The Role Of Government – Building On The American Heritage: Today, we are sharing a clip from the television show we did call, “Building on the American Heritage.” Today’s episode is on the role of government. You won’t want to miss this episode!

Air Date: 05/02/2019

On-air Personalities: David Barton, Rick Green, and Tim Barton


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Transcription note:  As a courtesy for our listeners’ enjoyment, we are providing a transcription of this podcast. Transcription will be released shortly. 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. Additionally, names may be misspelled or we might use an asterisk to indicate a missing word because of the difficulty in understanding the speaker at times. We apologize in advance.

Faith And The Culture

Rick:

Welcome to the intersection of faith and politics, WallBuilders Live with David Barton and Rick Green. Today is a special episode; we’re actually going to share with you the audio of the television program building on the American Heritage Series. It’s the new sequel.

Many of you have the DVD set of the American Heritage Series from a few years back. This is the sequel, and today’s episode is called “The Role of Government.” You’re going to enjoy it; here we go to the set with David Barton.

RICK:

Well, David, our topic today is pastors and the influence they had on the Revolution and whether or not they should be having influence today in the culture. What about the Revolution?

The Black Robed Regiment

DAVID:

Well, when you go back to the Revolution and look at people who were actually there and participated–like John Adams–from start to finish, signed the Declaration, signed the peace treaty to end it. John Adams, in 1816, when giving a list of who is most responsible for independence in America, went through and said, “Well, you’ve got the Reverend Dr. Samuel Cooper, the Reverend Jonathan Mayhew, George Whitefield, Reverend Charles–”  Preachers?

Not only Adams point to it, the British did as well. The British were the ones who named the American preachers “The Black Robed Regiment.” And, the British said, “If it hadn’t been for the preachers, America would still be a happy British colony.”

RICK:

So, they gave them a military name.

DAVID:

They gave them a military name and also went after them in a military manner. When they came to America and were going through the various states, the British burned church after church after church. They went to New York City, 19 churches burned, 10 to the ground.

They went across New Jersey burning churches, then across Virginia burning churches. We lost 4,300 soldiers to British bullets and lost 11,400 soldiers to prisoner of war camps; but, when a preacher got put in a prisoner of war camp, you can just about count that off.

Pastors Blamed for the Revolution

RICK:

Because they blamed them for the Revolution.

DAVID:

They specifically blamed them for the Revolution. You go, “What did the preachers have to with–what would John Adams point to preachers?” And, historians have documented that every single right set forth in the Declaration of Independence had been preached from the American pulpit prior to 1763.

That means the Declaration Independence is nothing more than listening to the sermons we’d be hearing in church leading up to the Revolution. Now, we used to study that; here are some old books. This is one called The Chaplains and Clergy of the American Revolution.

It’s an old book, 1860’s. You can find it online. People can read it at Google Books.

It talks about all these preachers who built America. You have one here The Pulpit of the American Revolution, also from 1860’s, and these are the famous sermons that were preached that shaped America, sermons and preachers.

Reverend John Wise

I mean, this is a great example this is a guy named the Reverend John Wise. He preached America in the 1680’s. He did two books in 1710 and 1717, talking about rights.

But, back in the 1680’s, he has already preached that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights. He’s already preached that according to the Bible, when you look at taxes, taxation without representation is tyranny. He’s already preached that when you look at forms of government in the Bible, that the consent of the governed is what God prefers.

And we say, “Wait; those are all lines in the Declaration.”

RICK:

Those are some of the most famous.

DAVID:

That’s exactly right.

RICK:

And, this is 100 years before that.

DAVID:

Yes, it is. In 1772, the Founding Fathers took his sermons and printed them in this book. This is from 1772; they spread this all over America.

RICK:

So, they wanted to republish it and get it back out.

DAVID:

They wanted Americans thinking right. And so,they re-published his sermons; two years later they had to reprint it because it was so popular. Two years after that, they write the Declaration, and guess what.

Pastors Had a Huge Impact

Lines right out here show up in the declaration. So, when you look at the role of pastors, they had a huge impact. Here’s, for example, a sermon preached by Reverend Foster, but it’s in front of John Hancock. What are they doing preaching in front of–

Because there’s preachers who helped government official think right about government. Here’s a sermon preached in front of Oliver Wolcott, who had just signed the Declaration. Yeah, but he’s the governor of Connecticut, and this was preached in front of the entire governor of Connecticut.

Here’s a sermon preached in front of John Taylor Gilman, a signer the Constitution. He was also the governor of New Hampshire. This is a preacher preaching to the government who said, “Hey, guys, here’s what God says about government.”

So, you look at all these preachers and at what we had in the beginning. America would not be the nation it is with the rights we have if it hadn’t been for preachers. And, that’s why John Adams lists all these preachers as being responsible for what we enjoy in America today.

RICK:

David, how about some questions from the audience on pastors?

DAVID:

Sounds good.

Should Preachers Stay Out of Politics?

MAN:

I understand preachers were involved in a Revolution, but it was before the First Amendment of the Constitution; so, aren’t they now supposed to stay out of politics?

RICK:

Well, I have to admit, at my age my first picture of pastors in the Revolution is from the movie The Patriot. And, remember the pastor going in to fight. So, that was a depiction of some of the pastors being involved; but, that was before the Constitution.

DAVID:

Yeah, well, you have pastors involved in the Revolution as military guys, as chaplains, as legislators, as writers of state constitutions. Then you move into the period the Constitutional Convention; a number of those guys at the Constitutional Convention were ministers. Twenty-nine of the 56 signers of the Declaration held seminary degrees.

So, you’ve got all these ministers involved in every area, every category of life. As a matter of fact, when you look at the First Amendment, it is signed at the bottom by a minister, the Reverend Frederick Augustus Muhlenberg. That minister had been back as a pastor at a church in New York City in 1777.

That minister, in New York City when the British came into New York City in 1777, there were 19 churches burned, 10 of them to the ground. He stood outside his church watching as it gets desiccated. He said, “I’ve got to be involved.”

And, he got involved and helped write the original constitution for the state. He turns around and gets elected to the Continental Congress. Then, he’s elected to the federal Congress. He’s elected speaker of the House in Congress.

RICK:

You’ve got to stop for a minute. This is a pastor–

A Pastor Wrote the First Amendment

DAVID:

A pastor.

RICK:

…serving in Congress; but, not only a member of Congress, speaker the House?

DAVID:

Speaker of the House. And so, now he’s over the writing of the First Amendment. And, we’re going think that a pastor, over the writing of the First Amendment is going to write an amendment that says that he can’t be involved? I don’t think so.

He got involved, wrote the First Amendment, helped write it. He helped oversee the writing of it as the speaker of the House so that pastors would be protected. And, that’s where our problem today is: we misunderstand the First Amendment.

The First Amendment is not a secularized government in any way, shape, fashion, or form; it is to limit government from secular rights in society. The First Amendment says, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” The only limitation in the First Amendment is what Congress can’t do; it’s not what pastors can’t do or what churches can’t do.

It’s not what religious individuals can’t do. It only says, “Congress, you can’t set up a national religion;” and, “Congress, you can’t stop anybody from expressing their faith.”

That’s all the First Amendment’s about; it’s no limitation or a pastor. I mean, it is wide open. That let pastors still serve in Congress, be legislators.

And, by the way, you actually had several pastors who helped frame the First Amendment. Hugh Williamson was a signer of the Constitution. He was also a minister and a framer the First Amendment.

Frederick Augustus Muhlenberg, the speaker of the house and a pastor, his brother was serving in Congress with him, John Peter Gabriel Muhlenberg. He’s a pastor as well. So, you’ve got all these pastors serving in Congress; and, we’re to think that they wrote an amendment that would limit themselves from doing anything?

RICK:

So, they didn’t stop with the fighting for the Revolution.

DAVID:

No.

Planting Seeds of Liberty in the Pulpit and More

RICK:

Even before that they were planting the seeds of liberty from the pulpit; but, they were in the state legislatures after that. And, they were in Congress giving us the First Amendment.

DAVID:

All they did was limit the government from stopping those expressions from occurring. They did nothing to limit the expressions themselves or pastors or churches. The only thing the First Amendment limits is “Congress shall make no law.”

Now, prior to the First Amendment, there was actually a couple of states that tried to limit the role of pastors. You had, for example, down in Georgia that said, “No minister can serve in the legislature.” Virginia had that.

It’s interesting that Thomas Jefferson is the one who went to bat in Virginia and said, “Hey, ministers shouldn’t be incapacitated from serving. They have the same rights of every other citizen; they don’t lose rights.”

And, when Georgia did that in 1777, John Witherspoon, who’s a sign or the Declaration and is in Congress throughout the Revolution, wrote a letter down to the legislature in Georgia saying, “Why would you say a minister can’t serve?

“Is he less of a citizen than anyone else? After having done so much in the Revolution, does he now lose the rights to participate that he fought for.”

RICK:

He was a minister serving in Congress.

DAVID:

Yes, serving in Congress. Now, they’re saying that ministers can’t serve in Georgia. And, the reason they gave was The Gospel is so important that you shouldn’t be distracted from ministering the Gospel by being in the civil arena.

Also, it’s kind of interesting; Witherspoon actually got humorous. He said, “So, I guess if I was profligate and immoral I could serve in the legislature. But, being a minister of the Gospel and having a moral and religious position, I can’t serve?

“Are you saying I’m going only be in the legislature if I set aside my religion, faith, and morality?” So, what you find is by 1791, many of those states had dropped that provision. There had been an earlier attempt–and, it’s an understandable attempt because even Thomas Jefferson supported the early prohibition of ministers because so many of the ministers were Anglican.

Thomas Jefferson: “Let’s Lift the Prohibition on Ministers.”

They had been part of the state-established church by Great Britain. And, when Baptists or Methodists or Quakers or whoever would try to preach, the Anglican ministers would whack them. They would find them, throw them in jail, and even kill them. So, what happened was after we separate from Great Britain, Jefferson puts in a prohibition, “We don’t want ministering serving,” because he’s seen these guys trying to whack the other ministers.

Well, just a couple of years in he said, “Hey, it’s really clear that this is not the position of the Anglican ministers.” As a matter of fact, Jefferson said, “Of all the Anglican ministers in Virginia–” I think there were about 120 Anglican ministers and only 20 supported a state-established church. So, it’s real clear the majority didn’t.

He said, “Let’s lift the prohibition on ministers. These guys aren’t trying to create a theocracy or an established denomination.” And, that’s why the First Amendment says that Congress can’t create that established denomination and takes away any ability of whatever minister to get together and say, “We’re going to all be Anglicans or Baptists or Presbyterians or whatever.”

So, while there were a couple of states that tried to limit ministers, the Founding Fathers quickly put that to rest. It’s really clear that in the First Amendment, they weren’t trying to limit ministers because when that popped up in other states, they went and whacked it in other states, whether it be Jefferson or John Witherspoon. They went and slapped it down.

“Render to Caesar What is Caesar’s and to God What is God’s.”

RICK:

I remember you saying that on one of our programs where we talked about “Separation of Church and State.” And so, here you’re saying these were actually pastors able to move within both arenas; they were able to do State and Church because they weren’t trying to take over one of the other. They were just serving as citizens.

DAVID:

It’s pastors simply reading the Bible, because Jesus tells us Matthew 22:21, “You render to Caesar what’s Caesar’s, and you render to God what’s God’s.” You’ve got spiritual duties and civil duties, and they were doing both. They were rendering to Caesar, and they were rendering to God.

The Truth About “Separation of Church and State”

They never separated their faith from either arena. There was nothing in the First Amendment to separate faith; it only separates institutions. We’re not gonna let the Anglican Church take over the Congress. We’re not going to let the press be–anything else.

RICK:

Or the Congress take over the church.

DAVID:

Or, the Congress take over the church. So, what it says is: “Congress, you can’t establish a national denomination or stop anybody’s free exercise of religion.” No limit there to secularize any aspect of society.

RICK:

Okay, Dave, back to the audience for a question about pastors and government.

WOMAN:

Shouldn’t pastors keep their focus on the Church and not on politics?

RICK:

Well, that’s a little bit of what you were referring to earlier about some of these states saying, “We don’t want pastors doing both.” Should they just be focused on the Gospel?

Should Pastors Just Be Focused on the Gospel?

DAVID:

Well, outside of American history, you do have a Biblical precedent for what’s happening. And, what’s happening today is we have, really, a false paradigm of what a minister is. A “minister” of the Gospel: it’s a preacher, you stay in the pulpit.

Well, actually if you believe the Word of God is inspired and inerrant and infallible, which I do since it’s a tenet of Christianity for 2000 years. You go over Romans 13 where the inspired, infallible Word of God says twice in verse three and once in verse six, that those that are in civil government are “ministers of God.” Really?

God uses the same word for those guys in government that He does for ministers in the pulpit? He doesn’t see a distinction between them; they’re both ministers? Same word.

And then, as you get into Hebrews 11, which list all the heroes of our faith, as you look from versus 22 through 34, everybody listed as a hero of our faith was involved in civil government. Now, why would God hold that up to us if He thought it is wrong to be involved in the civil arena?

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RICK:

Not just the American history in the Revolutionary period did you have pastors involved, but Biblically, you have ministers in government.

DAVID:

Consider how many–just go through the kings of Israel. Read the book of Chronicles or Kings; read the books of First and Second Samuel. Those six books deal with the kings.

The Role of Ministers in the Bible

Look at the role of ministers and all those kings. Did Samuel keep his mouth shut when he got around Saul? He’s always giving, “God’s saw you; should’ve done that. I told you to do this.”

You’ve got a minister speaking in the civil arena. You turn around with David; was a minister speaking? Yes, Nathan and Gad jumped at David for immorality, “You can’t do that. You murdered; you’re in trouble.”

“Oh, by the way, David, you wanna build a temple? Here’s what God says about it.” They were the advisers.

Even even Ahab and Jezebel wouldn’t go out to war until they got a minister in. They got a prophet and said, “What’s going to happen?”

Jehoshophat, the same thing. The role of the prophet was to speak to the king. And, that’s God’s minister.

You take any prophet in the Old Testament; God had them speaking into the civil arena.

RICK:

You just gave me–I had a picture of pastors, now today, being those prophets and being the ministers. We the People are the king, if you will. We’re sitting in the congregation, and the pastors should be speaking to us on all those those issues.

DAVID:

And, those that We the People elect in the government position, the pastors should be speaking into that arena as well. That is the Biblical precedent. So, even though it is also American precedent, who cares if American history says it if it’s against the Bible? But, in this case, American history lines up with the Bible, and you really do have ministers involved in the civil arena from the Bible and from American history.

RICK:

Okay, David, I have another question on pastors in government.

Did Jesus talk about Politics?

MAN #2:

Jesus didn’t seem to spend much time talking about government or politics in His time. So, what about my pastor?

RICK:

Well, did Jesus talk about politics? In fact, I think he talked to politics. He may have even called some politicians some names.

DAVID:

He called some folks out like Herod and other civil leader. He addressed them specifically on several of their policies.

In addition to that, I guess the answer to this question is What constitutes politics? Does policy constitute politics, because Jesus sure talks about policy. And, by the way, Who defines what “politics” is?

Now, we talk about marriage. Is that a political issue, or is that a Biblical issue? Well, it’s become a political issue; 20 years ago it was only a Biblical issue, not a political issue.

RICK:

And, if it becomes a political issue, is it no longer a Biblical issue?

DAVID:

That’s right.

RICK:

Because they take it away from the–

DAVID:

Abortion, the acknowledgment of God, all these things that have become political issues were Biblical issues long before. So, are we saying that every time the government says, “Oh, that’s our issue,” we suddenly can’t talk about it if the Bible talks about it?
RICK:

Yes, just because it’s controversial, does that now take it out of the pulpit where it can no longer can it be addressed?

Jesus Spoke Into Different Issues

DAVID:

What we have to do is say, “Okay, if it’s in here, I’m going to talk about it.” Oh, by the way, in Matthew 20, Jesus is dealing with the inviolability of contracts between employers and employees. Wait, that’s like this labor-relations stuff.

RICK:

Yeah

DAVID:

“That’s politics; we don’t talk about that.” Jesus talked about it; why shouldn’t we talk about it? You have in Luke 19 Jesus talking about no-fault divorce.

He says, “Look, Moses allowed divorce for the hardness of your heart. No-fault divorce: you can put away your wife for any cause.” He says, “From the beginning, it was not so. He made the man and woman and said, ‘Don’t divide them.”

So, no-fault divorce, that’s a big political issue. We’ve got probably two dozen states that are trying to do something to reform divorce: make the waiting period longer, get away from no-fault divorce because it caused divorce, whatever it is. Have covenant marriage. That’s political stuff.

Voting With Biblical Views

RICK:

Well, let me ask you in a different way then. If Jesus spoke to it and pastors should speak to it–I know our topic today is pastors. But, for me as a voter, then should I not be voting based on that Biblical view of each of those issues, not just abortion and marriage, but also taxes. I mean, there’s a Biblical view on all of these issues.

DAVID:

There is. Now, God does create a prioritization of issues. He gives us his top ten in the Ten Commandments.

He says, “This is the tenor of My teaching.” So, we do have to look for things that appear in the Ten Commandments. You have the public acknowledgment God; the protection of innocent life, abortion; the protection and preservation of marriage as He created it.

RICK:

Obviously the Biblical position on marriage.

DAVID:

You have the protection of private property in the eighth and the tenth commandments. Beyond that, there’s all sorts of guidance on taxes, labor relations, employees, and divorce, which would relate to the marriage thing.

RICK:

Well, not take away my personal responsibility to read and study and do those things; but, if if my pastor is not speaking to those things, most citizens are not going to know.

Pastors Expound the Application of the God’s Word On Every Aspect of Life.

DAVID:

The pastor should be expounding the application of the Word of God on every aspect of life. And, this is one of the problems we have in America today is that on any given Sunday, about 60 percent of the nation’s in church. Sixty-seven percent of nation thinks that Church is relevant today.

Now, that means the people who are going to church think it’s irrelevant. And, quite frankly, I agree with them in many areas. Being a Christian, if I hear salvation message 52 weeks out of every year, what do I get for Monday morning?

I’m already a believer and need something I can go out on Monday morning to apply when I go to work or school or to be with my family. What do I take and apply? I need something practical.

RICK:

Some discipleship.

DAVID:

Yes.

RICK:

Application to the things that may happen.

DAVID:

We have made the Word of God irrelevant by talking about one or two or three things and nothing else. And, if you go back and look at what Jesus taught, you bet he talked about eternal life and repentance But, He also talked about a ton of what we would call “public policies.”

And, we need to say, “Hey, I’m going to follow the model of Jesus and talk about all these things.” Jesus told Peter, “Feed my sheep.” The sheep are not not the ones who are outside the fold; feed the sheep.

The Great Commission Is Not About Evangelism

That’s what pastors need to take responsibility to do. And, by the way, the Great Commission is not about evangelism. Jesus, in the Great Commission says, “All authority is given to Me in Heaven and on Earth; so go and teach them everything I have  taught you.”

Now, that includes evangelism; but, it’s, “everything I have taught you.”

RICK:

You just listed off a lot of things. What a difference the pulpit–the impact of the pulpit on our nation–if we were teaching those things.

DAVID:

That’s exactly right. And, we need to change our paradigm as the Church, as pastors, as people who sit in the pews, and say, “Wait a minute. We can’t let the government take these things off the table just because it wants them. If they are in the Bible, I’m going to talk about them.
“They’re not political if they’re in Bible, even they are policy issues. Those are not political; they’re Biblical.” And, that’s a big difference.

We need to talk about what’s Biblical and not let the government tell us what we can talk about. Which, by the way, leads to another thing. There’s a great movement called the “Speak-Up Movement.”

The Speak-Up Movement

And, what you find is the government and secularists have really intimidated the Church into thinking there are certain things they can’t talk about. That is not true, even though they say, “You’ll lose your IRS tax exemption.” Government can’t take your exemption away because it came from the Constitution, not from the government.

All the government does is give you a letter recognizing that you’re tax exempt. If you lose letter, you don’t lose your title.

RICK:

You get you’re hitting on a big issue right here, David; because, I think a lot of pastors, if they were listening to the things we just talked about, might say, “Well, I’m afraid to talk about things where I might lose that tax exemption.” Say [that] again

DAVID:

Speak-Up Movement.

RICK:

{We encourage people to} learn more about what the laws actually say.

Johnson’s Rider

DAVID:

And, by the way, we’ve been pushing the IRS on this to prove–because see, the IRS. This policy is about 50 years old. For 350 years, there was no limit on what the pulpit said.

In about 1954, Lyndon Baines Johnson passed an amendment that says, “Oh no, we can’t do this; 501c3’s should keep their mouth shut on certain issues.” That has never been challenged in court and was not even a policy debated in Congress. They added it is a rider to a bill that went through without debate.

RICK:

It’s like sneaking it in in the dead of night when no one is paying attention.

DAVID:

Exactly. And so, it’s now become a national policy. We’ve never had a debate on it or litigated it. Now, if you take this and go into court, you say, “Wait a minute.

“You’re saying that pastor loses his right to free speech as association, to choose who he wants to associate with and talk about that association, whether it be political entities or anything else? You’re saying that he loses his free exercise of religion? He believes with all of his conscience that abortion is wrong; but, he can’t talk of that because of–”

RICK:

What power in Congress to censor what a pastor can say?

Four Constitutional Grounds That Protect a Pastor

DAVID:

That’s right. What happens is–really, there are four constitutional grounds that protect a pastor on whatever he says in the pulpit. So, with that, this group Alliance Defense Fund with the Speak-Up Movement, has developed lawsuits that they’re willing to take to the IRS; but, they can only take them to the IRS if they get the IRS to come after a church. What they’ve been doing for the last several years is getting pastors to clearly cross the IRS line and talk about political issues in the pulpit.

RICK:

Which are truly just Biblical issues.

DAVID:

Yes, Biblical issues, but they are political. And, by the way, they even call candidates names and political names from the pulpit, because if I say, “You know, I look at the president, and he’s the most pro-abortion president we’ve ever had in history. He has enacted over 41 pro-abortion policies.”

Politics or Reporting the Truth?

Is that politics or is that just reporting the truth? So, all these guys have been going in.  They even said, “Look, you cannot vote for certain candidates because they are pro-abortion, and you as a Christian cannot support the shedding of innocent blood. “And, if you vote for that candidate, you’re wrong.” They were calling candidates by name. We take those, turn them in the IRS, and say, “Oh, IRS, you’ve got to come after this preacher who crossed the line.”

And, we know they crossed the line. We’re encouraging them to cross the line, because we want the IRS to come. For years now, the IRS refuses to go after any of those guys.

Now, why would they do that? Because there’s 370,000 churches in America. If they come after those guys and we hit them with that lawsuit we win the lawsuit, then 370,000 churches know that there’s no limitation on what they say.

So, they would rather let 200 churches cross the line and not get in trouble than lose control of 370,000.

RICK:

This is huge, David. So, these pastors spoke from the pulpit on an issue as controversial as abortion.

DAVID:

Or marriage or all sorts of other issues that are in the Bible.

RICK:

And, they name candidates and their positions on these issues.

DAVID:

And, let me say also that there pastors speaking in the pulpit on things I disagree with; but, that doesn’t matter.

RICK:

They have the freedom to do that.

Pastors Have the Freedom They Need to Speak Truth.

DAVID:

They have the freedom. There are some guys coming out on all sorts of things: “The Bible’s against any war, anywhere, at any point in time. I’m against the war on terror and President Bush.”

They’ve got the right to do that from the pulpit. Government has no right to go into the pulpit and tell you what you can and cannot do.

RICK:

To limit them in that way.

DAVID:

You’ve got the right of free speech.

RICK:

Yes.

DAVID:

They don’t limit anybody else, like unions, from saying that they want, or teachers, political parties. Why would preachers be the only one they would limit?

RICK:

Well, it sounds like they’re not, then. If these pastors have actually been able to–

DAVID:

Exactly.

RICK:

Have sent those sermons to the IRS. The IRS hasn’t gone after them.

DAVID:

These pastors have gone through legal training and have deliberately crossed the line, saying, “Please come after me because I need to file a lawsuit.”

The IRS Line, Not the Constitutional Line.
RICK:

The IRS line, not the Constitutional line.

DAVID:

That’s right; they haven’t crossed the Biblical line or the constitutional line, but the IRS line.

RICK:

It’s really a paper tiger, it sounds like.

Alliance Defense Fund

DAVID:

And, that’s the whole point: it’s a paper tiger. That’s why I recommend learning more about the Speak-Up Movement speak with the Alliance Defense Fund, one of the premier constitutional groups in the United States. They defend pastors for free.

We’re finding out that that there is no limitation.

RICK:

David, that’s a wealth of information, not just for pastors, but for those of us in the pews as well. Let’s get another question from the audience.

MAN #3:

My church is full of different political views; but, we’re all united by faith in Christ. Should I be concerned that introducing politics into the pulpit will breed disunity in the Church.

Will Politics Breed Disunity in the Church?

RICK:

Well, here we go. Small or large church, they’re all going to be a diverse population there in their church.

DAVID:

That’s right; the bigger question is Who cares about unity? What you want is Biblical foundations, because Jesus said, “When I come, I’m going to be bringing a sword. There will be divided families, two against one, one against two; because, when you start holding up a standard of truth, there’s people who don’t want to embrace the truth.”

So, your objective should not be church unity, but to declare the Word of God. That will wean things out. You may recall the disciples came to Jesus in Matthew 14 and said, “Jesus the stuff You just taught, don’t you realize the Pharisees were offended over that?” He said, “Look; it’s the truth. They’re either going to get it now, or are they gonna have to get it at the judgment.

“But, I’m not going to stop speaking the truth.”

RICK:

That’s good.

DAVID:

So, when you go from that standpoint; for example, First Timothy 1:8-10 where it says, “The purpose of law is to–” I mean, Paul makes it really clear. He says, “The law is good to use as should be used, knowing this: law is not made for a righteous person, but for the lawless and wicked, for the ungodly sinners, for the unholy profane. The law is made to regulate murderers, manslayers, murders of mothers and fathers, fornicators homosexuals, kidnappers, liars, purchasers,” and all this other stuff.

Pastor’s Should Preach the Truth

So, if I come out with the position that says, “Wait a minute; the Bible says the law is made to regulate sexually immoral, whether homosexual, whatever. And so,we need to have laws that say this.” Which we had up until just a few years ago when the Supreme Court said, “Oh, all those laws have to go away because we disagree with them.”

I don’t care what the Supreme Court says. God’s made it really clear what is right and wrong in the Scriptures.

RICK:

So, even if your congregation is split on that issue, there’s still a duty to preach what the truth is.

DAVID:

This is where Jeremiah called the pastors back then “a bunch of dumb dogs;” that is “dumb” meaning they keep their mouth shut. They should bark when they see danger approaching but don’t. So, they were dumb dogs that wouldn’t bark at the danger.

The Basis of Common Law

Which, over in Revelation 21:8 and 22:15, you find that there’s another list of things that God says, “This is not to be tolerated in society.” That’s what formed the basis of common law, which is the Seventh Amendment of the Constitution. This is still common law today; but suddenly, we think we shouldn’t talk about it because it’s divisive.

It’s more important to get people to think Biblically than it is to get and have unity on a false basis. We need to have unity based around the continuity of what God says and God’s word. And, if people can’t handle that, you don’t compromise your message just because they don’t like what God said.

RICK:

And, not only think Biblically, but act Biblically. Like you said earlier in the program, we need that application.

DAVID:

That’s right.

RICK:

We need to be able to go out on Monday and apply what was said.

DAVID:

We need to get back to using this as the basis of building our lives, our churches, and our culture. Everywhere we go and in all we do, if it’s in this, it’s not off limits talk about in the pulpit or live out in society. This is what has made America successful.

You don’t limit it just because somebody like the government says, “Oh, that’s political stuff in there. You can’t talk about that.” No, no, no. What we want to do is Romans 12:1- 2; and, the King James says, “Be not conformed to this world; but, be transformed by the renewing of your mind.”

I love the Phillips translation; it says: “Don’t let the world around you squeeze you into its own mold.” We’ve got to stop letting the government, secular people, or critics within the church squeeze us into their mold. There’s a need to go back and say, “Hey, this is the guidebook, the mod, the plan I’m going to follow.”

It was pastors who made America, and pastors and kept America great. And, it’s only pastors who are going to keep America going the right direction.

American Heritage series: “The Role of Government”

RICK:

Well, thanks for listening today to WallBuilders Live! That was building on the American Heritage series: “The Role of Government.” And, you can actually get that entire series on our website right now at WallBuilders.com.

It is a brand new series. Pre-orders are being taken right now. You don’t want to miss it; get it into your library there at WallBuilders.com.

Thanks for listening to WallBuilders Live!

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