Prayer Targets: Finney; Nat. Day of Prayer; Military v. Faith; FBI & SPLC; MS RFRA; Justina; Repent!
April 02, 2014
And I will set up shepherds over them which shall feed them: and they shall fear no more, nor be dismayed, neither shall they be lacking, saith the LORD. Jeremiah 23:4
Dear Praying Friends,
Charles G. Finney, like Whitefield, Edwards and earlier Great Awakening preachers, called Americans to a radical repentance and faith. Like Jesus, Finney's strongest words were directed to the religious leaders of his day, specifically pastors. He believed they were key to revival in the church and the nation's moral health (Mt 15:14) or the primary reason for America's decline. Finney's revolutionary preaching helped pave the way for the end of slavery in America, much as the Great Awakening prepared the Colonies for Independence. Beginning in upstate New York, Finney's preaching led over a half-million people to Christ, nearly 4% of the entire U.S. population. From Finney on "The Decay of Conscience":
I have observed with pain that many ministers who write for the public press fail to reach the consciences of men... to go to the bottom of the matter and insist upon obedience to the moral law as alone acceptable to God... True faith in Christ will always and inevitably beget a holy life... To be sure, some of the Puritans were extremists. But still under their teaching there was a very different state of the individual and public conscience from what exists in these days. Those old, stern, grand vindicators of the government of God would have thundered and lightened till they had almost demolished their pulpits, if any such immoralities had shown themselves under their instructions as are common in these days... The universal literature of the present day shows conclusively that the moral sense of the people needs toning up, and some of our most fascinating preachers have become the favorites of infidels, sceptics of every grade...
Let us probe the consciences of our hearers, let us thunder forth the law and Gospel of God until our voices reach the capital of this nation, through our representatives in Congress... Let us give the reporters of the press such work to do as will make their ears and the ears of their readers tingle... Away with this milk-and-water preaching of a love of Christ that has no holiness or moral discrimination in it. Away with preaching a love of God that is not angry with sinners... Christ crucified for the sins of the world is the Christ the people need. Let us rid ourselves of...neglecting to preach the law of God until the consciences of men are asleep.
Brethren, our preaching will bear its legitimate fruits. If immorality prevails in the land, the fault is ours in a great degree. If there is a decay of conscience, the pulpit is responsible for it. If the public press lacks moral discrimination, the pulpit is responsible for it. If the Church is degenerate and worldly, the pulpit is responsible for it. If the world loses its interest in religion, the pulpit is responsible for it. If Satan rules in our halls of legislation, the pulpit is responsible for it. If our politics become so corrupt that the very foundations of our government are ready to fall away, the pulpit is responsible for it. Let us not ignore this fact, my dear brethren; but let us lay it to heart, and be thoroughly awake to our responsibility in respect to the morals of this nation (Finney, Power From On High, Ch. 11).
Since 2004, FRC has served pastors to help them not only minister the gospel but also to preach God's word as it pertains to the issues being debated in the public square - debates that will determine the future of our nation (Ho 4:6; 2 Tim 4:1-8). Please pray for our Watchmen on the Wall Pastors Briefing in Washington, DC (May 21-23). May it be the most effective yet!
National Day of Prayer, May 1, 2014 - Less than a month from now believers across America will observe the National Day of Prayer. Created in 1952 by a joint resolution of the United States Congress, signed into law by President Harry S. Truman, and designated the first Thursday of May annually by Congress and President Ronald Reagan in 1988, the day hearkens back to the Continental Congress' call to all the Colonies to pray, following the outbreak of the War for Independence. This year's Honorary Chairwoman is Anne Graham Lotz, daughter of Dr. Billy Graham (now 95) and sister of Rev. Franklin Graham, President of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association (BGEA) and Samaritan's Purse. Anne is an international evangelist in her own right. The National Day of Prayer (NDP), managed by the National Day of Prayer Task Force, was founded by Mrs. Vonette Bright and since 1991 has been led by Mrs. Shirley Dobson. The NDP is an anchor for the growing prayer movement in America and has given birth to other designated days of prayer, like Call2Fall (6/29/14) and Cry Out America (9/11/14).
- May Pastors, churches and Christians everywhere rally to make this event the most meaningful ever, in spirit, numbers and impact. May God hear our prayer for America! (Dt 28: all; 2 Chr 7:14; Ps 50:15; 86:6-7; Joel 1:14; 2:12-18; Mt 18:18-20)
War on Military Religious Liberty - President Obama drove the successful push to overturn Don't Ask, Don't Tell (DADT). Former Defense Secretary Robert Gates wrote that it was "the only" military issue over which the President showed "passion." Last week a video obtained via FOIA request, showed Coast Guard Commandant Adm. Robert Papp revealing that President Obama offered the Joint Chiefs the choice of either supporting open homosexuality in the military or resigning. Meanwhile, expressions of life-giving Christian faith are being systematically repressed (e.g., Bibles removed, Scripture censored; religious speech restrained), even among chaplains. The Air Force seems to be leading the branches in Christian repression, but all are moving in that direction (read 2012's Sexual Assault Alarm; Mostly Homosexual?; 60% Increase in 2013; Gideons Ousted; AF removes Bible from Display; Academy promotes Atheism; White Board Scandal; Chuck Norris" Overview; see FRC's Blackwell & Morrison's "Israel's Time's Running Out, Mr. President, or Yours?)
- May Christians enlist in the spiritual war for our fighting men's souls! May God continue to expose! And may Americans arise to protect those who sacrifice to protect us! (Ps 110:3; Is 6:8; 54:17; Dan 3:16-18; 6:7-10; Acts 4:18-20; Eph 5:11-14; 1 Tim 6:11-15)
"FBI Dumps SPLC" - On August 15, 2012, a pro-homosexual activist, inspired by the Southern Poverty Law Center's (SPLC) Internet Hate Map, entered FRC's D.C. Headquarters with 100 rounds of ammunition and shot our building manager, Leo Johnson. By God's grace, Leo heroically subdued the gunman and stopped his plan to kill as many FRC staff members as he could, then stuff their mouths with Chick-fil-A sandwiches. He confessed to the FBI that his inspiration came from SPLC's Website. SPLC, bent on its strategy of reckless name-calling, refuses to remove FRC from its "hate list." Instead, they have added even more mainstream conservative Christian groups. The man they inspired to commit domestic terrorism is now serving 25 years in prison. Yet, strangely the Department of Defense and the Justice Department (FBI) have both consulted with and/or recommended SPLC as a resource, specifically to law enforcement agencies. Last week, the Washington Times reported that the FBI had removed links and references to the SPLC from its Web sites. Their editorial summarizes the history and character of SPLC and its leaders (see FBI Dumps SPLC; Some Expect FBI to Continue its Relationship).
- May God intervene to stop the systematic defamation of those who honorably defend Biblical values. May believers everywhere pray and stand with all such. May they know spiritual and physical safety and God's protection from every scheme formed against them! (Dt 19:16-20; Ps 119:126; 140:1-8; Pr 6:16-19; Mt 5:10-12; 1 Pet 3:15-17)
Finally, both Houses of the Mississippi Legislature passed the Religious Freedom Restoration Act. Thankfully, Mississippi legislators read the bill and consulted the facts instead of yielding to the anti-religious liberty activists' distortions that have caused other elected officials to retreat in recent weeks. Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant says he will sign the bill into law. Pray, too, for Justina Pelletier, the 15-year old from Massachusetts, permanently taken from her parents' custody over a medical diagnosis disagreement between two hospitals. While Justine prospered at home, she has grown increasingly ill under control of the hospital and the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families (DCF). This parental rights case has huge implications for every American family. And, Pastor Jeff Daly of Jesus Christ Fellowship in Middletown, Calif. is calling for a National Day of Repentance on April 30th, before the National Day of Prayer. America needs prayer from a truly repentant people as per 2 Chr 7:14. Thank you for praying!