There are two trends in America that anyone of religious faith (actually everyone) should be very worried about. And the danger is that when seen by themselves these two trends may not seem all that alarming. But together they spell the end of your religious freedom. Sounds like I’m exaggerating, right? Using hyperbole to make a point? Think again.
The first trend is this: Government keeps getting bigger. Ever since the birth of our great Constitutional Republic (not a democracy), the size and scope of government have increasingly increased. So not only has it continually gotten bigger, but it’s getting bigger faster. Never has it shown any ability to meaningfully shrink itself. It has never shown that it has any real self-control.
Now this was not the intent of our Founding Fathers. They did not create a government as a little baby – meant to continue growing into the awkward, obnoxious, arrogant teenager it is today (who thinks it knows everything there is to know about the world and how you should live). In fact, it was specifically set up with restrictions to keep it from growing – leaving all but the necessities to the state governments and, ultimately, to the individual. They had the wisdom that such limitations were the only way to preserve our freedom. A wisdom we lack today.
Sadly, many today don’t see anything wrong with an increasingly bigger and out of control government. And specifically, there are many people of faith that do not see the danger it poses to our religious freedom – perhaps the most important freedom of all. And it may not seem very obvious until you view it in light of a second trend.
The second trend is this: Government increasingly denies the practice of religious freedom within its jurisdiction. With “separation of Church and State” as a battle cry – a phrase many obtusely misinterpret – there is a growing group of secularists in our country who aim to rid any hint of religious practice from any government jurisdiction.
And again, to many this by itself may seem like no big deal. After all, government has its place and I practice my religion elsewhere. So what’s the harm?
But put these two trends together. Government jurisdiction keeps growing with no sign of stopping. Government increasingly disallows any practice of religion within its jurisdiction. Are we thinking now?
For example, a long, long time ago government took over the school system. Now they are eradicating any kind of religious practice from the schools. Multiply that across everything the government has a hand in today, mix in a load of ACLU lawyers and an intolerant secular culture and it adds up to the eventual loss of your religious freedom – period.
Right now, the government has their hand in just about every pie in the bakery. And the growing rule of thumb is that if you receive federal dollars at all then not only can you not practice your religion, but you must practice the “government religion” instead.
Think I’m joking? Not only has this slowly and quietly already happened in our nationalized education system, but look at what Barack Obama is proposing in his Freedom of Choice Act. He says that if you are a hospital receiving any money from the government then you should be obligated by law to perform abortions and other morally despicable practices – your conscience or religion be damned. (And people still think socialized medicine is a good idea?)
It’s out of control. That being said, the government does have some convincing reasons for doing many of the things it does. But how much are they worth? And can it do them while still respecting our individual freedom?
We must weigh in the fact that the bigger these government programs get, the more our freedoms in general (not only religious freedoms) become endangered. That’s not fear-mongering. That’s historical fact.
We have another example this week in this “stimulus” bill. The Democrats are trying to make it so that no form of religious practice can take place in a facility that is renovated using these funds. Here’s the language:
(2) PROHIBITED USES OF FUNDS. No funds awarded under this section may be used for – (C) modernization, renovation, or repair of facilities (i) used for sectarian instruction, religious worship, or a school or department of divinity; or (ii) in which a substantial portion of the functions of the facilities are subsumed in a religious mission; or construction of new facilities.
And some might say “big deal.” It is a big deal. We are setting a precedent that all the government has to do is rub up against something with some “renovation” funds and now the facility can’t be used for anything religious. It gets scarier everyday. Hopefully this gets cut from this bill before passing. It’s another good example of how this “stimulus” is being abused to accomplish an underlying agenda to do much more than simply stimulate the economy. Further, it’s clauses like this that are later used by secularist lawyers and the ACLU to drive religion out of anything that’s been touched by the golden wand of government.
And still some say, “but religion doesn’t belong in government.” Well what about when the government is everywhere? What about when the government has a hand in everything? Is there then no place for religion at all?
We had better be very careful. We are quickly trading our religious freedom for a government kingdom – and not many of us seem to realize it.