Tuesday, March 01, 2016

NRB Prepares For Battle

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Most Christians know there is a battle for the mind and soul of America.

Most of us know by now that the battle involves religious freedom. And that battle is not only being waged in the classroom, the bathroom, the boardroom and the court room, but in our living rooms.

Everything and anything is now welcomed on radio and television---except certain biblical teaching.

Last week, the National Religious Broadcasters organization publicly acknowledged that a battle is brewing between the church and the state. And they took decisive steps regarding this battle, which will influence what you hear on Christian radio and television.

And some thoughts on today's "Super Tuesday" primary elections.

Last week at the NRB annual convention in Nashville, President Jerry Johnson announced the NRB is taking decisive steps to prepare for what they feel is a coming, intensified battle against religious freedom and freedom of speech directed toward Christian broadcasting.

More on that in a moment.

Today is being called the "Super Tuesday" of politics, because 11 states vote in their primaries.
Some who read this article live in states holding their primaries today. Many of you do not. 
But for all of us, the cast of characters who want to be president is diverse---some stunning and divisive. I have never seen, in my lifetime, America more politically divided at election time than we are today. 
CNN says, "Everything Changes In March." Their story is the most informative I've seen regarding what's happening politically today. Take a look at it. 
One thing, however, will "not" change in March. Or any other time. He is the same yesterday, today and forever. 
Please take a moment and ask God that His will be done "on earth as it is in heaven" on this important day in America. If you live in one of the states holding a primary today, be sure to vote, and do so with God's leading.

Most of us are fully aware of the media's power in the culture. It's considered "progress" when homosexual characters are featured in sitcoms, or Lucifer (Fox Network) is celebrated, etc.

It will not surprise you that JJ Abrams, director on "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" and executive producer for the upcoming Star Wars episodes VIII and IX says he will be introducing homosexual stars in the upcoming films. And many will applaud his courage.

NRB President Jerry Johnson says, "Now more than ever, our first freedoms---of religion, speech and the press---must be defended vigorously before members of Congress, federal government agencies, and the courts," therefore NRB is moving their headquarter offices to Washington DC.

But they are doing more than changing locations.

The NRB has also created a new Statement of Faith.

Often when religious organizations release a new statement of faith, it reflects compromise. That is not the case in this new statement.

The statement actually reaffirms and clarifies biblical teaching and declares this must be the standard for Christian broadcasting.

Beginning with the broadcasters themselves, it requires that "NRB members must resist and refrain from any and all sexual acts outside marriage" because "they are sinful."

It continues to define those sexual acts outside of marriage as "including but not limited to adultery, fornication, incest, zoophilia, pornography, prostitution, voyeurism, pedophilia, exibitionism, sodomy, polygamy, polyamory, sologamy, or same sex sexual acts."

The message is that if broadcasters are going to speak out on biblical cultural issues---and they must, and if the NRB is going to be successful in defending them, we better walk the walk.

There was also an emphases on staying true to God's Word in broadcasting content.

The new statement says, "We believe that all matters of faith and conduct must be evaluated on the basis of Holy Scripture, which is our inspired, infallible and inerrant guide (2 Timothy 3:16-17). Since the Holy Bible does speak to the nature of human beings and their sexuality, it is imperative that we correctly understand and articulate what the Bible teaches on these matters."

While there is a hesitancy on the part of some Christian broadcasters to speak out on cultural issues out of fear of being sued, there is a growing urgency among others to speak out boldly.

Several Christian business people shared their own experiences in standing up for their deeply held biblical beliefs.

One of them was Greg Stormans of the Stormans family, owners of Ralph's Thriftway in Olympia who are embroiled in a 10 year lawsuit because they cannot and will not sell abortion pills in their pharmacy.

Greg told the convention, "There are a lot of courts. There's the court of public opinion, a US district court, the Ninth Circuit Court---they've all weighed in. And maybe the Supreme Court will weigh in, but God's court with Him as the Judge is where we really want to win our case."

I'm in touch with the Stormans family. Greg's father has told me how much it has cost in legal fees and court costs over the years. It's stunning.

Standing for biblical teaching in the market place has always carried a cost. The book of Acts records the cost the early church paid for their message.

Now, thankfully, the NRB seems to be renewing and deepening their resolve to stand firm in the culture.

Having been, in the past, an active member for nearly 20 years, I applaud this statement. And trust it will inspire those Christian broadcasters who are running away from the battle to reconsider and recommit themselves to the only message that can change a life---and a culture.

And do so with boldness.

Be Informed. Be Vigilant. Be Discerning. Be Prayerful.