Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Free to be Faithful - Fourth of July and the Christian

Many have already been on vacation and enjoying the slow pace of summer. I've taken the opportunity to work on a whole host of administration duties, organizing, writing and implementing forms for the office writing the confirmation handbook, etc. The summer pace brings on the celebration of Independence Day - The Fourth of July.

What a blessing it is to live in the U.S.A. After traveling to third world countries, I will never forget the relief I felt when the pilot would announce that "We've entered U.S. airspace." Flying from Africa, through Amsterdam, and then home, the plane would erupt with applause. Whew! It hits you how blessed we are to have the freedoms our country guarantees her citizens.

Is Trouble Brewing?

Trouble is brewing. The First Amendment guarantees our freedom to practice our religion. This time, the attack on our religious freedoms is coming from something that is a hot political topic. It is in the form of medical care. It began with a Health and Human Service policy that is a full frontal attack on religious freedom. It is couched in a move toward public health care.

Lutherans in the Public Square

Lutherans have a wonderful understanding of how the Christian citizen is involved in the community and politics (Two Kingdom Theology). As a church, we don't promote any political candidate or push ourselves into policy debates. EXCEPT when the politics and policy try to move to our altar and force us to live against God's Word.

HHS and the LCMS

Here is the problem and the not so subtle attack. HHS has implemented a policy that requires religious institutions to provide "medicine" and "health care" for abortion. Behind the policy is the view that only the altar and pulpit are "true" religious institutions. In other words, all 501c3's - the tax code that provides nonprofit status to religious institutions - are threatened with health care policy that forces them to provide and pay for a practice that is against our religious beliefs. This means that such policy from HHS will force Concordia Plans, schools, universities, hospitals, etc. to provide abortifacients. This is a very dangerous precedent.

Will the Federal Intrusion into the Church Stop There?

I wonder...

Well, my brain is hurting from trying to think of an instance where and when the power and authority of the federal government has been stopped and reversed. I'll let you answer this question for yourself. However, we know that homosexual marriage is formally pushed by our government, that the LGBT movement is now publicly considered a legally protected minority. Hmm. What does this mean for our schools?

Pray for our church and the bold confession of Christ's Word.

Here is a video from President Harrison, the president of the LCMS. This year, we will be doing a bible study about the church and society.

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