The Religious Liberty Blitz is over 183 pieces of actual legislation that really is changing the game for faith in America. It covers everything from making sure that kids can express their faith in school, to making sure that the members of the clergy or even businesses are not discriminated against because of their faith. Learn about the Religious Liberty Blitz and so much more, right here on WallBuilders Live!
Air Date:Â 06/05/2017
Guests: Randy Forbes, David Barton, Rick Green, and Tim Barton
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Transcription note: Â As a courtesy for our listeners’ enjoyment, we are providing a transcription of this podcast. Â However, as this is transcribed from a live talk show, words and sentence structure were not altered to fit grammatical, written norms in order to preserve the integrity of the actual dialogue between the speakers. Â Additionally, names may be misspelled because of the difficulty in understanding the speaker at times. We apologize in advance.
Welcome to the intersection of faith and the culture, this is WallBuilders Live! Where we”re talking about today”s hottest topics on policy, faith, and the culture, all from Biblical, historical, and constitutional perspective.
We’re here with David Barton, America’s premiere historian and the founder of WallBuilders. Also, Tim Barton, president of WallBuilders, national speaker, and pastor. And my name’s Rick Green. I’m a former Texas state rep, national speaker, and author.
An Offensive Versus A Defensive Mindset
David, Tim, we’re always talking about how to influence the culture more. It seemed like for a while, especially the last few years, that the left made so much progress in America we were just on defense. Â David, you called it “whack a mole.” I mean, just trying to respond to all the different things they were doing. But now it starts to feel like we’re starting to be a little bit more offense minded and kind of getting our footing and pushing back in the culture in a positive way.
Yeah, we have a CD that’s out called, “Principles Reformation.” If you want to reform a nation, if you want to have a reformation, what do you do? And one of the principles historically and Biblically is to be offensive-minded.
You go into the Bible and you look particularly in Proverbs chapter 21:22 says, “A wise man attacks the city of the mighty, bringing down the fortress in which they trust.“ In other words, a wise man is an offensive mind. Â He goes on the offense, he attacks. And too many times we’re on the defense.
I was told by a great friend of mine he’s a colonel, he was at the War College, and at the War College, they have this course they teach on the nine principles of war. And he says that as you look at those nine principles of war, defense never appears in any principle of war. Defense is only considered to be a temporary time in which you reorganize to go back on offense.”
So you should be on the attack. Â You should not be defending from their attacks or respond to their attacks. Â You ought to be creating your own attacks. Â And when you go on the attack you make them respond to you. You’re setting the agenda and that’s the way we should be doing things.
And that’s the way legislators should do it. Â That’s what conservatives should do, that’s the way churches should do it, that’s the way families should. If you go on the offense, your offensive minded.
What You Need To Do To Win A War
Literally, this Colonel friend of ours, Colonel Brian Birdwell, we’ve had him on the program before. He is a state legislator in Texas but he’s a military guy, and because his principles are so firm, and because he understands the principles of war, four consecutive sessions now he’s been voted the most conservative legislator in Texas.
His voting record is consistent all the way through because he is very offensive minded. He picks his battles and he went his battles.
We had him share here a year ago with our legislative network. We have a network made up of between 700-800 state legislators. And once a year we have a national conference and come together.
So I had Colonel Birdwell to speak to him and he said, “As legislators, let me teach you about the principles of war.” Because what we do in the War College is we don’t teach you how to wage war, we teach you how to win a war. And there’s a big difference between waging war and winning war. If you want to win a war here’s the nine principles you need to know.
And so he took those principles from the War College and applied it to the legislative arena. And man, what a difference it makes. You start getting your legislation passed and start moving things through.
So, being offensive-minded is a really significant thing. I also learned that from the guests that we’re going to have on here and a little bit, Congressman Randy Forbes. Randy Forbes is a great guy in Congress out of Virginia. He’s now no longer in Congress, he’s got a different job now.
One of the things he told me a few years ago I thought was really profound was, “You know the scripture where Peter talks about how Satan walks about as a roaring lion. An interesting thing about the roar of a lion, out on the savannahs in Africa you can hear the roar of a lion from seven to eight miles away. Â That’s a long way to hear that.
And that’s a fearsome sound when you hear the roar of the Lion. But the roar is not what gets you. Â Here’s the way it works. Â In a pride of lions, it’s the females. Â It’s the lioness”s that do all the killing. They are the ones who are the hunters, they’re the ones that are fast. The males are way too slow. Â They have a loud mouth but they’re just not really effective as a hunting machine.”
There were a lot of things, Tim, we could have chimed in on that one. That was that was like sitting on the tee for some really- But I’m going to let it go.
I was for that. There was actually a lot I could have gone with that. Â I just left it sitting there and you guys whiffed on that one.
I feel like we whiffed. Â We dropped the ball. I”m sorry, go ahead. Â
Running To The Roar
He talks about how that when they hunt what’ll happen is the pride of lions will go out and they’ll find a herd somewhere out of some plane. And the lionesses will position themselves in the letter U around it on three sides. Â They will kind of surround this herd. The lionesses will spread out, and stalk up on them, they make sure they’re not seen, and they get on three sides. Â
At the far end the male lion, when everything’s right will start roaring. And when he starts roaring it scares those animals to death and they turn and run away from the roar and by doing that they run right into the waiting lionesses. And that’s what gets them killed.
He said, “If you would ever run to the sound of the roaring lion that’s the safest place you can be is running at the enemy.” And you think, “But that’s so scary.” Yeah, but when you run right at them that’s the safest place to be because when you run away from them that’s where all the danger lurks.
And so he was even going to do a book called, “Running to the Roar.” And it’s that principle being offensive minded that when you get offensive minded and when you go on the offense it makes such a difference.
And actually, we’re going to have him on in a little bit to talk about the offensive mindset that is now starting to happen in state legislatures across the nation. But he is a great guy, and we need to talk about him more when we come back.
We”ll take a quick break and we’ll be right back. Â Later in the program, former Congressman Randy Forbes with us. Â You’re listening to WallBuilders Live!
Moment From American History
This is Tim Barton from WallBuilders with another moment from American history. The Reverend James Caldwell was a famous minister during the American War for Independence. His sermons taught liberty and God’s opposition to tyranny.
The British hated him and tried to kill him. So for his own protection, he would actually take loaded pistols with him into the pulpit and lay them beside his Bible as he preached. In the 1780 battle of Springfield, the Americans ran out of wadding for their guns which were like having no ammunition.
Pastor Caldwell ran inside a nearby church and returned with an armload of Watts Hymnals, the pages of which would provide the much-needed wadding. He took this great Bible-based hymnal, raised in the air, and shouted to the troops,”Now put to watts into them Boys!” This pastor’s ingenuity saved the day for the Americans.
For more information or Pastor James Caldwell and other colonial patrons go to WallBuilders.com
The Prayer Caucus
Welcome back to WallBuilders Live, thanks for staying with us. We’re here with David and Tim and we’re talking about taking the battle to the enemy. Actually getting on offense as you put it, David. Actually running into the roar as Randy has told you before.
Yeah, and Randy is really good at this stuff. Randy actually ran the political party in Virginia before he was elected. Â He’s a very strategic guy. And when he got in Congress he said, “You know”- He is a very Biblical guy too, and he looked at what he thought needed to be done. And so way back years ago he created what’s called “the prayer caucus.”
The prayer caucus every single week when Congress first gathers they start the week off by having votes. And what Randy would do is as the votes were going he got a room right across the hall from the House of Representatives and they would cast that first vote, and usually, there’s a series of votes. Â They would come in they get 15 minutes on the first vote, and then it’s a series of running votes two to five minutes on each one thereafter.
But they would they would cast the first vote and they would all go over to room 219. In room 219 they all got down on their knees and they prayed. They prayed for the country, they prayed for what God was doing in the country, they prayed for the people of America, and they prayed for the military.
I mean, in a group of 103 members of Congress that every week we’re going in and getting down on their knees and praying about what was going on in America, praying for America, praying for the citizens, and it became a very significant Caucus called, “The Prayer Caucus.” They are the ones that started weighing in.
The Religious Liberty Blitz
When the military, the Air Force, the Navy, or the Army, or whoever, would say, “Oh my gosh, you can’t have a Bible verse where people can see it.” They’d call the four-star general in and say, “Hey, why in the heck did you say that? Â They can’t have religious liberty.” And so they were able to use their position to preserve religious liberty and defend it.Â
They did a bunch of court cases, and Randy is an offensive guy. He understands being on offense and how important that is. He was a state legislator in Virginia before became a federal congressman. He was so good on military issues that earlier this year they were looking at him for the secretary of the Navy. The Navy, they want him in the War College, they want him teaching the War College so he’s a really good tactical guy.
And so what has happened is, Randy has put together what’s called, “A Religious Liberty Blitz” in all 50 state legislatures. What if in all 50 state legislatures we found a whole bunch of religious liberty legislation and introduced it in all 50 states at the same time? And you started running bills through every state legislature and everybody is working together in a concerted effort to defend religious liberties and advance religious liberties. What would happen?
And you used the term earlier, Rick, “whack a mole.” It will drive the left crazy. How do you whack a mole in 50 state legislatures at the same time when there are three to six bills going on religious liberties in all of these different states. And that literally is what’s happened. It”s called, “The Religious Liberty Blitz.”
And this Religious Liberty Blitz we worked on it for a number of months leading up to the start of this year which was January when state legislatures started going in session and had all these bills ready to go and dropped them. And it’s quite a remarkable thing that’s happening across the nation right now.
So Randy who’s part of the architect of this, Congressman Randy Forbes, has a great view on what’s happening with religious liberties in the state legislatures right now.
Congressman Randy Forbes, our special guest today. Stay with us. Â We’ll be right back on WallBuilders Live!
Have you ever wanted to learn more about the United States Constitution but just felt like, man, the classes are boring or it’s just that old language from 200 years ago or I don’t know where to start? People want to know. But it gets frustrating because you don’t know where to look for truth about the Constitution either.
Well, we’ve got a special program for you available now called Constitution Alive with David Barton and Rick Green. It’s actually a teaching done on the Constitution at Independence Hall in the very room where the Constitution was framed. We take you both to Philadelphia, the Cradle of Liberty and Independence Hall and to the WallBuilders” library where David Barton brings the history to life to teach the original intent of our Founding Fathers.
We call it the QuickStart Guide to the Constitution because in just a few hours through these videos you will learn the Citizen’s Guide to America’s Constitution. Â You’ll learn what you need to do to help save our Constitutional Republic. It’s fun! It’s entertaining! And it’s going to inspire you to do your part to preserve freedom for future generations. It’s called Constitution AliveÂ with David Barton and Rick Green. You can find out more information on our website now at WallBuilders.com.
Standing Against The Anti-faith Movement
Welcome back! Thanks for staying with us here on WallBuilders Live! Our good friend Congressman Randy Forbes from Virginia is with us. Always good to have you, Sir.
Good to be with you, Rick! It’s always great to see all the great stuff you guys are doing.
Excited about your new project through the Congressional Prayer Caucus, project blitz. Tell us what’s going on there.
Well, Rick, the Conventional Prayer Caucus, as you probably know, it”s the largest group of elected officials in the country. It’s about 700 members of state legislatures around the country. And of course the Congressional Prayer Caucus is a different entity, it”s about a hundred members of Congress.
But their sole goal is to make sure that they’re defending and protecting religious freedom and making sure that they’re inspiring faith to a generation that needs it very much across the country.
And one of the things that we’re seeing in the country today is a huge anti-faith movement that is attacking the very core of the things that you and I believe that we have a right as we were coming along and growing up. That anti-faith movement is well organized and quite honestly they’re very strategic.
Why won”t men and women who are leaders across the country stand up? What people don’t realize is that they are. Â Hundreds of them are standing up across America. You just don’t read about that in the mainstream press.
What we realized is that this was a great window of opportunity. And so we kind of helped coordinate, but there’s probably 40 organizations that came together and we said instead of us coming up with the piece of legislation that we think some of these members should put forward and make sure that they get into the law, we decided what if we just created a menu and we created a clearinghouse of ideas so that they could fix what works best for their state.
So we brought in the best experts we could bring in. We looked at religious freedom legislation across this country, we took the best of the best. And then what we did is compile it into a document that says, “Here is the best legislation we know of, here are the talking points. Â These are the pros and cons about it. Â Now you pick and see what’s best for your states. And once you do, we’re not going to live on an island, we’re going to bring in groups to help you cross the finish line.”
And right now we have more than 183 pieces of legislation and about 39 states. We’re really excited because what happens is you can have something in Alabama that somebody needs and start working on the synergy. Â That’s what we need if we’re going to turn the tide back in America.
Over 183 Pieces Of Legislation Is Changing The Faith Game
That is definitely a blitz. You said 189 pieces of legislation?
It”s over 183 right now and 39 different states and that doesn”t even count what”s going on in Congress.
And that’s everything from making sure that kids can express their faith in school, to making sure that the members of the clergy are not discriminated against because of their faith, or business. I mean, it’s a pretty broad amount of legislation, right?
It’s very broad, Rick. And the reason is because, as you can appreciate, your listeners certainly can appreciate, the same piece of legislation may not be right in every single state.
There are some states where they can be a little more bold and can do a little more pieces of legislation. Either one, sometimes it”s something as simple as those legislators come together and saying, “We’re going to write a letter to stop new regulations coming out and attacking somebody.” But this is over 183 pieces of actual legislation that really is changing the game field for faith in America.
That is very very exciting to see it happen. And it’s it’s a great tool. I know as a former state legislator, certainly for you as a former congressman, there’s so many bills and so many issues sometimes it’s hard to know where to turn and what specifically to do. Especially in an area like this where you”ve got so much legal mumbo jumbo, and all the cases, and everything else. So to have a resource like what you guys are doing with the prayer caucus for these legislators to know where to go, and like you said, not just to get the idea that’s been tried, true, and tested in other states, but to then have a team to come alongside you and help you to get that passed, this a big deal and can be a quantum leap in this particular battle.
Responding To The Call
And Rick you know because you”ve been in this fight for so long, and for many of these legislators across the country when they decide to stand up for faith, but when they do it they feel kind of thrown out. Because first of all, they feel like they’re reinventing the wheel, they’re having to draft legislation. They’re having to like you said, look at the pitfalls of it.
The other thing is that when they go out there to push it, we all know that some of the people that just attack them whether it’s a radio person that doesn”t like faith that is going after them to try to destroy them or editorial board writers. And often times the faith community doesn’t know what they’re doing and doesn’t come out along to support them.
And there was a scripture in Jeremiah that I’m paraphrasing that basically talked about where the Lord said, “I sent watchman on the wall. They blew the trumpet. But nobody listened.” And we want to make sure that doesn’t happen in our country.
A lot of people, like I said at the beginning, I hear people over and over again saying, “Where are the watchmen on the wall? Where are the people that are willing to stand up?” Well, there are hundreds and hundreds of them around the country. The real question we’ve got to be asking is, “How come we’re not standing with them?”
And so this gives them an opportunity to know if you step out and you stand for faith as an elected leader. Â We want to make sure that they know that there are a lot of people around the country that are going to be stepping out with them. That we’re going to bring the best of the best to help them draft this legislation, give them the talking points. But then we’ve got a coalition that probably over 50 different groups now that are saying, “We’re going to step up with you and help support that legislation to make sure we get it across the finish line. So you’re not standing by yourself anymore.”
How You Can Help Too
Love it! Alright, for folks who are listeningÂ who want to do something, they want to be part of it. Maybe they’re not a legislator. Â They can get this information at your website for the Congressional Prayer Caucus and then share it with the legislators that they know and get them started on it, right?
They can do a couple of things, they can go to the Congressional Prayer Caucus Foundation website. They can sign their name, too, and say, “We want to stand with you.” And they can become a standing member to literally make sure they are standing with them.
They can help their legislators make sure they are apart of this and that they’re doing this legislation there. And then they can do their part of this team because it”s going to take all of us working together for America if we want to have this country going in the direction that we believe it should be going in.
That’s fantastic! We’ll have links to it at WallBuildersLive.com to make it easy for you folks to sign up and get on that list and then get this information in the hands of your legislators. Congressman Forbes, sure appreciate you, man. Thanks for your time and for your continued leadership.
Thank you, it’s always great to be with you! Have a blessed day
Stay with us, folks. Â Be right back with David Barton.
Hi, friends! This is Tim Barton of WallBuilders. Â This is a time when most Americans don’t know much about American history or even heroes of the faith. I know, oftentimes as parents were trying to find good content for our kids to read.
If you remember back in the Bible, the Book of Hebrews it has the Faith Hall of Fame, where they outlined the leaders of faith that had gone before them. Well, this is something that as Americans we really want to go back and outline some of these heroes not just of American history, but heroes of Christianity and our faith as well.
I wanted to let you know about some biographical sketches we have available on our website. One is called, “The Courageous Leaders Collection“ and this collection includes people like Abigail Adams, Abraham Lincoln, Francis Scott Key, George Washington Carver, Susanna Wesley, even the Wright brothers.
There’s a second collection called, “Heroes of History“ in this collection you read about people like Benjamin Franklin, Christopher Columbus, Daniel Boone, George Washington, Harriet Tubman, the list goes on and on.
This is a great collection for your young person to have and read. And it’s a providential view of American and Christian history. This is available at WallBuilders.com.
Get This Information In The Hands Of Your Legislature
Welcome back to WallBuilders Live! Back now with David and Tim Barton. Thanks to the former Congressman Randy Forbes for joining us today.
Guys, everybody may think, “Well, I’m not a legislator. Â I can’t be a part of this.” But they can because they can get this information in the hands of their legislators that want to carry legislation like this.
They can. And Rick, one of the things that as we’ve worked with so many state legislatures, it’s amazing how many state legislatures still have so many state legislators that don’t know some of this information. As we travel and speak places, sometimes we’ll have a state legislator in the audience and they’ll come up and say, “That”s incredible. Â We’ve never heard of you guys. Â What do you do?”
And we’ll even talk to them about some of these religious liberty packets and they go, “That’s awesome. Â We want to do it.” And we’ll tell them people in their state that are carrying it and they go, “Oh, that’s what they’re doing.”Â
And so really there is a great opportunity to get a lot of this information into the hands of your state legislator, get it into your state legislation, and really help get this information out there because there’s a lot we can do to take back positive ground.
Every Friday on Good News Friday we’re telling stories about how state legislatures are making steps in the right direction. Almost without exception in every state. Â I say almost without exception. Â There are a few liberal states that there are some major uphill climbs to even get anything positive done. But the majority of states are moving the right direction. And so this could be something that for our listeners they literally can help get their state going in the right direction. They can help get the state legislatures informed on some of these issues and see some of these positive things happen in their state.
Getting This Information Out There
And you know as Randy said, we’ve already got a hundred and eighty-three pieces of legislation that have been introduced on this. Now, has anybody heard a news report on that?
That’s enough to encourage people if they knew that and it’s enough to encourage legislators that they knew that.
Or have they heard of any other issue? With that many pieces of legislation?
That is significant. People may know that “They’ve got a bill or two in our state.” No, they”ve got more than you think they do. And as Tim pointed out, just letting your legislator know that there’s a link to this package of legislation put together and you can get it to your state rep.Â
And your state rep is so accessible, so easy to get to. They have so few visits from constituents and you can come in and say, “Hey Mr. State Rep, I’m so and so. Â I’m in your district. Â Really appreciate what you do. You know religious liberty is important stuff. That’s the First Amendment. Â The Constitution is defending religious liberties and we’ve got that in our state constitution as well and man here’s a package of bills you have to look all over and see if we can’t get some of this stuff introduced and done.”
And they can look at. I think there are 23 different pieces of legislation there and they can look at it and maybe they want to do one, or three, or five, or seven, or 23, you know, whatever. But get it done. And the question Randy asked I thought it was really good, “How come we’re not standing with our legislators?”
Standing With Your Legislators
And that’s the other issue is our state legislators really don’t know that people have their back because they just don’t hear from people very often. And this is a great way to say, “Mr. Legislator, we’ve got your back, bro. Â We love this thing and a man we’ll stand with you on this and we’ll let everybody know what you’re doing.” And if you go like that as a legislator you get a whole lot done.
Because as I mentioned at the start, we’ve got this network 700- 800 legislators and they really enjoy getting together every year because they always tell us, “We didn’t know there was anybody else out there that believed what we believe. And now we look around the room and there’s hundreds of us.”
And so it’s the kind of thing that they often feel like they’re the only one out there. Â They’re an island in the middle of the ocean, and if you, as just a constituent, will talk to them, or give them the package, or say, “Hey, I see that you’re already doing some of this stuff, thank you so much! I can’t tell you how much we appreciate it. I’m going to let all my friends know. That makes a huge difference with legislators. Â And Rick, you were a legislator, you know what the difference it makes.
It’s 100 percent true. Â You expect the opposition to rant and rave against and come after you when the papers are always going to print lies and print negative stuff. So when the supporters are silent you really you lose heart, sometimes. It’s hard to stay motivated and keep in the fight.
But when we get behind our legislators and we make that call or we send that e-mail or we see them at church or wherever and just say, “Hey, thanks for staying true. Thanks for doing that bill.” I just got to tell you guys, it really does help, it invigorates you for the next battle.
Well, this is good news that we’ve got this advancement, this offense and not defense. We’re on the charge, across the nation right now 183 pieces of legislation. Randy Forbes has done a great job. And this Religious Liberty Blitz is good news. Â This could be a Good News Friday. But in the meantime, get that list of bills to your legislator. Talk to your legislator. Support them for what they’re doing and help give them good ammunition to keep the battle moving forward.
We’ll have links to that on WallBuilders Live- the Congressional Prayer Caucus. You can learn more about that blitz and get that legislation in the hands of your legislators as well. Â Thanks for listening today to WallBuilders Live!