"Now in our twenty-first year of standing for truth!"
Eric & Melanie Barger
Our Christian Responsibility
"Election Prayer Points" and other thoughts
Update - Sept. 7, 2004
To all of you who read this letter from around the world I ask that you indulge me as I remind my American readers of the awesome responsibility we have before us. It is to elect men and women of character and Christian values to office this November. This is not about party affiliations or alliances. It is about placing people in public office who will serve as if they are accountable not only to those who elected them but also to the one who created them. It has been and will continue to be my prayer that God convict and convert politicians at every level as well as those who preside on the bench in our courts. "God, either save them or remove them in Jesus' name!"
There is much at stake in the coming election. Certainly it will decide which party will control the Congress. Many State House's and local races will be run. And of course, the President of these United States will be chosen who will lead this nation through the next four years. But there is much more at stake.
Precluding any continued filibustering of appointees by radical left-wing senators, perhaps the most important result from this November's election is the assurance that the next President will be selecting many federal judges. Among them could be one, two or even three Supreme Court nominees whose influence and term could literally outlive our next President! This single fact could hold sway over the very lives of millions of unborn babies. If conservative judges are appointed by the President and then confirmed by a conservative "super" majority in the Senate awesome things could occur to secure and insure that our nation enact biblical standards concerning the sanctity of life and the institution of marriage. Imagine that - an America whose laws respect life and biblical values?!! But if liberal judges and senators are allowed to continue their calculated assault on constitutional truth and biblical morality, then we may be destined to continue down the road to self-destruction. With the atheist left at the wheel we'll watch as they swerve and side-swipe every traditional value and drive our nation into the dust heap of history to be remembered only as a "once great" nation.
Oh, and besides all of that need I mention that the focus and future of the war on terror is at stake?
Over 180 years ago one of our country's framers, John Jay stated: “Providence has given to our people the choice of their rulers and it is our duty and privilege to choose and prefer Christians for our leaders.”
Jay was the first Secretary of State under Washington and the first Supreme Court justice in our nations history. Most importantly, John Jay served the Lord Jesus Christ with his whole heart.
In September of 1904 Colliers magazine recorded the words of another famous American.
“It will be conceded that a Christian’s first duty is to God. It then follows, as a matter of course, that it is his duty to carry his Christian code of morals to the polls and vote them. Whenever he shall do that, he will not find himself voting for an unclean man, a dishonest man. If Christians would vote their duty to God at the polls, they would carry every election, and do it with ease. Their prodigious power would be quickly realized and recognized, and afterward there would be no unclean candidates upon any ticket, and graft would cease. If the Christians of America could be persuaded to vote God and a clean ticket, it would bring about a moral revolution that would be incalculably beneficent. It would save the country.”
These are not the words of a famous pulpiteer but rather those of the famous atheist know as Mark Twain!
While I am quick to point out that you must each vote according to your conscience, I pray that you will allow the Bible to dictate the choices you make when marking your ballots this year. After all, the conscience of an authentic Christian should always align with God's Word. Most of all, we Christians simply need to register and get involved. It is a lie to believe that politics and faith do not mix. You can trace much of our nation's troubles back to when some well-meaning but misguided preachers began espousing that nonsense 100 or so years ago. Since God instituted earthly government and then gave us the privilege to take part in it we must be involved in public political discourse - if only as a voter. While I do not believe that just by instating a good set of government officials we are likely to solve every problem today, it is certainly a step that we must take as a nation. We Christians need only look around at how far our country has slipped morally to see the results of what our abstention from politics has gotten us.
Here is just one Scripture to help guide our path.
Proverbs 29:2 states: When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice, but when a wicked man rules, the people groan.
If this nation is to return to and maintain any resemblance of greatness it will be because Christians get involved and as Twain said "vote their duty to God."
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More Election Thoughts...
The following is an excerpt from the September Saints Alive in Jesus newsletter by our good friend and co-laborer, Ed Decker.
I wanted to drop you a note and remind you to get involved in the election process this year. There seems to be such a move to take the God whom we sought when this nation was birthed and replace Him with everything that offends Him. We are not Europe and we are not universalists. Our forefathers and mothers crossed a dangerous ocean, faced starvation and death to be sure they could raise families in an environment where they could freely worship God in peace.
That marvelous heritage is being eroded faster than the Media can gleefully report it. Only you and I can stop it. That means the millions of Christians who stayed away from the voting booths last election must be there this time. It is time for you to get your church involved. Be sure all your friends, family and church- members are registered and will vote this November. As I said in my recent newsletter, set up a table at church and get a note in the bulletin. Get Voter registration forms filled out.. Visit your party headquarters and volunteer!
Here are a few reasons why.
Your brother in Christ, Ed Decker
Did You Know That:
Congress formed the American Bible Society. Immediately after creating the Declaration of Independence, the Continental Congress voted to purchase and import 20,000 copies of scripture for the people of this nation.
Patrick Henry, who is called the firebrand of the American Revolution, is still remembered for his words, “Give me liberty or give me death.” But in current textbooks the context of these words is deleted. Here is what he actually said: “An appeal to arms and the God of hosts is all that is left us. But we shall not fight our battle alone. There is a just God that presides over the destinies of nations. The battle sir, is not to the strong alone. Is life so dear or peace so sweet as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it almighty God. I know not what course others may take, but as for me, give me liberty, or give me death."
These sentences have been erased from our textbooks. Was Patrick Henry a Christian? You be the judge. The following year, 1776, he wrote this: "It cannot be emphasized too strongly or too often that this great Nation was founded not by religionists, but by Christians; not on religions, but on the Gospel of Jesus Christ. For that reason alone, people of other faiths have been afforded freedom of worship here."
Consider these words that Thomas Jefferson wrote on the front of his well-worn Bible: "I am a real Christian, that is to say, a disciple of the doctrines of Jesus. I have little doubt that our whole country will soon be rallied to the unity of our Creator " He was also the chairman of the American Bible Society, which he considered his highest and most important role.
On July 4, 1821, President Adams said, “The highest glory of the American Revolution was this: it connected in one indissoluble bond the principles of civil government with the principles of Christianity."
There is more. In 1782, the United States Congress voted this resolution: "The Congress of the United States recommends and approves the Holy Bible for use in all schools."
William Holmes McGuffey is the author of the McGuffey Reader, which was used for over 100 years in our public schools with over 125 million copies sold until it was stopped in 1963. President Lincoln called him the "Schoolmaster of the Nation." Listen to these words of Mr. McGuffey: "The Christian religion is the religion of our country. From it are derived our notions on the character of God, on the great moral Governor of the universe. On its doctrines are founded the peculiarities of our free institutions. From no source has the author drawn more conspicuously than from the sacred Scriptures. For all these extracts from the Bible I make no apology."
Of the first 108 universities founded in America, 106 were distinctly Christian, including the first, Harvard University, chartered in 1636. In the original Harvard Student Handbook, rule number 1 was that students seeking entrance must know Latin and Greek so that they could study the scriptures:
"Let every student be plainly instructed and earnestly pressed to consider well, the main end of his life and studies is, to know God and Jesus Christ, which is eternal life, John 17:3; and therefore to lay Jesus Christ as the only foundation for our children to follow the moral principles of the Ten Commandments."
Yale historian Harry S. Stout's wrote an article in Christian History magazine titled, “Christianity and the American Revolution”. Here is what he said about America at the time of the Revolution.
“Over the span of the colonial era, American ministers delivered approximately 8 million sermons, each lasting one to one-and-a-half hours. The average 70-year-old colonial churchgoer would have listened to some 7,000 sermons in his or her lifetime, totaling nearly 10,000 hours of concentrated listening. This is the number of classroom hours it would take to receive ten separate undergraduate degrees in a modern university, without ever repeating the same course!
Events were perceived not from the mundane, human vantage point but from God's. The vast majority of colonists were Reformed or Calvinist, to whom things were not as they might appear at ground level: all events, no matter how mundane or seemingly random, were parts of a larger pattern of meaning, part of God's providential design. The outlines of this pattern were contained in Scripture and interpreted by discerning pastors. - [Today] taxation and representation are political and constitutional issues, having nothing to do with religion. But to eighteenth-century ears, attuned to lifetimes of preaching, the issues were inevitably religious as well."
Times have changed, the world is different from those days, yet we all have the same hopes and desires, the love of God, family and the freedoms that such a spiritually based birth gave us here in America. Yes, we are a great nation, but it was earned by the sweat and toil and prayers of men and women like these.
Here are a few things to pray about.
A. Let Your will be done in the fall 2004 elections. Let everything on earth work together to bring about Your will and purposes.
B. Raise up godly leaders who love You and who love righteousness. Give us elected officials at every level who can be counted on to do what is right in Your eyes, honoring you and shunning sin.
--II Samuel 23:3-4
C. Awaken our nation to the need for godly leaders. Make us a country of people hungry and thirsty for righteous leaders.
--Proverbs 25:5, Proverbs 29:2
D. Give discernment and wisdom to the electorate. Grant to our electorate the ability to see those leaders whose actions are in accord with Your values and laws.
E. Spur the hearts of all Americans to invest their time, energy and interest in the fall 2004 elections. Cause them to dismiss the negative and seek Your will as they consider candidates and issues.
F. Protect our nation from harm and calamity throughout the campaigns, the conventions of both parties and Election Day. Protect the candidates, their team members and the delegates to their conventions. Foil the plans of anyone intending to bring harm or damage to them. Guard and preserve our system of government.
G. Guide the members of the media into wisdom and truth. Protect them from the temptation to stretch or distort the truth, to add hype or spin. Give us sources for our election-related decisions that are trustworthy and honorable.
H. Build into the very fabric of our nation a sense of the privilege and responsibility of our citizenship. Grant each American of voting age an acute awareness of the value of his or her vote. Let no one feel unneeded, unnecessary or above the process of the elections. Cause unprecedented numbers to vote in this election, honoring You and doing Your will.
I. Grant that the election officials, machinery, balloting equipment, and all persons involved in overseeing the elections will work flawlessly resulting in accurate and fair results.
J. Bless the efforts of the Pray the VoteTM initiative that great numbers of people will commit to pray and will faithfully follow through on their commitment. Bring to mind the need for prayer and spread the word about all the prayer efforts for this fall's elections http://www.presidentialprayerteam.org/praythevote/res-whattopray.php
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