God’s Plan for America

by | Jun 15, 2011 | Spirit-Led Living

church and stateALTHOUGH
ANTI-CHRISTIAN SENTIMENT IS INCREASING, GOD HAS NOT FORGOTTEN US. BUT
OUR NATION MUST ALTER ITS COURSE IF WE ARE TO FULFILL OUR DIVINE
PURPOSE.

Anyone
who reads the paper, listens to the news, watches television or goes to
the movies with regularity can’t help but be aware of the rising tide
of anti-Christian sentiment in America. It is apparent in almost every
aspect of our culture, including our educational system.

Negative
views of Christians and Christianity are particularly blatant in the
media. Believers are generally seen as religious fanatics who use their
faith as an excuse for being hate-mongers. But the truth is, most
believers do not fit this description at all. Perhaps worse than our
poor reputation is the ground we have lost in public arenas—schools,
for example. Though Christians cannot pray in public schools because of
rulings regarding the separation of church and state, religious
practices associated with Wicca and yoga are accepted in this setting.

Something is terribly wrong! How do we stem this anti-Christian tide?

We
must begin by acknowledging that we are partly to blame. Because we as
believers have been silent and separated from society we have, perhaps
unwittingly, allowed some of the anti-Christian sentiment to develop.

The
church, for the most part, has kept silent, while those with other
agendas have spoken out in a loud voice. We have insulated ourselves
within our four walls and fortressed ourselves against the ills of
society. Some branches of the church have even come to believe that the
separation of church and state in America is a godly state of affairs.

SEPARATION OF CHURCH AND STATE

The problem is that most Christians don’t understand what our Founding
Fathers actually meant by the separation of church and state. The first
amendment to the Constitution states that “Congress shall make no law
respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibit the free exercise
thereof.”

Broad, sweeping
suppositions have been made from this statement that have ultimately
resulted in the complete separation of church and state. That was not
the result our forefathers intended! They were trying to prevent the
establishment of a state church such as the one from which they had
fled. They wanted freedom of religion, not freedom from religion.

The
whole separation of church and state concept, as David Barton points
out in his book Original Intent, stems from a letter written by Thomas
Jefferson to the Danbury Baptist Association of Danbury, Connecticut, on
January 1, 1802. Jefferson wrote:

“Religion
is a matter which lies solely between man and his God; that he owes
account to none other for his faith or his worship; that the legislative
powers of government reach actions only, and not opinions, I
contemplate with sovereign reverence that that act of the whole American
people which declared that their legislature should ‘make no law
respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free
exercise thereof,’ thus building a wall of separation between church and
State.”

Jefferson had no
intention, Barton claims, of allowing the government to limit, restrict,
regulate or interfere with public religious practice. He believed that
God, not government, was the Author and Source of our rights and that
the government was to be prevented from interfering with those rights.

But
because of the current wave of anti-Christian sentiment in our country,
Jefferson’s nine-word phrase referring to a wall between church and
state has been twisted out of context and used to limit, restrict,
regulate and even interfere with religious practice in the public
schools and universities of our nation. In fact, recent rulings have
caused even the mention of God in prayer at graduation services to be
prohibited (Lee v. Weisman).

Prayer
cannot be offered at football games in public schools unless it is
student initiated (Jane Doe v. Sante Fe Independent School District).

Prayer
in general has been removed from our schools. How the founders of this
nation would be astounded and grieved to see what has happened to the
nation they birthed in prayer and gave their lives to set free!

We,
the church, are suffering greatly from the absence of Christian
influence in our society. Our nation and children are suffering because
of our years of apathy.

WHO’S TO BLAME?
We need to take a look at ourselves. The Bible says that judgment must begin “at the house of God” (see 1 Pet. 4:17).

Has the church become a lifeless, religious institution? Have we given society a reason to hate us?

We
need to ask ourselves what type of example we’ve been of the model
Christian. Have we been there for those who are dying of AIDS? Do we
care for the hurting in the homosexual community?

It
is a sad indictment on believers that many of the social justice
concerns in the nation are being addressed by those in the gay
community. Have we really been salt and light in our communities so that
people can see the face of Jesus in our actions?

Not
long ago I was celebrating a birthday party with friends at a
restaurant in Colorado Springs, Colo. At one point I stopped to ask the
waitress if I could pray for her. I told her she looked tired and asked
if she had had a hard day.

The
waitress replied that it was Sunday and that the Christians who came
into the restaurant were often difficult. She admitted that the waiters
and waitresses had a saying that the Christians went to church and
repented so they could come into the restaurant and act their worst with
them!

I was embarrassed and
told her how sorry I was. Sadly, that was not the first time I had
heard a similar story in my own city, which houses around 135 Christian
ministries. As Christians we should be solution providers, not problem
makers!

WHAT WE CAN DO

Part of the solution, of course, is prayer. The Lord recently convicted
me for not praying for the salvation of the homosexual community and
loving homosexuals as I should.

However, praying is not the end of our responsibility. We need to stand up for righteousness in our nation.

Finding
the balance between being loving while still speaking out against
unrighteousness can sometimes be difficult. But this must not stop us
from holding the belief system revealed through our nation’s laws up to
the plumb line of God’s Word.

In
order to stem the anti-Christian tide we are going to have to become
reformers. One of the reasons the tide has been able to sweep the nation
in the first place is that believers have been silent. We were silent
when prayer was taken out of our schools in 1962 and when Bible reading
was eliminated in 1967. Now subsequent generations are suffering from
our silence.

“To reform”
means “to amend that which is defective, vicious, corrupt or depraved.”
There is much that is defective and depraved in our society today. In
order to change it we must act as standard bearers who are not afraid of
being criticized for supporting measures that are completely counter to
today’s culture.

Consider
Mel Gibson and The Passion of the Christ. I read an entertainment
magazine that “predicted” Gibson would lose his fortune and his
reputation if he proceeded with his plans to release the film to the
public.

However, the April
5, 2004, edition of People magazine reported that the movie was a
monumental success and that nearly 45 percent of Americans have either
seen the film or intend to, according to a March 2004 Gallup poll. Box office
earnings defied all expectations, having reached an astonishing $300
million by the time the magazine was published.

I
don’t know whether Gibson looks upon himself as a reformer, but the
type of courageous stance he took is what is necessary to stem the tide
of anti-Christian sentiment in the media. The success of his movie has
stunned those in Hollywood who assumed that the nation has an appetite
for more perverse fare.

What
can we as individuals do to reform the nation? First of all, don’t be
afraid to speak up for righteousness. When I see an objectionable
magazine at the counter of a store I ask to speak to the manager and in a
nice way tell him it is objectionable to me. The managers have been
kind and courteous each time I have done this and have removed the
magazines from the stands.

Where
would the civil rights movement be without Martin Luther King, who
wasn’t afraid to be heard, or Rosa Parks, who refused to go to the back
of the bus? While we esteem these reformers, we need to do more than
simply honor their acts; we need to go and do likewise!

Second,
teach your children to be bold and unafraid to speak out against
unrighteousness in their schools. My son, Daniel, debated the school
librarian on the subject of evolution when he was 12 years old. He told
her he objected to the books in the library that presented evolution as a
fact but did not even mention creation science. As a result of his
action, books on creation science were added to his public school
library.

Second, don’t
insulate yourself by spending time only with Christians. Get involved in
community affairs. Volunteer at schools, run for local school boards
and write letters to the editors of your newspaper when there are
objectionable articles. Just make sure you do what you do in a kind
manner.

Finally, with
elections coming up soon in the United States, it is critical that we
realize one major way to stem the anti-Christian sentiment in our
society is through the officials we elect. We need to understand that we
are voting not for a party but for ideals.

Here are some questions to consider before you vote:

Where do the candidates stand on the issue of same-sex marriage?
•Are they advocates for the rights of the unborn?
•Will they appoint judges who rely on a clear biblical basis for their decisions, or who have an agenda that would grieve God?
•Where do they stand on the issue of prayer in school?

God
let me know recently that He considers voting a spiritual exercise.
Why? Because the Bible says that “righteousness exalts a nation” (Prov.
14:34). If we chooseunrighteous leaders to govern the nation then we
will be accountable to God.

Remember,
there is not a perfect political party, but we will be held responsible
for which party we put in power. Our choice may cause our family or
others we love to turn against us. However, when Jesus went to the cross
and died for us, He had to lay down all earthly affections.

I
have often heard it said that the only way evil will prevail is for
good people to do nothing. Perhaps it is time to take up our cross and
follow the example of Christ for the sake of righteousness.

Read a companion devotional.

Cindy Jacobs is founder and president of Generals of Intercession, an international intercessory prayer ministry she started with her husband, Mike, based in Texas. She has written several books and frequently travels and speaks at events.

CHARISMA NEWSLETTERS

Stay up-to-date with current issues, Christian teachings, entertainment news, videos & more.

The latest breaking Christian news you need to know about as soon as it happens.

Prophetic messages from respected leaders & news of how God is moving throughout the world. 


MORE FROM CHARISMA

Kingdom Economics: Choosing a Better Way—God’s Way

Kingdom Economics: Choosing a Better Way—God’s Way

The Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) released its third and final estimate of second quarter GDP (Gross Domestic Product) and its PCE (Personal Consumption Expenditure Price Index). Since core (less food and energy) PCE is one of the Fed’s preferred measures of...

Orthodox Jew: The Miraculous Return of the Red Heifer to Israel

Orthodox Jew: The Miraculous Return of the Red Heifer to Israel

Read Time: 4 Minutes, 4 Seconds American Airlines flight 146 touched down at Israel’s Ben Gurion airport on time, arriving from New York’s JFK airport as one of the dozens of flights that arrive in Israel from the US daily. While a regularly scheduled flight, among...

Brother Andrew Was My Hero

Brother Andrew Was My Hero

When Andrew van der Bijl was a young man, doctors told him he was “too weak to travel” because of his chronic back pain. That advice seems absurd now, when we look back on the life of this legendary evangelist who came to be known as “Brother Andrew.” After he started...

Messianic Rabbi: The Last Words of Moses, Yeshua—and You

Messianic Rabbi: The Last Words of Moses, Yeshua—and You

As I get older, I find myself reading the Bible and seeing the text as if I was wearing a different pair of glasses. I am not talking about the fact that as I have gotten older, I have actually had to start wearing glasses. I am speaking more of the way I view the...

RECENT ARTICLES

Prophetic Revivalist: The Significance of the Hebrew Fall Feast Season

We have just entered a new Hebrew month called Tishrei on the Jewish calendar. As we proceed on this month in the celebration of the fall feasts of the Lord, it is vital to know the holy days and...
Elvis Presley’s Charismatic Faith on Display in New Book

Elvis Presley’s Charismatic Faith on Display in New Book

A new book called “The Faith of Elvis Presley” explores the spiritual side of the iconic “Heartbreak Hotel” singer, asserting that Elvis was a devout Christian who prayed for the infilling of the Holy Spirit on a regular basis. The author, Billy Stanley, whose mother...

Joseph Mattera: 7 Traits of the Sown Life

Joseph Mattera: 7 Traits of the Sown Life

Paul said he was a "drink offering." This meant that he offered his very life, spirit, soul, and body, to the Lord and to His church as a "living sacrifice" (Num. 15:4-10; 2 Tim. 4:6; Rom. 12:1-2). He also said he not only "spent" but "was spent" for the gospel (2...

Pin It on Pinterest