Marriage Equality

Mat Staver: Gay Marriage Is A 'Satanic Attack' On Marriage

On today's "Faith and Freedom" radio program, Liberty Counsel's Mat Staver and Matt Barber declared that the push for gay marriage is literally satanic and will bring God's judgment down upon this nation.

"When you put two men together within the same-sex agenda," Staver said, "it is not about the institution of marriage; it is about having the protection, the legal status, it's about using that as a hammer to crush anyone who believes in objective reality, marriage reality, that it is the union of a man and a woman, anyone who believes in human sexuality between a man and a woman and that there are certain limits to moral boundaries that we shouldn't cross and that certain limits are on human sexuality. They literally want to ultimately destroy the institution [of marriage]. This is literally a satanic attack, in my view, and there's no question about it."

Barber, of course, readily agreed, saying that "the whole idea of marriage equality is nothing more than a push to gain the official government sanction on evil."

"It is unnatural, it is immoral, it is self-destructive and it is destructive to society," he added. "If our Supreme Court, if our government puts it stamp of approval on that which is evil, woe to our government ... Woe to our nation when God's judgment comes down upon a nation that calls evil good and good evil."

Mike Huckabee: Gay Marriage Will Criminalize Christianity by Elevating 'A Lifestyle To The Status Of A Civil Right'

This month’s issue of Billy Graham’s Decision magazine contains, along with a fawning profile of Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, a “special report” on the upcoming Supreme Court gay marriage decision, featuring panicked interviews with GOP presidential candidate Mike Huckabee and Liberty Counsel founder Mat Staver.

In an interview with Decision, Huckabee repeated his warning that marriage equality will lead to the “criminalization of Christianity,” saying, “When you elevate a lifestyle to the status of a civil right, I don’t think a lot of believers fully understand or comprehend that once it’s risen to that level and our government accepts it, then anyone who disagrees with it could be at least civilly liable, but more than likely would be criminally liable.”

He warned that if marriage equality is legalized nationwide, it will become a “criminal act” for a pastor to preach against gay marriage. Of course, this has not yet happened in any of the states where gay marriage is currently legal, nor did it ever become illegal to preach against interracial marriage after that was legalized by the Supreme Court nearly 50 years ago.

Similarly, Staver warned that marriage equality is an attack on “the very image of God” and urged churches to prepare for civil disobedience in the mold of pastor and anti-Nazi dissident Dietrich Bonhoeffer: “We’re no longer going to just talk like Dietrich Bonhoeffer, we’re going to act like Dietrich Bonhoeffer.”

“To attack marriage attacks the very image of God,” said Mathew Staver, founder and chairman of Liberty Counsel and former dean of the School of Law at Liberty University.

“It puts the State in the position of acting as though it knows better than God and, in fact, is the creator, with the ability to redefine God’s natural created order.”

A decision in favor of same-sex marriage would set off an unprecedented avalanche of threats on religious liberties, potentially affecting virtually every church, pastor, ministry and Christian-owned business.

“The implications are staggering,” Staver said.

Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee warns that it could even lead to the “criminalization of Christianity.”

“When you elevate a lifestyle to the status of a civil right, I don’t think a lot of believers fully understand or comprehend that once it’s risen to that level and our government accepts it, then anyone who disagrees with it could be at least civilly liable, but more than likely would be criminally liable,” Huckabee, a Republican presidential candidate, told Decision during a recent visit to the Billy Graham Library.

“The impact is this: A pastor getting up in the pulpit and proclaiming God’s Word that marriage is the act of one man and woman joining together for life would violate the civil rights of a same-sex couple. … That would make it a criminal act.”

Proponents of same-sex marriage—backed by the Obama administration—say LGBT couples are being discriminated against and deserve marriage equality protections.

Regardless of how the case turns out, Huckabee made clear that the true definition of marriage will stand.

“Even if the Supreme Court rules that same-sex marriage is OK, it doesn’t make it OK because the Supreme Court is not the Supreme Being,” he said. “The ultimate rules for marriage were not made by the Supreme Court, but by God. He is the One who gave us the blueprint.”

Liberty Counsel’s Staver said of the threat to religious liberties: “You’re not going to be able to have your own opinion if it’s a contrary opinion because the force of the police state will require individuals not just to remain silent, but to affirm and promote same-sex unions and immoral sexual behavior.”

[Liberty Institute president Kelly] Shackelford said it will be difficult for churches to follow their doctrine without interference from the government.

“Almost every ministry is going to have implications,” he said. “Every Christian organization and every church is going to find themselves in a situation where they’re going to have to decide, in many cases, whether to follow man’s new law or God’s law.”

Staver said churches, ministries and individual believers must be willing to practice civil disobedience if that’s what it takes to obey God’s Word.

“We’re no longer going to just talk like Dietrich Bonhoeffer, we’re going to act like Dietrich Bonhoeffer,” Staver said, referring to the German pastor who was imprisoned for resisting Hitler’s Nazi regime.

“We have to say we will not move and we will not compromise. We must say that this is a line we cannot cross, not because we want a controversy or a conflict, not because we’re being belligerent, but because it is such a stark assault on our religious freedom and our Christian beliefs that we cannot cross it. We have to render to God what belongs to God.”

Daubenmire Organizing 'Focused Prayer' Effort Aimed At Swinging Justice Kennedy's Gay Marriage Vote

Last month, a federal judge acquitted creationist tax scofflaw Kent Hovind of contempt of court and dismissed conspiracy and mail fraud charges against him and "Coach" Dave Daubenmire is pretty sure that it was the prayer effort organized by his "Salt and Light Brigade" that made the difference.

Fresh off of that victory, Daubenmire is now organizing a solemn assembly outside the Supreme Court on June 14 at which right-wing Christians will gather to repent for America and ask God to break through to Justice Anthony Kennedy so that he will vote against legalizing gay marriage.

As Daubenmire told radio host Chuck Wilder yesterday, his Salt and Light Brigade hopes to organize prayer rallies all over America to take place at the same time in order to "focus their guns at the same target" and "punch a hole in the heavenlies."

"We're going to have a solemn assembly of prayer and repentance, asking God, please God, help us rescue marriage," Daubenmire said. "And we're going to totally focus on Justice Kennedy, we believe he is the swing vote, and we're just going to ask the Lord to forgive us of our sins and turn the heart of Justice Kennedy that he might see the error of his ways and protect marriage."

Not everyone will be able to join Daubenmire outside the Supreme Court for this rally, he realizes, which is why he is asking for people to organize rallies of their own to take place at the same time in order to increase the power of their prayer effort, likening it to hundreds of people gathering with Super Soaker squirt guns and focusing their aim all on the same spot instead of just spraying in all directions.

"Concentrated, focused prayer" is what Daubenmire needs, he said. "We're going to focus all of our power in the same direction rather than just sporadically squirting our guns up in the air."

Roy Moore: Gay Marriage Will 'Literally Cause The Destruction Of Our Country'

In an interview with CNS News published over the weekend, Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore warned that a Supreme Court ruling in favor of marriage equality would “literally cause the destruction of our country”:

“What [the court is] doing is they’re toying with something that’s like dynamite and will destroy our country,” Justice Roy Moore told CNSNews.com in an exclusive interview last week during the Family Research Council’s annual pastor’s retreat in Washington, D.C.

Moore said a favorable ruling would mean Americans would be forced to accept homosexual marriage and support it through goods and services for those ceremonies.

“I think there’s an attempt to destroy the institution of marriage and I think it will cause, literally cause the destruction of our country or lead to the destruction of our country over the long run,” Moore said. “And I think there are people who would like to see this country destroyed.”

“I’m not saying that everyone who’s homosexual wants to see the country destroyed,” Moore said. “I’m not saying that. I’m saying there’s a push for it.”

CNS News posted an audio clip of part of the interview:


 

Sandy Rios Predicts Major Worldwide Disaster In Divine Punishment For Gay Marriage

On her radio program Friday, the American Family Association’s Sandy Rios predicted that God will send a “major shift or disaster” to punish the world for gay marriage.

Rios was responding to social media comments from an LGBT rights supporter named Peter, who pointed out that none of the countries that have legalized marriage equality have yet fallen to ruin because of it.

“There are some effects already early on, there are here in this country as well,” Rios responded. “But it’s too early to see any kind of major shift or disaster that I think most of us who believe that God’s word is true are predicting for the whole world, really, Peter, for the whole world. For God will not let us just continue to be debauched and ignore him.”

Rios also responded to “a very good point” that Peter made about “the sanctity of marriage and the divorce rate.”

She explained that while “God does hate divorce” it is “not a sin” and it is allowed under some circumstances. “But gay marriage is never allowed,” she said. “Gay marriage is a subject of a whole different matter, and it strikes at God and his design for man, creating male and female from the very beginning, giving women to man at the very beginning.”

Marriage Equality Opponent: Gay Marriage 'Mess' Started With Contraception

The Heritage Foundation’s Ryan T. Anderson — the fresh face of the movement against marriage equality — agreed with an interviewer last week that the road to marriage equality started with widespread contraception use, saying that the acceptance of gay marriage came about because “we’ve had a culture since the ‘60s, since the sexual revolution, that has largely made a mess of human sexuality, the family and marriage.”

Patrick Coffin, who hosts a podcast for the group Catholic Answers, asked Anderson whether “the widespread acceptance of contraception” was “the first domino to fall” on the way to marriage equality.

“Yes, the sexual revolution explains quite a bit of this,” Anderson agreed. “We only arrived at the place where we are today, in 2015, at the cusp of a potential Supreme Court case redefining marriage everywhere because we’ve had a culture since the ‘60s, since the sexual revolution, that has largely made a mess of human sexuality, the family and marriage. It’s only after a generation or two of premarital sex, non-marital childbearing, the hookup culture, pornography, no-fault divorce, that you’d then be at the point of saying, ‘Oh, yeah, marriage has nothing to do with men and women.’”

Opponents of marriage equality don’t always acknowledge that the rights that they would like to roll back don’t stop with gay marriage. But just as the gay rights and women’s rights movements have been intertwined for decades, so has the opposition to those advances.

In fact, Anderson made this very argument in a 2006 essay in defense of the radically anti-contraception Quiverfull movement (made famous by the Duggar family), in which he wondered if a backlash against gay marriage might lead Christians to reexamine their "sexual practice" and come to realize "the immorality of contraception":

As people continue to see the bad results of the sexual revolution, they are likely to reevaluate their current attitudes toward sex, and while doing so they may find that the logic of human sexuality leads right back to traditional Christian orthodoxy. Might the continued push for same-sex "marriage" and the normalization of homosexuality prove to be the tipping point, the catalyst for a widespread reexamination of Christian sexual practice? Might these issues push the envelope so far that, as faithful Christians reflect on the reasons why they must conclude that homosexual acts fail to embody the truth of human sexuality, they come to realize that these same reasons entail the immorality of contraception? (For the moment I’ll assume that anyone entertaining this line of thought has already concluded that premarital and extramarital sex likewise fail to embody the truth of human sexuality.)

Last month, during the Supreme Court arguments in the Obergefell v. Hodges marriage equality cases, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg challenged the idea that the definition of marriage has existed for “millennia,” pointing out that the ground for same-sex marriage was paved by a “change in the institution of marriage to make it egalitarian” for women. More recently, the legal fight for reproductive rights for women — starting with defending the right to contraception — has gone hand in hand with the fight for LGBT rights.

This post has been updated with Anderson's 2006 article.

Lutzer: Homeschooling Parents Could Have Their Children Taken Away If SCOTUS Legalizes Gay Marriage

Pastor Erwin Lutzer was among the speakers at the Family Research Council's "Watchmen on the Wall" conference last week where he warned that homeschooling parents could find their children taken away by the state if the Supreme Court legalizes gay marriage.

Saying that the freedom of religion protected in America is a historical anomaly, Lutzer warned that Christians should expect it to be stripped away "by a hostile state" in the near future.

"In America today, you know that the same-sex marriage issue is very, very important," he said. "Let me tell you that it would not be surprising to me if, in the future, homeschool parents, for example, if they were examined would perhaps fall under the category of what is being known as 'intolerant personality syndrome.' And it's not too far a stretch to believe that their children would be taken from them because they are declared as unfit parents":

Tony Perkins: Gay Rights Encouraging ISIS, Pastors Will Be Dragged 'Kicking And Screaming' Out Of Church

Family Research Council President Tony Perkins wrapped up his group’s annual “Watchmen on the Wall” pastors’ conference by warning the conservative pastors in the audience that although they “may have five years” before they are dragged “kicking and screaming” out of their churches if the Supreme Court strikes down same-sex marriage bans, they should start preparing their congregations for “persecution.”

“We are about to be challenged to the very core of what it means to be a Christian,” he said. “If the court hands down this decision redefining marriage for America, they’re not going to come and take you, dragging and kicking and screaming out of your church in the next six months. You may have five years.”

“But let me tell you who’s going to face it first,” he said. “It’s your folks that are sitting in the pew.”

He said that pastors should tell their congregations that there is no middle ground on gay rights and that “they live all for God or they don’t live for him at all.” It’s “time to teach them” to “resist unrighteous and unlawful government,” he added.

Perkins told them that he was not being hateful because “I love God and I love people.”

“I cannot think of anything that would be a greater display of hate than to know the truth and not speak it,” he said.

Later in his speech, Perkins repeated his claim that the supposed persecution of Christians in America resulting from LGBT equality and reproductive rights  is encouraging the violent oppression of Christians in the Middle East by groups like ISIS.

“Understand that we don’t live in a vacuum here in America,” he said. “What we do here has consequences elsewhere. If we step back and allow this growing intolerance of Christianity here at home at the hands of our own government, Christians will die at the hands of terrorists and tyrants in faraway places. If we are silent about the intolerance here at home, we have given the green flag for those abroad to target and persecute our brothers and sisters in Christ.”

GOP Partner David Lane Calls For Christianity As 'Official Religion' of US

As Brian reported this morning, the Republican National Committee continues to partner with the American Renewal Project, which is run by Christian Nationalist and anti-gay extremist David Lane and is affiliated with the far-right American Family Association.

Lane is a busy guy these days. In addition to leading a training session at the Southern Republican Leadership Conference, his American Renewal Project is gearing up for its next political prayer rally, this time hosted by South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley in the important early primary state. Previous Response rallies were hosted by Texas Gov. Rick Perry and Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal.

All the events push David Lane’s divisive and exclusionary view of America as a nation founded by and for Christians — a view on display in an email alert Lane sent to his supporters last night.

Lane’s letter opens with a typically distorted view of American history:

Did you realize that America's Founders established Christianity as the official religion of America in the 13 Original state Constitutions? ... Then suddenly, following three and half centuries of meteoric rise and cultural distinction, a secular U.S. Supreme Court in 1963 pronounced that the Bible would no longer be the fixed point in which to structure and judge community.

Lane’s opening misses a few minor historical points: the adoption of the Constitution, First Amendment,  and Bill of Rights, and the fact that states with established official churches had disestablished them in the 18th and 19th centuries, long before the Supreme Court ruling Lane is complaining about.

Speaking of the Supreme Court, Lane declares, “God defines marriage, not secularist crusaders of the superior court.” And in order to be “completely transparent and unclouded on God’s position on homosexuality,” he quotes several Bible verses, including one from Leviticus that a man who sleeps with another man “shall surely be put to death.”

Lane denounces the American church for its “submission to secularists.”

Egregious and scandalous is the Church’s submission to secularists, and the resignation of America’s Founder’s mission, “We do hereby Dedicate this Land, and ourselves, to reach the People within these shores with the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and to raise up Godly generations after us, and with these generations take the Kingdom of God to all the earth.”

That’s another historical sleight-of-hand. In common usage, terms like “founders” and “founding fathers” typically refer to men involved in the Declaration of Independence and the writing and ratification of the Constitution. Lane’s quote comes from Robert Hunt, a leader of the British settlement at Jamestown nearly two centuries earlier.

Republicans who attend Lane’s candidate forums, invite him to conduct trainings, or join him on all-expenses-paid trips to Israel, can’t really claim ignorance of his agenda, which is crystal clear, as he states in this week’s email alert:

The American church has lost its commission in the public square, its purpose for being. Ultimately, unless we find the chart and compass used by Colonial America to establish Christianity as the official religion of America, America will no longer be.

 

CWA Goes After 'Ruth Traitor Ginsburg' For Officiating Gay Couple's Wedding

We can now count Concerned Women for America among the groups that wants Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg to recuse herself from the marriage cases at the Supreme Court because she has officiated weddings for gay couples.

CWA's president, Penny Nance, sent out a fundraising email this morning with the subject line “Ruth Traitor Ginsburg,” the treason in question apparently being Ginsburg’s officiating at a gay couple’s wedding this weekend.

Fischer: We 'Will NEVER Capitulate To Any Nazi-esque Order' To Recognize Gay Marriage

On his radio program today, Bryan Fischer called on social conservatives "to prepare for a post-apocalyptic world" when the Supreme Court strikes down gay marriage bans and to stand united in declaring that they will "NEVER capitulate to any Nazi-esque order" requiring them to recognize gay marriage.

"This has got to be a non-negotiable red line for us," Fischer said. "It is absolutely imperative that that we categorically, unambiguously, and publicly declare that we will NEVER ... accept the normalization of homosexual marriage, and will NEVER capitulate to any Nazi-esque order from any government at any level to violate either conscience or biblical principle on this matter."

"They can’t arrest us all, they can’t prosecute us all, they can’t lock us all up, they can’t shut down every Christian-run business, they can't shut down every Christian school, they can't shut down every Bible-believing church, they can't shut down every Christian ministry," he concluded. "They can't lock us all up, but our determination to resist moral tyranny must be resolute enough to prompt them to try":

Rebuffed by Republican Legislators, Bobby Jindal Issues Executive Order on 'Religious Liberty'

In a Republican presidential field crowded with far-right candidates, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal is trying to distinguish himself as the far-rightest candidate, especially on issues relating to marriage equality and its supposed threat to the religious freedom of conservative Christians.

Jindal’s latest came at the end of the day on Tuesday. Unwilling to accept the legislature’s failure to pass a so-called “religious liberty” bill (it was voted down 10-2 in a House committee), Jindal issued an executive order designed to protect any person who “acts in accordance with a religious belief that marriage is between one man and one woman.” The order explicitly defines “person” to include for-profit corporations and well as nonprofit organizations.

Jindal has adopted the rhetorical strategy promoted by the National Organization for Marriage and other opponents of LGTB equality: try to turn conversation about anti-gay discrimination “on its head” by declaring that laws protecting gay people are actually a form of discrimination against Christians. His statement about the executive order said it was designed to “prevent the state from discriminating against persons or entities with deeply held religious beliefs that marriage is between one man and one woman.”

Jindal’s order invokes the Supreme Court’s decision in Hobby Lobby, making it the latest sign that the decision – which granted corporations a right to claim legal exemptions based on the religious beliefs of company owners -- poses a threat to nondiscrimination measures and potentially a wide range of laws protecting the interests of workers. Jindal declared that his order is “not about discrimination,” even though its clear intent is to give legal cover to companies, government officials, and others who discriminate against same-sex couples.

Louisiana does not currently give legal recognition to same-sex couples, but Jindal is concerned that the state’s ban on marriage equality may soon be struck down by the Supreme Court, a potential ruling which his order seems to be a legally questionable effort to pre-empt. Jindal should be asked to clarify exactly what actions his legislation is designed to “protect”: a courthouse clerk who refuses to process marriage license paperwork? Religious schools getting tax dollars under Jindal’s education policy refusing to accept children of gay parents? Catholic hospitals refusing to recognize the spousal or parental rights of gay couples during medical emergencies?   

Jindal’s “religious liberty” bill had been opposed by business and tourism leaders as well as civil rights groups. The New Orleans Times Picayune reports that the New Orleans Convention and Visitors Bureau CEO Stephen Perry had called the bill “a radioactive, poisonous message.”

But Jindal’s primary audience is no longer his Louisiana constituents; it's right-wing activists nationwide. Jindal boasted about the executive order by stopping by the radio program hosted by Family Research Council President Tony Perkins, an anti-gay activist who once suggested that LGBT non-discrimination measures would lead to the Holocaust perpetrated against Christians.

Right-wing pundit and Iowa GOP activist Steve Deace reacted rapturously, proclaiming Jindal his “winner of the week” for standing up to “Republicrats.”

Jindal immediately stepped in and ordered that while he’s governor the state government is not going to be a tool of the Cultural Marxists’ Rainbow Jihad against religion — particularly Christianity….

This action by Jindal is an example of what will be required of the next president if he’s going to truly honor his oath of office to defend our Constitution against all enemies — “both foreign and domestic.”

Let’s face it, the vast majority of alleged conservatives won’t stand up to the Democrats. And almost none of them will stand up to the Republicrats. On perhaps the most important issue of them all — the First Amendment that allows us the freedom to peacefully and publicly stand on principle for everything else — Jindal has done both.

But he didn’t just stand up to them rhetorically, he actually did something about it. There are several potentially exciting presidential candidates this cycle. There’s even a couple that like Jindal have shown they will tell the Republicrats bleeding us dry to stick it where the sun doesn’t shine.

PFAW

Rebuffed by Republican Legislators, Bobby Jindal Issues Executive Order on 'Religious Liberty'

In a Republican presidential field crowded with far-right candidates, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal is trying to distinguish himself as the far-rightest candidate, especially on issues relating to marriage equality and its supposed threat to the religious freedom of conservative Christians.

Jindal’s latest came at the end of the day on Tuesday. Unwilling to accept the legislature’s failure to pass a so-called “religious liberty” bill (it was voted down 10-2 in a House committee), Jindal issued an executive order designed to protect any person who “acts in accordance with a religious belief that marriage is between one man and one woman.” The order explicitly defines “person” to include for-profit corporations and well as nonprofit organizations.

Jindal has adopted the rhetorical strategy promoted by the National Organization for Marriage and other opponents of LGBT equality: try to turn conversation about anti-gay discrimination “on its head” by declaring that laws protecting gay people are actually a form of discrimination against Christians. His statement about the executive order said it was designed to “prevent the state from discriminating against persons or entities with deeply held religious beliefs that marriage is between one man and one woman.”

Jindal’s order invokes the Supreme Court’s decision in Hobby Lobby, making it the latest sign that the decision – which granted corporations a right to claim legal exemptions based on the religious beliefs of company owners -- poses a threat to nondiscrimination measures and potentially a wide range of laws protecting the interests of workers. Jindal declared that his order is “not about discrimination,” even though its clear intent is to give legal cover to companies, government officials, and others who discriminate against same-sex couples.

Louisiana does not currently give legal recognition to same-sex couples, but Jindal is concerned that the state’s ban on marriage equality may soon be struck down by the Supreme Court, a potential ruling which his order seems to be a legally questionable effort to pre-empt. Jindal should be asked to clarify exactly what actions his legislation is designed to “protect”: a courthouse clerk who refuses to process marriage license paperwork? Religious schools getting tax dollars under Jindal’s education policy refusing to accept children of gay parents? Catholic hospitals refusing to recognize the spousal or parental rights of gay couples during medical emergencies?   

Jindal’s “religious liberty” bill had been opposed by business and tourism leaders as well as civil rights groups. The New Orleans Times Picayune reports that the New Orleans Convention and Visitors Bureau CEO Stephen Perry had called the bill “a radioactive, poisonous message.”

But Jindal’s primary audience is no longer his Louisiana constituents; it's right-wing activists nationwide. Jindal boasted about the executive order by stopping by the radio program hosted by Family Research Council President Tony Perkins, an anti-gay activist who once suggested that LGBT non-discrimination measures would lead to the Holocaust perpetrated against Christians.

Right-wing pundit and Iowa GOP activist Steve Deace reacted rapturously, proclaiming Jindal his “winner of the week” for standing up to “Republicrats.”

Jindal immediately stepped in and ordered that while he’s governor the state government is not going to be a tool of the Cultural Marxists’ Rainbow Jihad against religion — particularly Christianity….

This action by Jindal is an example of what will be required of the next president if he’s going to truly honor his oath of office to defend our Constitution against all enemies — “both foreign and domestic.”

Let’s face it, the vast majority of alleged conservatives won’t stand up to the Democrats. And almost none of them will stand up to the Republicrats. On perhaps the most important issue of them all — the First Amendment that allows us the freedom to peacefully and publicly stand on principle for everything else — Jindal has done both.

But he didn’t just stand up to them rhetorically, he actually did something about it. There are several potentially exciting presidential candidates this cycle. There’s even a couple that like Jindal have shown they will tell the Republicrats bleeding us dry to stick it where the sun doesn’t shine.

 

Albert Mohler at CNP: Freedom To Preach Gospel Threatened By 'Erotic Liberty'

The secretive Council for National Policy (CNP) and the Conservative Action Project, right-wing coalitions that are trying to figure out how to get conservative evangelicals united around one of the many GOP presidential candidates vying for their support, met outside Washington, D.C. late last week to vet the presidentials and strategize for 2016.

While most of what happens at CNP gatherings is kept behind closed doors, the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary (SBTS) was happy to brag that its president, Albert Mohler, had received the 2015 Edwin Meese III Originalism and Religious Liberty Award from the Alliance Defending Freedom on Friday. The award was presented by ADF’s Alan Sears and the Family Research Council’s Tony Perkins, identified by the SBTS as president of the CNP.

Meese, who played a major role in the rise of the Federalist Society and the right-wing school of constitutional interpretation known as “originalism”— colloquially referred to as “strict constructionism” — was on hand for the event.  According to the SBTS account, Meese said originalism and religious liberty “go hand-in-hand” and asserted that “religious liberty is under attack as never before” in America.

That was also the theme of Mohler’s remarks, which took their title, “The Gathering Storm: The Eclipse of Religious Liberty and the Threat of a New Dark Age,” from Winton Churchill’s account of the period leading up to the World War II. “We are not facing the same gathering storm,” Mohler declared, “but we are now facing a battle that will determine the destiny of priceless freedoms and the very foundation of human rights and human dignity.”

Other excerpts from Mohler’s speech:

A revolution in morality now seeks not only to subvert marriage, but also to redefine it, and thus to undermine an essential foundation of human dignity, flourishing, and freedom….

Already, religious liberty is threatened by a new moral regime that exalts erotic liberty and personal autonomy and openly argues that religious liberties must give way to the new morality, its redefinition of marriage, and its demand for coercive moral, cultural, and legal sovereignty.

A new moral and legal order is ascendant in America, and this new order is only possible, in the arena of American law and jurisprudence, if the original intent and the very words of the Constitution of the United States are twisted beyond recognition….

We are in a fight for the most basic liberties God has given humanity, every single one of us, made in his image. Religious liberty is being redefined as mere freedom of worship, but it will not long survive if it is reduced to a private sphere with no public voice. The very freedom to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ is at stake, and thus so is the liberty of every American. Human rights and human dignity are temporary abstractions if they are severed from their reality as gifts of the Creator. The eclipse of Christian truth will lead inevitably to a tragic loss of human dignity. If we lose religious liberty, all other liberties will be lost, one by one. I am a Christian, and I believe that salvation is found in no other name than Jesus Christ and in no other gospel, but I will fight for the religious liberty of all.

 

Fischer: 'I Believe We Are Going To Have Violence' If SCOTUS Legalizes Gay Marriage​

On his radio program today, Bryan Fischer called upon state legislatures to pass resolutions declaring that they will not abide by any Supreme Court ruling that legalizes gay marriage, warning that failure to do so would result in chaos, civil unrest, and violence.

Declaring that states "have every moral and legal right to ignore the federal government," Fischer said that such a step was necessary to save America from tyranny and social chaos.

"The Supreme Court can be slapped down through a deliberative and representative process," he said, "rather than through chaos and civil unrest which I and a lot of other pro-family leaders fear is the alternative. If the Supreme Court continues to overreach and they aren't checked, we are headed towards civil unrest, I don't think there is any other way around it. If it's not stopped and reversed, the tyrannical overreach of the Supreme Court, we are to have social dislocation and I believe we are going to have violence as a result. And that is simply because freedom is too deeply ingrained in the DNA of the American people to permit tyranny to continue unchecked forever":

Schlafly: Goal Of Gay Marriage Is 'To Wipe Out the Christian Religion'

In an interview with conservative radio host Chuck Wilder on Monday, Eagle Forum founder Phyllis Schlafly said that lawsuits against business owners who violate nondiscrimination measures by refusing service to gay and lesbian customers show that marriage equality advocates ultimately seek “to wipe out the Christian religion.”

“Have you noticed that only Christian small-businesspeople have been harassed and sued for refusing to participate in same-sex marriages even though our fast-growing immigrant populations, you know of Muslims, Hindus and other faiths are also opposed to that concept?” Wilder asked. “The use of same-sex marriage to attack Christian businesses but not businesses run by members of other religions demonstrates what is really driving the demand for the new constitutional right to same-sex marriage.”

“Well, that is right,” Schlafly responded. “They want to wipe out the Christian religion. And most of these other religions do not recognize same-sex marriage. I assume there are some Muslim bakers and photographers and other people who have been harassed, but they’re not being attacked and they’re not being criticized.”

 

International Anti-Gay Groups Look To Ireland As Country Debates Marriage Equality Referendum

Buzzfeed’s Lester Feder is out with an extensive report today from Ireland, which later this month may become the first country in the world to approve marriage equality by popular vote.

The “No” campaign has organized under the name “Mothers and Fathers Matter,” a message right out of the National Organization for Marriage’s playbook. And Feder reports that marriage equality opponents from around the world have been paying close attention to the referendum in Ireland, including NOM’s Brian Brown, who says he “talked a lot” to a leader of the Irish “No” campaign and conservative American political operative Frank Schubert, who says he kicked in some polling information and messaging guidance.

Feder reports that a strong network of European anti-gay groups has also been involved in the Irish campaign, including the French group Manif Pour Tous and Italian activist Luca Volante, whose foundation contributed a significant amount of money to the organization that’s been heading the “No” movement in Ireland.

Volante and a representative of Manif Pour Tous haveboth been involved in Brown’s effort to create an International Organization for Marriage meant to unite the effort to push back marriage equality throughout the world.

Brown sent an email to NOM’s supporters earlier this month asking them to back the anti-marriage campaign in Ireland (although non-residents of the country can’t contribute money to the effort). CitizenGo, the international petition platform on whose board both Brown and Volante sit, made a similar appeal.

From Buzzfeed :

The No side denies that it is borrowing tactics from California, saying it’s learned more from campaigns in eastern European countries like Slovenia in 2012 or Croatia in 2013, where referendums were passed curtailing partnership rights for same-sex couples.

“We wouldn’t be taking too many more lessons from Prop 8 than from elsewhere,” said David Quinn, head of the Iona Institute and adviser to Mothers and Fathers Matter. Quinn, who also writes a regular column in the Irish Independent newspaper, is widely regarded as the savviest campaigner on the No side.

“Obviously the only way two men or two women can found a family is by violating a child’s right to have a mother and a father.”

But the No camp has gotten some input from veterans of the California campaign and other marriage fights abroad. Frank Schubert, the conservative political consultant credited with the Proposition 8 victory, told BuzzFeed News before an NOM rally in Washington earlier this month that he has sent private polling, focus-group work, and other messaging guidance to activists on the No side. NOM President Brian Brown also said he had “talked a lot” to Quinn periodically over the past few years, though they hadn’t communicated in over a year.

They’ve also sought advice from opponents of same-sex marriage in the U.K., Keith Mills, a spokesperson for Mothers and Fathers Matter, told BuzzFeed News last Tuesday. The next day, he said, the group was due to meet with a representative from La Manif Pour Tous, an organization formed in opposition to France’s 2013 marriage equality law that has established itself as an engine for movements opposed to marriage equality across Europe.

“We would take most succor from what happened in Slovenia,” Quinn said, referring to the 2012 referendum that reversed a law passed by parliament extending legal protections to same-sex couples. Opponents have also consulted the leaders of the 2013 campaign that blocked marriage equality in Croatia.

They hear the same advice from campaigners in every country, Quinn said. “The message that comes back all the time, loud and clear … [is] keep talking about the children.” Marriage is inherently bound up with the right to found a family, Quinn argued: “Obviously the only way two men or two women can found a family is by violating a child’s right to have a mother and a father.”

Mills and Quinn both said the No campaign had not received any funding from international donors, however. Quinn said the Iona Institute’s only substantial international funding has been €24,000 over the past few years from an Italian foundation headed by a former member of the European Parliament, Luca Volonté, who sits on the board of the conservative online campaign platform CitizenGo along with NOM’s Brian Brown. But none of that money has gone to the referendum campaign, Quinn said.

Staver: Gay Marriage Will Lead To Another Holocaust And 'The Ghettoization Of Christianity'

On today's "Faith and Freedom" radio broadcast, Liberty Counsel's Mat Staver seized on right-wing fears that anti-gay organizations will lose their tax-exempt status if the Supreme Court legalizes gay marriage to predictably warn that the U.S. is on the verge of turning into a modern-day Nazi Germany.

"We're talking about the ghettoization of Christianity," Staver said, "and this is what happened to the Jews in Nazi Germany, they put the Jews in ghettos, they put other people in ghettos. They took away their ability to earn a living, then they isolated them to ghettos, they stigmatized them, they ultimately destroyed their humanity in the minds of others and then the next step was easy, in the sense that they had gone to the point where they had lost respect for humanity."

"This is a serious manner because this ghettoizes Christianity," he continued. "This stigmatizes those who have Christian beliefs. This ultimately punishes those and prohibits those individuals from earning a living or working in the marketplace. And this is the beginning of ultimately dehumanizing the person and when you dehumanize the person, terrible things can happen":

Fiorina Comes Out Against Federal Marriage Amendment

In an interview with the Iowa conservative blog Caffeinated Thoughts this weekend, GOP presidential candidate Carly Fiorina said that she would oppose any effort to amend the Constitution to reverse a Supreme Court decision striking down bans on marriage equality. Fiorina, who said this year that she doesn’t think the Supreme Court should “shortcut” the conversation about marriage by ruling in favor of marriage rights for gay and lesbian couples, said in a 2010 Christian Coalition candidate survey that she would support a Federal Marriage Amendment banning gay marriage.

Fiorina quickly pivoted to talking about “religious liberty” being under threat from LGBT rights, a strategy she also took in a recent interview with National Journal.

Barber And Staver: Gay Marriage Is Like Defacing The Sistine Chapel And Shaking A Fist At God

On today's "Faith and Freedom" radio broadcast, Liberty Counsel's Mat Staver and Matt Barber said that the push for marriage equality is nothing more than an attempt to destroy what God has created and likened it to someone tossing paint all over Michelangelo's masterwork on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel.

"Assume that you're looking at Michelangelo," Staver said. "He spends all of his life preparing and perfecting the art of painting that only he can do and such great artistic work that it literally stands the test of history and ripples through time. And so, as part of his creative effort, he paints hours and weeks and days and years on the Sistine Chapel ... Here somebody walks into the Sistine Chapel with a paint bucket and a big brush and says, 'Michael, you got it all wrong, this is frankly ugly' and gets up there and thinks he knows better and starts splashing paint all over this beautiful painting and destroying it."

"And yet, here we've got God, who is the creator," he continued, "who knows the creation that He created and the crown jewel of all the magnificent things He created is you and I in His image that has the unitive, the procreative, and the spiritual component. And then the created being shakes its fist at God and says, 'Ah, no, we've got a better idea God and we're going to change what you created and we're going to elevate it and promote it and put laws around it and try to protect it because we think we know better.' The audacity of the created being, shaking its fist at the natural creation of God almighty."

Barber was in complete agreement, saying that "to try to build on this building block of vile affections and abominations something that is supposed to be equal to, akin to, what God created, God's union of a man and a woman, is offensive. It's shaking its fist at God":

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