Prayer Targets: Recruits Who Identify as Transgender; Planned Parenthood; Alabama Senate Race; Taxes; Christmas!
December 13, 2017
Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. Ephesians 4:3
Dear Praying Friends,
These excerpts from Christian historian Rod Gragg's By the Hand of Providence: How Faith Shaped the American Revolution, conclude those begun last week (see Liberty's Keystone):
Colonial America was overwhelmingly Protestant. Jewish communities were sprinkled throughout the Colonies, and a minority Catholic community clustered in Maryland... The Church of England was the official state church... but by the eighteenth century, Anglicans were outnumbered by dissenter denominations -- Congregationalists, Presbyterians, Baptists, Lutherans, Dutch Reformed, Quakers, and others. Colonial America was distinguished by a variety of denominations... at times competitive, but it was overwhelmingly united by the commonly-shared Judeo-Christian worldview. With its unique combination of Bible-based faith and freedom, America was a land like no other.
But by the early 1700s ... America's heritage of faith was growing dim. Biblical principles continued to shape American law and culture, but... America's foundation of faith was fading, undermined by prosperity in the cities and a scarcity of clergy and churches on the frontier. "Church discipline was neglected, and the growing laxness of morals was invading the churches," reported a New England pastor. "The difference between the church and the world was vanishing."
Then came an event that transformed Colonial America, restored its biblical foundation, united its people, and left the culture awash in faith on the eve of the Revolution. The Great Awakening was an epic-sized revival of Christianity that swept floodlike through Colonial America. It began in the summer of 1743, with a solemn, unemotional sermon delivered by the Reverend Jonathan Edwards at a Congregationalist church in Enfield, Connecticut. A brilliant scholar and theologian who would later become president of Princeton University, Edwards preached a sobering call to salvation through Jesus Christ. Conversions swept through the congregation, then the region, all New England, and eventually all Thirteen Colonies. It was further fueled by the preaching of English evangelist George Whitefield... whose Gospel message attracted crowds of thousands.
As the Revolution and nationhood [approached], the hearts and minds of the American people were molded and reinforced by the biblical doctrines revived through the Great Awakening. Under its pervasive influence, they overwhelmingly rejected the humanistic worldview of Europe's Age of Reason -- Enlightenment deism, rationalism, and atheism was becoming faddish among some at the time. The Judeo-Christian worldview remained America's consensus philosophy, and on that foundation America's founding fathers established a new nation forged in faith. The Bible remained the guidebook for life, law, and government, and the local church became a "school of democracy," teaching the biblical principle that life and liberty are God's gift of grace to all. Americans did not believe God existed for America, but that America should exist for God.
A citizen's first responsibility, Colonial Americans believed, was to live righteously according to biblical standards of morality. Biblical faith was the foundation of responsible citizenship... "[He] who neglects his duty to his Maker," observed John Adams' wife, Abigail, "may well be expected to be deficient and insincere in his duty towards the public." A government's first responsibility, [they] believed, was to govern righteously according to the Word of God, for it was from God, not man, that genuine liberty originated. "They looked up to Heaven as the source of their rights, and claimed [them] not from the promises of kings, but from the parent of the Universe" (David Ramsay, South Carolina member and President pro tempore of the Continental Congress) ...
American colonists believed God originally made all mankind equal: that he endowed them with the rights of life, property, and as much liberty as was consistent with the rights of others. He bestowed upon his vast human family, the earth for their support. Government was a political institution between men naturally equal, not for the aggrandizement of one, or a few, but for the happiness of the whole community. Impressed with such sentiments, they grew up from infancy with confidence well-calculated to inspire love for liberty and a prepossession in favor of independence. On the eve of the Revolution, Americans generally respected the preeminence of God's Higher Law, and expected those in authority to abide by it -- even the King and Parliament.
This Christmas, may we pray for another Great Awakening, a nationwide embrace of our Lord Jesus Christ, Savior of the world and the Hope for every nation. Faith in him made America great. Only faith in him will make America great again! O Come, O Come, Emmanuel!
Pentagon to Begin Recruiting Individuals who Identify as Transgender January 1st -- Unless a legal request by the Department of Justice (DOJ) succeeds, and quickly, military recruiters in all branches will begin enlisting recruits who identify as transgender on New Year's Day, 2018. This is despite President Trump's August order banning those who identify as transgender in the military. On October 30th, D.C. District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly (a President Clinton appointee) ruled in a lawsuit brought by plaintiffs who identified as transgender, partially barring implementation of the president's order. In her opinion, the judge wrote that plaintiffs were likely to prove that the transgender ban violates their Fifth Amendment right to due process. Judge Kollar-Kotelly not only ordered that recruitment proceed, she also ruled against the president's order barring troops who identify as transgender from obtaining sex change surgeries in military hospitals at taxpayer expense. The DOJ's request is, simply, that the District Court allow recruitment not to proceed pending judicial review by a higher court.
The Pentagon says it must train 23,000 personnel by January 1st to prepare for recruits who identify as transgender. Experts say the retraining of troops will proceed immediately, and will supplant the time and money budgeted for training leaders and troops to fight and win wars. The government argued in its legal filing, "Compelling the military to implement a new accessions policy while it is simultaneously completing a comprehensive study of military service by transgender individuals ... would waste significant military resources and sow unnecessary confusion."
Bringing those who identify as transgender into the military, a radical move by former President Barack Obama, requires the indoctrination of our military troops in an ideology alien to their human nature and warrior culture. Yet imposing this kind of change in what may be America's most conservative subculture was part of President Barack Obama's vision for fundamentally changing America's social order. Strangely, he timed his policy for implementation in July 2017, when he would no longer be president. Experts say that the Constitution gives President Trump, as Commander in Chief of the military, authority in this matter and that the intervention of the courts is extraordinary and possibly unconstitutional. Others say that the involvement of Congress may be necessary if the courts continue to interfere. (Enlistment Disqualifiers; U.S. Military: Small, Old, Unready; Presidential Memorandum Ending Transgender Recruitment; Circuit Court Opinion; DOJ Appeals and DOD Prepares)
- Lord, you ordained use of "the sword" for national security and police protection a core role of civil government. You created the two distinct, biological sexes as fundamental to life and decreed that sexual anarchy is a serious sin with profound consequences to individuals and society. Lord, intervene! Prevent our military from further weakening and our society from further sexual anarchy via the godless indoctrination of our troops. Guide and govern our leaders in all three branches of government. You are our Judge. You are our Lawgiver; and You are our King; it is You who will save us! (Lev 18: all; Dt 20:1-9; Dt 22:5; 1 Chr 12:32-36; Is 33:22; Mt 19:4; Rom 13:1-5)
DOJ Investigating Planned Parenthood -- The Department of Justice is finally investigating Planned Parenthood (PP). It has been two years since the Center for Medical Progress produced undercover videos demonstrating that Planned Parenthood was selling aborted baby organs and parts for a profit. The videos prompted a congressional investigation, which demonstrated that the largest abortion clinic chain in America did not need any federal funding. In fact, Senate investigators issued their own report, demonstrating that the taxpayer-subsidized organization was, indeed, profiting from the sale of baby parts.
The difference between the DOJ and the private and congressional investigations that have gone before is this: 1) The DOJ should have been the first to launch an investigation into Planned Parenthood's wrongdoing; 2) The DOJ has the authority and responsibility to bring Planned Parenthood to justice for its numerous violations of the law. Hopefully, the DOJ will highlight PP's wrongdoing sufficiently that Congress will do its job quickly to end all taxpayer funding of this criminal organization. (See The Federalist: "Finally"; FRC Statement; Evidence on Planned Parenthood; LifeSite News; FRC: Justice for Planned Parenthood?)
- Pray that God will guide our nation's chief law enforcement agency to discover all of Planned Parenthood's violations of law, many of which have been evident to onlookers over the years, as well as those that have been hidden from the public. May Planned Parenthood be held to account for its lawbreaking and may Congress act speedily to get out of the business of financing this preeminent leader in advancing a culture of death in our nation! (Ex 20:13; Pr 24:11-12; 31:8-9; Rom 12:8; 1 Cor 4:5; Eph 5:11-17)
Finally, please continue to pray regarding 1) the aftermath of the Alabama Senate race (while nearly 6 in 10 Alabamians identify as pro-life, fully 27 percent of them voted for Doug Jones (D), the pro-abortion candidate); 2) Congress must pass a continuing resolution to fund the federal government and avoid a government shutdown; 3) Some are trying to hold the tax bill hostage to an Obamaca re funding effort; 4) Read this brief article by a pediatrician about "transgender" children, and PRAY!
Sorry to give you these kinds of stories as we enter the joyous Christmas Season, but they will be progressing during the next two weeks, and the Prayer Team Targets will be on hiatus during that time but will resume during the first week of the New Year. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! And as always, thank you for praying!