Congressman J. Randy Forbes recently gave a chilling interview with BreakPoint about religious liberty becoming a “second tier” right in America. “There are two realities. One reality is, there is an effort to push Christians out of the marketplace of ideas. The other reality is that many Christians have [voluntarily] walked out of the marketplace of ideas.”
There is a common belief, “In the marketplace of ideas, truth will win out.“ But what happens if truth is banned from the discussion or we choose not to bring the truth needed to guide our lives?
When asked what he meant about “second-tier” rights, [Congressman Forbes] responded: “The whole purpose of freedom of speech is that you can say what you want to say. . . . That [freedom] works for pornography, TV . . . but when it comes to faith, they come down with a sledgehammer.”
“When the Constitution was first written, the government was not going to stop you from expressing your faith. Now, if what you say offends anybody, we will punish you if it relates to faith. If it’s related to vulgarity, obscenity, or whatever, it is okay. . . .”
“When you read Jefferson,” the congressman explains, “he was saying that we didn’t want the church telling the government what to do. And Jefferson was very clear the government was not going to tell individuals what they had to believe or do.”
However, as Forbes puts it, there is now a “new face” on government. Referring to Justice Kennedy’s oft-quoted majority opinion in the Supreme Court decision on DOMA, Forbes said: “Anybody who believes in [defending] traditional marriage is now ‘mean-spirited.’” He added, “If you believe in Bible [explanations] you are actively denounced as a person who is mean-spirited.”
As encouraging as that sounds, the congressman makes it obvious that truth will not win out without titanic struggles. To one who lives and works in the policy world of Capitol Hill as he does, nothing shows the struggle more clearly than the recent flare-up over protections of personal religious freedom in the U.S. military. As a member of the Armed Services Committee and representative for a district with a significant military population, Forbes is keenly aware of the problem caused by recent statements from military departments, warning against “proselytizing” and “evangelizing” by members of the military.
Forbes, who has been in Congress since 2001, founded the bipartisan Congressional Prayer Caucus in 2005. He now serves as co-chair with Mike McIntyre (D-N.C.). “The Caucus started based on observations,” he says. “Prayer and faith seemed to be under attack in the United States, especially the Judeo-Christian faith. Nobody was standing up from a policy/legislative point of view. We decided to draw a line in the sand.” READ Full article.
The good news is that this trend can be reversed, however it is going to take the entire nation (not just Congress) engaging through prayer and action. In 2005 the founding members of the Congressional Prayer Caucus called the nation to join them in prayer for the country. The Prayer Caucus members have increased to nearly 100 members with many of them gathering the first night of session in Room 219 in the U.S. Capitol to pray for each other and for our country. Read the Call To Prayer For America.
You can join our nation’s leaders in the titanic battle for prayer and faith.
1. Pray! Form a 219 Prayer Group. Pray with at least one other person regularly for America and our leaders.
2. Take a Stand! Have the courage to re-engage in the marketplace of ideas, to live and speak the truth wherever you have opportunity.
3. Put God up! Place a display of our national motto, “In God We Trust“, in your home or office. Learn more about how the landslide Congressional vote to reaffirm “In God We Trust”as our national motto has equipped you to put God up in every school and government building.