The Day After

By more than 53%, Tennesseans approved pro-life amendment one to the state’s Constitution. In spite of the abortion industry’s (an accurate characterization) confusing information, misleading ads and massive spending advantage, one must attribute the success of YESon1 in large measure to the power of the pulpit. Across Tennessee, and various denominations, pastors, with conviction, explained the purpose of the amendment and the need for its passage. All called on their congregations to remember the privilege of voting and that sanctity of life is a Biblical precept that must be honored. Such efforts produced a victory badly needed by the Christian community.

Recently, the Supreme Court de facto made same-sex marriage legal in thirty states. Attacks on religious liberty (note Houston, TX) are continuous. The battle to defend the Biblical world view will be difficult and on-going. Hopefully, the success of YESon1 has emboldened  pastors and shown they aren’t without influence and resources when it comes to encouraging Godly, righteous living. Their leadership is essential!

Countdown Starts Today

The fate of YESon1 will be decided four weeks from today. It is time to fulfill your commitment to: “resolve to be involved.” Beginning now, over look no opportunity to promote this urgent issue through conversation, publicity, social media and voting.

Since a woman’s right to an abortion was legally established by Roe vs Wade, be prepared for those who question the need, purpose or reason for passage of this important Amendment. Your response should be — in your own words — as follows: “It simply allows the TN legislature, if it so decides, to pass laws protecting the health of expectant mothers and their unborn babies. Would’d that be a good thing?”

If still questioned, inquire if the role of the legislature isn’t to pass laws affecting Tennesseans? Or, aren’t laws discussed and debated before being passed or rejected?

Our opponents will use misinformation and half truths to confuse voters. But, such tactics will be to no avail against the consistent, persuasive message we offer. So, observe 1 Cor 16:14, stay positive and effectively press the benefit of voting — YESon1!

Front and Center

Over the next several months, pro-life advocates will have opportunities to be “front and center” in support of protecting both the unborn and the health of the mother. Please note the following:

Item 1:

This Fall, the 40 Days for Life campaign  begins Sept. 24 and concludes on Nov. 2. This is a peaceful, prayerful, lawful, 40-day prayer vigil in front of the Regional Women’s Clinic abortion site, 2901 West State Street, Bristol, TN. If you wish to participate or need additional information, contact Linda Edwards at 477-00774 or Edwards724@earthlink.net

Item 2:

As they have so graciously done in the past, Heritage Baptist  has agreed to host the local observance of the International Life Chain on Sunday, October 5th. This pro-life event is to increase the public’s awareness of the need to protect unborn babies and the health of their mothers. This year will be especially important as we promote passage of the YESon1 Amendment.

Attendees will gather at the Heritage Baptist Church on John Exum Parkway at 1:30 p.m. on Sunday, October 5 and after a brief prayer and instruction session, move out to the sidewalk with pro-life signs and stand until 3:30. Feel free to bring chairs and to move into and out of the line as needed. We urge all churches to rally for this event and fill both sidewalks along John Exum with supporters and signage.

Item 3:

Today, the Government Accountability Office (GAO), a nonpartisan government agency, released a reportconfirming what FRC’s said repeatedly about ObamaCare: It subsidizes abortion. The exchange plans lack transparency, do not comply with the law on the abortion surcharge, and fund elective abortion with taxpayer funds. The report outlines state-by-state abortion coverage in healthcare plans sold on ObamaCare state exchanges, revealing that over 1,000 plans nationwide cover elective abortion.

Because of this lack of transparency, Americans are being forced to play a game of moral Russian roulette when they select a health care plan. The GAO’s report reaffirms that the Senate needs to act and pass H.R. 7/S. 946, the “No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion and Abortion Insurance Full Disclosure Act of 2014,” sponsored byU.S. Rep. Chris Smith (R-N.J.) and Sen. Roger Wicker (R-Miss.) in order to protect taxpayers and offer real transparency.

Finally,

The YESon1 Amendment effort is a ideal time for youth directors to instruct their students on the Biblical requirement that they be Christian Citizens. Scott Hayes, at Cherry Grove, has planned the following activities which allow his youth to see the value of meeting their civic responsibilities. Good job, Scott!

“Our youth director is having a sign placed in front of our church talking about the number of aborted babies and increase awareness of “Yes on 1” by having pinwheels represent the number of babies.  Over 300 pinwheels will be placed in the front lawn of the church. Our youth will be going to the Jonesborough Court House to stand outside and encourage early voters to vote “Yes on 1″ during their fall break.  That week will be October 20-24. ”

Scott Hayes
Youth Minister
Cherry Grove Baptist Church
104 Cherry Grove Road
Jonesborough, TN 37659

Is it legal?

 
 

Too many Christian parents, students, and teachers simply don’t know their rights. Those who oppose religious freedom take advantage of this confusion — especially when it comes to public schools. Can you accurately answer seven simple questions about students’ rights on public school campuses? Test your knowledge now.

 
 
Christian students have rights.  Test Your Knowledge Now.
 
     
  TAKE THE QUIZ NOW  
     
 

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You care about religious freedom, but could be misinformed about your rights.

Thanks to a massive misinformation campaign by the Freedom From Religion Foundation, American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), and their allies in teachers’ unions and the public education establishment, too many Christians believe the myth that you’ve got to check your religious freedom at the schoolhouse door.

Nothing could be further from the truth, but the myth keeps hanging on.

That’s why we’re inviting you to take The Student Rights Quiz from Alliance Defending Freedom. Whether you’re a parent, a student, a teacher, or just a concerned friend, it’s absolutely essential that you know the truth about what the law and the Constitution say.

Knowing your rights is the first critical step to protecting them.

     
  TAKE THE QUIZ NOW  
     
 

Don’t let those who oppose religious freedom impose their own agenda on America. Don’t let them deceive you with their cleverly crafted mischaracterization about the “separation of church and state.” The Constitution and religious freedom apply everywhere, including inside the public schools your tax dollars support. Take the quiz and learn the truth today!

See the Results!!

The Gideons have a long history of sharing Bibles with the American military. Indeed, President Franklin D. Roosevelt wrote a special message for such Bibles which was  given to all those participating in the 1944 D-Day invasion. Thus when the news leaked that the Navy had removed all Bibles from the guest lodges at naval installations, a firestorm of opposition quickly occurred. Complaints poured into the Department of Defense, Navy headquarters and Congressmen & Senators offices.  The response was immediate  — the Bibles were restored! This episode confirms again the “power of pressure”.

A more local example occurred  in Washington County. The pro-life amendment “YESonONE was submitted to the local Commission for endorsement by that body. When some reservations were voiced about the benefits of such endorsement, contacts by interested local citizens allayed such concerns & the resolution easily passed.

If the Christian community would just realize the massive influence it has — when applied immediately, directly and purposefully — many of the harmful secular actions perpetrated today could be thwarted or reversed!

YES on ONE — action steps

In the July 30th post, background material was provided as to why successful passage of YES on One should be a high priority for every believer concerned with protecting the defenseless unborn and their mother. If you are pro-life and know every life is precious, these are some of the action steps you should consider:

1) pray continuously over this matter for it is truly a life and death issue

2) equip yourself with information so you can confidently and readily express your position on the proposed amendment, link here: yeson1tn.org

3) resolve to be involved. So: a) be available to serve; b) be willing to hand out materials & plant yard signs; c) inform media why you support YES on One; d) contact local public officials regarding their stance; e) recruit other volunteers to help.

4) provide financial support; ads & materials are not cheap but the YES on ONE message must be broadly delivered.

The successful passage of YES on ONE — and the protections it will brings   — depends on YOU. Those with the greatest commitment will be the most successful!

 

YES on ONE — background

In the previous post,”Bits and Pieces”,  the power of courts in American decision-making was noted. An example of such power can be found in our own state. In 2000, the Tennessee Supreme Court, in the case of Planned Parenthood vs. Sunquist, interpreted this state’s Constitution as giving an implied right to unregulated abortions. Thus, the following reasonable safeguards desired by our citizens to protect mother, and her unborn, are not provided:

* informed consent, particularly needed for minors

* 24 hour waiting period to avoid abortion on demand or under pressure

* inspection and regulation of abortion facilities to assure a safe environment

* hospitalization when risker late-term abortions performed.

The effect of the Court’s ruling in 2000 has had significant impact in two areas: First, it made TN the abortion destination  for abortion seekers with nearly 25% coming from out-of-state. Second, and more importantly, it removed from Tennesseans, and their representatives, all power, except by Constitutional amendment, to enact reasonable regulations of abortions.

However, after more than a decade, Tennesseans will soon have an opportunity to take control of the abortion issue and protect lives by supporting YES on ONE. In a subsequent post, we’ll discuss this opportunity and the action steps that can be taken to assure the people’s voice is heard.

 

Bits & Pieces

While the Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby decision was gratifying, concerns still exist. Remember, the vote was 5-4 with strong dissenting positions. Moreover, the decision was based on a 1993 statute rather than the First Amendment’s “Freedom of Religion” provision. Thus, the U.S. Senate moved quickly to pass legislation negating the basis for the Court’s decision. Requiring 60 votes for passage, it was defeated but only by four votes. Obviously, there is strong sentiment in the Senate concerning religious freedom.

In Obamacare, provision could have been made so religious organizations and businesses would be exempt from the abortion causing requirements. But the current administration refused thus necessitating the above court decision. Recently, the President signed an executive order making gender identity, which includes gays, lesbians & transsexuals, a protected class for hiring purposes by federal contractors. The religious community requested exemptions where their religious beliefs were impacted. Again, the administration refused. It is obvious that when personal sexual liberty conflicts with the Constitutional guarantee of religious liberty, this administration comes down on the side of the former.

The power of courts has been on display recently, sometimes harmful, sometimes helpful to the Christian community. Examples: New Mexico Supreme Ct. ruled against a Christian photographer, who refused to shoot a same-sex wedding, declaring ‘…giving up the right to live according to one’s conscience and religious belief is “the price of citizenship” in America today.’ However, a North Carolina Ct. ruled a college could not deny promotion to full professorship an employee simply because of his religious, conservative views. He got back pay and the college was assessed $650,000 in attorney fees. This is a strong and useful precedent to deter other colleges from taking such bias positions.

The legal aspect of the above underscores the value of Alliance Defending Freedom, the Beckett Fund, Liberty Counsel and others as they daily fight in the courts to protect Christians and Christian beliefs.

July 4th

This is the week of July 4th celebration.  It is a time to honor our nation’s founding, our freedoms and the government under which we live. Interestingly, the Bible has a good bit to say about governments. For the purpose of this post, let’s examine Matt 22:21. You’ll need to access that verse for the following to have application.

When questioned on the legality of Jews paying Roman taxes, Christ’s response deserves study. First, the term “render” means yielding to one what they are due; an obligation that must be fulfilled. Second, note the conjunction used, “and” which implies rendering to each according to their requirements. Thirdly, the image on the Roman coin used in confronting Christ was that of Caesar. At that time, Caesar was the government and the government was Caesar. Jesus could have just as accurately said;, “Render unto the government …” Lastly, Christ did not limit His answer to address only taxes. He stated the government is due its things and God is due His things.

Now what are these things Christ instructs us to render? To God , it is glorification through worship; obedience to His commands, laws and tenets and recognition He is the Supreme Being. And, to the government we acknowledge Romans 13 where, as God’s appointed authority, it is due esteem, loyalty, submission to edicts, payment of taxes and intercessory prayer for those in leadership.

Christ provided us important teachings for this 4th of July week. Why?? Because the foundation of this great nation rests on these Biblical truths  — government and God each have their rightful place in our lives. Our responsibility as Christian citizens is to assure government does not gain ascendency over the things that are God’s!