Bill Lockwood: Post-Christian America
Post-Christian America- “– in many American circles, the persecution (though mild) has already begun.”
by Bill Lockwood
Salon Magazine has a recent article in which they label our nation a “post-Christian America.” The “process of secularization,” says Matthew Sheffield, “has been slower-moving in the U.S. compared to Europe, it is now [however] proceeding rapidly.”
For example, “[I]n 1972, just 5.1 percent of Americans said they had no religious affiliation, according to the University of Chicago’s General Social Survey. In 2014 that number was 20.7 percent, an increase in more than 400 percent.” Stating the obvious, that historically the irreligious have gravitated more to the Democrat Party, Sheffield admonishes Republicans: “Get with the times or shrink into obscurity.” Remove God from your platform.
What Shall We Say to Such Dismal Forecasts?
First, Sheffield is not sharing statistics which are catching conservative Americans and Christians unawares. As long as I can remember Christian families have been concerned with the “godless drift” in America.
The advice therefore, that “conservative Republicans” must drop God from its platform or “shrink into obscurity” is about fifty to seventy-five years late. Unconstitutionally removing God, public prayer, and Bible reading from public schools by a secularist Supreme Court was a clear-enough warning shot fired across the bow of the ship-of-state long before Sheffield was probably born. Any person paying any attention at all knew what the end game was going to be.
Second, the above causes the Matthew Sheffield’s of the world to scratch their heads in dismay. Why will not conservative Christians “get with the times?” he wonders. “Either that, or shrink into obscurity.”
What he fails to recognize is that Christianity is founded upon the historically-verifiable facts of Jesus Christ and proffers an absolute objective standard which governs human behavior. Though many Christians are too weak and therefore mold to society [under advice of Salon Magazine, no doubt], followers of Jesus Christ are principled. And these principles we do not bring to the barter table for negotiation—political power or not.
This is indeed a puzzle to secularists who spinelessly adopt whatever is trending in society—be it the murder of the unborn, homosexuality or transgenderism. To Democrats of yesteryear, even these positions were unthinkable. But the very reason for this shift is that the Democratic Party cut the cord to biblical values long ago.
As a matter of fact, in many American circles, the persecution (though mild) has already begun. Witness governing authorities demanding sermonic content in Houston; or the Iowa Civil Rights Commission banning places of “public accommodation” from expressing their views regarding “human sexuality” either “directly or indirectly.” Yet, faithful Christians are unmoved. I do not speak for the Republican Party, but if the GOP follows Sheffield’s advice it will simply mirror the other.
Third, since Matthew Sheffield and Salon Magazine is interested in cause and effect relationships, perhaps this will interest them. The rise of secularism and the loss of freedom. With an irreligious government in charge the average American works one-half of his time for the plantation we call Washington, D.C. The freedom to enjoy the fruits of our labor is being depleted by a socialistic government. We cannot exist half-slave and half-free.
Our freedom to speak of God has already been banned or seriously curtailed from the public school-house, the halls of government facilities, the military, the court-house, and the publicly funded university. In contrast our pompous rulers flout the law of the land in almost every conceivable area. Our cultural darkness is felt in the current debates by various elitists as to whether or not preachers can speak freely in their own pulpits to the godlessness that has engulfed our political authorities.
We are close to the position that colonial preacher Patrick Henry famously described in at St. John’s Church in 1775: “Our chains are forged! Their clanking may be heard on the plains of Boston! The war is inevitable and let it come! I repeat it, sir, let it come.”
My interest in political-relevancy is overshadowed by my desire to be right with God. If I will shrink into obscurity in our hedonistic society because of those values, so be it. At least I have some values.