"It's no longer easy to be a faithful Christian” in America, says the chairman of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom.
Our culture increasingly condemns Christian beliefs as bigoted and hateful, says Dr. Robert P. George. “They despise us if we refuse to call good evil and evil good.”
The Princeton University professor and author told Washington, D.C.’s 10th annual National Catholic Prayer Breakfast that American culture no longer favors faithful Christians. For example, he asked attendees to consider “the derision that comes from being pro-life and pro-traditional marriage,” reported Napp Nazworth in the Christian Post. “Because of that, Christians must be willing to bear the consequences of standing up for the teachings of Jesus and his bride, the Church.”
"They threaten us with consequences if we refuse to call what is good, evil, and what is evil, good. They demand us to conform our thinking to their orthodoxy, or else say nothing at all," Dr. George told the prayer breakfast.
The intimidation to remain silent is insidious and growing, he said, citing the recent public humiliation of fired Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich and cancelled reality show hosts David and Jason Benham – all paying heavy prices for defending traditional marriage. Dr. George told the prayer breakfast that “what American Christians are facing is the 21st century version of the question, ‘Am I ashamed of the Gospel?’” reported J.C.Derrick, for World magazine.
Of course, Christians can avoid public derision, Dr. George noted, by staying silent. It is still socially acceptable, he said, to be a "a tame Catholic, a Catholic who is ashamed of the Gospel, or is unwilling, publicly, to act as if he is not ashamed of the Gospel."
But how can Christians remain mute considering the challenges to biblical teaching? “Marriage is inseparable from the Gospel,” Dr. George told breakfast attendees. “These teachings are not the whole Gospel, but they are integral to the Gospel. They are not optional truths.”
Dr. George has been called “this country’s most influential conservative Christian thinker,” by the New York Times’ David Kirkpatrick, who notes “Glenn Beck, the Fox News talker and a big George fan, likes to introduce him as ‘one of the biggest brains in America,’ or, on one broadcast, ‘Superman of the Earth.’ Karl Rove told me he considers George a rising star on the right and a leading voice in persuading President George W. Bush to restrict embryonic stem-cell research. Supreme Court JusticeAntonin Scalia told me he numbers George among the most-talked-about thinkers in conservative legal circles. And Newt Gingrich called him ‘an important and growing influence’ on the conservative movement, especially on matters like abortion and marriage.”
Dr. George’s comments came as judges made Arkansas and Idaho the latest states with overturned bans on gay marriage. Even if the current cultural trend is unstoppable, Dr. George told the breakfast, Christians must not stop teaching what the Bible declares.
“If we deny these truths, we really are like Peter [saying] ‘I do not know the man,’” he told attendees. “If we keep silent, we are like the other disciples, who ran.”