can’t we lovingly challenge their words? This isn’t dividing the Body, rather it’s sharpening our iron (Proverbs 27:17). 

    Many of us are becoming weary of the silent pulpit that seems more comfortable slamming bold saints than confronting blatant sinners. Weak sermons from woke pastors won’t convict the sinners who need redemption. 

    A person who is considered “woke” prides themselves on being extra sensitive and aware of racial and social discrimination and injustice. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing. It all depends on the motive of the person using the phrase. 

    If we repent of our skin color, dislike policemen, disdain America, and support sexual perversion by our silence (all under the banner of “wokeness”), we are in deep trouble. If we won’t preach the truth because some in our audience are on the other side of the political spectrum, we aren’t pastors, we are appeasers. 

    Love of country over love of people 

    Love of country shouldn’t take precedence over love of people, but doesn’t loving people also mean loving the country in which they live? 

    What many are really saying is: If you vote for a mean-tweeting president, care about God-given freedoms, and talk about hot-button issues, you don’t love people. With all due respect, that simply is not true!

    Is it even possible for Christians to embrace a political party without hurting the feelings of the other party? No, it’s not. This is the dilemma of Pastor Stanley and other leaders. Instead of asking, “How can we not offend others?” they should be asking, “Are we offending God?” 

    There must appear a new type of preacher

    A.W. Tozer hit the nail on the head decades ago: “If Christianity is to receive a rejuvenation, it must be by other means than any now being used … there must appear a new type of preacher.”

    Tozer continues, “The proper, ruler-of-the-synagogue type will never do. Neither will the priestly type of man who carries out his duties, takes his pay and asks no questions, nor the smooth-talking pastoral type who knows how to make the Christian religion acceptable to everyone. All these have been tried and found wanting.”

    He concludes, “Such a man is likely to be lean, rugged, blunt-spoken and a little bit angry with the world. He will love Christ and the souls of men to the point of willingness to die for the glory of the One and the salvation of the other. But he will fear nothing that breathes with mortal breath.” God, give us more prophets and less puppets! 

    Appeasement — an exercise in futility 

    Those who have been called to preach will confront compromise, condemn moral digression, and powerfully denounce sin in the hope of reconciling man to God. The world despises them because they challenge the sin the world enjoys. Trying to please a Christ-rejecting world is an exercise in futility.

    Although ruffling feathers is not our goal, we will step on toes from time to time when we speak the truth. This can’t always be avoided, nor should it be. 

    Weak and woke won’t turn America around, but neither will pride and arrogance. Speaking the heart of God flows from a reservoir of brokenness and time spent with Him. How are you doing in this area? 

    Whether you’re on the Right or the Left, you must be on the right side of God’s Word. 

    We need more men like the Old Testament prophet Micaiah, who said, “As surely as the Lord lives, I will speak whatever the Lord tells me” (1 Kings 22:14).

    Shane Idleman is the founder and lead pastor of Westside Christian Fellowship in Lancaster, California, just North of Los Angeles. Shane’s sermons, articles, books, and radio program can all be found at shaneidleman.com or wcfav.org. He is the author of Feasting & FastingIf My PeopleDesperate for More of God, and Help! I’m Addicted. Follow him on Facebook at: facebook.com/confusedchurch. You can also follow Pastor Shane on the new free speech platform Parler https://parler.com/profile/ShaneIdleman/posts

    Virginia passes law defining religion as including ‘outward expression,’ not just ‘belief’


    Reported By Michael Gryboski | Mainline Church Editor | June 1, 2022

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/news/virginia-passes-law-protecting-outward-religious-expression.html/

    OWEN li | Unsplash/Owen li

    Virginia’s Republican Gov. Glenn Youngkin has signed a law that legally defines religion as including actions and expressions, not just personal belief, which is viewed as a win by religious liberty advocates. Known as House Bill 1063, the legislation defines the word “religion” as meaning “any outward expression of religious faith, including adherence to religious dressing and grooming practices and the carrying or display of religious items or symbols.” Youngkin spokesperson Macaulay Porter told The Christian Post in a statement Tuesday that the legislation is a “modest step” to advance religious liberty in Virginia.

    “Governor Youngkin has a firm spiritual foundation that guides his entire life and will use every ounce of his authority to protect Virginians’ First Amendment right to freely live out their faith,” Porter said. “HB 1063 is a modest step toward preserving religious freedom in the Commonwealth and the Governor hopes to continue to build on that in the future.”

    Alliance Defending Freedom, a conservative legal group that has argued religious liberty cases before the United States Supreme Court, applauded the passage of HB 1063. ADF Senior Counsel Gregory S. Baylor said that the measure “provides a necessary and helpful clarification in the law to help ensure Virginians won’t face discrimination simply for outwardly expressing their religious beliefs.”

    “Virginia law forbids discrimination on the basis of religion in multiple contexts yet fails to define the actual term ‘religion,’ which can leave Virginians vulnerable to hostile reactions to expressions of their faith,” said Baylor in a statement.  

    “We commend Gov. Youngkin and the Virginia General Assembly for resolving this ambiguity so that Virginians can freely live out their faith without fear of government punishment.”

    The bill was introduced by Del. Irene Shin, a Democrat representing northern Virginia, with the aim of protecting individuals with an outward religious expression like wearing a yarmulke or cross from being discriminated against.

    In April, after the legislation passed both houses of the General Assembly in unanimous votes, Youngkin offered an amendment to HB 1063 that would have instead defined religion as “all aspects of religious observance, practice, or belief.”

    Shin denounced this change of language, claiming in a statement posted to Twitter that it “perverts the intention of this legislation and the legislative body.” After maintaining that Youngkin “hijacked my bill to push his own insidious, right-wing agenda,” Shin unveiled the hashtag #GetYourOwnDamnBill to highlight her disapproval of the amendment. 

    Last week Gov Youngkin aka Wolf in Fleece Clothing™ amended my bill HB1063.

    I’m furious he hijacked my bill to push his own insidious, right-wing agenda. Maybe I should be used to it by now but nah I’m still appalled by his recklessly divisive policies.#GetYourOwnDamnBillpic.twitter.com/f41xQgV5Ah— irene shin ???????? (@ireneshintweets) April 21, 2022

    “The practical implications of the Governor’s amendment would be to create legal protections for discriminatory and bigoted policies, acts and beliefs under the guise of religion,” she continued.

    “The fact that this Administration would co-opt a universally approved bipartisan measure designed to ensure equal protections and weaponize it to advance their agenda of discrimination and division, while sadly unsurprising, is still appalling.”

    Although the governor’s amended version of HB 1063 passed the Republican-controlled House of Delegates in a vote of 52-48 last month, it was not taken up by the Democrat-controlled Senate in time for the governor’s action deadline.   

    HB 1063 was one of 23 bills Youngkin signed into law Friday, as the regular session of the 162nd Virginia General Assembly came to a close. He acknowledged that “while most of these bills were returned to me in an imperfect form, I firmly believe they offer a bipartisan path forward.”  The governor vetoed an additional seven bills sent to him by the legislature.

    Oklahoma bans most abortions throughout entire pregnancy


    Reported By Michael Gryboski, Mainline Church Editor | Thursday, May 26, 2022

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/news/oklahoma-bans-most-abortions-throughout-entire-pregnancy.html/

    Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt. | Facebook/ Governor Kevin Stitt

    Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt signed a new law Wednesday that bans most abortions through all nine months of pregnancy, with the measure being enforced via litigation brought by private citizens. Stitt signed House Bill 4327, which was modeled off of a Texas law that bans most abortions after six weeks into a pregnancy but uses private civil actions to enforce the legislation. While Stitt had previously signed a six-week abortion ban, this new law bars abortions through the entire length of a pregnancy, making it one of the most restrictive abortion laws in the United States. Exceptions include rape, incest and life-threatening medical emergency for the mother.

    In a statement, Stitt said he promised to “sign every piece of pro-life legislation” that came across his desk.

    “l and I am proud to keep that promise today,” he declared. 

    “From the moment life begins at conception is when we have a responsibility as human beings to do everything we can to protect that baby’s life and the life of the mother,” Stitt said.

    “That is what I believe and that is what the majority of Oklahomans believe. If other states want to pass different laws, that is their right, but in Oklahoma, we will always stand up for life.”

    The law allows for private individuals to sue abortion providers and anyone who “aids or abets” a woman seeking an abortion.

    The Center for Reproductive Rights said in a statement that Oklahoma is the first state to enact a “citizen-enforced total ban on abortion.” A coalition of abortion providers and a “reproductive justice” organizations will imminently file a lawsuit hoping to block the law in court. 

    “Banning abortion after six weeks was not extreme enough for Oklahoma lawmakers,” Center for Reproductive Rights President Nancy Northup said in a statement. “The goal of the anti-abortion movement is to ensure no one can access abortion at any point for any reason.”

    The Oklahoma bill was denounced by the White House last week when it passed the state legislature. Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre called abortion a “fundamental right” and labeled HB 4327 “the most extreme effort to undo these fundamental rights we have seen to date.”

    “In addition, it adopts Texas’ absurd plan to allow private citizens to sue their neighbors for providing reproductive health care and helping women to exercise their constitutional rights,” she continued.

    “This is part of a growing effort by ultra MAGA officials across the country to roll back the freedoms we should not take for granted in this country.”

    Last December, the U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments on the case of Dobbs v. Jackson, which centers on a Mississippi law banning most abortions after 15 weeks into a pregnancy. If the high court upholds Mississippi’s 15-week abortion ban, it could overturn or weaken the landmark 1973 opinion in Roe v. Wade, which prohibited laws restricting abortion before the unborn child attains viability.

    Earlier this month, Politico published a leaked draft opinion in the Dobbs case, which indicated that the Supreme Court would overturn Roe and allow states to decide their abortion laws. Although Politico acknowledged that the draft opinion was not final and did not necessarily mean Roe would be overturned, the report nevertheless sparked numerous protests and several acts of vandalism against churches and pro-life pregnancy resource centers. A ruling is expected by the end of June. If Roe is overturned, 21 states would either ban or severely restrict abortion, 16 states will continue to allow abortion throughout most or all of pregnancy. Existing abortion restrictions would remain in effect in 10 states. 

    Follow Michael Gryboski on Twitter or Facebook

    The Left Has Effectively Banned Christian Kids from Public Pools, Libraries, And Summer Camps


    POSTED BY: JOY PULLMANN | MAY 23, 2022

    Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/05/23/the-left-has-effectively-banned-christian-kids-from-public-pools-libraries-and-summer-camps/

    girl scouts at camp

    Forcing children to sleep and undress next to kids of the opposite sex effectively puts up a ‘Christian kids need not apply’ sign on public recreation activities.

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    This spring I got an email from 4-H, a club I participated in as a child, effectively communicating that my Christian family need not apply to summer camps and other activities sponsored by the quasi-public organization. (County governments often sponsor 4-H activities.) This email was signed by a 4-H staffer who put pronouns in his signature and told me, “Youth are assigned cabins based on gender indicated on the 4-H camp application and registration,” suggesting children were roomed by gender identity rather than sex.

    Naturally, I was concerned that my tween daughter and son might be roomed overnight with an emotionally disturbed camper or counselor if I enrolled them in this camp. Based on numerous reported stories, I know that if this did happen, the camp likely would not even tell me, so I’d only hear about it after the fact from my kids. When I emailed again to confirm I was understanding this correctly, the staffer refused to answer definitively whether campers could be placed in private facilities such as bedrooms and bathrooms with transgender individuals. That’s an unacceptable risk to children’s well-being, as well as a lawsuit waiting to happen.

    Given how socially contagious LGBT identification is, it’s not just about transgender issue but also exposing children to sexual information and pressures far earlier than they are ready. Hand in hand with grouping children by gender identity is forcing conversations about what that means, which pushes children earlier and earlier to declare and investigate sexual behaviors. This is destabilizing to their identity, not “affirming” it.

    Given 4-H national’s commitment to the toxic “diversity, equity, inclusion” ideology, the fact that my Christian kids now cannot equally access lots of their programming due to 4-H’s choice to sexualize their activities was no surprise. But I still wanted to see in writing that my red county in my red state was indeed giving tax breaks and other government privileges to an organization that might room children overnight with troubled people of the opposite sex against their parents’ will. The answer is yes. (Thanks, Republicans!)

    Everywhere We Go, Someone Wants to Talk Dirty to My Kids on the Public Dime

    It’s not just places kids get naked. It’s everywhere. I cannot take my children to the public library anymore, either, because the shelves are so full of pornographic and hostile books that it’s not a safe place for them. There, too, self-righteous LGBT activism has resulted in effectively banning my children from yet another public place and weaponizing my own tax dollars against my children’s safety. The shelves and displays in our library are full of books telling my children lies such as that “men can become women” and “some boys have girl brains” and “gender is a social construct.” I’m happy to have these conversations with my children when they are ready, but I know my six-year-old, and he is not ready. My eight-year-old is not ready, and neither are my 10- and 11-year-old, frankly. It’s grotesque and evil to put books at their eye level that deliberately aim to confuse them about something so deep and important. To do this is to usurp not only my parental wisdom and authority over my own children but to usurp my children’s right to an innocent, emotionally secure childhood.

    It Won’t Happen, And When It Does, You Bigots Will Deserve It

    These all prove that rapidly rewriting American laws to ignore sexual differences has effectively banned Christian families from equal participation in public facilities and activities. It’s not just Christian families, it’s any family that thinks it imprudent to lodge their sometimes-undressed daughters with an emotionally traumatized male at summer camp or to obtain swimming lessons at a public pool. This all descends from the massive bait and switch inherent to the LGBT policy agenda. We were told it was only about extending government sanction to what consenting adults do behind closed doors. We were told it was about allowing people to visit loved ones in hospice and inherit without legal difficulties. It wasn’t going to affect our families, remember?

    Anyone who raised concerns about how calling sexual activities that cannot create a family “marriage” would affect children, faith, and families was smeared as a know-nothing bigot. Anyone who wanted to logically think through how legally equating men to women in the social keystone of marriage would have a domino effect on many other laws and social arrangements was also smeared as a hateful bigot, all the way up to highly intelligent and reasoned Supreme Court dissents. It’s the same toxic play we’ve seen work ever since: Anyone with a contrary opinion or even unanswered questions is not engaged, but simply smeared.

    Men and Women Are Different, And That Matters

    The fact is that equating homosexual relationships to marriage very often requires explaining adult sexual behaviors to tiny children. Erasing the differences between the sexes in marriage also leads irrevocably to erasing the differences between the sexes everywhere else, from bathrooms to pools to summer camps. Breaking down all sexual differences also results in discrimination against religious expressions that acknowledge men and women are different, and these differences are divinely ordered.

    Thus upending the natural sexual order has resulted, not in the falsely promised “equality,” but in simply flipping which social system will rule. For what we were prevented from discussing or even seeing was the fact that these two regimes — treating the sexes as different and complementary versus seeing them as neutered and interchangeable — are mutually exclusive.

    You cannot have both transgender swimmers and single-sex sports competition. You cannot have both the sexual profligacy pushed by the dominant LGBT activist class and protect children from sexualized childhoods and predatory social situations. You must have one or the other.

    In the absence of clarity about this reality combined with effective use of power on reality’s behalf, abrasive, antisocial activists have fully taken over every public space. Any further sorties are merely tinkering around the edges of their all-encompassing kingdom.

    Children Are No Longer a Protected Class, They’re Targets for Groomers

    So instead of achieving equality, what we have really achieved is the subversion of children’s developmental needs to adult desires. Instead of equality, we have replaced legal preferences for the only sexual arrangement that produces the most stable future citizens — lifelong married biological parents — with legal preferences for sexual arrangements that harm children and send religious folk to the back of the public bus.

    Therefore, all who believe in protecting children from marinating in sexual imagery and ideas everywhere they go are the new underclass in our political regime, and in many cases no Republican officials will even recognize our legitimate concerns, let alone fight for our daughters. That’s certainly the case here in Indiana, where Republican Gov. Eric Holcomb won’t sign bare-minimum legislation protecting girls’ sports and nobody is even talking about making our libraries, camps, and pools safe for families (even though that’s one of the few value-added policies a state like Indiana can offer its citizens).

    Many of our major public and private institutions are making the public square completely hostile to a happy childhood and faith. Their “solution” to alleged bigotry was institutionalizing actual bigotry. “Our kind” aren’t wanted in “their” territory, you see. Maybe we would be allowed to have separate pools and summer camps funded by our own money, as long as the ACLU doesn’t sue them out of existence like they do Christian hospitals and foster care agencies.

    What we weren’t told was that letting homosexuals out of the closet would require stuffing all the children and Christians inside.


    Joy Pullmann is executive editor of The Federalist, a happy wife, and the mother of six children. Sign up here to get early access to her next ebook, “101 Strategies For Living Well Amid Inflation.” Her bestselling ebook is “Classic Books for Young Children.” Mrs. Pullmann identifies as native American and gender natural. She is also the author of “The Education Invasion: How Common Core Fights Parents for Control of American Kids,” from Encounter Books. In 2013-14 she won a Robert Novak journalism fellowship for in-depth reporting on Common Core national education mandates. Joy is a grateful graduate of the Hillsdale College honors and journalism programs.

    Disney launches LGBT clothing line for kids; critics blast company for promoting ‘sexual confusion’


    Reported By Samantha Kamman, Christian Post Reporter | Thursday, May 19, 2022

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/news/disney-launches-new-lgbt-clothing-line-for-children.html/

    People from the Walt Disney Company participate in the annual LA Pride Parade in West Hollywood, California, on June 9, 2019. | DAVID MCNEW/AFP via Getty Images

    Disney has released a new “Pride Collection” clothing line for children amid controversy surrounding the corporation’s reaction to Florida’s new parental rights in education bill and reported efforts to include LGBT advocacy in its children’s programming. The family entertainment company launched the new fashion line on Monday, featuring merchandise such as sweaters, T-shirts, baby clothes and other items, all bearing the rainbow pride flag that symbolizes the LGBT movement. The collection’s launch comes two weeks before the start of so-called pride month, which LGBT activists recognize each June. 

    Many of the products also include LGBT-themed images of iconic Disney character Mickey Mouse and the company’s Star Wars, Marvel and Pixar franchises. The company is selling the items through its “shopDisney” online store, Disney retail shops and theme parks. 

    “The Disney Pride Collection was created by LGBTQIA+ employees and allies at The Walt Disney Company and is a reflection of their incredible contributions and place at the heart of the company,” the corporation wrote in a statement announcing the clothing line. “We stand in solidarity with our LGBTQIA+ community everywhere.”

    In an opinion piece published by The Daily Citizen, Zachary Mettler, staff writer and communications liaison for the Christian organization Focus on the Family, contended that Disney is “targeting” children with an LGBT agenda. 

    “The new clothing line is just a part of Disney’s continued push to promote sexual confusion in children,” Mettler told The Christian Post. “Children weren’t designed to carry the weight of adult sexuality.” 

    He further suggested that Disney is trying to plant the idea into children’s heads that same-sex couples marrying is morally the same as a marriage between a man and a woman. He said the family entertainment company is attempting to teach children that gender is malleable, something he envisions will “confuse” and negatively impact them when they become young adults.

    In its announcement of the clothing line, Disney pledged to donate the entirety of the collection’s proceed’s now through June 30 to various LGBT activist organizations, including: Ali Forney Center, GLSEN, LGBTQ Center OC, Los Angeles LGBT Center, PFLAG National, SF LGBT Center, The Trevor Project and the Zebra Coalition. 

    Mettler views this as a sign that the corporation has become more vocal about its stance on LGBT issues than in previous years.

    According to Fox Business, the corporation has produced pride-themed clothing for children every year since 2018 but previously donated only a small percentage of the profits. This year, the company also renamed the fashion line from Rainbow Disney Collection to the Disney Pride Collection.

    “I think parents especially need to be aware of the content that their children are consuming and, ideally, will proactively discuss these issues with them. Particularly topics on sexuality and gender identity, so that their children know how to navigate the content that these organizations promote,” Mettler said. 

    On March 11, Walt Disney Company CEO Bob Chapek apologized to employees via a letter for not taking a firmer stance against Florida bill HB 1557. The law prohibits sexual orientation and gender identity instruction for students in kindergarten through third grade and requires schools to notify parents about their child’s healthcare services on campus. Disney initially remained neutral about the legislation that critics derided as a “Don’t Say Gay” bill, changing its stance after criticism from LGBT employees and supporters. The company condemned the bill in a March 28 statement, declaring that it “should never have passed and should never have been signed into law.” 

    A few weeks after the company first criticized the bill publicly, leaked video footage obtained by the Manhattan Institute’s Christopher Rufo showed Disney employees discussing their efforts to promote an LGBT message in the company’s children’s programming. During the meeting, Latoya Raveneau, an executive producer at Disney, praised the showrunners of the company’s “Proud Family” reboot for adhering to her “not-at-all secret gay agenda.” The spinoff of the children’s animated series features new characters, including a same-sex couple. 

    Franklin Graham, CEO of Samaritan’s Purse and the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, said Disney has

    “gone too far” in a Facebook post last month. 

    “What has happened at Disney is moral failure,” Graham insisted. “Walt Disney had a vision for wholesome family entertainment. He was committed to the family. The morals of the corporate leadership of Disney today are in the gutter, and they want to redefine family counter to God’s original design and flaunt sin.”

    Most US voters oppose body mutilating sex-change surgeries for kids but too afraid speak up: poll


    Reported By Ryan Foley, Christian Post Reporter | Wednesday, May 18, 2022

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/news/most-american-voters-oppose-trans-surgeries-for-kids-but-afraid-to-speak-up.html/

    Getty/Drew Angerer

    Although most Americans oppose allowing surgeons to perform sex-change operations on children and teenagers suffering from gender dysphoria and teaching young children about sexual orientation and gender identity in schools, many are afraid to speak about such hot-button issues due to fear of retribution.

    Summit Ministries, in conjunction with McLaughlin & Associates, conducted a poll of 1,000 general election voters between April 22-26 and asked respondents for their views on LGBT issues, specifically the debate about body mutilation surgeries for minors and teaching matters related to sexual orientation and gender identity to young children. One question asked participants to share their “personal opinions about transgenderism,” specifically whether they

    • “believe it is a healthy human condition that should be celebrated” or
    • “do not believe it is a healthy human condition.”

    Those who selected the latter option had the opportunity to clarify whether they “stay silent on the issue to not offend others” or are “willing to say so.”

    A majority of respondents (56%) indicated that they do not believe transgenderism is a “healthy human condition.” Twenty-seven percent hold that view and are willing to share it in public, while 29% elect to remain silent about their true beliefs on the issue. Thirty-two percent of Americans characterized transgenderism as a “healthy condition.”

    The differing responses to that question reflect the partisan divide among demographic subgroups, with majorities of liberals (61%), those who approve of President Joe Biden’s job performance (52%), Democrats (51%) and those who plan on voting for Democrats in the upcoming congressional elections (51%) viewing transgenderism as healthy, and pluralities or majorities of all other subgroups seeing it as “not healthy.”

    An overwhelming majority of those surveyed (78%) told pollsters that minors suffering from gender confusion should “be required to wait until they are legal adults” before undergoing life-altering surgeries, such as removing breast tissue and genital mutilation, including removing one’s testicles (an orchidectomy) or severing the penis to create a cavity (a vaginoplasty).

    By contrast, 9% said gender-confused children “should be encouraged to undergo permanent gender alteration.” Majorities of all subgroups agreed that children should have to wait until adulthood before they undergo elective, life-changing elective operations.

    Requiring “medical professionals performing gender-altering procedures” to “disclose the common, long-term medical and psychological impact of such procedures” received an even higher level of support among all demographic groups. Eighty-one percent of respondents supported requiring the disclosure of side effects associated with body mutilation surgeries, while 9% opposed the idea. 

    The questions about body mutilation surgeries for minors come as some states, including Arizona and Arkansas, have banned the procedures for children due to concerns about their longterm effects.

    As Florida continues to face pushback from LGBT activists for enacting a law prohibiting school officials from engaging in discussions about sexual orientation and gender identity with students in kindergarten through third grade, the poll demonstrated opposition to such discussions among the American public. 

    When asked to weigh in on “schools teaching about sexual identity and sexual behavior with elementary-age children,” 38% of respondents described such instruction as “inappropriate in a school setting,” while an additional 28% said it was “dangerous because it could lead to children being groomed for sexual encounters at a young age.” Slightly more than one-fourth (26%) of participants thought such material was “appropriate in a school setting.” 

    Liberals are the most likely demographic subgroup to view the discussion of sexual orientation and gender identity at school as “appropriate” (54%), followed by those who approve of President Joe Biden’s job performance (47%), those planning on voting Democrat in the upcoming congressional elections (46%), Democrats (44%), those who supported Biden in the 2020 presidential election (43%), those residing in urban areas (32%) and African Americans (30%). 

    Besides rural Americans, pluralities of all other subgroups believe that such instruction is “inappropriate.” A plurality of those living in rural areas (40%) think teaching children about sexual orientation and gender identity is “dangerous.” 

    Another question asked whether it was “possible to distinguish between men and women.”

    An overwhelming majority of those surveyed (89%) answered in the affirmative, while 7% said “no.” A narrower majority of respondents (53%) disagreed with the idea that “a person’s biological sex and their gender are two separate things.” Thirty-six percent of the sample agreed with the proposition that an individual’s biological sex is different from their gender. 

    Majorities of liberals (62%) planning on voting for Democrats in the upcoming election, those who voted for Biden in the 2020 presidential election (53%), Democrats (52%), and those who approve of Biden’s performance as president (52%), view biological sex and gender identity as distinct, while majorities of all other subgroups do not.

    A separate poll conducted by the American Principles Project of voters in battleground states from May 2-6 yielded similar findings. The poll surveyed 1,200 likely voters in Arizona, Georgia, Nevada, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin, all states that have competitive U.S. Senate races this year. The survey found that 56% of respondents residing in battleground states supported laws banning minors from obtaining puberty blockers, cross-sex hormones and medicalized gender transition surgeries, while 31% opposed them.

    The American Principles Project poll also revealed that 60% of Americans living in battleground states supported laws banning school officials from discussing sexual orientation and gender identity with students in kindergarten through third grade, while 34% opposed such laws.

    Ryan Foley is a reporter for The Christian Post. He can be reached at: ryan.foley@christianpost.com

    In post-Roe world, pro-lifers will be there for women and babies: Lifeline president


    Posted By Samantha Kamman, Christian Post Reporter | Tuesday, May 17, 2022

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/news/pro-life-centers-ready-to-help-women-babies-if-roe-goes.html/

    A pregnant woman is seen getting an ultrasound scan. | PIXABAY

    With the U.S. Supreme Court potentially poised to overturn decades of precedent making abortion a national right, national and local pregnancy resource centers are making preparations to support women and babies in a post-Roe world.

    “The truth of the matter is, Lifeline [Children’s Services] and other organizations like ours, we’re ready,” Lifeline President Herbie Newell said in an interview with The Christian Post. “We’re scaled for the ability to help more women.”

    Newell’s organization helps pregnant women create an adoption plan and build skills through budgeting and job training classes. Lifeline currently has just under 200 staff members working in 16 states throughout the U.S. and about 60 international partners and staff members. It is primarily funded through donor and corporate support and private grants. 

    While optimism in the pro-life community builds as the nation’s high court is expected to issue a ruling in the coming weeks on Mississippi’s 15-week abortion ban, Newell said his organization is about as ready as they’ve ever been for the overturning or weakening of the court’s 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling that interpreted abortion access as a right under the 14th Amendment. 

    According to a May 2 Politico report, a leaked draft opinion shows that the court’s Republican-appointed Justices may be leaning toward reversing Roe. A statement the following day by the court verified the authenticity of the draft opinion but also said the draft does not reflect the final ruling. 

    “We’ve already recruited and prepared church partners and legal partners to be able to get those women to the best places where they can be helped,” Newell said. “In the last year, we have scaled to the point where we’re ready to work with women in all 50 states and even in the states where we may not have a physical presence.”

    Another organization that is ready to scale up its services in a post-Roe world is the Human Coalition, a national collective that has aided thousands of mothers through the years in making the hard choice to give birth instead of abort. The organization’s “unique” telecare services connect women to needed resources.  Human Coalition President Jeff Bradford told CP that his organization is forming partnerships with state governments — particularly pro-life states like Texas — and local pregnancy centers to connect women with supportive services. Over the last year and a half, Human Coalition has brought on specialists to connect women to employment, housing or education services. They’ve also approached pastors throughout the country and equipped them with information about the group and its partners. Human Coalition plans to launch a “pilot program” in Texas sometime this summer to help reduce infant morbidity. Bradford said Human Coalition is working with doctors to help promote healthy pregnancies and connect women with early OB/GYN care.  

    “We’re looking at programs that can help women, especially those that are in vulnerable situations, socioeconomic situations that are more difficult for that,” Bradford said. “And we want to make sure that we, as the pro-life movement and the Church, can come alongside her and help.” 

    Roland Warren, the president and CEO of Care Net, believes it’s a “misconception” that the only response to a potential overturn of Roe is building more pregnancy centers. Care Net provides practical support services to women and families, operating more than 1,100 affiliates throughout the country.

    “You have to understand it’s not just about the woman. It’s not just about saving the baby. It’s about reaching the guy, creating a family,” he told CP. 

    On March 4, the organization hosted the first pro-life men’s conference in Dallas, Texas, inviting men to participate in supporting pregnancy centers. Care Net plans to host another conference within 12 to 18 months. Care Net has also increased the number of coordinators involved in its Life Disciples Progam, recently hiring new coordinators in Florida and Texas. The program equips churches to come alongside and support women and men contemplating their pregnancy decisions. 

    Warren believes that the pregnancy center model alone — care from conception to birth — is not enough in a post-Roe society. 

    “The model has to be engaging guys, so he’s that support,” Warren said. “And if that’s not possible, then the Church comes in and steps in to assist.”

    More than 2,000 churches have purchased and implemented the discipleship kit since Care Net began the program in 2015. According to Warren, that number has continued to grow over the years. 

    Executive Director Susan Barrett of the Chicago-based Aid for Women pregnancy care centers said the organization opened two additional centers in Waukegan and Wheeling, Illinois, last year. Aid for Women has five center locations. In addition to pregnancy support services, the organization offers maternity housing — Heather’s House and Monica’s House. The organization states on its website that many women choose abortion because they “lack adequate housing or will be otherwise homeless if they choose life.”

    Aid for Women recently hired three nurses and sonographers, and Barrett said there are plans to potentially implement telehealth services. But the most significant push right now is to expand the number of hours at each location, she said. 

    “So, we’re definitely looking at different ways to expand and to meet the needs,” Barrett said. 

    Caring Network President Kirt Wiggins, who leads a network of Illinois-based pregnancy resource centers, estimates the number of women seeking abortions in Illinois will be in the “thousands” if Roe falls. Illinois is among 16 states that have over the years enshrined abortion access into state law in case Roe is overturned. According to Illinois.gov., over 46,000 abortions took place in Illinois in 2020, and over 9,600 women traveled out of state for an abortion. 

    Wiggins said that Caring Network was already strategizing about outreach efforts for the last two years before Dobbs and the leak. The possibility that Roe could be overturned added a “greater sense of urgency” to the organization’s work. Caring Network has hired three new pregnancy consultants and one marketing writer within the last few months. They’re also looking to implement a telecare clinic to serve women out of state before they travel to Illinois for an abortion.

    The third measure involves building new centers in the most “strategic” locations in Illinois to reach more women.

    “I feel like the Lord has helped us be ready for this,” Wiggins said. “I’m thankful we’ve been able to be thinking it through well and planning well.” 

    Hedieh Mirahmadi Op-ed: Be very wary of the US thought police


    Commentary By Hedieh Mirahmadi, Exclusive Columnist | Thursday, May 12, 2022

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/voices/be-very-wary-of-the-us-thought-police.html/

    It was astonishing when I first read about the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Disinformation Governance Board.

    In my 20 years of government service fighting terrorism, the most complicated element of our work was protecting the sanctity of free speech while preventing radicalization. We watched young Americans leave their families to either marry a stranger or die in a foreign war but could do nothing about it because they had not committed a crime. They believed the persuasive pleas of the recruiters and wanted to be part of something bigger than themselves.

    Civil rights groups, free speech activists, and others were very wary of our efforts. They claimed we were infringing on religious freedom and free speech by monitoring the recruiters’ activity. Back then, the social media giants wanted no part in censoring online profiles unless they advocated the violent overthrow of the U.S. or encouraged acts of violence. We understood it as Americans; we are not in the business of policing ideas, however unpopular they may be.

    The Supreme Court even established “an imminent threat” standard to ensure we did not regulate grossly unpopular or hateful speech. So, it was not until groups like ISIS and Al-Shabab were officially designated as foreign terrorist organizations that criminal charges could be imposed for recruitment and/or material support. 

    Fast forward to today, and this new board is tasked with addressing the threat of disinformation. The repeated use of the word “threat” by DHS Secretary Mayorkas should be a cause for concern. It purposely creates connectivity between disinformation and the potential for physical harm, so there is a crime that can be investigated and eventually prosecuted.

    We already have laws to address any potential harm stemming from intentionally providing false information. There are civil penalties in defamation and slander cases and criminal charges for perjury or obstruction of justice against government officials. However, the Constitution does not allow the government to punish the exaggeration of a story or having a different opinion from the cultural norm.

    Look, for example, at all the controversy surrounding the Hunter Biden laptop. What was commonly touted as a wacky MAGA conspiracy was eventually demonstrated to be fact. Same with the research about the utility of masks in fighting off COVID infections and the risks associated with vaccines. Just because something may sound outlandish to some does not mean it’s false. The power of free speech is that the marketplace of ideas allows our opinions to evolve and change with new data. Isn’t that how we defeated slavery and gave women equal rights?

    This recent push to criminalize “unpopular” speech started with the backlash against the parental rights movement. Passionate and angry parents at school board meetings triggered the Justice Department to issue a memo about prosecuting the “threat” to school officials. Soon after, DHS issued a National Terrorism Advisory, warning of a heightened terrorism threat caused by disinformation introduced by foreign or domestic actors. Consider the language of the bulletin very carefully:

    “These threat actors seek to exacerbate societal friction to sow discord and undermine public trust in government institutions to encourage unrest, which could potentially inspire acts of violence.”

    The alarming conclusion is this: Our leading national security agency says the most significant domestic terrorism threat today is from people who share unpopular ideas with others, which could make them angry enough to commit a crime. To address this apparent threat, they create a Disinformation Governance Board to advise the operational departments of DHS on who to investigate and possibly prosecute for these alleged crimes.

    I am shocked and dismayed this is happening in the public service sector, where I dedicated most of my professional career. How is the U.S. government suddenly the arbiter of “truth?” And why is lack of public trust defined now as a potential terrorism threat?

    As if the unconstitutionality of regulating truth in the public square was not bad enough, the choice to govern the Disinformation Board makes it obvious who is the intended target of this effort. Nina Jankowicz, a clearly left-leaning social activist, has already labeled opponents of CRT “disinformers” and considers gender-based harassment online to be a national security threat, equal to terrorism. 

    U.S. law enforcement power should never be partisan. We saw how damaging that was during the Russian collusion debacle when corruption in senior leadership tarnished the stellar reputation of the FBI. DHS and FBI officials are also never meant to be the thought police. We pride ourselves on that as Americans. Thankfully, many legislators are voicing their objections to this partisan attempt to silence opposition.

    Marsha Blackburn from Tennessee wrote to DHS that the “federal government has no place interfering with the rights of all Americans to speak publicly about their political views … In fact, the Supreme Court has made it abundantly clear that this kind of ‘core political speech’ is the primary object of First Amendment protection.” Ranking Senator Rob Portman said, “I do not believe that the United States government should turn the tools that we have used to assist our allies counter foreign adversaries onto the American people.”

    It is no secret that the U.S. has directly engaged in “disinformation” campaigns in countries worldwide to defeat communism, totalitarianism, and in many cases, terrorist recruitment. The American people should not tolerate its government now turning around to tell us what truth we can or should believe.

    As Christians, even those who try to remain “apolitical” must realize we will be the greatest casualty of this effort. Our truth about who Jesus Christ is as God incarnate and that life begins with conception can easily be weaponized against us when the arbiter does not believe in God’s word. Look at the underwhelming response by law enforcement as the radical’s torch Christian nonprofits and harass conservative Supreme Court judges at their homes. Nothing is being done to stop those crimes as if their truths or legal rights do not matter.

    There are dark days ahead of us, “For the wrath of God is revealed from Heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who suppress the truth in unrighteousness” (Romans 1:18). 

    Hedieh Mirahmadi was a devout Muslim for two decades working in the field of national security before she experienced the redemptive power of Jesus Christ and has a new passion for sharing the Gospel.  She dedicates herself full-time to Resurrect Ministry, an online resource that harnesses the power of the Internet to make salvation through Christ available to people of all nations, and her daily podcast LivingFearlessDevotional.com.

    The Supreme Court’s Decision on Overturning Roe Will Be an Inflection Point for The Nation


    POSTED BY: JOY PULLMANN | MAY 10, 2022

    Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/05/10/overturning-roe-would-be-a-triumph-that-can-bring-america-back-to-life/

    Ronald Reagan and Clarence Thomas

    If the Supreme Court does not overturn Roe v. Wade, its legitimacy is finished, and so is the nation the Founders created. The opposite is also true.

    Author Joy Pullmann profile

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    Just as slavery and its lingering effects scarred America for centuries, the national sin of Roe v. Wade has weighed our nation down with the shame and devastation of legalized mass murder. Just as slavery deeply challenged the patriotism of those scarred by that evil regime in America, so has the unconstitutional and morally abhorrent abortion regime in America.

    Also, just as slavery plainly contradicted the philosophy and law of the American founders — who wrote “all men are created equal, and… endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, [and] among these are Life” — so does Roe v. Wade, which even leftist “scholars” agree is a garbage decision. Just as slavery created a constitutional crisis that existentially threatened America, so did Roe v. Wade.

    The attention on the protesters using violence and intimidation to retain a clearly unconstitutional and clearly immoral court diktat has obscured that if the Supreme Court does not overturn Roe, its legitimacy is finished. At that point, after decades of fruitlessly investing in keeping as many courts as possible closer to constitutionalism, the right will fully agree with the left that the Supreme Court is an illegitimate, utterly politicized institution, as I explained on EWTN last week. That will finish off what was left of the American republic and mark its complete conversion into something entirely different.

    For it is highly politicized decisions like Roe, its companion Planned Parenthood v. Casey, and others such as those sanctioning the New Deal starting with West Coast Hotel Co. v. Parrish, that have undermined the court’s legitimacy. The court maintains legitimacy precisely in doing its job of applying the law faithfully, instead of taking politics into consideration. Just as overturning Plessy v. Ferguson restored the Supreme Court’s legitimacy, so would the overturn of Roe v. Wade.

    Besides keeping the Founders’ America alive for “one more season of restraint,” fixing warped Roe v. Wade jurisprudence would also enliven the country, not just literally but also figuratively. It would breathe new life into an America that all of us should be able to admit has been on life support for some time.

    Those of us who have been willing to admit what abortion is — the taking of a human life — have for decades been weighed down with the knowledge our own country has been allowing this on a mass scale, and even demanding we participate in and celebrate it. Such a regime not only delegitimizes itself but drains its own lifeblood.

    The potential overturn of Roe v. Wade is a massive opportunity to overturn a horrifying evil, and therefore to do great good. The opportunity to do great good is a strong and previously unavailable motivator. It would be a huge energizer for those who have resisted the usurping regime’s massive efforts to get us to stop seeing and talking about what we have seen that regime do to our nation. It would be the fall of a great spiritual Berlin Wall inside our nation.

    It would allow us to finally stop talking about “norms” and start talking about whether those norms nourish or destroy life. We could stop talking about marginal tax rates and about whose duty it is, exactly, to provide for those who cannot provide for themselves. In short, we can start making the necessary bold moves to re-seed and water a culture of life. Without Roe, we can start from the beginning and move holistically, from the bottom up instead of merely tinkering around the corners of an entirely corrupt edifice.

    That’s the most needed action in this moment, as the political and immoral left has become very clear about its frightening degradation into a death cult. Overturning Roe would show that major, enduring cultural victories are still possible, and that all of the nation’s institutions don’t belong to the left. Perhaps that’s why this poll showed a move to the right after people heard about the leaked majority opinion to overturn Roe.

    An outpouring of creative social entrepreneurship and policy could be in the offing as states finally have the opportunity to make good on their voters’ belief that the unborn are people deserving of the best care a civilization can offer. By returning this existential policy to the people again, it could allow them to get involved in more immediate, tangible, and fruitful ways than demonstrating in the streets or on Twitter. People who want to save lives could be more able to adopt a baby now that abortion isn’t killing nearly all of the potential adoptees or help sponsor local children living with their own needy families like many churches do for children in faraway nations. It would be even less tenable to ban Christians from helping with foster care and adoption when the need for connecting children with parents increases through refusing to kill inconvenient children.

    We’re so used to losing, who knows what the biggest win in generations could do to energize the American majority that remains committed to families and the rule of the real Constitution, not the murderous “living” one. But I do know that nothing is so energizing and refreshing as a baby. There’s nothing more unifying, more animating, and more lively. A baby is a life, and a baby makes a life. This is true both for us as individuals and for us as a collective.

    Children are a reason to get up in the morning, to make a morning at all. Discharging our responsibilities to children is the way to make it “Morning in America” again, both in our homes and in our civic life. Caring for them is the best way forward. It is the only way. Without children, a civilization dies, both spiritually and literally. We are on the cusp of continuing to lose our babies, but there’s a chance we can get them back. And we need to, for our nation’s life is inextricable from theirs.

    As every good parent learns, having a child is the way to become human again. Being human means becoming the kind of person who will sacrifice himself to benefit another. A society without enough of such persons is soon not a society at all. The Supreme Court’s decision, therefore, can either mean life or death not only for the unborn, but also for their nation. We must all hope, pray, and prepare.


    Joy Pullmann is executive editor of The Federalist, a happy wife, and the mother of six children. Sign up here to get early access to her next ebook, “101 Strategies For Living Well Amid Inflation.” Her bestselling ebook is “Classic Books for Young Children.” Mrs. Pullmann identifies as native American and gender natural. She is also the author of “The Education Invasion: How Common Core Fights Parents for Control of American Kids,” from Encounter Books. In 2013-14 she won a Robert Novak journalism fellowship for in-depth reporting on Common Core national education mandates. Joy is a grateful graduate of the Hillsdale College honors and journalism programs.

    Franklin Graham delivers an Easter message from Ukraine: ‘The only hope is God’


    Reported by PAUL SACCA | April 17, 2022

    Read more at https://www.theblaze.com/news/franklin-graham-delivers-an-easter-message-from-ukraine-the-only-hope-is-god/

    Rev. Franklin Graham will deliver an Easter message of hope from war-torn Ukraine, where he has seen the resiliency of the Ukrainian people who are fighting back against an invasion by Russia.

    “The people that you meet and talk to [in Ukraine] are strong,” Rev. Graham told Fox News. “There’s no question there’s despair and there’s fear. But they are determined they are going to fight for their land. And I just admire the [Ukrainian] people for the stand that they’re taking.”

    Graham said the worst suffering has occurred in the Donbas region of eastern Ukraine, where there is “famine and great food shortage.” The faith leader revealed that four Ukrainian people distributing food through Graham’s humanitarian aid charity Samaritan’s Purse were recently killed. The victims died “trying to help their own citizens, their own people,” Graham said.

    “This may be one of the hardest countries that we have worked in,” he said of the crisis. “It’s a big country, the size of Texas. And transportation is an issue. They have trains, and trucks, and so forth, but fuel is a big issue. You can’t always get fuel.”

    Samaritan’s Purse said their team of doctors and nurses has treated over 5,000 Ukrainian patients at six medical sites across Ukraine. The Christian charity has also airlifted more than 232 tons of emergency relief supplies to Ukraine, and utilized a network of over 3,200 churches to share medicine and food.

    Graham said the Ukrainian “people are living in the shadow of death,” but still have the sense that God is with them.

    “It’s obvious that these people have a strong faith in God,” Rev. Graham continued.

    He pointed out that there are more than 5,000 churches in Ukraine, and they are “full on Sunday.”

    “They’re packed. Catholic, Orthodox, Evangelical, Pentecostal, Baptist — they’re packed. The people’s faith is strong in Ukraine right now. Very strong,” the CEO and president of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association said.

    “In Ukraine, there are billboards that say, ‘Our only hope is God.’ We need some billboards like that here in this country,” he added. “I hope that our nation would wake up and see the problems we’re facing and realize that the only hope is God.”

    “The problem we have in the world today is a sin problem,” Rev. Graham stressed. “People have turned their back on God.”

    “The only hope is God. That’s the only hope. Only God can turn [our] nation around,” he proclaimed. “This Easter, I pray that people will look to God, pray to him and ask him for his help in all that we do — and that he’ll bless the nation.”

    Graham declared, “But to do that, we’ve got to repent, turn from our sins and believe on the name of his son, the Lord Jesus Christ.”

    “We [all] need to repent and turn from our sins. And maybe God will hear us from heaven,” Graham advised. “Pray for yourself. Just examine your heart. And if something’s not right in your life, confess it to God and turn from it. We need to look at ourselves.”

    “I will be sharing a message the whole world needs to hear: Jesus Christ, the Prince of Peace, conquered sin and death 2,000 years ago when He rose victoriously from the grave,” Graham said of his Easter message. “This good news changes everything – for individual hearts, for communities, and for entire nations.”

    Previously, Graham wrote to Vladimir Putin and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy requesting a ceasefire from April 15-24 in observance of the Easter holiday.

    “It’s a mess. It’s going to get worse, I’m afraid,” Graham said of the conflict in Ukraine. “And what President Putin’s end game is, I don’t know. But I think we just need to pray that God can change his heart.”

    “And I would recommend for people to pray for Putin. I don’t want to be misunderstood,” he clarified. “I want people to pray that God would change his heart. And turn his heart around, and that he would see the sin that he’s involved in. That he would repent and turn from it.”

    He added, “And if we pray, that could happen.”

    “God loves us, and Easter is about God’s love,” Graham said.

    Graham’s Easter message from the Ukrainian city of Lviv airs on Fox News at 12 p.m. EST on Sunday.

    Jesus Christ created 3 resurrection portals


    Posted By Dan Delzell, Christian Post Contributor | Tuesday, April 12, 2022

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/voices/jesus-christ-created-3-resurrection-portals.html/

    As Christians prepare to celebrate Easter, are you aware that Jesus Christ created three resurrection portals? The first portal is rooted in history; the second is rooted inside man’s soul; and the third is rooted in Heaven. A portal is “a doorway, gate, or other entrance.” 

    The first resurrection portal is the opening to the tomb Jesus exited after rising from the dead (Matthew 28:5-7). J.C. Ryle said, “The resurrection is a fact better attested than any event recorded in any history, whether ancient or modern.” 

    Charles Colson said, “I know the resurrection is a fact, and Watergate proved it to me. How? Because 12 men testified they had seen Jesus raised from the dead; then they proclaimed that truth for 40 years, never once denying it. Everyone was beaten, tortured, stoned and put in prison. They would not have endured that if it weren’t true. Watergate embroiled 12 of the most powerful men in the world — and they couldn’t keep a lie for three weeks. You’re telling me 12 apostles could keep a lie for 40 years? Absolutely impossible.”

    The first resurrection portal involves believing the historical fact that the crucified Savior rose from the dead. When the women “found the stone rolled away” and then walked through the portal into the empty tomb, “they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus” (Luke 24:2). Christ had risen from the dead, just as He foretold (Matthew 16:21). Do you accept this fact of history and this fulfillment of the Old Testament prophecies concerning the coming Messiah? (Psalm 16:10; Psalm 22:1-31; Isaiah 53:1-12).

    The first resurrection portal is an essential element of Christianity. “If Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins. Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ are lost … but Christ has indeed been raised from the dead” (1 Cor. 15:17-18,20).

    The second resurrection portal is inside man’s soul. When you receive Christ as your Savior through faith, (Ephesians 2:8,9) the God of the universe enters your body through a portal in your soul and takes up residence within you. The Apostle Paul informed believers: “Christ lives in me” (Galatians 2:20), and “your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit” (1 Cor. 6:19). 

    How does God enter the believer? Through a door; that is, a portal. Jesus said, “Be earnest and repent. Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him and he with me” (Revelation 3:19-20).

    “If Christ is in you, your body is dead because of sin, yet your spirit is alive because of righteousness” (Romans 8:10). The second resurrection portal is necessary “so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith” (Ephesians 3:17). Jesus said, “Because I live, you also will live. On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you” (John 14:19-20).

    The second resurrection portal is an essential element of Christianity. Jesus declared, “I tell you the truth, unless a man is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God … you must be born again” (John 3:3,7). In other words, one must be saved, forgiven, justified and redeemed through faith in Jesus (Romans 3:21-26).

    “In His great mercy God has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade — kept in Heaven for you,” (1 Peter 1:3-4) and for all who have received Christ through faith (John 1:12).

    The third and final resurrection portal is entered when the body of the believer dies. At that point, the person’s soul is immediately ushered through “the gates of Heaven” (Genesis 28:17; Revelation 21:21). The Christian is then “absent from the body and present with the Lord” (2 Cor. 5:8). Believers will be given a resurrection body at the end of time “in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed” (1 Cor. 15:52).

    Jesus told His disciples: “In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. You know the way to the place where I am going” (John 14:1-4).

    And so, you see: Jesus Christ has created three resurrection portals. The Messiah rose from the dead; Jesus is the author of our faith (Hebrews 12:2) and Christ is also the guarantor of our eternal life in Heaven. 

    Jesus told Martha, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?” (John 11:25,26). 

    The death of Christ on the cross paid for our sins, and the resurrection of Jesus from the grave guarantees everlasting life for all believers. Repent of your sins as you turn away from them. Trust that Christ died on the cross to save you, and then rose from the grave on the third day. 

    “All things have been created by Christ” (Colossians 1:16), and this includes the three resurrection portals. Will you humble yourself before the Creator of all things? Will you admit you are a sinner and unable to save your soul? 

    If you refuse to accept the historical fact of Christ’s resurrection (first portal), you will remain stuck in unbelief. Without faith, you cannot be forgiven and born again (second portal). And your soul will be locked out of Heaven forever (third portal) unless you “repent and believe the good news” (Mark 1:15) while you still have time to do so. 

    If you have not yet placed your faith in Christ for salvation, will another Easter come and go while you remain spiritually dead in the tomb of your unconverted soul? Will you believe in the risen Savior who is the resurrection and the life? (John 11:25,26) “Wake up, O sleeper, rise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you” (Ephesians 5:14).

    Dan Delzell is the pastor of Redeemer Lutheran Church in Papillion, Nebraska. 

    Jason Whitlock Op-ed: Cam Newton is a ‘bad b***h’ who doesn’t know when to be quiet or how to lead


    Commentary by JASON WHITLOCK | April 12, 2022

    Read more at https://www.theblaze.com/op-ed/whitlock-cam-newton-is-a-bad-b-h-who-doesnt-know-when-to-be-quiet-or-how-to-lead/

    The coroner’s report on Cam Newton’s NFL career should list “lack of self-awareness” as the cause of death, not misogyny.

    Newton returned to the news cycle yesterday after media outlets circulated comments about women he made during a recent podcast interview. On the Sunday edition of the “Million Dollaz Worth of Game” podcast, Newton discussed his upbringing, his parents’ long marriage, and his philosophy on women. The latter comments provoked the ire of feminists, the matriarchy, Twitter, and beta males and cast Newton as the love child of Archie Bunker and Cardi B.

    Newton said: “It’s a lot of women who are bad bit***s, and and I say ‘bit***s’ in a way not to degrade a woman but just to go off the aesthetic of what they deem as a ‘boss chick.’ A woman for me is handling your own but knowing how to cater to man’s needs. I think a lot of times when you get that aesthetic of like ‘I’m a boss bit**, I’m a this, I’m a that,’ no baby. But you can’t cook. You don’t know when to be quiet. You don’t know how to allow a man to lead.”

    ProFootballTalk’s Mike Florio wrote that Newton’s “outdated views regarding gender roles and obligations” will make it more difficult for Newton to land a job this off-season.

    I disagree. Sans the profane language, Newton’s views on gender roles and obligations are commonplace in the NFL or among high-net-worth men. His views are standard among people, regardless of income, with a biblical worldview. Genesis 2:18 says that God created Eve as a suitable helper (helpmeet) for Adam. Newton’s views are not problematic or outside the mainstream, especially within his peer group. It’s his lack of self-awareness that’s the problem. The content of his podcast interview is a reflection of the lack of self-awareness that has undermined the success of his NFL career.

    Newton never fully delivered on his seemingly endless potential because of his distorted view of himself. Talent and the coddling produced by immense athletic gifts blinded the quarterback prodigy to the harsh realities and inevitabilities of playing the most challenging position in all of sports.

    Talent isn’t enough at quarterback. The intangibles of leadership, film study, technique, and persona matter as much as physical skill. Cam Newton was a rock star playing the one position in football that requires an actor. Newton was Rick James, b***h! He needed to be Denzel Washington.

    Had Newton played tight end or outside linebacker, he’d likely be seen as a sure-fire Hall of Famer and a missing piece for some team’s Super Bowl dream. Instead, at age 32, the former MVP is jobless, quite possibly finished as an NFL player, and too many miles from Canton, Ohio, to hitchhike to the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

    Rich Gannon, a journeyman, played in more Pro Bowls, won more games, and had a better career than Cam Newton. Why? Because Newton has no idea how to be a leader. You can see the shortcoming in his attitude toward women.

    “You don’t know how to allow a man to lead.”

    Newton doesn’t know how to lead. He fathered four kids with a woman, Kim Proctor, he refuses to marry. His relationship with Proctor ended because he fathered a fifth child with an Instagram model.

    Why would a woman follow a man with five illegitimate kids? Why would a woman cater to the needs of a man who refuses to cater to her desire for monogamy, matrimony, and spiritual salvation? Why would a woman agree to be a suitable helper to a man who eschews being obedient to God’s will?

    You can’t lead without sacrifice. You can’t lead without following first. In order to follow God, man must sacrifice the desires of the world.

    This is at the heart of Newton’s professional underachievement. His talents convinced him he didn’t need to do all the little things that make great quarterbacks and great leaders. When it comes to relationships, wealthy men suffer the same delusion. They think finances allow them to bend the rules in their personal relationships with women.

    I’ve made this mistake too many times to count.

    In the podcast interview, Newton praised his dad and mom for sustaining their 38-year marriage. His parents are devout Christians. Newton said his father set a tremendous example of what a man is supposed to be. Did Cam follow his father’s blueprint? Is Cam obedient to God’s will?

    Cam’s lack of self-awareness is the reason he doesn’t know when to be quiet, when to be humble, when to be reflective, and when to evaluate his own behavior rather than analyze the actions of “bad bit***s” and boss chicks.

    Newton’s intentions on and off the field are positive. He wants to be a great football player. He wants to build a great family, similar to his parents. Talent and money have prevented him from taking the necessary steps to make those goals a reality.

    Virtually every NFL owner, executive, and coach desires a woman who can cook, caters to his needs, knows when to be quiet, and will allow him to lead. They want the exact same thing from their players.

    As a football player, Cam Newton is a lot like the “bad bit***s” he describes. Everybody eventually tires of “bad bit***s.” The NFL is tired of Cam.

    Today’s TWO politically INCORRECT Cartoons by A.F. Branco


    A.F. Branco Meme – Joe Biden

    A.F. BRANCO | on April 11, 2022 | https://comicallyincorrect.com/a-f-branco-meme-joe-biden/

    What happens when the village idiot is somehow elected President and then goes senile? Joe Biden?

    Village Idiot as President
    Political meme by A.F. Branco ©2022.

    A.F.Branco Cartoon – He Has Risen

    A.F. BRANCO | on April 12, 2022 | https://comicallyincorrect.com/a-f-branco-cartoon-he-has-risen/

    Jesus was crucified on the cross and on the third day he rose to defeat death.

    Jesus Christ Overcomes Death
    Cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2022.

    Donations/Tips accepted and appreciated – $1.00 – $5.00 – $25.00 – $50.00 – $100 – it all helps to fund this website and keep the cartoons coming. Also Venmo @AFBranco – THANK YOU!

    A.F. Branco has taken his two greatest passions, (art and politics) and translated them into cartoons that have been popular all over the country, in various news outlets including “Fox News”, MSNBC, CBS, ABC, and “The Washington Post.” He has been recognized by such personalities as Dinesh D’Souza, James Woods, Sarah Palin, Larry Elder, Lars Larson, Rush Limbaugh, and President Donald Trump.

    Ryan Bomberger Op-ed: Don’t. Erase. Women


    Commentary By Ryan Bomberger, Exclusive Columnist | Monday, April 04, 2022

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/voices/dont-erase-women.html/

    We’re constantly told, amusingly, by the Left to “follow the science!” When we follow actual science, we get shouted downcensoredpurged, and called terrorists. There are only two genders: male and female. I know this triggers those with progressive fragility. For anyone struggling with gender dysphoria, there is help and hope in counseling (as long as it’s still legal). There is an all-out assault on women, and it’s global. It’s a rhetorical, social and political attack intent on erasing objective truths such as what makes women beautifully and biologically different.

    Modern feminists decry “the Patriarchy” that keeps women from being equal. Those same fake feminists then celebrate when “the Patriarchy” pretends to be a woman and eviscerates centuries-long efforts of equality. William “Lia” ThomasRichard “Rachel” LevineBruce “Caitlyn” JennerRoderick “Laverne” Cox. The list goes on and on of the co-optation of women.

    These men can be “women,” but a white woman (e.g. Rachel Dolezal) can’t identify as a black woman? Why not?

    If self-identity is reality and confers upon you all the rights and privileges of the co-opted identification, why did we bother even having confirmation hearings for Ketanji Brown Jackson? Couldn’t she just “identify” as a Supreme Court Justice? How can a jurist claim, “I am a woman” and then infamously fail to offer any definition of what a woman is?

    I’m not a mechanic, but I can define a car. No one needs to be a biologist to know what a boy is, what a girl is, what a man is, or what a woman is. Only progressives, who want to mangle language and deny basic science, pretend they don’t know the obvious. A judge must be able to rule on objective criteria. Judge Jackson calls herself a woman insisting there should be “meaningful numbers of women” on the Supreme Court, yet she has no objective definition for a “woman”?

    The American Medical Association is “following the science” by insisting that our sex designation be removed from our public birth certificates. Why? Well, sex is “determined at birth” they say, defying over a century of scientific knowledge.

    That fave mantra of the pro-abortion Left, “No uterus! No say!”, is now rendered meaningless because anyone can identify as a woman. Whoops. Sorry. I meant a “non-prostate owner.” At least that’s what Teen Vogue is preaching to young girls (or whoever reads the soft-porn mag targeting kids).

    The leader of this erasure of women is the self-anointed “leading women’s healthcare provider,” Planned Parenthood. They’re super sciency of course. “Your genitals don’t make you a boy or a girl,” the nation’s leading abortion business falsely claims. You know, because our genitals aren’t based on our sex which is determined by our DNA at fertilization — the moment human life begins.

    Years ago, Planned Parenthood Action — the political arm that is indistinguishable from its 501c3 parent organization — tweeted a classic erasure of women. “Menstruators in New York started to #TweetTheReceipt celebrating the repealed tampon tax.”

    Planned Parenthood’s web pages dealing with pregnancy have purged every reference to the biological label. The abortion giant’s president, Alexis McGill Johnson, won’t even refer to women as “women.” In warning people-formerly-known-as-women of Idaho’s six-week abortion ban (which protects mothers and their unborn children), Johnson tweeted: “it will harm pregnant people and disproportionately impact marginalized communities.”

    Women are now the marginalized community.

    The highly political CDC also refers to women as “pregnant people.” In pushing their distorted COVID propaganda, the Centers for Dialogue Control tweeted: “Pregnant people with symptomatic COVID-19 have a 70% increased risk of death.”

    You’ve got the Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine wanting to use the term “chestfeeding” to be “inclusive” of “lactating people.” I’m not making this up! They claim that fathers experience “complications while chestfeeding” too. Yes. Because we don’t lactate. That would be a definite biological “complication.”

    The Senate Committee on Oversight and Reform (led by Democrats) declared that “Health equity for Black birthing people is attainable.” How can (fake) equity be attainable if a simple definition of women is so escapable?

    President Biden’s FY2022 budget deleted women, too, referring to mothers as “birthing people.” I’m sure he’s used that term affectionately with the First Lady (or is it First Person?), calling the mother of his children one of those pregnant people or Jill-the-birthing-person.

    Don’t erase women. Just. Don’t.

    Interestingly, the Left is doing what Planned Parenthood founder Margaret Sanger accused the so-called Patriarchy of doing. She wrote in her book Women and the New Race: “Woman’s role has been that of an incubator and little more.” Well. Welcome to 2022. Where women’s biological designation is being eviscerated to appease biological men who can never share in the experience of the natural acts of pregnancy and birth.

    The ACLU even changed a famous quote from the late pro-abortion Ruth Bader Ginsburg to erase the very people she was talking about. Their tweet changed the clearly offensive parts that mentioned “woman” and “her” to: “The decision whether or not to bear a child is central to a [person’s] life, to [their] well-being and dignity … When the government controls that decision for [people], [they are] being treated as less than a fully adult human responsible for [their] own choices.”

    I’m no fan of RBG or her actual quote because the undignified act of harming or killing another innocent human being never gives anyone equality. But this global progressive campaign to erase women sees binary gender as an oppressive biological reality that must be excised from our lexicon.

    So, “follow the pseudoscience” or be branded a hater. Too many Americans cower in fear of being called some form of -phobic. Who cares? Love people enough to speak the truth. When did confusion become the virtue we uphold instead of clarity and compassion?

    These attacks on the dignity of women are rooted in a lie. Politicians know it. Planned Parenthood knows it. And so does a dangerously leftist judge who may tragically sit, for generations, on a Supreme Court currently made up of men and, yes, women.


    Originally published at Radiance Foundation. 

    Ryan Bomberger is the Chief Creative Officer and co-founder of The Radiance Foundation. He is happily married to his best friend, Bethany, who is the Executive Director of Radiance. They are adoptive parents with four awesome kiddos. Ryan is an Emmy Award-winning creative professional, factivist, international public speaker and author of NOT EQUAL: CIVIL RIGHTS GONE WRONG. He loves illuminating that every human life has purpose.

    Why Are So Many Kids Rejecting Christianity? Look At Their Parents


    COMMENTARY BY: PAMELA DANZIGER | MARCH 28, 2022

    Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/03/28/why-are-so-many-kids-rejecting-christianity-look-at-their-parents/

    white church in a field

    The education and scientific establishments have been co-conspirators in propagating their secular worldview and banishing the biblical one.

    Author Pamela Danziger profile

    PAMELA DANZIGER

    MORE ARTICLES

    The Cultural Research Center (CRC) is out with a new study comparing the number of American parents of children under age 13 who hold a biblical Christian worldview with those who adhere to competing secular alternatives. The results are a damning indictment of Americans’ rejection of or simple indifference to a biblical worldview.

    Across all parents of pre-teens, only 2 percent hold a biblical worldview, which is defined as “consistently interpreting and responding to life situations based on biblical principles and teachings.” Those with a biblical worldview believe the Bible is the inerrant word of God containing all moral truths.

    Among all respondents, other measured worldviews (such as secular humanism, nihilism, postmodernism, etc.) garnered even fewer adherents. Fully 94 percent subscribed to “a blending of multiple worldviews in which no single life philosophy is dominant.”

    The needle scarcely moves for all self-identified Christians (not just pre-teen parents). Only 6 percent of them look at and interpret the world through a biblical lens; that number rises to 21 percent among those attending evangelical Protestant churches.

    The fact that the biblical Christian worldview has become so insignificant in the culture should be of concern to all Americans because our country, including its governing principles and legal system, was based on our founders’ biblical worldview.

    All around, we see the results of our abandonment of the biblical worldview. According to CRC research, more than half of the population accepts that truth is subjective.

    Without objective truth, there is no way to determine what’s real and no moral absolutes to distinguish right from wrong. So we hear the popular “my truth” refrain as the justification for any idea or behavior depending upon what feels right at the time.

    Why Worldview Matters

    Professor Mikael Stenmark defines worldview as “beliefs, values, and attitudes that … constitute [people’s] basic understanding of (a) who they are, what the world is like, and what their place in it is, (b) what they should do to live a good and meaningful life, and (c) what they can say, know and rationally believe about these things.”

    A dividing line between a secular and a biblical worldview is the belief in how the world came to exist. Secularists hold that reality consists entirely of physical matter and forces, which can only be explained through science. For the secularist, the Big Bang and Darwinian evolution explain how all things came to be.

    Those with a biblical worldview believe in an all-encompassing divine mind — i.e., God — who rules over and maintains physical matter and forces. The theistic worldview is founded on the core belief that God exists and is the creator of all things.

    It is easy to see why the biblical worldview is all but extinct in the culture. Every living generation — baby boomers, Gen X, millennials, and many of the silent generation (pre-1945) — has been educated predominantly in a secular or naturalistic worldview based on the prevailing science of the Big Bang and Darwinian evolution.

    Science Declares God Is Dead

    The only “official” science approved to be taught in the primary grades through post-graduate education is the anti-faith naturalistic one. It’s virtually illegal to teach anything that hints at creation science or intelligent design. The National Center for Science Education proudly displays ten major court cases, including a Supreme Court ruling, that essentially ban the teaching of intelligent design.

    It’s not just the education system. Mathematician and philosopher William Dembski calls the scientific establishment’s approach to intelligent design a “zero-concession policy.”

    For example, the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) issued a statement claiming “There is no significant controversy within the scientific community about the validity of the theory of evolution. The current controversy surrounding the teaching of evolution is not a scientific one.”

    Scientists and post-graduate students who dare to challenge naturalistic-science orthodoxy are subject to professional ridicule, or loss of jobs or research funds. Peer-review journals reject their submissions, as do scientific conferences and meetings.

    It’s not in support of science that the establishment defends its official position so vehemently, but to protect its secular worldview. And the American Civil Liberties Union backs them up with legal firepower a detailed statement about why students must be protected against intelligent design at all costs.

    Truth Will Come Out

    Not all scientists are so didactic. But the “vital few” in control have effectively kept any serious discussion of intelligent design from the rest of the scientific community. However, when they are presented with evidence supporting intelligent design, many discover truth there.

    That includes scientists like astronomer Allan Sandage, who studied under Edwin Hubble and continued his work after Hubble died. Sandage’s study of astronomy and astrophysics led him to conclude there is “evidence for what can only be described as a supernatural event,” or what he called a “creation event.”

    Plenty of members in the scientific community see much to challenge in Darwinian doctrine. More than 1,000 academics and scientists have signed the Dissent from Darwinism petition stating, “We are skeptical of claims for the ability of random mutation and natural selection to account for the complexity of life. Careful examination of the evidence for Darwinian theory should be encouraged.”

    The number of acclaimed scientists who challenge the establishment’s orthodoxy is growing thanks to the work of places like the Discovery Institute, the research arm of the Center for Science and Culture.

    Rekindling the Discussion

    The education and scientific establishments have become co-conspirators in propagating their secular worldview and banishing the biblical one. But there is hope. Belief in God “as described in the Bible” is still held by a 54 percent majority of Americans, according to a 2022 poll reported by The Federalist’s Jordan Boyd.

    Noting that 72 percent of Americans agree the nation’s moral compass is “pointed in the wrong direction,” she writes, “As generations age and the push for secularism and the erasure of faith continues in American establishments such as public schools, younger people are losing spiritual influence and instruction, and with it their faith.”

    That is the ultimate goal of our society’s ruling institutions, including government, education, science, medicine, and business. They are determined to wipe out faith by indoctrinating all into their secular worldview using the Big Bang and evolution as the cudgel.

    So far, the scientific establishment has been successful in shutting down discussion that the Bible might be true from beginning to end. But continuing research in intelligent design and more scientists who question science’s naturalistic orthodoxy will arm the public with information to support the biblical worldview and loosen the stranglehold of the secular one on our youth and culture.

    “Let there be light,” God said in Genesis 1:3. “And there was light.” Jesus said in John 8:32, “You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” That day isn’t here yet, but we pray it comes quickly.


    Pamela Danziger is a market researcher specializing in the study of consumer behavior and motivation. Author of ten books, she shares insights as a senior contributor on Forbes.com. And as a Christian, she is co-founder of Faith Underground. She holds an M.L.S. from University of Maryland and B.A. in English Literature from Penn State.

    Stop Arguing for Religious Liberty and Start Arguing Against Religious Discrimination


    COMMENTARY BY: AUGUSTE MEYRAT | MARCH 28, 2022

    Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/03/28/stop-arguing-for-religious-liberty-and-start-arguing-against-religious-discrimination/

    catholic charities

    For an increasingly secular populace, actions and policies must be defended on the basis of reason much more than faith.

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    In a recent legal settlement, Catholic Charities West Michigan successfully challenged Michigan’s decision to bar state funds to adoption agencies that do not serve same-sex couples. The settlement forced Michigan to reimburse the charity for its legal fees and other costs. Using an argument that has now become familiar to most Americans, Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel, a lesbian mother of two and former gay rights activist, charged Catholic adoption agencies with discriminating against same-sex couples. In response, the Catholic adoption agencies used the same logic, accusing the Michigan state government of discriminating against Catholics and effectively denying them their religious freedom.

    While Christians should celebrate this recent victory, it’s nonetheless sad this appeal had to be made. When gay marriage was legalized in Obergfell v. Hodges, Christians were assured that they could practice their faith and live out their values in peace, but this was almost immediately proven wrong. As the ink of Justice Anthony Kennedy’s majority opinion was drying, LGBT groups immediately went after Christian bakersfloristsphotographers, popular chicken sandwich chains, and other Christian organizations for their religious beliefs.

    Defense Based on Reason not Faith

    This war will continue so long as Christians keep using the religious freedom defense. Even though this argument has the best chance of winning in legal courts, it is unconvincing in the court of public opinion. As more Americans drift away from Christianity, they increasingly view this defense for denying service to same-sex couples not as a valid objection, but as a childish copout: “The Christian God doesn’t like gay people.”

    Rather, it’s important to establish that most Christian churches are established on natural law (that is, moral laws based on objective truth) as much as the Bible. To be sure, faith and reason both matter enormously, but for an increasingly secular populace, actions and policies must be defended on the basis of reason much more than faith.

    This has been the case with abortion, with the pro-life position steadily gaining popular support as it has adopted more reason-based arguments. The pro-life movement has grown because it has argued that unborn babies are people, and therefore abortion is murder. Although the Bible acknowledges this argument, the argument itself isn’t strictly based on the Bible.

    Reasons Against Same-Sex Couples Adopting

    Similarly, in issues involving marriage and children, Christians need to appeal to reason more than their faith. In the case of same-sex couples adopting, two issues need to be addressed. First, do all couples have a right to adopt a child? Second, do children have a right to a father and mother?

    Concerning whether all couples have a right to adopt, the answer is that they do not. As any couple who has gone through the process of adoption understands all too well, many screenings and conditions have to be met. Someone from the adoption agency will inspect their home, rifle through their personal information, interview them and others, and then, after so many legal hurdles, possibly allow a child to live with them. Even then, the biological parent may change his or her mind and take back the child.

    As painful and expensive as this process is, it is necessary because children are human beings with rights of their own, not objects a couple acquires out of boredom or simply some charitable impulse. Consequently, adoption agencies must discriminate among couples wanting to adopt, only selecting those who meet the criteria of good caretakers.

    A Right to a Mother and Father?

    This leads to the second issue of whether a child’s rights include having a mother and father, as opposed to two fathers or two mothers. The science on this is mixed, both because it’s a politically charged issue and because it’s a difficult thing to measure. One may say that a loving committed couple is enough, but one may contend that a loving committed heterosexual couple is necessary.

    Katy Faust persuasively argues this latter view in her excellent book “Them Before Us.” She explains that men and women represent two distinct and essential supports to a child growing up; fatherhood and motherhood are not interchangeable or dispensable. Furthermore, she argues that a child does best with his or her biological parents in nearly all cases. For Faust, adoption is an alternative that should only be considered in cases of serious abuse or neglect.

    Not only does Faust support her argument with a multitude of studies, but she has both a homosexual parent and an adopted child. Even though her situation would suggest that same-sex adoption should be treated the same as any other parental arrangement, her reasoning leads her to think otherwise.

    Faust’s example is a good model for all Christians trying to serve their community in accordance with their values. Whatever charitable work they do — whether it is finding homes for orphans or allowing those orphans to be born in the first place — it is done for the person in need, first and foremost. This is not a political or religious issue, but a human one.

    It is not a coincidence that this means they are doing God’s will in the process. Contrary to what opponents claim, Christian values are based on objective truth, not blind faith to various Bronze Age prejudices. As such, the goal is not about winning, but about making the world a better place.


    Auguste Meyrat is an English teacher in the Dallas area. He holds an MA in humanities and an MEd in educational leadership. He is the senior editor of The Everyman and has written essays for The Federalist, The American Conservative, and The Imaginative Conservative, as well as the Dallas Institute of Humanities and Culture. Follow him on Twitter.

    Can former transgenders tweet truth on Twitter?


    Posted By Dan Delzell, Christian Post Contributor | Wednesday, March 23, 2022

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/voices/can-former-transgenders-tweet-truth-on-twitter.html/

    Now that Twitter has taken action against The Christian Post and The Babylon Bee over their tweets calling Rachel Levine a man, will Twitter do the same thing with every former transgender who wishes to share his or her honest story with the world? Why are executives at Twitter so afraid of allowing people to hear the truth about transgenderism on their platform? Could it be that deep down, these executives realize that the truth is what sets people free from gender confusion?

    I suspect that many gender-confused women would be able to relate to some of the things Laura Perry experienced early in life. Laura’s video testimony is humble, sincere and liberating. Would Laura be allowed to tweet the truth on Twitter that she has always been a female, even during the confusing period in her life when she thought she had mysteriously turned into a man? 

    And what about men like Walt Heyer, who came to realize that “transitioning doesn’t fix the underlying ailments.” After pretending to be a woman for eight years, Walt says, “Had I not been misled by media stories of sex change ‘success’ and by medical practitioners who said transitioning was the answer to my problems, I wouldn’t have suffered as I have. Genetics can’t be changed. Feelings, however, can and do change … You will hear the media say, ‘Regret is rare.’ But they are not reading my inbox, which is full of messages from transgender individuals who want the life and body back that was taken from them by cross-sex hormones, surgery, and living under a new identity. After de-transitioning, I know the truth: Hormones and surgery may alter appearances, but nothing changes the immutable fact of your sex.”

    Would Twitter executives allow Walt to tweet the truth about how much pain transgender propaganda has caused him? Rather than addressing his deep psychological struggles, hormone therapy and surgery simply compounded his problems exponentially. Walt said, “The reprieve I experienced through surgery was only temporary. Hidden underneath the makeup and female clothing was the little boy hurt by childhood trauma. I was once again experiencing gender dysphoria, but this time I felt like a male inside a body refashioned to look like a woman. I was living my dream, but still I was deeply suicidal.”

    As I pointed out in my CP op-ed four years ago, (“Will America’s Public Grade Schools Become Transgender Mills?”), the Wall Street Journal cited the largest study of its kind concerning those who have had sex-reassignment surgery and found they are almost 20 times more likely to commit suicide than the rest of the population. (This 30-year study in Sweden involved 324 people.)

    Twitter executives have a moral responsibility to look at these suicide statistics with their eyes wide open. Why would Twitter want to keep this critical information from the public? Are they more committed to their misguided transgender ideology than to the health and well-being of gender-confused individuals? They really need to take a hard look at what is driving them to be so reckless with the truth about transgenderism and gender confusion.

    “Male and female God created them” (Genesis 5:2). Biology isn’t bigotry. 

    Former transgenders deserve to be heard. Justice demands that the truth be told. And if Twitter executives are too afraid of the truth about transgenderism, why don’t they just come out and tell the world about the fears they are harboring? These executives will not experience the healing they need until they address their faulty presuppositions. They must come to recognize that their fears are irrational, not to mention dangerous for anyone who experiences gender confusion. Why should the illogical and absurd fears of Twitter executives drive their platform into such a dark place? 

    Unless these executives choose to have an open mind on the matter, they will likely continue charging down the perilous path of transgender misinformation. And this will certainly increase the suffering of those like Walt Heyer who made monumental decisions about his body based on the lies he was hearing from the media.

    In contrast to media propaganda today, Jesus never told a single lie. “To the Jews who had believed Him, Jesus said, ‘If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free’” (John 8:31,32). Jesus asked some religious leaders this important question: “Haven’t you read that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female’?” (Matthew 19:4). 

    Unless Twitter executives look beyond their limited and flawed perspective on transgenderism, they will never come to understand the simple truth about gender. And in that case, they may never escape their self-imposed prison of “acceptable” transgender tweets that are allowed on their platform.

    The question remains: Can former transgenders tweet truth on Twitter? Time will tell. 

    Let’s see if Twitter executives decide to deal with their biases, and address those malignant strongholds that develop within the human mind when lies are accepted as truth. Infectious strongholds, after all, are what lead a gender-confused individual to make extremely unwise decisions about his or her own body. And immoral strongholds compel social media executives to block transgender truth on their platform from reaching a world of people who hunger for truth, authenticity, and holistic health.

    Dan Delzell is the pastor of Redeemer Lutheran Church in Papillion, Nebraska. 

    Churches near Ukraine’s border shelter refugees as 1 million flee Russian invasion


    Reported By Samuel Smith, Deputy Managing Editor | Friday, March 04, 2022

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/news/churches-near-ukraines-border-provide-shelter-as-1-million-flee.html/

    Churches in countries neighboring Ukraine have opened their doors to shelter and aid refugees as the United Nations refugee agency estimated Thursday that 1 million people have fled the Eastern European nation since the beginning of Russia’s invasion last week. 

    “In just seven days, 1 million people have fled Ukraine, uprooted by this senseless war,” U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi said in a statement. “I have worked in refugee emergencies for almost 40 years, and rarely have I seen an exodus as rapid as this one.”

    Russia began its invasion last Thursday, targeting military installations in Kyiv and other major cities nationwide. Reports have indicated that the Russian military has also targeted areas with civilian populations, and hundreds of civilians have reportedly been killed. 

    Many of the displaced have fled to neighboring countries such as Poland, Moldova, Slovakia and Hungary, while many more remain in Ukraine. 

    Grandi said people are fleeing the violence “hour by hour” and “minute by minute” as “countless” people have also been displaced internally inside Ukraine. The U.N. official warned that “millions more are likely to be forced to flee” unless the conflict reaches an “immediate end.”

    Churches in neighboring countries are among community centers and camps sheltering refugees who’ve fled from the violence, with some seeing hundreds of Ukrainians coming and going in recent days. 

    As Poland has taken the brunt of the Ukrainian refugees, one church that has served as many as 400 refugees is a Baptist church in Chelm. According to the Baptist Federation of Europe, the church is “filled with life” as it has pushed its pews out of the way to make room for beds. 

    “It is not tension that you feel as you enter the building but life, peace and joy,” a statement from the federation reads. “Children laugh and play while mothers prepare for onward journeys. The church piano plays a variety of tunes, none of the hymns, as the children practice their piano lessons.”

    “Pews are in the pulpit and beds fill the sanctuary, the balcony and every available space,” the statement adds. “Ukrainian and Polish families work side by side, making food, receiving donations and cleaning the toilets. The laundry vibrates as the three new washing machines continue their endless 24-hour cycle. The supply rooms are full of children excitedly selecting new clothes and discovering new toys that have been donated.”

    The church’s kitchen has supplied soup, snacks and hot meals for the refugees arriving while packing lunches for the refugees that depart. The church receives help from local hotels that provide clean linen for the beds. 

    The Polish Baptist Union hopes to house as many as 1,000 refugees.

    According to the Southern Baptist Convention’s International Mission Board, Polish Baptists have established 40 shelter camps. The PBU provides the camps with bedding items, food and hygiene items, while Send Relief, IMB’s relief arm, provides funds to assist in the relief efforts. 

    First Baptist Church of Gdasnk, Poland, will host one of the refugee centers, according to IMB missionary Ken Brownd.

    “It’s just cool to see Polish Baptists stepping up and taking care of their neighbors. They’ve done that for a long time now, but this is a different level,” Brownd was quoted as saying in an IMB report. “Our team is trying to organize the Send Relief help … but really, this is mostly driven by Polish Baptists, so we’re not the main players in this at all. We’re helpers, and so it’s amazing.” 

    A church in Poland about an hour from the border affiliated with the Shoreline Church in Austin, Texas, has put beds “in every possible place they can put one.” Shoreline Church has raised over $110,000 to support the refugees through its Caleb Foundation. 

    “Your generosity is astounding, thank you for being the church in the world. It is imperative that we continue to pray and fight in the spirit,” the church told its members in a Facebook post

    https://www.facebook.com/plugins/post.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Fshorelineatx%2Fposts%2F5070767019611567&show_text=true&width=500

    Shoreline Pastor Rob Koke has preached in Kyiv numerous times. Koke told KXAN the church he and his wife, Laura, started 15 years ago in Czestochowa, Poland, has taken in over 100 refugees. Koke said that the church’s members have brought food to the border and brought refugees back to their church. 

    “They were freezing cold and standing for five days,” Laura Koke told the news outlet about the refugees. “They were hungry. One little boy said, ‘I don’t have a home.’ One of the church members said, ‘this is your home’ it’s so touching.”

    In Cluj-Napoca, Romania, Methodists are providing shelter to refugees in a former hotel that has been rented out and turned into a community center, according to United Methodist Church in Romania Superintendent the Rev. Rares Calugar. 

    “The UMC has built a network in Cluj-Napoca and has access to numerous apartments and houses where those leaving the community center can stay to make room for new arrivals,” Calugar told UMC’s official news agency UM News

    Church members have also traveled to the border to help refugees as they cross the border. 

    UMC churches in Hungary, Slovakia and Poland have also provided shelter to refugees. In Slovakia, Pastor Svetlana Komives Francisti from a UMC church in Michalovce transported six African students who fled while studying in Kyiv to her church for shelter until they can reunite with families or other students, according to UM News.

    Experts say the invasion is the most significant attack by a European country on another since World War II. World leaders have called on Russian President Vladimir Putin to put an end to the war, and the global community has issued targeted sanctions to cut off Russia from western financing and technology.

    Earlier this week, the United Nations reported that at least 227 civilians had been killed in Ukraine and over 525 injured.

    A European Union executive warned Sunday that as many as 4 million Ukrainians could flee the country and as many as 7 million could be displaced internally by the conflict. 

    “Inside Ukraine, our staff — and other humanitarians — are working where and when they can in frightening conditions. Our staff stay, even at great risk, because we know the needs in the country are huge,” Grandi said. 

    “Despite the extraordinary pace and challenges, the response from governments and local communities in receiving these 1 million refugees has been remarkable. UNHCR staff have already moved in throughout the region and are scaling up our protection and assistance programs for refugees, in support of host governments.”

    U.S.-based Christian disaster relief organizations such as World Help and Samaritan’s Purse, as well as American churches, have also sprung into action to help those displaced by the war.

    Samaritan’s Purse, which evangelist Franklin Graham heads, has deployed members of its Disaster Assistance Response Team to surrounding countries to help meet the needs of Ukrainian refugees.  

    Ridgecrest Baptist Church in Springfield, Missouri, has sent a team of volunteers and its senior pastor to Poland to provide care and shelter to orphaned refugees from Ukraine, arriving on Thursday morning. Another team is expected to leave in two weeks, according to the church. 

    Speaking with reporters Wednesday, U.S. President Joe Biden accused Russia of targeting civilians but said it’s too early to tell if Russia had committed war crimes. However, United Kingdom Prime Minister Boris Johnson told members of Parliament Wednesday that Putin should be investigated by the International Criminal Court for war crimes, citing attacks against civilians in Ukraine. 

    The second round of negotiations between the two countries began on Thursday in Belarus. Ukraine said both sides had agreed to create humanitarian corridors through ceasefires that would allow civilians to evacuate and aid to be delivered. 

    Mykhailo Podolyak, an adviser to Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, told Reuters that ceasefires will exist only in areas where the “humanitarian corridors themselves will be located.”

    “[I]t will be possible to cease fire for the duration of the evacuation,” he was quoted as saying.

    Christian group calls on parents to pull kids out of private schools over LGBT activism


    Reported By Ryan Foley, Christian Post Reporter | Thursday, February 24, 2022

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/news/private-school-curriculum-teaching-lgbt-gender-ideology-to-kids.html/

    Gender Unicorn
    An image from a Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools of North Carolina training presentation for faculty. | keepmyncsafe.com

    Christian groups are urging parents to remove their children from a group of private schools after video footage revealed an effort to teach pre-k students about LGBT ideology.

    Breitbart News obtained video footage from a National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS) workshop in 2020. NAIS describes itself as a “nonprofit membership association that provides services to more than 1,900 schools and associations of schools in the United States and abroad, including more than 1,600 independent private K-12 schools in the U.S.”

    At the training session, which took place in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, speakers addressed how to “prepare your PK-8 Students for Their World” through “the lens of gender, identity, and sexuality education.”

    NAIS lauded the workshop for enabling Belmont Day School, a private school in Belmont, Massachusetts, to share its “comprehensive, dynamic, responsive Health and Wellness curriculum with a developmentally appropriate PK-8 Gender, Identity, and Sexuality strand.”

    One speaker who presented at the workshop discussed how “with the younger children starting in pre-k, we talk about their bodies, about the parts that they were born with, about penises and vaginas and whether that makes somebody a boy or a girl.” The speaker explained that students as young as pre-k are asked, “What do they feel like inside? Do they feel like a boy or a girl? What does their head say? Does (sic) their head and their heart and their body match up?”

    As the woman spoke, a picture of the “Every” Body Tool appeared on the screen. The image on the left side of the screen featured a human body with icons representing the brain, heart and DNA. A key on the side of the screen had the phrase “gender identity” next to the brain icon, the phrase “sexual orientation” beside the heart icon and the word “sex” alongside the DNA icon. A star appears in the middle of the diagram to represent “gender expression,” which is implied to be a sum of an individual’s gender identity, sexual orientation and sex.

    In a statement to The Christian Post, Meg Kilgannon, senior fellow for education studies at the Family Research Council, explained that because “parents with children in private schools do not enjoy basic civil rights protections that are afforded in public institutions,” “their recourse is to remove their child from the school since groups like NAIS are training private school teachers and administration to promote LGBT materials even to very young students.”

    “Parents of children in private schools often have a false sense of security about the intellectual safety of their children from sexualized materials we see promoted in public schools,” she added. “Whether they are teaching in public or private schools, teachers and administrators are produced by the same university system that’s obsessed with queer theory and critical race theory. The post-Obergefell world is fraught for parents seeking to protect children from sexualized content or instill a worldview based on traditional sexual ethics.”

    The 2015 Supreme Court decision Obergefell v. Hodges legalized same-sex marriage nationwide. Critics of the decision expressed concern that it would have negative implications for religious liberty and lead to schools promoting same-sex relationships as equally beneficial to children as the nuclear family. 

    “LGBT interest groups and advocates have significant influence in public education settings”, Kilgannon told CP. “Private institutions are the next step, to the degree some were not early adopters of sexualized identity trends in education. The HRC rating and scores for businesses can easily be applied to private schools.” 

    Kilgannon warned that “LGBT activists and advocates are ready to name and shame any organization that doesn’t go along with their demands for affirmation and applause, including private schools and the organizations that are part of the private educational infrastructure, like NAIS.”

    The video footage of the NAIS conference reveals that the effort to expose young children to LGBT ideology continues throughout the elementary school years. Suggested reading material for first-grade students includes the book, What Makes a Baby, characterized by Amazon as a “twenty-first century children’s picture book about conception, gestation, and birth.”

    Amazon’s summary of the book notes that the work “reflects the reality of our modern time by being inclusive of all kinds of kids, adults, and families, regardless of how many people were involved, their orientation, gender and other identity, or family composition.”

    The summary also states that “the story doesn’t gender people or body parts, so most parents and families will find that it leaves room for them to educate their child without having to erase their own experience.”

    Who Are You? The Kid’s Guide to Gender Identity is listed as recommended reading for second-graders. Second-grade students are taught about gender identity “in terms of your head and your heart and your body parts matching up” and asked, “Does that work for you?” and “What happens if it doesn’t?”

    “The kids draw wonderful self-portraits … dealing with all aspects of their identity, including specifically, their gender identity,” the speaker explained. Under this curriculum, fifth-grade students are reintroduced to the “Every” Body tool and told that “hormones and chromosomes” are “something that you can only change with a whole lot of effort.”

    The speaker suggested that fifth graders are told that “gender expression” is “something that you can change from day to day.”

    Describing fifth grade as “our big year,” the speaker discussed the “Gender Unicorn,” where students are asked to check off their “gender identity” as either “female/woman/girl,” “male/man/boy” or “other genders.” Additionally, students have the option to check off their gender expression as “female,” “masculine” or “other,” their sex assigned at birth as “female,” “male” or “other/intersex” and indicate whether they were physically or emotionally attracted to “women,” “men” or “other gender(s).”

    A Google drive account featuring “Workshop Resources” lists “Anything by Planned Parenthood, but especially their Sexuality Education Conference Series” as one of several “recommended resources” for NAIS schools looking to implement similar curriculum. Other recommended resources included the Gay, Lesbian, Straight Educators Network, an LGBT advocacy group.

    Five pages of recommended reading for students and parents included books promoting transgenderism, such as Jacob’s New Dress and My Princess Boy, and books that promote same-sex relationships with titles like A Tale of Two Daddies and A Tale of Two Mommies. The list also featured a book titled Who Are You?: The Kid’s Guide to Gender Identity.

    Another document outlines scenarios for teachers to respond to, including one where “a male kindergarten student wants to wear a princess costume in the Halloween parade” but “his parents have communicated with the homeroom teachers that they do not under any circumstances want their son wearing a princess costume.”

    In another scenario, a student comes to the teacher saying that his parents refuse to let him participate in a gay pride parade the school is spearheading and uses “homophobic and transphobic language as well as perpetuating LGBTQ+ stereotypes.”

    In each scenario, teachers are encouraged to consider guiding questions asking, “Who does this impact?” “Who do we need to respond to?” “How does the approach change for different constituents?” “What would I like to do vs. what would I probably do?” “Can you use this framework with other scenarios in your school” and “How do you move or encourage others to move from an accomplice to ally?”

    Breitbart’s reporting about the NAIS workshop comes as many American families increasingly turn to private schools and other alternative methods of education due to dissatisfaction with the sexually charged curriculum their children are exposed to in public schools. The inclusion of the books Gender Queer and Lawn Boy, which critics liken to child pornography and a promotion of pedophilia, in school libraries has caused particular concern. 

    Illinois’ recently enacted sex education guidelines teaching children in grades as low as kindergarten about gender identity have also resulted in parental protest. Outrage over public schools’ embrace of critical race theory, “woke” ideology and sexually explicit curriculum has led to the rise of advocacy organizations such as Parents Defending Education and the 1776 Project PAC, which is working to elect school board candidates opposed to such ideology.

    Breitbart credited the video footage and screenshots included in its reporting to tips from “Undercover Mother,” a group that describes itself as a “Mom Collective with children in independent schools” seeking to protect their children from “the abuse being inflicted by the schools and the cartels of the regional and National Association of Independent Schools.”

    Ryan Foley is a reporter for The Christian Post. He can be reached at: ryan.foley@christianpost.com

    Op-ed: Flynn Exposes Truth About Putin’s Real Plan – Says It’s Time to Pray


    Commentary By Michael Flynn | February 24, 2022

    Read more at https://www.westernjournal.com/breaking-flynn-exposes-truth-putins-real-plan-says-time-pray/

    With the price of oil pushing above $100 per barrel, the U.S. stock market opening with heavy losses, more global economic challenges looming, the real potential for significant loss of life, and the international community in complete disarray with feeble attempts to condemn what was totally avoidable, we face the onset of another very grave and historic period of tension between competing ideologies and worse, the onset of WWIII.

    This “invasion” was totally avoidable.

    As one friend told me, President Joe Biden and his failed foreign policy team set the table and sent the invitation and Russian President Vladimir Putin came and spoiled the dinner party.

    Clearly, there are fault lines on both sides, but for now, we must pray that those affected, without the ability to decide their fate, are able to survive this extraordinary period of world history unfolding (for many, unraveling) on the world stage. Civilians and military forces will be killed, wounded and displaced; those are the real consequences of war.

    Pray that this conventional war is limited in scope, purpose and intent.

    Yes, there were gross violations of previous agreements due to incompetence, arrogance and ignorance that got us to this point. Beyond this, what happens next is anyone’s guess, but Putin (and Xi — Taiwan?) just laid down a new world order marker.

    That said, it is doubtful that the U.S. administration will change its failed foreign policy, and instead, it will make weak attempts to triple down on leveraging this extremely serious situation in Europe to continue to distract from problems here at home.

    Given the shutting down of the Keystone pipeline and America’s energy independence while also enabling Russia and Germany (read: Europe) to reopen the Nordstream pipeline, one has to wonder about the discussions in the Oval Office that came to these conclusions.

    This is the Biden administration: describing America as a systemically racist nation; appointing Marxists and other radical ideologues to positions of power; allowing millions to surge across our southern border; attempting to federalize our election systems and processes; implementing racist critical race theory in our schools, military and government; and all along, raising the national debt until it is closing in on $30 trillion — spending us toward extinction, all for left-wing causes.

    Let us not forget the Afghanistan disaster, the myriad lies about COVID, a certain Biden-owned laptop, a complete refusal to investigate allegations of election irregularities … all while China gets a pass.

    It is extremely difficult to trust this administration when they lie with a straight face to the American people daily.

    Anyone who questions these rotten foreign and domestic policies is demonized as a racist. We see the unleashing of the federal government on citizens who are simply exercising their constitutional rights and the establishment media covers all this incompetence with a fake smile due to their own deep corruption.

    Our president rarely entertains questions or takes responsibility for his tone deafness and failures. The White House ignored — even laughed at — Putin’s legitimate security concerns and ethnic unrest in the Ukraine.

    We have yet to hear from the president of the United States an explanation of U.S. national security interests in the region.

    Instead, we continue to demonize Russia — reminiscent of the fake Russia-collusion hysteria we now know was perpetrated against the Trump administration by elements of the Clinton campaign  and Obama administration (among others).

    President Putin calculated this strategic, historic and geographic play and made the decision to move.

    And he did.

    All that given, there will never be justification for this invasion or any other form of invasion. However, never forget that war results when diplomacy fails.

    May God watch over and protect those in harm’s way and may God continue to bless and protect the United States of America.

    Michael Flynn

    Retired Army Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn served as national security advisor to President Donald Trump. Headshot photo credit: Jewel Samad / AFP via Getty Images.

    Phil Robertson Op-ed: Just loving America will never be enough


    Commentary By Phil Robertson, Voices Contributor | Thursday, February 10, 2022

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/voices/just-loving-america-will-never-be-enough.html/

    Christian flag
    Christian flag and American flag flying together | GettyImages/ sdgamez

    I love America, but my hope for the future isn’t wrapped up in the American flag. If our government imploded tomorrow and all of our freedoms were jerked from our grasp, I would mourn, but I would not throw in the towel.

    Some in the Christian community discuss politics as if our future depended on the outcome of every election. They say, “Our Christian freedoms are being eroded.” Many post scandalous, hateful, degrading memes about the opposition. Some advocate for a violent overthrow of the government.

    For me, I’m a free man who was bought and paid for by the mercy of God. And since He owns me, I am here only to obey Him and glorify His name. When He bought me, I surrendered my old passport and voluntarily became a citizen of his kingdom. My citizenship is in Heaven (Phil. 3:20).

    Did Jesus or the apostles give a hint of obsession about worldly governments? I can’t find it. The only thing Jesus said about government was, “Give back to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and to God what is God’s” (Matt. 22:21).

    Wasn’t Caesar corrupt? Weren’t elections rigged? Weren’t babies killed and innocent people executed? Did the citizens of the Roman empire have a Bill of Rights? The United States can’t hold a candle to the corruption of first-century Rome, but Jesus seemed to have no obsession with the quality of a government.

    This isn’t to say we shouldn’t get involved and do good when we can — we should. But we are given specific instructions about how to be a leavening influence on culture, including politics.

    Paul wrote, “I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people — for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness” (1 Tim. 2:1–2).

    He’s talking about ushering in a revolution by praying and petitioning the Almighty to bring about political change.

    He wrote, “Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. Consequently, whoever rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves” (Romans 13:1–2).

    In my opinion, there’s no ambiguity here. This passage says what it says. God is in charge.

    Yes, work to change your culture, but if it becomes illegal to worship God again, should we just wait until we get the government’s approval before we can praise him? No, the advancing borders of God’s kingdom do not wait on worldly systems.

    Sure, I openly speak about elections and social issues. I faithfully cast my vote. But all of my hope is in Jesus and His kingdom, not in any political system, including the United States of America.

    Jesus said, “Seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well” (Matt. 6:33).

    I made the decision a long time ago to seek first God’s kingdom and His righteousness. Jesus promised that when I make his kingdom my number-one priority, God will supply all my needs, no matter how dire the political and social climate appears to be.

    So far, Jesus hasn’t let me down.

    The writer of Hebrews said about the persecuted saints, “They were foreigners and strangers on earth” (11:13).

    Think about that. If I travel outside the United States, I don’t have the same rights as the citizens of the countries I visit. I can’t express my opinion about their government by voting in their elections. I can’t take up residence without getting permission to become a permanent resident. I am completely at the mercy of the systems that govern those countries. As a stranger in a foreign land, I often long for my humble abode on the banks of the Ouachita River.

    Accepting that I’m a stranger here means I am liberated from the obligation to put my trust in anything that offers no hope beyond the here and now. It also sparks a desire to be with God in his kingdom where He wipes away every tear (Rev. 21:4).

    There’s no more death, mourning, crying or pain. No corruption! No racism! No bigotry! No greed! And to top it off, our leader is a holy, righteous, perfect, all-powerful, and loving God. We will never see that in our worldly leaders. Never.

    This realm in which we live is chock-full of disappointments. Sure, I experience joy and happiness here on earth, but when I look around, I can’t help but see pain and suffering: divorce, abuse, injustice, addictions, hatred, unrest, gossip, slander, discord, and other ugly sins. So, the promise to dwell with God where all that junk will be eradicated creates an intense longing to be there.

    Peter wrote, “Since everything will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people ought you to be? You ought to live holy and godly lives as you look forward to the day of God and speed its coming. That day will bring about the destruction of the heavens by fire, and the elements will melt in the heat. But in keeping with His promise, we are looking forward to a new Heaven and a new earth, where righteousness dwells” (2 Pet. 3:11–13).

    I love America. And yet, a better dwelling awaits.

    When I tell people to act like a kingdom-driven follower of Christ, I am saying to be liberated from the disappointing rules of worldly systems. I’m saying not to let the temporary things of this world control your life.

    You will never regret when you turn control of your life over to the one who is eternal, the one who is good. One day, you will dance with joy that you did not give your allegiance to the systems of this world.


    Follow Phil on Twitter at @DuckCommanderPR and on Instagram at @officialphilrobertson.

    Erica Caudill Op-ed: True feminism: An unpopular opinion


    Commentary By Erica Caudill | Tuesday, January 25, 2022

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/voices/true-feminism-an-unpopular-opinion.html\

    Women
    Unsplash/Becca Tapert

    In a seemingly never-ending sea of hot topics, gender equality is always near the forefront. Whether it’s called ‘women’s rights,’ ‘female empowerment,’ or ‘the feminist movement,’ it’s all pushing the same agenda.  According to society, if you’re not crying ‘I am woman, hear me roar,’ then you’re not supporting other women. Well, I respectfully disagree.

    According to mainstream media, to be a woman who supports women, you must be: pro-choice, pro-LGBT, and celebrate all-female life choices. You must think Cardi B grinding on Megan Thee Stallion (ask yourself why that’s her stage name) on national television is sexual empowerment. You must watch your step as to not cut yourself on the remnants of the shattered ceiling of Kamala Harris becoming the first female Vice President. Meanwhile, don’t forget to cheer while Miranda Hobbs has a sexual awakening and leaves her husband for a non-binary comedian (a female named Che, formerly known as Cheryl) on the new Sex and the City reboot, And Just Like That…

    To the overly aggressive agenda-pushing media and entertainment industry, I say no. No, I will not support abortion because it is murder. I will not perpetuate the LGBT movement because there are two genders and woman was made for man and vice versa. I’m never going to celebrate someone holding public office that I fundamentally disagree with regardless of their gender. I’m never going to cheer as a family is torn apart, regardless of the circumstances. (I’m aware there are valid reasons for divorce — I’m not referring to that here.)

    I will not compromise my morals under the guise of women supporting women. This does not make an anti-feminist. It means that I am rooted in my beliefs and I’m not wrong for saying such.

    Every religious stand in this country, great or small, is met with a deafening outcry denouncing the cause. So, where are the Christian women? Where are the fierce, Bible-believing wives and mothers? Why is it acceptable to tolerate the outcry of every opposing thought that hits the airwaves but the conservative, family-centered matriarch is expected to sit down and shut up? If the church is not influencing our nation, then conversely, one can assume the nation is influencing the church.

    God created man in His image. Then from the ribs of the man, He created woman. Genesis 2:21-24 tells us how He brought the woman out of the man and now they are one flesh. This is the nucleus of the family unit. This was God’s design. When you step back and look at the many movements concurrently running through our society, you’ll discover they all seek to destroy the Biblical family unit. If you remove gender from society, then you remove the image of God. That is the ultimate goal after all — to remove Christ and His influence from the world.

    Ephesians 2:2 tells us that Satan is the prince and the power of the air meaning that he rules on the earth. He has tremendous influence and reach on the earth but that doesn’t mean that Christians are expected to sit back and endure silently.  Matthew 5:13-16 tells us that we are salt and light, and we are to let our light shine before others so that they may see the Father through us. Salt retards corruption and light outshines the darkness. We have a purpose and it’s to spread the message of Jesus Christ to a fallen world.

    Truthfully, a God-fearing woman is the ultimate feminist. There is nothing more feminine and empowering than finding your God-appointed mate and creating life out of that love. Proverbs 31:10-31 describes a Godly wife and mother. The world has this distorted view of Christian women as lowly, meek pushovers who are afraid of their powerful husbands. While this might be the case for some, I assure you that is not what God intended. There is no gender priority according to God. One can simply not exist without the other. We were created with a specific design in mind. We were created uniquely and with specific responsibilities for home and for the body of Christ.

    Christian friends, we need to be strong advocates for Christ and His design. The world’s effort to derail Christianity will only increase so now is the time to be rooted in our dedication to the Lord.

    Ladies, be proud of being a Christ-centered woman. Love your husband unapologetically. Raise your children to know and love Jesus. Men, love and respect your wives and guide your families according to His Word. It takes strong men and women to boldly speak the truth in a dark world. Rise up and be proud of exactly who Christ created you to be.

    Erica Caudill is a lifelong Christian who runs a blog. She is a married mother of two children. She can be reached at mrscaudill@me.com.

    Why Accepting Child Transgenderism Will Pave the Way for Accepting Pedophilia


    REPORTED BY: SPENCER LINDQUIST | JANUARY 24, 2022

    Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/01/24/why-accepting-child-transgenderism-will-pave-the-way-for-accepting-pedophilia/

    trans flag

    The last several years can be viewed as a testament to the remarkable strategic power the woke left wields. The speed at which absurd ideas have been thrust into the limelight by vested media and a wide array of well-financed academics and non-profits is both startling and impressive. Not long ago, it would’ve been unimaginable that a seven-year-old boy’s innocent preference for Polly Pockets over Power Rangers would find its tragic end in puberty blockers, chemical castration, and 15 minutes of fame on Snapchat’s explore page. Calling this abuse doesn’t encapsulate the full extent of the damage. It is a culturally bolstered, politically incentivized mass grooming campaign with a disturbing history. Even worse, this all may be eclipsed by a much darker future should it continue unabated.

    The push for childhood transgenderism is predicated on a perverse and extreme individualistic sentiment, specifically that children’s rights as individuals imply an autonomous ability to make irreversible decisions regarding their health, rather than require protection from parents and a culture that fend off all that endangers the most vulnerable. The dangerous claim that children can meaningfully consent to puberty blockers, hormone replacement therapy, or genital mutilation is, besides itself being deeply harmful, also leading our society down a sinister path towards accepting pedophilia. Here’s how.

    A Legacy Of Abuse

    Unfortunately, this isn’t speculative fear-mongering. Pedophilic child abuse has deep roots in the transgender movement. John Money, a sex researcher who paved the way for acceptance of childhood transgenderism, sexually abused his young patients and defended pedophilia. Money is infamous for the series of experiments he ran on David Reimer, the first child who was born developmentally normal yet underwent a sex-change operation. After Reimer’s botched circumcision, Money saw an opportunity to test his leftwing gender theories. He convinced Reimer’s parents to raise their son as a daughter and subject him to a sex change operation. Reimer and his twin went on to be studied and abused by Money, who according to a peer-reviewed biology encyclopedia from Arizona State University forced them to “engage in behavior resembling sexual intercourse” while he watched and took pictures. Despite this, Money failed to get Reimer to adopt a feminine identity. Reimer, who didn’t know he had been born male until the age of 14, frequently behaved in a masculine manner and resisted Money’s attempts to feminize him.

    According to Reason Magazine’s Books Editor Jesse Walker, Money touted himself as a defender of sexual liberation: for the rights of gays and other sexual minorities, for legalized pornography, for breaking down social taboos.” When his abuse of the twins was exposed, he insulted his critics as “anti-feminist” bigots beholden to traditional gender roles. 

    Reimer’s life eventually ended in the same tragic way that still disproportionately claims the lives of so many transgender people when he committed suicide at the age of 38. As if it wasn’t sinister enough, Reimer’s case was used to justify thousands more sex reassignment surgeries on children born with genital abnormalities. 

    Transsexual Pioneer Also Supports Pedophilia

    Money also used his stature as a prominent academic to defend pedophilia. The pedophilic organization North American Man/Boy Love Association (NAMBLA) even references a quote from an interview with Money that explicitly endorses pedophilia in an attempt to normalize their pathology. None of these revelations have prevented academics from lauding this moral monster as a founding father of the transgender movement. Terry Goldie, the author of a biography on Money, explained that Money “didn’t search for biological evidence of transgender identity, but accepted a patient’s conviction as fact.”

    Anke A. Ehrhardt, a research partner and disciple of Money, similarily noted his role in the transgender movement, calling him a “pioneer,” crediting him with the introduction of terms like “gender identity” and “sexual orientation,” and pointing out his role in our culture’s departure from a biological understanding of sex.    

    Erhrardt, who was directly involved in the Reimer case, still has a foothold in academia and is now the director of the Division of Gender, Sexuality, and Heath, and The Program for the Study of LGBT Health, a project of Columbia University. The abuser is also honored with the John Money Fellowship for Scholars of Sexology at Indiana University’s Kinsey Institute, which specifically seeks out those “whose research interests concern the history, politics, and methodology of sexology and sexuality studies.” The institute is named after Alfred Kinsey, another leftwing sex researcher venerated by NAMBLA. Kinsey, who worked alongside transgender activists to normalize gender dsyphoria, also mainstreamed the concept of gender fluidity through experiments that featured the systematic sexual abuse of children and even babies as young as two months old, according to his own books. Kinsey heavily influenced both Money and Harry Benjamin, the latter of whom has been called the “father of transexualism.” 

    Make no mistake, the transgender movement is predicated on a psuedo-academic legacy that’s replete with the most egregious crimes against children.

    The Threat Of A Legacy Fulfilled

    It isn’t hard to identify the same trend in the modern incarnations of transgenderism and adjacent movements. Here I highlighted numerous attempts to normalize pedophilia by various entities, the most pertinent being a New York Times article that referred to the serial rape of a 13-year-old homeless victim of transgender groomers as selling sex.

    As children are lured into the world of transgenderism, they become open to a number of abuses beyond cross-sexual treatments. One study found that children with a recent onset of gender dysphoria (62.5 percent of whom had previously been diagnosed with “at least one mental health disorder or neurodevelopmental disability”, began to isolate themselves from their families and distrust those who weren’t trans, both of which lead to further isolation.

    To make matters worse, transgender figures have told children that “it’s okay to walk away from unsupportive … parents” and to exchange them for a “glitter family, your queer family,” before inviting these children to call or Skype him. And what do “supportive” families look like anyways? How many “supportive” families have encouraged their children to become trans in exchange for social media’s fleeting dopamine hits? 

    The grooming has been institutionalized in American schools, with campus organizations like the Gay-Straight Alliance that seek to “train youth leaders” finding financial favor from Soro’s Open Society Foundation, the Ford Foundation, Weingart Foundation, Vans, The California Endowment, and various other elite organizations. The Federalist broke news that America’s second-largest school district, which is associated with GSA, has been holding LGBT club meetings for 4-year-olds and hosted a nurse who discussed “medical transition.” The district refused to answer whether parents were required to accompany children to such meetings. 

    These moneyed efforts are capitalized on by teachers who’ve used the club to groom children to become transgender under the nose of unsuspecting parents who are subsequently lambasted for not being “supportive.” 

    These People Aren’t Kidding. You Shouldn’t, Either

    Yes, they are coming for your children. It’s a feature, not a bug. The history of transgenderism proves this. You shouldn’t expect them to stop unless you make them through protecting your kids, coordinated activism, and community involvement. If you don’t, it likely won’t be long before it’s argued that children who can allegedly consent to sexual surgeries should also be able to consent to sexual relationships. If such a hellish future seems unimaginable, consider that any number of the outgrowths of sexual progressivism would’ve been beyond the pale only a decade ago. 

    Alternatively, turn your attention to a 1977 open letter in France from 69 people that defended three pedophiles and argued for the age of consent to be lowered below 15. It also contended that 13-year-old girls, by virtue of receiving birth control pills, should have the legal right to consent to sex. One of the signers was critical theorist Michel Foucault, who would later have a sizeable impact on the field of queer theory that now dominates American society. 

    Child grooming is already commonplace within the transgender movement as it has been since its inception and attempts to normalize pedophilia have already hit the mainstream.

    We Can’t Accept Half Measures In The Defense Of Children

    If there was ever an instance in which the right needed moral courage and a healthy dose of stubbornness, this is one of them. You can defeat this, but not alone. 

    This movement is backed by an array of NGOs, elite interests, and pallets of cash. It’s pivotal that you find like-minded people in your church and community and that you employ all legal and ethical means to collectively reject the dangerous insanity that’s being foisted on your children. For all the risks this comes with, you can be certain that cowardice bears a heavier cost, both on your children and on your psyche. But here’s cause for celebration: this moment is begging to be met by those who have the courage to do so.


    Spencer Lindquist is an intern at The Federalist and a senior at Pepperdine University where he studies Political Science and Rhetoric and Leadership and serves as Pepperdine’s College Republicans President. You can follow him on Twitter @SpencerLndqst and reach him at LSpencerLindquist@gmail.com.

    North Korea no longer the worst persecutor of Christians on Open Doors’ World Watch List


    Reported By Ryan Foley, Christian Post Reporter | Wednesday, January 19, 2022

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/news/north-korea-no-longer-worst-persecutor-of-christians-open-doors.html/

    Taliban
    Taliban fighters atop vehicles with Taliban flags parade along a road to celebrate after the US pulled all its troops out of Afghanistan, in Kandahar on September 1, 2021 following the Taliban’s military takeover of the country. | JAVED TANVEER/AFP via Getty Images

    For the first time in over 20 years, North Korea is not listed as the worst country in the world when it comes to Christian persecution on watchdog Open Doors USA’s influential World Watch List.

    Afghanistan has replaced North Korea as “the most dangerous place on the planet to be a Christian” on Open Doors USA’s 2022 World Watch List, released at a virtual press conference Wednesday morning. 

    Open Doors CEO David Curry said that his organization, which monitors persecution in over 60 countries, takes into account “on-the-ground expert consensus about what’s happening around the world to Christians who are targeted simply for their faith.”

    The World Watch List measures “pressure, intolerance and violence against the Christian faith worldwide.”

    “The 2022 World Watch List reveals the most seismic changes in the history of our research,” Curry said. “For the first time ever, Afghanistan is the most dangerous place on the planet to be a Christian, coming in at No. 1 on the World Watch List. It has supplanted North Korea, which is now No. 2, for the first time in 20 years.”

    Curry clarified that “North Korea has not gotten better” but rather that “Afghanistan has gotten worse.”

    The ranking comes months after the Taliban Islamic radical insurgency retook control of the Central Asian country after the United States withdrew its military presence.  Curry shared the personal story of a young Afghan woman who “fled for her life and went into hiding” after the Taliban took control of the country. The woman finds herself in particular danger because she is both a female and a Christian. Curry recalled a conversation Open Doors had with her and retold it from her perspective. 

    “A few years ago, the Taliban came, and they took my father away because he was a Christian. They tortured him for months and then killed him. A few months later, my brother also disappeared, and we’ve never heard from [him] again.”

    “It’s no doubt that she knows where her fate is, and thus she and her mother are now on the run,” Curry said. 

    The human rights advocate maintained that the Taliban’s recapturing of Afghanistan led to a global rise in Islamic extremism that extends beyond its borders.

    “In September, shortly after the Taliban seized control, a list was circulated with the names of prominent Christians. Somehow, this list fell into the hands of the Taliban,” he said.

    “Those listed were among the first to be hunted,” he continued. “The Taliban’s interpretation of Islam considers Christians to be traitors, enemies of the state, enemies of the tribe and community. They are infidels from Islam, and in their mind, the punishment is death.”

    Curry declared that every Christian who remains in Afghanistan “is either on the run or in hiding.”

    He shared testimony from another Afghan Christian Open Doors USA spoke with, asserting that “the Taliban are going door-to-door and snatching young girls and destroying … families.” 

    Assessing the state of religious freedom worldwide, Curry said Open Doors’ data shows that “free societies” that protect freedom of conscience, freedom of speech and freedom of assembly are “facing a war against hatred and discrimination on two separate fronts.”

    “The one battle is against tribal, religious and nationalistic extremists that’s sweeping the globe,” he described. “And there’s a second battle against authoritarian regimes who are deploying sophisticated systems of surveillance, censorship and punishment of anyone who believes or worships outside of a strictly enforced boundary.”

    “Today, religious extremists and the governments they control or influence lead the World Watch List for the first time,” he said, adding that “extremism and tribalism are skyrocketing” along with “related incidents of harassment against Christians.”

    “Nine of the top 10 countries on the World Watch List are run or influenced by radical Islamists or Hindu extremists,” Curry stated. 

    The only exception is North Korea, which is run by a “murderous dictator with a communist ideology.”

    In addition to Afghanistan and North Korea, Somalia, Libya, Yemen, Eritrea, Nigeria, Pakistan, Iran and India rounded out the World Watch List’s top 10 “countries where it’s most difficult to follow Jesus.”

    “Our report shows that 360 million Christians globally now suffer high levels of persecution and discrimination. That’s one in seven Christians worldwide,” he lamented.

    Curry emphasized that the World Watch List “also illustrates the challenges … to freedom of conscience and expression for all people, whether they have a religious faith or … consider themselves an atheist or just have different views from the majority of their culture.”

    The list contains a total of 50 countries where persecution of Christians is either “extreme” or “very high.”

    Open Doors USA determined that the top 10 countries on the list, as well as Saudi Arabia, have “extreme” levels of Christian persecution while the remaining 39 have a “very high” amount of persecution. While the countries on the list are primarily located in Asia and Africa, a handful of countries in the Western hemisphere made it on the list.

    Mexico, located directly south of the U.S., is ranked as the 43rd most dangerous country for Christians because of “organized crime and corruption.” Cuba came in as the 37th most challenging country for Christians because of “dictatorial paranoia.”

    The complete report, which contains detailed examples of religious freedom violations in each country on the list, is available on the Open Doors USA website.

    Ryan Foley is a reporter for The Christian Post. He can be reached at: ryan.foley@christianpost.com

    Suicide is now a public health epidemic, not a personal problem


    Reported By Hedieh Mirahmadi, Exclusive Columnist | Thursday, January 20, 2022

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/news/suicide-is-now-a-public-health-epidemic-not-a-personal-problem.html/

    suicide depression
    Unsplash/ Just Jack

    The Surgeon General recently reported that our teenagers are more at risk of suicide since the pandemic than ever before in our nation’s history. Their feelings of isolation, uncertainties about the future, substance abuse, and other problems occurring in the home have triggered soaring rates of depression, anxiety, and suicidal thoughts nationwide. Young people across every socio-economic class, race, and ethnicity are affected, with 6,600 teenagers committing suicide in 2020 alone. Our children are dealing with more uncertainty than any other generation in history. The average American youth will have seen close to 200,000 violent acts on some form of media by the time they turn eighteen, and most no longer live in two-parent households that provide emotional support. Consequently, many have an over-dependence on their peers, which ends up creating greater emotional instability.

    During a recent podcast episode, my husband I were surprised to learn how many people in the church were affected by the horrible tragedy of suicide. Out of a dozen live listeners, five of them had an immediate family member who either attempted or committed suicide – including myself. My husband shared how in his early twenties, he placed a loaded gun inside his mouth, having lost the will to live. Interestingly, a commercial on TV about starving kids in Africa ultimately shocked him back into the reality that his life was worth living. For another, her son’s girlfriend committed suicide right before Christmas while pregnant with his child. It shook the family to their core, but their faith in God is helping them heal. 

    For myself, I deal with the powerlessness that comes from being the parent of a child who struggles with mental illness and thoughts of suicide. My faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and knowing my daughter has also accepted Christ comforts me and allows me to surrender the burden to Him. Yet, I can’t help but face the very real notion that God is ultimately in control and none of us know what life may have in store. Kay Warren, whose son took his own life in 2013, eloquently expressed the paradox in this way:

    “My hope was pretty much centered around what could happen here. Rather than taking the longer view, sometimes things don’t happen the way we want them to here on Earth…Yet I can be safe and secure and even joyful with that confidence of what God is doing, ultimately.”

    When anxiety about ourselves or our loved ones builds up inside, the real danger is turning away from the Lord and towards ourselves. Whether it’s money, social distancing, escapism in substance abuse, anger, or resentment against the “other,” none of these offer a real solution to the problem. In the midst of being threatened, we must realize God is our refuge. The pressure should lead us to run towards God for rest and peace rather than running away.

    The threats we all face are real. People are losing their jobs, loved ones are dying, and our country is deeply divided along political lines. Suicide is now a public health epidemic, not a personal problem. We cannot treat it like something that just happens and cannot be prevented. Whether we’re health care providers, teachers, friends, or family members, we need to change our attitude towards the issue if we hope to reverse this alarming trend.

    In fact, the existence of a national mental health crisis is the one issue that receives overwhelming bipartisan support. Instead of capitalizing on it, this Administration again misses the mark and decides to tackle suicide in a deeply contentious approach. Rather than creating programs to address the root causes of suicide, like improving access to mental health services or eliminating the erratic COVID restrictions, the White House strategy focuses on reducing suicide through better gun control. It is as if our government is tone-deaf, ignoring the disturbing trends in self-harm, feelings of hopelessness, and trauma from the COVID hysteria happening in cities across America. One expert refers to it as “Mask induced psychosis.” No one disputes the statistics that guns are the most common method of suicide, but shouldn’t our focus be on reducing the stressors that lead people to choose a weapon in the first place?

    The past couple of years of lockdowns, financial chaos, martial pressure, and trauma for our children has taken a toll on all of us. Regardless of what the government may or may not do, the church should be a place of hope and acceptance. Survivors can be overwhelmed by feelings of anger and guilt because everyone seems to think they could’ve prevented it somehow. Yet, the reality is suicide is impossible to predict.

    Having faith in the Lord does not mean we can always handle life’s unpredictability. Let us reduce the stigma of needing help for ourselves and our loved ones so we can pray and support one another. We need to provide resources for those struggling with mental illness so they do not face their demons alone.

    “The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness” (Lamentations 3:22-23).

    https://player.edifi.app/embed/index.html#/channels/Living-Fearless-Devotional/26358

    Hedieh Mirahmadi was a devout Muslim for two decades working in the field of national security before she experienced the redemptive power of Jesus Christ and has a new passion for sharing the Gospel.  She dedicates herself full-time to Resurrect Ministry, an online resource that harnesses the power of the Internet to make salvation through Christ available to people of all nations, and her daily podcast LivingFearlessDevotional.com.

    FROM MY INBOX


    January 19, 2022

    Bill Connor Op-ed: Decline in Christianity among Democrats bringing steep polarization


    Commentary By Bill Connor, Op-ed Contributor | Tuesday, January 18, 2022

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/voices/decline-in-christianity-among-democrats-bringing-polarization.html/

    partisan divided
    iStock / Getty Images Plus

    A telephonic poll by The Heartland Institute and Rasmussen Reports has given a shock to many Republicans about the views of average Democrats regarding basic rights.  Around half of Democratic voters (48 percent) believe government should be able to imprison and/or fine those who question the efficacy of vaccines, while only 27 percent of all Americans would support such infringement of free speech.  Though 58 percent of American voters would oppose government fines on the unvaccinated, 55 percent of Democrats support such measures. Disturbingly, 59 percent of Democratic voters support confining the unvaccinated to their homes at all times, while the vast majority of American voters oppose such a draconian infringement of rights.  Almost a third of Democrats (29 percent) even support removing custody of the children of the unvaccinated, and 47 percent support forced tracking devices on the unvaccinated.

    Republicans, vaccinated or not, have been shocked, while Democrats generally don’t see the problem. Most Americans are starting to wonder about the source of such divergent values and worldviews and the lack of understanding. This dangerous polarization has followed an increasingly steep trend with the Democratic Party becoming secularized in recent years.

    First, the secularization of America is picking up steam and bringing profound change in values.  A recent Pew Research Center survey showed that between 2007 and 2021, the number of Americans identifying as Christian plummeted from 78 percent to only 63 percent. During that same period, the percentage of religiously unaffiliated almost doubled from 16 percent to 29 percent. In 2007, 58 percent of Americans prayed daily, and yet that number is now 45 percent, while those who hold religion as “very important” in their lives sank from 56 percent to 41 percent. The percent of Protestant Americans fell 10 percent in the past ten years to only 40 percent today. These numbers seem to be increasing, as the numbers of Americans who attend religious services at least monthly fell 2 percent (33 percent to 31 percent) last year. By some estimates, around a third of Churches will be shutting down from the start of the pandemic to today.

    Though alarming, this decline in Christianity is primarily a dynamic of the Democratic Party. Pew Research finds that the number of Republicans who believe in God has remained relatively consistent at 73 percent, while Democrat believers dropped to 55 percent.  Republicans are double (58 percent to 28 percent) the number of Democrats who identify as Evangelical. The number of Republicans who attend church weekly is substantially higher than that of Democrats (44 percent to 29 percent). For those who hold religion as “very important” in their lives, Republicans outnumber Democrats 61 percent to 47 percent. Most important when it comes to the connection of religiosity to worldview about rights and values, Republicans are significantly above Democrats in two key areas.  According to the Pew polls, Republicans look to religion for moral guidance over Democrats by a whopping 44 percent to 29 percent. Further, Republicans believe in absolute standards of right and wrong at over double the numbers of Democrats (47 percent to 23 percent).    

    Going back several decades, both parties showed comparative numbers of those who looked to religion as a source of moral guidance and believed in absolute standards of right and wrong. In the American experience, both parties generally agreed with the importance of individual rights as being from God or “endowed by our Creator” as we told King George III. Religion provided firm moral guidance on the respect for each individual and individual rights that political majorities should not infringe.  The Christian belief in original sin, and therefore the danger of corruption of power, has driven the value of limiting the power of government.

    The more secularized the Democratic Party has become, the more Democrats appear willing to infringe on previously held sacred rights in deference to government power. The more faith they have placed in government (over God), the more willing Democrats have been to wield power against individual rights.  Republicans generally put faith in God over government and therefore put primary value in the rights of individuals. 

    The way out of the polarization appears to be with the Democratic Party moving back from secularization and to the unity of values.  Alternatively, the Republican Party can begin repudiating God as a source of moral guidance, but most Americans would agree that’s the way to ruin.  Americans have a choice to make with our values. Is it government control over individual liberty? Does the value of the “collective” outweigh the value of individuals? Religion is at the root of the answers. For me, I stand with Joshua when he reasoned with his people about these issues and concluded: “as for me and my house, we choose the Lord.”

    Bill Connor, a retired Army Infantry colonel, author and Orangeburg attorney, has deployed multiple times to the Middle East. Connor was the senior U.S. military adviser to Afghan forces in Helmand Province, where he received the Bronze Star. A Citadel graduate with a JD from USC, he is also a Distinguished Graduate of the U.S. Army War College, earning his master of strategic studies. He is the author of the book Articles from War.

    Robin Schumacher Op-ed: The No. 1 worldview today is Woody Allen’s


    Commentary by Robin Schumacher, Exclusive Columnist | Monday, December 27, 2021

    Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/news/the-number-1-worldview-today-is-woody-allens.html/

    Desires and needs
    [PHOTO:UNSPLASH/ALEXISFAUVET]

    When filmmaker Woody Allen was publicly exposed in 1992 as having an affair with the adopted daughter of his partner Mia Farrow (Soon-Yi Previn, 34 years his junior), his defense was simply, “The heart wants what it wants.”  

    In quoting a statement made in an 1862 Emily Dickinson letter, Allen perfectly sums up the rationale underpinning today’s prevailing secular worldview, which is a deadly combination of post-truth and pragmatism, and driven solely by the adherent’s heart wanting what it wants.

    And so what ends up happening?

    The heart wants what it wants so it elevates itself above everyone else, putting others last, thus becoming the quintessential, prideful Captain You-Planet.

    The heart wants what it wants so it commits smash-and-grab, follow-home, and brazen what-are-you-going-to-do-about-it robberies, taking from others what it hasn’t earned.

    The heart wants what it wants so it goes to a Planned Parenthood abortion clinic to end the life of a person it finds currently inconvenient.

    The heart wants what it wants so it breaks its marriage vows and destroys its family all for nothing more than a muscle spasm.  

    The heart wants what it wants so it refuses to work and lives off of others because it bizarrely believes it is entitled to do so.

    The heart wants what it wants so it suppresses truth and rewrites history to fit a lying narrative that furthers its agenda and enriches itself.

    The heart wants what it wants so it cancels disagreement and slanders others because they threaten its echo chamber’s false peace.

    The heart wants what it wants so it misuses religion in order to murder, suppress, oppress, and exploit people in hopes of getting the power, position, and wealth it desires.  

    The heart wants what it wants so it deliberately thinks with its feelings instead of using the mind and facts to arrive at conclusions that may be distasteful at first, but saving in the end.  

    In his article for The Blaze, Jason Whitlock writes, “My problem [with today’s culture] is its aspiration to redefine every form of sin as a natural desire we should not tame. “Do what thou wilt” is the unstated overarching theme of progressive politics. “Do what thou wilt” is the primary tenet of the Thelema occult practice established by English writer Aleister Crowley, a Satanist.”

    This dovetails exactly with how the Bible describes the natural, sinful heart. Scripture says that “God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually” (Gen. 6:5), that the heart is “more deceitful than all else and desperately sick; who can understand it?” (Jer. 17:9); that we are “brought forth in iniquity” (Ps. 51:5) and “he who trusts in his own heart is a fool” (Prov. 28:26); that “the hearts of the sons of men are full of evil and insanity is in their hearts throughout their lives” (Ecc. 9:3) and “out of the heart come evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, slanders” (Matt. 15:19).

    Needless to say, it’s a terrible thing when that kind of heart gets what it wants.

    What God’s heart wants

    God knows the sinful heart wants what it wants and so He’s provided a cure that’s announced throughout Scripture. His Law acts as a tutor (Gal. 3:24) to bring us what we really need because, says Tim Keller, a sinful heart is one where “law only restrains the heart; it doesn’t change it.”

    That being true, we find early in the Old Testament God said, “[I] will circumcise your heart and the heart of your descendants, to love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul” (Deut. 30:6). In the pages of the prophets, God says: “I will take the heart of stone out of their flesh and give them a heart of flesh, that they may walk in My statutes and keep My ordinances and do them” (Ez. 11:19-20), and “I will put My law within them and on their heart I will write it” (Jer. 31:33).

    The awesome end result is a person where “the law of his God is in his heart; his steps do not slip” (Ps. 37:30-31) and they say, “I delight to do Your will, O my God; your Law is within my heart” (Ps. 40:8).  

    The miraculous change is perfectly captured in a verse from John Newton’s hymn, “We Were Once as You Are”: “Our pleasure and our duty, though opposite before; since we have seen His beauty, are joined to part no more.”

    And so what ends up happening?

    The heart wants what God wants so it elevates others above itself and washes others’ feet.

    The heart wants what God wants so it doesn’t rob others and steal what it hasn’t earned.

    The heart wants what God wants so it values the life of everyone, including the unborn.

    The heart wants what God wants so it is loyal to its spouse and keeps its marriage vows.  

    The heart wants what God wants so it works with its hands to support itself and is generous to others.

    The heart wants what God wants so it upholds and speaks the truth in love, following the narrative of Scripture.

    The heart wants what God wants so it respectfully engages dissenting voices and is in no way threatened by different opinions (Phil. 1:28).

    The heart wants what God wants so it engages in pure and undefiled religion (James 1:27), serving those around it with no self-centered agenda.  

    The heart wants what God wants so it is deliberately mature in its thinking (1 Cor. 14:20) and is Holy Spirit led vs. emotions driven.

    Needless to say, it’s a fantastic thing when that kind of heart gets what it wants.

    In truth, Woody Allen’s explanation for his actions is correct. However, the effect of “the heart wants what it wants” on culture is dependent on whether the heart in question is one that gives itself over to its natural, sinful desires or one that is born again (John 3:3) and acts under the direction of God.

    Needless to say, what the world desperately needs today is the latter where everywhere society turns, it sees people who are, “a letter of Christ … written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts” (2 Cor. 3:3).

    Robin Schumacher is an accomplished software executive and Christian apologist who has written many articles, authored and contributed to several Christian books, appeared on nationally syndicated radio programs, and presented at apologetic events. He holds a BS in Business, Master’s in Christian apologetics and a Ph.D. in New Testament. His latest book is, A Confident Faith: Winning people to Christ with the apologetics of the Apostle Paul.

    Carlos Garcia Op-ed: The ‘reason for the season’ is to be grateful for all the sacrifices made for us


    Commentary by CARLOS GARCIA | December 25, 2021

    Read more at https://www.theblaze.com/news/christmas-reason-season-sacrifice/

    Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images

    “Remember the reason for the season!” is the sign we see all over once the holidays start popping up. What is that exactly?

    It’s funny, when I was growing up, everyone knew what the reason was. Not everyone recognized or believed in the sacrifice that Jesus Christ made for the sins of the world. But we lived in a culture and a country that at least knew what it was, even if some rejected it.

    It’s different now.

    Our culture, our nation, has splintered. There are many many reasons for this, but one of those is that we just don’t celebrate Christianity in as unified a way as we used to. People in the Western World simply don’t have as much space for any faith, much less Christianity, as we used to.

    But the central reason for Christmas is still one that all people can recognize, despite their faith, or lack thereof. The reason for the season is that no man is an island, and we all have people that came before us that sacrificed in order for us to be where we are, to have what we have and be what we are. And it is good for us to stop and think about those sacrifices made for us, and be thankful, and grateful.

    And this is true in every spheres of our lives.

    As an American, a central part of my identity is to be grateful for all the people who sacrificed so much for this incredible nation to be created and maintained for decades until I was lucky enough to participate in it. Part of my identity is to continue that work, in whatever way I can, to preserve and maintain the institutions upon which this country is founded, and those that made it great.

    Part of my identity is to recognize the sacrifices my father and my mother made to make me who I am, and to be grateful to them and respect those sacrifices by living a life they would be proud of. That extends to my own family now, I have to repay the sacrifices made for me by sacrificing for them.

    Even as simply a person who was born at a time where the world has advanced to such an incredible age, I have to force myself to stop sometimes, quit taking things for granted, and look around and marvel at the awesome miracles that technology and our human inventiveness have produced for us to share and flourish. Even those are gifts from a God who planted that inventiveness into the human soul and provided the elements in creation for us to invent with.

    Part of the reason I believe in Christianity is that I have so much to be grateful for. The central story, the incredible narrative at the center of the Bible is that a holy and perfect God came down to save humanity and made an unfathomable sacrifice for us, to redeem us from our sins, and draw us to Him in a way we could never do on our own. It is the highest most perfect sacrifice that encompasses all others.

    As I look around at every miraculous good that God has provided to me, to all of us, I am reminded at the reason for this holy season.

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