Prayer Targets: Bishop Madison; Supreme Court; Obama Surtax; Power Grab; Deductions; HHS Mandate
December 05, 2012
He ruleth by his power for ever; his eyes behold the nations: let not the rebellious exalt themselves. Selah. Psalm 66:7
Dear Praying Friends,
Bishop James Madison (1749-1812), cousin to the U.S. President, served as president of the College of William and Mary for 35 years. Ordained an Anglican Priest in 1775, he served as a Captain in the Virginia militia during the Revolutionary War. Afterward, as an Episcopal Bishop, he spent his life rebuilding and shaping the College of William and Mary and the Episcopal Church. On the National Day of Thanksgiving, proclaimed by President Washington, February 19, 1795, Madison delivered a sermon, which includes the following excerpt:
Who does not remember when the fate of this rising empire, nay of mankind, hung trembling between the fury of the oppressor, and the weakness of the oppressed? How many were our prayers to the God of battles! How often did we look forwards upon the mightiness of the adversary; how often backwards upon our own imbecility, upon our wives and our tender infants? In that awful crisis, who does not remember, that in God alone was our trust? ... "It was His right hand and His holy arm," which rescued thee from the strength of the lion and the bear [and] the hands of the mightiest of nations...
It behooves us, above all things, to inquire, how are these blessings to be preserved? ... What ... can attract the smiles of heaven... but virtue? ... Let virtue then, I entreat you, be the ruling principle, the polar star... which the heavenly Teacher delivered... Shall virtue trickle from the oozy bed of political catechisms, or shall it gush, pure and in full stream, from the Rock of our Salvation? Ah! brethren, the moment that we drop the idea of ...God... the moment we abandon that divine system...which ...Jesus taught and exemplified; the moment that religion... loses its influence over their hearts, from that fatal moment, farewell to public and private happiness, farewell, a long farewell to virtue, to patriotism, to liberty! Virtue, such as republics and heaven require, must have its foundation in the heart...it must derive its obligations and its sanctions, not from ... the political moralist, or the...wisest of human legislators, but from the unchangeable Father of the universe, the God of love, whose laws, and whose will we are incited to obey by motives, the most powerful that can actuate the human soul... Not till then, will virtue reign triumphant in the hearts of citizens... (Bishop James Madison, Manifestations of the Beneficence of Divine Providence towards America, 1795, Liberty Fund Library, see also Lost Episodes, Dr. Kenyn Cureton)
The lights of liberty and virtue are growing dim in America. God is our nation's only hope. His ears remain open to repentant, persistent, fervent, believing prayer (Jas 5:16).
Supreme Court Struggling with Same-Sex "Marriage" Cases - Last Friday, the U.S. Supreme Court met privately to confer over which, if any, of the ten same-sex "marriage" cases they will hear this term. This Friday will be the Justices' last day to conference before the New Year. Eight cases challenge the constitutionality of the 1996 federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which for federal purposes limits the recognition of marriage to unions between a man and woman. It also prevents states from being required to recognize same-sex "marriages" performed elsewhere. One case deals with an Arizona state law akin to DOMA, which provides marriage benefits to state employees in traditional unions.
The last case is California's "Proposition 8," the state Constitutional amendment approved by voters in 2008. The amendment limiting marriage in California to one man and one woman was struck down by a then closeted, but now open, homosexual federal district judge, who declared it to be "irrational." His ruling was upheld by the liberal 9th Circuit Court in San Francisco. If the Supreme Court takes up the case and rules with the lower courts, the laws against homosexual "marriage" in 41 states will be nullified, including, 31 state constitutional amendments duly ratified by the people at the ballot box.
Homosexual "marriage" is on hold in California pending action by the U.S. Supreme Court. Constitutional lawyer Ted Olson, who represents California homosexual activists, predicts a 6-3 ruling by the Supreme Court, in favor of homosexual "marriage." It is the Justice Department's job to defend DOMA in court, yet it refuses to do so, leaving Congress to defend it. Meanwhile, the New York Times writes that homosexual journalists are at the forefront of the sexual/legal revolution. The implications for our laws and culture are huge but even larger are the biblical implications. (Read Jude 7, see No Word, Biggest Issues, Journalists)
- God, our nation is flooded with sin and debauchery. Move upon our Supreme Court to uphold the Constitution, the laws of Congress, the will of the people, and "the laws of nature and of nature's God." Cause us to return to you. Send revival to your Church and awakening to our nation and a turning of the cultural tide, including our laws, politics and policy. Make us, yet, a City on a Hill and a light for You to the nations. Help us fervently to pray until our courts preserve natural, historic, biblical marriage just as You intended it! (Lev 19:5; Dt 28: all; 2 Sam 23:3; Is 1:2-20; 59:11-21; Eze 18:27-32; 22:24-31; 1 Tim 3:1-4:5; Jn 7:24; Acts 2:38; Rom 1:18-32; 1 Tim 2:1-8)
More Prayer Needed! - New HHS regulations reveal that a 3.5% federal surtax will be charged health insurance customers who buy policies from yet-to-be-established federal exchanges in states that choose not to establish state exchanges (1 Sam 8:7-22). Last week amid "fiscal cliff negotiations," President Obama asked for permanent authority to raise the debt limit (the Constitution gives Congress exclusive authority to borrow and authorize spending) and he rejects any proposal that does not raise taxes rates on families making over $250,000 (Pr 20:23; Lk 16:1-2). Dr. Richard Land writes that if the government tampers with the Charitable Deduction, churches and charities will be devastated, along with the needy people they serve (Dt 15:9-11). Less efficient, more costly government will be required to fill the gap. Please pray as God leads you over these matters!
Finally, thank God for every victory in this war for our nation's soul. Liberals lost their bid to push the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) through the Lame Duck U.S. Senate. The treaty would have subjected American families to U.N. jurisdiction. Last week the U.S. Court of Appeals in St. Louis issued an injunction against the HHS and its contraceptive/abortion pill mandate in favor of O'Brien Industrial Holdings, which sued HHS on First Amendment grounds. This was the first such injunction against the mandate at the appeals court level. It overturned one of the administrations' only successes. Four of five court rulings on the mandate vs. businesses have favored religious liberty. The only exception, Hobby Lobby, is appealing a lower court ruling in favor of the mandate. However, ADF attorney Matt Bowman says this latest ruling suggests more court victories for religious liberty. Thank you for praying!