The famed 19th Century revivalist and major contributor to America’s “Second Great Awakening,” Charles Finney, said the following: “If there is a decay of conscience, the pulpit is responsible for it. If the public press lacks moral discernment, the pulpit is responsible for it. If the church is degenerate and worldly, the pulpit is responsible for it. If the world loses its interest in Christianity, the pulpit is responsible for it. If Satan rules in our halls of legislation, the pulpit is responsible for it. If our politics become so corrupt that the very foundations of our government are ready to fall away, the pulpit is responsible for it.” I believe Finney was absolutely correct.
Notice that Finney believed there was a direct correlation between the kind of legislation passed in Congress and the kind of preaching taking place in the pulpits of America’s churches. He also believed that the pulpits of the country were responsible for corruption in government. Again, I agree.
America’s biggest threat does not come from abortionists, gay rights activists, pornographers, or drug dealers. Neither does our biggest threat come from North Korea, Iran, Syria, Iraq, or Afghanistan. America’s biggest threat comes from our nation’s pulpits.
In all candor, I’m increasingly frustrated with many of my pastor and Christian brethren. Over the decades, they have made a god out of government–especially the federal government. Their support for US military interventionism (justified or not) borders on worship. Plus, they have put their absolute trust in the Republican Party to the point that their support for the GOP has, for all intents and purposes, made the Republican Party more sacred than their own churches. They would abandon a church, or denomination, or pastor quicker than they would abandon the GOP–regardless of how much Big Government Republicans promote. When a Republican is in office (especially the office of President), he or she takes on the image of a god more than a civil magistrate. The Religious Right was absolutely deaf and dumb to the ubiquitous unconstitutional and unlawful conduct committed during Bush’s eight years in office. In fact, virtually everything that President Barack Obama is currently doing to circumvent constitutional government was copied from G.W. Bush’s political playbook.
Then these same pastors and churches turn around and get all righteously indignant about abortion, gay rights, family decay, etc. The fact is, the government in Washington, D.C., is the chief culprit in America’s moral and cultural tailspin. DC is a cesspool whose leakage has spilled over into the entire country. And the more pastors and Christians refuse to resist the ever-burgeoning power and influence of Washington’s unconstitutional manipulation and intimidation of our states and communities, the deeper the manure gets. Yet, so many pastors and Christians continue to quote Romans 13 as justification to sit back and do NOTHING to prevent DC’s unlawful control over what was the FREE AND INDEPENDENT STATES of this nation.
Forgive me, but when I hear these pastors and Christian leaders bewail the conditions of America, I get kind of sick. If they would stop supporting this out-of-control federal leviathan that is swallowing our liberties, if they would stop preaching their pansy, don’t-make-anybody-mad sermonettes, if they would stop sucking up to these corrupt politicians, most of the problems they complain about would not exist.
Why do you think your public schools are so liberal and socialistic in their philosophy? Why do your public school textbooks promote sodomy and other aberrant lifestyles? It started back in 1979 when the United States Department of Education (DOE) was created by President Jimmy Carter as a payoff to the National Education Association (NEA) for their political support. Ever since its creation, the DOE has coerced, intimidated, harangued, and cajoled State and local school districts to adopt its socialistic agenda. That’s why no matter what local school district one may find themselves living in, the textbooks, philosophies, and instruction of the school varies nary a bit. They are all under the thumb of the DOE. Get rid of the DOE, and local schools would be able to teach what the people of the local school districts preferred, which in many school districts would mean old-fashioned American values. That’s why, for the most part, it doesn’t matter to a tinker’s dam who you elect to your local school board. The root problem is the DOE in Washington, D.C. But when is the last time you heard any preacher in America say a word of protest against the DOE?
Why is your county sheriff so reluctant to oppose the Obama/Feinstein gun control bills? Because his office is receiving millions of federal tax dollars (otherwise known as bribes) from the United States Department of Justice (DOJ). In addition, the DOJ constantly sends directives, policies, agendas, etc., to your local sheriff. And, unfortunately, most sheriffs, governors, attorney generals, etc., labor under the delusion that individual states have no authority, power, or right to resist, and otherwise refuse to comply with, the wishes of Washington, D.C. That’s why, regardless what county you live in, your local sheriff’s office is not in charge. It is taking its orders from the DOJ in Washington, D.C. (Thank God not every county sheriff in the country is such a brain dead puppet of Washington. There are several hundred sheriffs who have unequivocally stated that they will NOT comply with any law out of Washington, D.C., outlawing semi-automatic rifles. Praise God for them!) Get the DOJ off the backs of your county sheriff’s office and you will see honest law enforcement return to your county. But when’s the last time you heard any preacher in America say a word of protest against the DOJ?
The reason you cannot afford to build a new home is because of federal departments such as the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA). The reason you cannot afford to buy property or do much of anything with the property you own is because of federal departments such as the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The reason you cannot get a loan at your “local” bank–or the reason you lost your business, house, or job during the past five years–is mostly because of the draconian and damnable decisions of the Federal Reserve. But when is the last time you heard any preacher in America say a word of protest against OSHA, the EPA, or the Federal Reserve?
Where did abortion-on-demand come from? Did you vote for it? Did your State legislators and senators vote for it? No! It was forced upon the states by the US Supreme Court in Washington, D.C. Yet, when Congressman Ron Paul of Texas introduced (several times) the Sanctity of Life Act, which would have, in essence, overturned Roe vs. Wade and given the states the authority to restrict or outlaw abortion-on-demand, what did America’s pulpits do to support it? NOTHING! The GOP leadership didn’t support Dr. Paul’s pro-life bill, so neither did America’s pulpits.
And where are America’s pulpits regarding the current attempt by Washington, D.C., to make criminals out of God-fearing Americans who believe in the Second Amendment and who own a semi-automatic rifle? They are AWOL! They are deserters from battle. They are traitors to freedom and the Bill of Rights. They follow constitutionally-ignorant Christian leaders such as Franklin Graham and Richard Land. (By the way, Land is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, a notorious Big-Government, globalist organization. I just thought you should know.)
Oh, trust me, I know that there are a handful of courageous preachers (true men of God) around the country who actively resist the tyrannical tentacles of the Beast in Washington, D.C., but, unfortunately, they are a small minority of the hundreds of thousands of preachers across America.
Again, what do you hear from the vast majority of our pulpits? “Romans 13.” “Obey the government.” “Don’t resist the government.” And by “government,” they almost always mean the federal government in Washington, D.C. So, our pastors and churches actively support the DOE, the DOJ, OSHA, the EPA, the Federal Reserve, etc. By their complicity with Big Government zealots in Washington, D.C., our pulpits are culpable in the escalation of virtually every piece of vice and villainy that currently engulfs our country. Every bit of it can be traced back to the manipulation, coercion, intimidation, regulation, oppression, bastardization, calculation, constriction, repression, and contamination spewing forth from Washington, D.C.
This is why when I hear these preachers lamenting the deteriorating conditions in America, I get nauseous!
Give pulpits back to honest and courageous pastors who will preach the Bible without fear of losing the tax exempt status that Washington, D.C., hangs over their heads, and give America back to the states and to the people who could enact their own civil laws and cultural norms without interference from Washington, D.C., and watch the re-birth of freedom take place; watch tens of thousands of communities return to the streets of Mayberry; watch the crime rates drop like an anvil; watch the demand for abortion drop; watch education test scores skyrocket; watch people go to work; watch houses being built; and watch prosperity thrive.
Sure, I realize that there would be hundreds of communities (mostly large, metropolitan areas and socialist-dominated states controlled by large, metropolitan areas) that would continue to promote the same Big-Government programs and policies that we see now. So be it. If people want to live in those pig pens, let them. But give people an opportunity to choose for themselves communities that respect old-fashioned decency, honesty, integrity, limited government, true republicanism, etc., and see how many people would flee to these refreshing, modern-day Cities of Refuge. Instead of gun free zones, America needs “Washington, D.C., Free Zones.” After all, that’s what America was intended to be; that was the purpose of the Tenth Amendment, and rest of the Bill of Rights.
By refusing to resist the Big-Government machinations of Washington, D.C.; by hiding behind an erroneous, passive, and compliant interpretation of Romans 13; by fearing the IRS more than they fear God; by worshipping the state more than they worship God; by refusing to teach their congregations the Biblical and Natural Law principles of liberty, America’s pulpits are the ones that are the most culpable in the deterioration and destruction of our blessed country. Instead of blaming the abortionists, gay rights activists, pornographers, and drug dealers, they need to be looking in the mirror.
Charles Finney was right: “If Satan rules in our halls of legislation, the pulpit is responsible for it. If our politics become so corrupt that the very foundations of our government are ready to fall away, the pulpit is responsible for it.”
P.S. Now that 14 people have been injured in a multiple-stabbing attack at a college in Texas, will Barack Obama and Dianne Feinstein call for a ban on “assault knives”? And will Franklin Graham and Richard Land call for national registration and universal background checks for all knife buyers? And if not, why not? I guess we had better watch out for those “assault rocks” and “assault baseball bats” next, huh?
Chuck Baldwin is a syndicated columnist, radio broadcaster, author, and pastor dedicated to preserving the historic principles upon which America was founded. He was the 2008 Presidential candidate for the Constitution Party. He and his wife, Connie, have been married for 37 years and have 3 children and 7 grandchildren.