Close
  • CONNECT WITH US
Print pagePDF pageEmail page

Justice Alito Challenges Americans to Protect Religious Freedom

Justice Alito is a proven defender of religious liberty. You may recall he authored the court’s opinion in Hobby Lobby, protecting the religious consciences of family-owned businesses. Learn how he’s challenging Americans to protect religious liberty at FirstLiberty.org/Briefing

Thank you for joining us for the First Liberty Briefing, an exclusive podcast where host Jeremy Dys—also First Liberty Senior Counsel—provides an insider’s look at the stories, cases, people and laws that have made America the world’s leader in protecting religious liberty.

Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito recently gave remarks to a group in New Jersey. His 45-minute presentation proved to be quite sobering.

Justice Alito Challenges Americans to Protect Religious Freedom

Image: Chip Somodevilla

Justice Alito is a proven defender of religious liberty. You may recall he authored the court’s opinion in Hobby Lobby, protecting the religious consciences of family-owned businesses. In other opinions, he has warned of the impact the sexual revolution may inflict upon the religious liberty of Americans.

In his latest remarks, however, Justice Alito told the audience, “You don’t need to be a weatherman to know which way the wind blows. A wind is picking up that is hostile to those with traditional moral beliefs.”

But, the good justice ended with a word of caution and challenge. He said, “We are likely to see pitched battles in courts and Congress, state legislatures and town halls. But the most important fight is for the hearts and minds of our fellow Americans. It is up to all of us to evangelize our fellow Americans about the issue of religious freedom.”

That’s where you and I come in. Freedom—and especially religious freedom—is not a given in human history. It is something each generation must renew for itself. Telling the story of religious liberty, and its blessings, to one another is part of our responsibility as Americans. It’s also how we preserve liberty.

To learn how First Liberty is protecting Religious Liberty for all Americans, visit FirstLiberty.org.

First Liberty Institute is the largest organization in the nation dedicated exclusively to protecting religious freedom for all Americans. Find out more here.

(This podcast is by First Liberty Briefing. Discovered by Christian Podcast Central and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Christian Podcast Central, and audio is streamed directly from their servers.)

OUR SUPPORTERS

  • NCMC Logo12
  • cwd_link
    Over 18,000 wholesome, family friendly, Christian websites.
  • WM-ad-web-v2-489x486
  • RdR Large ad
  • Danny Avila
  • Talking Bibles Sidebar Ad
  •  Good News, Etc
Print pagePDF pageEmail page

Recent news out of Carson City, Nevada reveals that some lawmakers in “The Battle Born State” have initiated legislation that would delete the state’s laws protecting the religious conscience of employers. Learn more about the proposed legislation at FirstLiberty.org/Briefing.

Thank you for joining us for the First Liberty Briefing, an exclusive podcast where host Jeremy Dys—also First Liberty Senior Counsel—provides an insider’s look at the stories, cases, people and laws that have made America the world’s leader in protecting religious liberty.

After years of litigation on the topic, it appears that some lawmakers still don’t get it.

Nevada Legislators Attempt to Repeal Religious Conscience Rights

Image: Adam Liptak

In 2014, the Supreme Court of the United States, in its Hobby Lobby decision declared that family owned businesses should be free to reflect the religious conscience of their owners. For the State to compel individuals to act contrary to their religious believes is a substantial burden on their religious freedom.

Nonetheless, recent news out of Carson City, NV reveals that some lawmakers in the “Battle Born State” have initiated legislation that would delete the State’s laws protecting the religious conscience of some employers. The pending legislation would force small business owners to provide abortifacients in their corporate health policies by deleting current legislative protections intended to protect religious conscience of small business owners.

Americans of goodwill can disagree with one another on matters of contraception, but we should all be in agreement that it is not the government’s job to compel the beliefs of its citizens.

As Justice Alito put it when writing for the majority in Hobby Lobby:

“In our Constitutional tradition, freedom means that all persons have the right to believe, or strive to believe, in a divine Creator and a divine law. For those who choose this course, free exercise is essential in preserving their own dignity and in striving for a self-definition shaped by their religious precepts.”

To learn how First Liberty is protecting Religious Liberty for all Americans, visit FirstLiberty.org.

First Liberty Institute is the largest organization in the nation dedicated exclusively to protecting religious freedom for all Americans. Find out more here.

(This podcast is by First Liberty Briefing. Discovered by Christian Podcast Central and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, notChristian Podcast Central, and audio is streamed directly from their servers.)

OUR SUPPORTERS

  • NCMC Logo12
  • cwd_link
    Over 18,000 wholesome, family friendly, Christian websites.
  • WM-ad-web-v2-489x486
  • RdR Large ad
  • Danny Avila
  • Talking Bibles Sidebar Ad
  •  Good News, Etc
Print pagePDF pageEmail page

Justice Alito is a proven defender of religious liberty. You may recall he authored the court’s opinion in Hobby Lobby, protecting the religious consciences of family-owned businesses. Learn how he’s challenging Americans to protect religious liberty at FirstLiberty.org/Briefing.

Thank you for joining us for the First Liberty Briefing, an exclusive podcast where host Jeremy Dys—also First Liberty Senior Counsel—provides an insider’s look at the stories, cases, people and laws that have made America the world’s leader in protecting religious liberty.

Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito recently gave remarks to a group in New Jersey. His forty-five minute presentation proved to be quite sobering. Just as Alito is a proven defender of religious liberty, you may recall he authored the Court’s opinion of Hobby Lobby, protecting the religious consciences of family owned businesses. In other opinions, he has warned of the impact the sexual revolution may inflict upon the religious liberty of Americans.

Justice Samuel Alito Challenges Americans to Protect Religious Freedom

Image: Chip Somodevilla

In his latest remarks, however, Justice Alito told the audience:

“You don’t need to be a weatherman to know which way the wind is blowing. A wind is picking up that is hostile to those with traditional moral beliefs.”

But the good justice ended with a word caution and challenge. He said:

“We are likely to see pitched battles in courts and Congress, State Legislatures and Town Halls, but the most important fight is for the hearts and minds of our fellow Americans. It is up to all of us to evangelize to our fellow Americans about the issue of religious freedom.”

That’s where you and I come in.

Freedom, and especially religious freedom, is not a given in human history. It is something each generation must renew for itself. Telling the story of religious liberty and its blessings to one another is part of our responsibility as Americans.

It’s also how we preserve liberty.

To learn how First Liberty is protecting Religious Liberty for all Americans, visit FirstLiberty.org.

First Liberty Institute is the largest organization in the nation dedicated exclusively to protecting religious freedom for all Americans. Find out more here.

(This podcast is by First Liberty Briefing. Discovered by Christian Podcast Central and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Christian Podcast Central, and audio is streamed directly from their servers.)

OUR SUPPORTERS

  • NCMC Logo12
  • cwd_link
    Over 18,000 wholesome, family friendly, Christian websites.
  • WM-ad-web-v2-489x486
  • RdR Large ad
  • Danny Avila
  • Talking Bibles Sidebar Ad
  •  Good News, Etc
Print pagePDF pageEmail page

The wait for the Supreme Court nomination is now over. His qualifications for the office are unquestionable. But what does his record reflect on the issue of religious liberty?

Thank you for joining us for the First Liberty Briefing, an exclusive podcast where host Jeremy Dys—also First Liberty Senior Counsel—provides an insider’s look at the stories, cases, people and laws that have made America the world’s leader in protecting religious liberty.

The long wait to see what kind of a judge President Trump would appoint to the nation’s Highest Court is now over. Just ahead looms the confirmation battle for Judge Neil Gorsuch. His qualifications for the office are unquestionable. With degrees from Columbia, Harvard and Oxford, there can be little doubt about his intelligence.

Supreme Court Nominee Judge Neil Gorsuch's Record on Religious Freedom

Image: Alex Wong

But what about his record as a judge?

Well, at First Liberty Institute, we have one criterion for evaluating judicial candidates: Does his record reflect a history of upholding the Constitution, especially as to religious liberty?

Well, I’m happy to say that it does!

Judge Gorsuch wrote in joined opinions supporting the rights of ministries like Little Sisters of the Poor and closely held family businesses like Hobby Lobby to be free from the burden imposed by the Health and Human Services’ abortion pill mandate.

He wrote or signed opinions upholding the Constitutionality of the public display of Ten Commandments monuments and even wrote an opinion defending the existence of cross-shaped memorials for fallen state troopers.

Whether Neil Gorsuch will adequately fill the shoes of the late Justice Scalia is impossible to fully predict. What we can say with some confidence is that Judge Gorsuch has a history of defending the First Amendment from the bench.

We hope that Justice Gorsuch which will live up to the American people’s expectation and strongly protect our Constitutional freedoms.

 

To learn how First Liberty is protecting Religious Liberty for all Americans, visit FirstLiberty.org.

First Liberty Institute is the largest organization in the nation dedicated exclusively to protecting religious freedom for all Americans. Find out more here.

(This podcast is by First Liberty Briefing. Discovered by e2 media network and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not emedia network, and audio is streamed directly from their servers.)

OUR SUPPORTERS

  • NCMC Logo12
  • cwd_link
    Over 18,000 wholesome, family friendly, Christian websites.
  • WM-ad-web-v2-489x486
  • RdR Large ad
  • Danny Avila
  • Talking Bibles Sidebar Ad
  •  Good News, Etc
Print pagePDF pageEmail page

Welcome to the Big Picture Podcast. I’m Joel Fieri. 

This podcast hopes to begin and sustain a conversation about current trends, ideas and issues in the Church and greater society. 

Today I want to talk about politics. It’s an uncomfortable subject for many Christians, which is why so many of us avoid it. Some of us don’t avoid it and tend to over-emphasize it. These are my thoughts on politics, specifically on how we can strike a balance in the big picture.

Many Christians today say that we shouldn’t be tied to or bound by any political ideology, and certainly not a political party. They’ll say we need to rise above political ideology and stay above the fray. 

When it comes to voting, they don’t often give an alternative to ideology,  except maybe to say something like, “I don’t care about the ideology of Joe Candidate, I just care about what kind of person he or she is” and that they “get things done”. 

In other words, that we need to consider the  character or personality or competence of a candidate or leader. Which is understandable and important. Character matters very much in our elected officials, and bears close attention.

Personality, not so much. So many times in world history, a dynamic personality has fooled people into putting someone in power, with disastrous results. 

Competence is a tricky one. On the one hand, we would like our elected leaders to get things done, yet on the other, it matters very much WHAT they’re getting done. History is also full of very competent leaders who were competent in all the wrong things, with again, disastrous results.

Which is why, when it comes to politics, I’d like to make a case FOR ideology, and specifically for Christians to yes, indeed be tied to an ideology.

The first reason to tie oneself to ideology is that ideologies keep the fight non-personal, or at least they should. 

For instance, if I have an ideology that’s different from yours, I can still say that I think you’re a good person. You’re political ideas are mis-guided, but you’re a good Christian and I like you and we can have fellowship. 

But, if I tie or relate my political opinions and stances to personality or character, then all of a sudden your opposition to me could mean that you have a flaw in your personality or character. Then I might think “What’s wrong with them? How could a good person – or even a Christian – think like that?” Which of course is what happens all the time in today’s climate.

What Ideology does is reflect values. A value system, if you will. And for Christians it is vital that we know our foundational values come from what’s known as the Judeo-Christian value system, or worldview. This is an ideology, a set of values, founded in the adherence to Biblical truths of the Old and New Testaments. This would be in contrast to something like a Post-Modern worldview, a view that rejects the idea of any kind of absolute truth or objective morality. 

And in case you haven’t guessed, this is the value system to which I would like us all to be tied. 

So this is all very interesting, I’m sure – comparing worldviews, but what does that have to do with  us today as  Christians. After all, didn’t Jesus say, “…render to Caesar that which is Caesar’s, and to God that which is God’s”. 

Yes he did. Specifically with regard to taxes, but the principle still applies. 

There’s an important distinction in this verse, and one very important implication. First of all, the distinction is obviously between God and Caesar. Some things are Caesar’s, some are God’s. We shouldn’t try give Caesar’s stuff to God, but more importantly, we must NOT allow Caesar to have what we know is God’s. 

And this is where the big problem lies. It is Caesar’s nature to take what is God’s, and what God has entrusted to US:  marriage, the care and training of children, helping the sick and needy, work, money, the list goes on. 

To paraphrase a famous quote, ”you may not be interested in Caesar, but Caesar is definitely interested in you”. 

And secondly, the implication in Jesus‘ words is one of personal responsibility to God, and to society. And for us as American Christians, we need to realize that we don’t have a Caesar. 

WE are Caesar. 

The early Christians under Rome had no voice as to whether or not their taxes were too high, or any other aspect of their political life. 

We DO have such a voice. We have government of the people, by the people and for the people, and it’s incumbent on us to subject and limit government’s – or Caesar’s – role to the things that God has entrusted to it, and to make sure that the laws and burdens put on all citizens are just and fair. 

And most importantly, we must not shirk our own responsibility to do good in this world by claiming that it’s Caesar’s (or the governments) role, not ours. God will hold YOU and ME accountable for the fruit our good deeds have produced in this world, not those of our government.

And THAT, my friends, is an ideological statement, one that comes from a Judeo Christian value system. It’s a statement that says government should be limited, and that citizens are free to do good as their consciences, before God, demand, to be judged by their Creator, not their government. 

In closing, it’s time for the Great Cloud Of Witnesses, the segment of our podcast where we meet and hear the stories of those who have given, and some who are still giving, their lives by faith in the promises of God, and of whom the world was and is not worthy (if you don’t know that reference, please check out Hebrews chapters 11-12 in your Bible). 

And keeping with our subject, today’s witness is a politician, believe it or not. Before you tune out, let me just say he’s not your typical politician. This guy broke the mold and radically changed the world. I’ll try to do his story justice. He we go;

In the late 1700s, English slave traders raided the African coast on the Gulf of Guinea, capturing between 35,000 and 50,000 Africans a year, shipping them across the Atlantic, and selling them into slavery. It was a profitable business that many powerful people had become dependent upon. The economics of slavery were so entrenched that only a handful of people thought anything could be done about it. 

That handful included William Wilberforce, a Christian member of the British Parliament.

His first years in parliament didn’t amount to much, by his own admission. He was mainly there to fulfill his own ambitions. 

But he soon became disenchanted with the status quo of political life, and began to take his Christian faith seriously. 

Under the influence of Christian abolitionists, he came to fully embrace the cause of abolishing the slave trade. “So enormous, so dreadful did the trade’s wickedness appear that my own mind was completely made up for abolition. Let the consequences be what they would: I from this time determined that I would never rest until I had effected its abolition.” he said

Poor health plagued him his entire life, but when healthy, he was a persistent and effective politician, partly due to his natural charm and partly to his eloquence. After decades of struggle and defeat, his anti-slavery efforts finally bore fruit. In 1807 Parliament abolished the slave trade in the British Empire. He then worked to ensure the slave trade laws were enforced and, finally, that slavery itself was abolished. 

Wilberforce’s health prevented him from leading the last charge, though he heard three days before he died that the final passage of the emancipation bill was ensured in committee, and slavery was abolished.

Though some historians argue that others were just as important in the antislavery fight, Wilberforce played THE key role in one of the most important turning points in the world history.

One final quote from Wilberforce to wrap up on the subject of politics. It’s a little flowery, but bear with it:

“Let true Christians then, with becoming earnestness, strive in all things to recommend their profession, and to put to silence the vain scoffs of ignorant objectors. Let them boldly assert the cause of Christ in an age when so many, who bear the name of Christians, are ashamed of Him: and let them consider as devolved on Them the important duty of suspending for a while the fall of their country, and, perhaps, of performing a still more extensive service to society at large; not by busy interference in politics, in which it cannot but be confessed there is much uncertainty; but rather by that sure and radical benefit of restoring the influence of Religion, and of raising the standard of morality.”

So that folks, is William Wilberforce, a faithful man in an unfaithful profession – politics – who knew, in The Big Picture, the importance of where God had placed him, and how to use his influence for The Kingdom. He is hereby nominated for the great cloud of witnesses, of whom the world is not worthy.

Thanks for listening. If you enjoyed this week’s Big Picture Podcast, please go to my web site at gobigpicture.net and also check out our other podcasts and points of view on the E-Squared Media network at e2medianetwork.com. Wherever you go, leave a few comments and tell your friends about us. See you next time on the Big Picture podcast. 

Be blessed!

OUR SUPPORTERS

  • NCMC Logo12
  • cwd_link
    Over 18,000 wholesome, family friendly, Christian websites.
  • WM-ad-web-v2-489x486
  • RdR Large ad
  • Danny Avila
  • Talking Bibles Sidebar Ad
  •  Good News, Etc