Speak Out with Chuck - Freedom of Worship

What do YOU think?

Tell Chuck what you think about the effort to redefine freedom of religion in America. Is “freedom of worship” the same as “freedom of religion”? Should any other “right” trump this freedom? How much power should the government exercise over your religious liberty? Join the debate and make your voice heard!


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Freedom of Religion
Does the Bill of Rights guarantee our freedom to practice our religion in public? It doesn't specify that. So I can see how certain people will try to specify what "freedom of religion" means, and they will exclude public worship.

We are at liberty to move about and talk; yet we aren't at liberty to falsely cry "fire" in a crowded theater. The government makes laws to keep people safe.

But I think it has gone too far in saying derogatory speech hurts people. I think I ought to have the right to make a derogatory comment about a particular race if I want to. Are we going to come to the point of fining people for lying?

It seems to me the government wants to take the place of each individual's responsibility to think and judge. If I make a derogatory remark, people can judge me for it. We don't need the government stepping in to do that, i.e. to judge me. We don't need the government stepping in to police public speech or public worship.

So the Bill of Rights is vague, and the government will use that vagueness to try to make a grab for more power and control.
supporting actors
Hello Chuck,
I appreciate your article on the above subject, however I disagree that one has to watch a movie to know how our culture is being affected. Movies don't affect our culture, it's the reverse.I don't have to go to a strip club to know how much evil they spew out.

"The passion of the Christ" is just a movie made by a man that covets wealth or he would have given the proceeds to a homeless family. If my spiritual light has to depend on a movie to motivate my faithfulness, and not the power of the written word, I'm a sad Saint (Rom.1:16).

There are no jutifications for watching a movie about all the evils this world possess.
The people ARE the Government!
Let me be absolutely clear:
In these United States WE, THE PEOPLE, ARE THE GOVERNMENT! Not those whom we elect and those who our elected leaders appoint and hire to assist in their work. THEY ARE SERVANTS OF THE PEOPLE - NOT THE GOVERNMENT!!!! This is what so many Christians (and non-Christians) who balk at the the thought of civil disobedience completely forget. This is what made our American revolution so radical: for the first time in history, it made THE PEOPLE the GOVERNMENT. SO, while those in power and those who are badly misinformed about the order of things see any civil disobedience as disobeying the government or sedition against the government, they are DEAD WRONG. When we stand in disobedience to un-Godly laws, we are not acting as "subjects" or "servants" of the government. We are acting AS THE GOVERNMENT and demanding that OUR SERVANTS cease disobeying THEIR GOVERNMENT: "THE PEOPLE"! Get that through your heads!!!! We have allowed the servants to take over the estate! It is time to regain control over our birthright and our home! Thank you Chuck for understanding this!
ps: When Jesus said to give to Caesar what is Caesar's and God's what is God's he was saying in effect that NOTHING is Caesar's! Everything IS GOD'S!...even that miserable coin!
Freedom of Religion
This is just another of satan's attempts at taking advantage of the church. This sounds awfully like 'what is IS?'. Splitting hairs, translating words by stretching their meanings etc etc ad nausea. Freedom of religion is simply what we have always had, changing it to freedom of worship is logically something they want to change it to. If freedom of religion is not good, they need to explain what is not good, and why they want to change it. Personally I think this is all about Islam, and islamic law. There is an alternative agenda, and once again the governing body of this nation is behind it. Please note I did not say conspiracy theory, this is no theory. Freedom of worship is a watered down version of what we have, so that every Tom, Dick and Harry can come to America and claim his right to do what he wants - since of course it is his religion. Thanks Mr.Colson for being a great WATCHMAN.
God Bless

Seeking Clarification
I have read much of Chuck's works throughout the previous 20 years.

Shortly after Obama was elected, I read Chuck's encouragement from Jeremiah that we should just peacefully go into captivity, until God straighten's it out. Now, Chuck is sounding the alarm. So what is the connection betwenn these two?

Obama is a Marxist. Only the shade is in question. Every stone the searcher turns over from his early days reveals a key Neo-Marxist lurking in the shadows.
Worship/Religion Meets U of I
you asked for examples, here is one. even professors do not have a right to teach on religious issues as they may effect the culture.

"University of Illinois Inclusivity Standards Exclude Catholics
by Laurie Higgins, Director of IFI's DSA -Illinois Family Institute

Examples of hypocrisy and viewpoint and religious discrimination are tumbling out of academia faster than I can keep track of. The latest is from the problem-ridden University of Illinois (U of I), or as I have come to think of it, the gang that couldn't shoot straight (no pun intended).

U of I has fired adjunct professor, Dr. Kenneth Howell, who has taught for nine years in the Department of Religion. Most recently, he taught "Introduction to Catholicism" and "Modern Catholic Thought." From all reports, it appears that Dr. Howell was fired essentially for being Catholic.

According to the News-Gazette, "One of his lectures in the introductory class on Catholicism focuses on the application of natural law theory to a social issue." To help his students prepare for an exam, Dr. Howell, who is open with his students that he is Catholic, sent a lengthy email explaining what the Catholic doctrine of natural law would say about homosexual acts, including the following:

NML says that Morality must be a response to REALITY. In other words, sexual acts are only appropriate for people who are complementary, not the same. How do we know this? By looking at REALITY. Men and women are complementary in their anatomy, physiology, and psychology. Men and women are not interchangeable. So, a moral sexual act has to be between persons that are fitted for that act....Natural Moral Theory says that if we are to have healthy sexual lives, we must return to a connection between procreation and sex. Why? Because that is what is REAL. It is based on human sexual anatomy and physiology. Human sexuality is inherently unitive and procreative. If we encourage sexual relations that violate this basic meaning, we will end up denying something essential about our humanity, about our feminine and masculine nature.

Subsequently, a friend of a student in Dr. Howell's class sent an email to the department chair, Robert McKim, accusing Dr. Howell of engaging in "'hate speech,'" saying that "'The courses at this institution should be geared to contribute to the public discourse and promote independent thought; not limit one's worldview and ostracize people of a certain sexual orientation.'" This email resulted in Dr. Howell's firing.

I have two questions for this student:

1. How would teaching Catholic (or Orthodox Jewish, or Muslim, or orthodox Protestant) beliefs on homosexuality undermine public discourse, inhibit independent thought, or ostracize those who self-identify as homosexual?
2. And how in his view could a professor teach these theological beliefs without undermining public discourse, inhibiting independent thought, or ostracizing homosexuals?"
Religious Liberty
I *do* understand, but this is a concept that's hard to help other people understand. And I wonder if enough people will understand if the pastors in this country don't begin to speak explicitly about these issues from their pulpits. In addition to sharing your commentaries with others and signing and sharing the Manhattan Declaration, what steps can we take to help people "get it"?
Origins of dualism
Glen Stassen and David Gushee, in Kingdom Ethics, point to the crack that began the separation of church and state (pages 128-132):

About A.D. 154 Justin [Martyr] wrote his First Apology. When he presented what Christians stand for, he quoted fully from the teachings of the Sermon on the Mount... He said that as Christians carry out Jesus' teachings, this bears witness to the power of the teachings to transform the way people live...

But then a crack appears, a hint of greater problems to come in subsequent church history. Justin addressed his Apology to Emperor Antoninus Pius and his son, trying to get their favor. Therefore, immediately after presenting these teachings from Jesus' way, he quoted Jesus' teaching in Matthew 22:17-21 "Render therefore to Caesar the things that are Caesar's, and to God the things that are God's" (RSV). He interpreted it dualistically: "Whence to God alone we render worship, but in other things we gladly serve you, acknowledging you as kings and rulers of men." Thus he limited Christian independence from the emperor to the matter of how we worship. ...

This was not Jesus' attitude. For Jesus... knew God is the Lord over everything. His teaching in Matthew 22:17-21 is an ironic Hebrew parallelism (Bornkamm, Jess of Nazareth, 121-4). The second member of the parallelism, "Render to God the things that are God's," means "render everything to God".

[even Martin Luther was concerned about pleasing a ruler, prince Frederick]...
Luther insisted that the teachings were for all Christians. But then he adopted something like Justin Martyr's Platonic dualism. The Sermon is for every Christian in our inner attitudes, but the outer self ...should obey the authorities in the world and not the commands of the Sermon. The Sermon on the Mount was for our attitudes, not our actions (Luther, Secular Authority, 364ff). ...

During the Reformation, John Calvin taught the sovereignty of God over all of life, and he developed a covenant ethic for life in the world that continues to be helpful today...
Big Brother Tactics
Once upon a time a few years ago, I believed that exercising my 1st ammendment rights as a U.S. citizen would stand up in the marketplace and academia, but sadly I found that one lonesheep speaking out without support reveals just how far down the slide to totalitarianism we have already fallen. And sadly Big Brother tactics have always been in place in one form or another regardless of who sat in the White House. The use of surveillance on innocent persons - Christian disciples -will soon be the norm along with intentional retaliation in many untraceable forms.
Jeremiah 12:5.6 declares "If you have raced with men on foot and they have worn you out, how can you compete with horses? If you stumble in safe country, how will you manage in the thickets by the Jordan. Your own brothers have betrayed you and raised a loud cry against you."
But our hope is where it has always been: in a Holy Spirit initiated revival. When we (the Body) humble ourselves before our Holy Sovereign God, He will deliver us, wash us clean and empower us. Good-bye American Culturized Christianity. Hello Bride of Christ made ready for her Savior's return.
Number of comments
I find it disheartening that in a nation of 300 million people, and who knows how many real Christians, that there are only 64 people responding.

"Action" is a word Christians need to get into their vocabulary. I don't care how busy we are on the job or how many kids anyone is raising. We are on the verge of losing all of it while Christians fiddle. Rome is burning. The weaponry is different. Armed warfare is irrelevant when we have lost political control to our enemies.
We have become as consumerist, self serving, and self-indulgent as any secular citizen.
Semantics are important, but the greater issues have lain dormant, so now we find ourselves mincing words.
The fight is getting far more critical than just vocabulary.

Chuck Colson, though is very good at pointing out all of the issues. I would like to see more emphasis on getting Christians off their lives of play, consumption of toys, and generally gorging on everything other than Jesus Christ.

Get off the forums, and get to talking with neighbors and coworkers about our Lord and the lethal condition of our politics and government.
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