Religion and Politics (Them's fightin' words!)
Do you wish religion and politics could be separated?
The fact is, values are moral issues. Witness the presidential election of 2004 in the United States! The question is not so much one of "religion and politics" as "morality and politics."
"Can we legislate morality?" That interesting question surfaces from time to time. Many people become nervous and seem to feel threatened by the government "getting into our bedrooms." But as a law professor of over 30 years once pointed out to me, we legislate morality all the time! Case in point: murder. And do you not think murder ever occurs in the bedroom? By legislating morality -- which we must do, for the good of society (because many people have no self-control, the government must control them) -- we inextricably connect morality and politics.
God and country belong together. Look at our money. Look at our monuments. Look at our national cemeteries. Some people want to make us a godless country. But people will always seek God, they will always seek to worship. It's in our very nature. The Bible says, "He has set eternity in their hearts..." If we erase the mention of God from our money, our pledge, our monuments, people will still worship. People will either worship God, or they will invent something else, or will exalt someone else, to worship.
The constitutional issue in the United States is not a question of the separation of church from state but rather separation of state from religion. Religion has to do with the particular teachings of people who worship in a particular way. The government should not choose our religion for us, but I submit that the government has the constitutional right, and even the social obligation, of helping to shape our morality.
Matt Murphy said on 101.1 FM, Birmingham, AL, 11/05/04, "The new Republicans are the old Democrats; the new Democrats are the old Socialists." Perhaps the new Socialists are the old Nazis, and the new Nazis are just plain old. But at any rate, political groups will come and go.
Does one political party or the other have a monopoly on morality? Socialists or Libertarians? Anarchists or Independents? Democrats or Republicans? Hmmm.... Since I have been old enough to vote in national elections, I have based my choice on -- you guessed it -- morality. There has for the last twenty years been a clear difference between the major candidates on the moral issues of abortion and homosexuality. Now, the obvious criticism of my approach is that it is too simplistic. Simple, yes; simplistic, no. There is no other issue as important as morality. Not education. Not social security. Not the environment. Not jobs. It's NOT "about the economy, stupid," it's about morality!
"Righteous exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people." Do you think that the fall of the Roman Empire had nothing to do with moral decay? Do you think it was a coincidence that the U.S. President who wrote "Abortion and the Conscience of a Nation" oversaw eight years of economic growth and the fall of the Soviet Union (well known for its atheistic principles)? Do you think it's a fluke that secular, humanistic, and idolatrous societies all over the globe are weak and faltering, poverty-stricken and decimated by AIDS, and that the most powerful nation in the world is -- and historically has been since its inception -- the most conservative from a moral standpoint?
So, get it straight when you vote: vote straight... morality. Your grandchildren will thank you!
Pray for the Nation (Sermon Outline)
Pray for the Nation (Sermon In Song)
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