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It's time for Christians to stop ignoring political issues and let our voices be heard.
This may be one of the most important columns I've ever written--and I'm praying you will respond to it. I want to motivate you to personally flood Congress with phone calls, letters and e-mails supporting the Federal Marriage Amendment and to get your friends and your church to do the same.
Two decades ago, the Equal Rights Amendment almost passed. On the surface it looked like a harmless plan to give everyone in our country equal rights. But it was potentially very damaging to citizens with conservative values, as it could have been used by those with an unconventional lifestyle to claim they had equal constitutional rights. Thankfully voices were raised in time, and it was defeated.
Now the radical homosexual community wants to legalize so-called gay marriages. In response to their pressure on individual states to pass same-sex marriage laws, President Bush is supporting an amendment to the Constitution called the Federal Marriage Amendment (FMA), which states: "Marriage in the United States shall consist only of the union of a man and a woman. Neither this Constitution or the constitution of any State, nor state or federal law, shall be construed to require that marital status or the legal incidents thereof be conferred upon unmarried couples or groups."
Charles Colson, founder of Prison Fellowship Ministries, reported in the April 13, 2004, edition of his BreakPoint commentary that he had recently met with a group of senior congressional staff who are concerned about the lack of public support for the FMA. They told him that "no senator was reporting any unusual number of calls or e-mails" from constituents.
"One conservative Midwest senator ... said he isn't sure he wanted to get involved in this issue because he hasn't heard from his constituents," Colson wrote. "He's not alone. This is tragic. Where are the Christians? Are we asleep?
"Too many, I fear, have been suckered into a 'what's-in-it-for-me?' approach to faith," Colson continued. "People go to church to hear a feel-good sermon, sing some happy clappies, and visit with friends. We ignore completely the cultural implications of our faith. And then we're shocked by the state of the culture.
"The political realities in Washington are very clear: This is the best opportunity we'll ever have to get this amendment."
Colson summarized the situation in these words: "The fact is that we are going to have legalized gay 'marriage' in the United States ... unless Christians and others speak up strongly."
Focus on the Family founder James Dobson agrees. In April he issued an urgent call to action, stating that "the efforts of homosexual activists and liberal courts to legalize same-sex marriage ... seem to be succeeding. Possibly in a matter of weeks ... they may complete the job, unless we all take a stand."
Pacifism among Bible-believing Christians has a long history, beginning with the Quakers in Pennsylvania who declined to get involved in the Revolutionary War. Nearly a century ago, most Pentecostals also were pacifists and refused to fight in World War I.
Pacifism among Pentecostals was less prevalent by the time World War II began, but all along church leaders have focused on doctrinal matters rather than political. I once read that when the possibility of nuclear war was a significant issue for political debate, one of the large Pentecostal denominations had no official policy on it--but they did have an official policy stating that playing volleyball on Sunday was wrong!
It's time for Christians to stop ignoring political issues. We need to rise up and let our voices be heard!
Go to our Web site (www.charismamag.com/congress/) to read about the dangers we face if we don't act now. You will also find directions for how to contact your congressmen. I urge you to write or call them every week until the FMA passes.
We have a small window of opportunity. It's possible the amendment will pass this summer. But if it dies in committee, what hope do we have of thwarting the homosexual agenda regarding same-sex marriage?
Please don't wait. Act today to support this amendment. Your voice will make a difference!
Stephen Strang is the founder and publisher of Charisma.
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