Monday, July 19, 2010

Three Authors Warn of Potential Threat to Religious Freedom in the U.S.

NOTE:  Why would the president and Secretary of State both begin a policy of being coy and unclear about what they mean by religious liberty?  For whatever reason, the policy of this administration is steadily undermining separation of church and state, so as to have a policy more in accordance with Vatican policies.  When "our country shall repudiate every principle of its Constitution as a Protestant and republican government, and shall make provision for the propagation of papal falsehoods and delusions, then we may know that the time has come for the marvelous working of Satan and that the end is near.5T 451

(Excerpts) "End Times" authors Tim LaHaye and Craig Parshall say the Obama administration may be killing religious freedom by redefinition.

In a statement posted on their website this past week, the co-authors of the political thriller Edge of Apocalypse claim there is a shadow growing over religious freedom in America.

"We are talking about the Obama Administration’s subtle, but apparently deliberate use of a language-sleight-of-hand, substituting the phrase 'freedom of worship' for 'freedom of religion," they wrote this past Tuesday.

According to the fiction series authors, President Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton have "consistently" used the new phrase in several speeches in recent months.

They pointed to how the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom also noted the shift and raised a flag on it in its 2010 annual report.

“Because of the policy implications of using ‘freedom of worship’ language, USCIRF urges President Obama, Secretary Clinton and other high-ranking U.S. government officials to return to invoking or embracing ‘freedom of religion or belief’ or similar language in all public statements and stress the universal nature of these and other rights,” the bipartisan body stated.

Though some might consider their observations as nit-picking or overanalyzing, LaHaye and Parshall made a case for their warning, explaining that the phrase “freedom of worship” follows an international concept that departs from the United States’ First Amendment understanding of religious freedom.

Under international law, they say, “worship” is a limited right, and connotes activities within a church body, but can exclude public evangelism.

The U.N. Declaration of Human Rights, for example, protects “teaching, practice, worship and observance” but does not protect public preaching. The United Nation’s 1981 Declaration on the Elimination of All Forms of Intolerance uses the same approach on matters of religion.

Article 9 of the European Convention on the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms allows evangelism to be banned on the basis of protecting ‘public order,’” note the authors, one of which – Parshall – is a religious rights attorney and the general counsel for the National Religious Broadcasters.

“In 1997 the European Court of Human Rights ruled that under Article 9 Christians could be prosecuted for efforts to evangelize,” they added.

Alleging that the Obama administration is edging America closer to a global approach in matters of religion, LaHaye and Parshall recalled the future “Babylon” in the Bible’s book of Revelation, which they say has three aspects, “much like a three-legged stool.”

“Two of them are a global economic system and a global political system. The third? A global unification of religion,” they stated.   Source
 by Chuck Colson
(Excerpts)  Just this clever dissembling of words is an apparent attempt to restrict freedom of religion to freedom of worship only. Do you see the implications? Sure, I am free to attend church, sing hymns, pray over meals, offer thanks to God for my children and grandchildren. That’s my own private affair.
But should the government succeed in redefining freedom of religion, how much longer can I practice my faith in public?

If you read history, you will see that that the first act of a tyrant is to suppress religion, which means of course, religious practice. Our Founders knew this. They knew the first English settlers came to these shores precisely so they could practice their faith.

...make no mistake, if government can redefine or restrict our freedom of religion, our first freedom will be gone.

And, as our Founders understood, when that freedom is gone, we will, in short order, lose the other freedoms as well.   Source