I believe that it was at the beginning of the Feast of Tabernacles in 2010, during my annual "The Handwriting is on the Wall" sermon that I gave you many statistics regarding persecutions against the Christian religion occurring worldwide. By "Christian religion," I include all those denominational groups claiming Christianity, regardless of what they believe as the core issues in their faith, or how fervently their members practice it. I gave you a great deal of evidence, gathered from around the world, that Romans 8:7 is alive, is operating, and growing at an alarming rate. The statistics and quotations given showed me that Christianity is by far and away the world's most persecuted religion.
Living in an Israelitish nation has kept us somewhat in ignorance, and indeed, shielded as if by a wall, against the harsh reality of a tsunami of hatred, fueled and energized by Satan, prophesied by God and called in the Bible the "tribulation" that is advancing toward us. The violent persecutions have taken place in non-Israelitish nations where the Christians' religions do not dominate the religious sphere. Whatever Satan's reasons may have been is not my concern, but the fact remains that he has not used violence as a strategy for persecution here.
I have given commentaries in the past that give compelling evidence to me that the leadership of this nation in government in business, in education, media, science, the courts, and even, to some degree, in the Christian religion itself, is under the influence and control in most cases of humanists. Humanists can be quite deceptive in appearance, because a humanist is often quite a nice person, and also moral in his relationships with fellow man in American communities. Some may even personally claim to be Christian.
However, the reality is that in actual practice, they do not worship the Creator, but things like knowledge and science dominate their reasoning, where faith in the Creator and His words should be the dominating factor. They do not look at the God of creation and the Bible as the authority. Man and his achievements are. They do not believe that there is a Satan either, and thus they do not realize that man without God is in reality a product of Satan in the way he thinks and appears to the casual observer. They do not perceive Satan as the ruler of this world, who has deceived all of mankind and therefore is a primary cause of our culture's being as they are. Things are the way they are because of what Satan is. Humanists believe the Bible has good moral advice, but no authority.
In the Israelitish nations, Satan has not used violence, but rather the "frog in the gradually heated water" approach to undermine Christianity. He has not managed to baffle everybody, but a recent Barna poll regarding religious liberty in America reveals that he has been very successful.
There was a time, 70-100 years ago, almost all Americans practiced the Judeo-Christian values of the Bible. But things have changed considerably. The Barna report shows that, overall, most American Christians are growing concerned because they discern that religious liberty is declining in America, and Barna's survey shows that the ages of those expressing concern at their level is revealing.
Millennials, the youngest adult group surveyed, are between the ages of 18 and 28, and these young adults express little concern. The elderly, those above age 55, including Boomers as well as my generation (the [Silents]) are very concerned.
Well, Satan's approach against the Christian religion in Israelitish nations has been through educational institutions and the courts. He has been eminently successful in both areas, and the result has been that humanists of varying degrees of fervency hold virtually all leadership offices of secular authority throughout the nation. It's not limited to government.
Hosea 10:13 makes a very interesting statement regarding the situation in Israel. This verse shows the effect of misplaced trust:
Hosea 10:13 You have plowed wickedness; you have reaped iniquity. You have eaten the fruit of lies, because you trusted in your own way, in the multitude of your mighty men.
God is saying the trust that should have been given to Him instead is given to men. And in this nation they are the humanist leadership who lie regarding where true leadership resides. We just heard a sermonette on that ["Who Needs Authority?"] and the authority that that leadership—God—has, and God says the result, reaped in this nation, is a harvest of lawlessness. Is that happening?
America is following its humanist leadership right into the pit. Instead of calling the leadership into account, as Satan maneuvered them into positions of authority, the citizens of the United States were content with the bribes they promised and sometimes even gave in the form of gifts from the government.
After Ronald Reagan's administration left office, those administering government have grown ever more forceful regarding the use of their authority. The present administration is coming very close to outright dictating, and it is confronting the Christian faith directly, not with violence but with subterfuge.
Here is one example. The Obamacare Act requires employers to pay for abortifacients for employees. An abortifacient produces an abortion in a pregnant woman. This has motivated a number of employers, mostly Catholic, to resist that demand on the basis that it is a violation of their religious conscience. This is where it's going to reach out and touch us, and you can bet on this. That directive is a promotion of abortion services, forced on people who do not believe in abortion. The employers do not believe that they should, directly or indirectly, be involved in the murder of a fellow human being by supplying the means to do the killing, and thus becoming an accessory before the fact of the murder. Are you willing to give a person a gun that you know they are going to use to kill a fellow human being? That is the principle that is involved here.
Hercules Industries, which is located (I believe) in the Denver area, is not a religious corporation. It is a fully family-owned, for-profit business, and the owners have refused to be a partner in providing abortion services, and have taken the government to court on the basis of their religious convictions. The government attorneys have replied before a judge that—listen to these words—"Paying for abortion pills does not amount to a significant burden on their conscience at all."
However, God says in Romans 14:23, at the conclusion of a fairy long argument, "Whatever is not from faith is sin." These people do not want to be involved in a sin, but the government is forcing them to be involved. So far, the company appears to be winning. The case is not over, but a judgment has been delayed. The judge has ordered the government the back off until some other issues are involved.
At stake is the issue of authority in matters of faith—God or the secular government. The very fact that the issue has even arisen bodes evil for those of faith. If murder does not matter to the government, what about the Sabbath? What about the Holy Days? What about tithing? You see, it is just a short step from the issue that is in the public eye and these other things that we are directly involved in.