Posts Tagged ‘James Madison’

Why the Left Loathes Religious Liberty

April 9th, 2015 1 comment

moral collapse (1)

The Rights of Conscience

Have you ever wondered why the Left has so little regard for religious liberty and the rights of conscience? How can a group so committed to “equality or all” and “an America free from discrimination” have no problem using fines and other means of coercion to force others to violate their most deeply held convictions?

Secularists have a nasty habit of taking words we commonly use in the context of a Christian worldview and then gutting them of all their original meaning. Words like freedom, liberty, justice and beauty are powerful and inspiring because they point us to something Transcendent. They direct our attention to the existence of a good, holy, wise, just, all-powerful and eternal God Who sets the objective standard for these transcendent values. When you remove God from everyday life like the secularists do, the words become meaningless. They lose their weight and substance.

Perhaps this is why the Left rabidly fights for the unbridled freedom of sexual expression, while caring little for protecting the “rights of conscience.” You see, our English word conscience comes from the Latin word conscientia. The prefix con means “with” or “together.” The verb scire means “to know.” So the word literally means “to know with or to know together.”

We must ask the question, “With whom we are “to know together?”

Herein lies the problem for secularists. The conscience was designed to agree with God concerning matters of right and wrong. God Himself, His character and standards, is our benchmark. Thus, the conscience is a God-given moral compass which helps us determine right from wrong. It has been called “a law we cannot not know.”

The conscience is that part of every person which, willingly or unwillingly, responds to the universal moral law of God. The Apostle Paul writes, “Even Gentiles, who do not have God’s written law, show that they know his law when they instinctively obey it, even without having heard it. 15 They demonstrate that God’s law is written in their hearts, for their own conscience and thoughts either accuse them or tell them they are doing right.”
(Romans 2:14-15, NLT)

Our conscience bears witness to our actions. When we examine our actions what does our conscience say? It is trying to give you an accurate witness of how you measured up to God’s standards.

This is why the Apostle Paul said, “I always strive to keep my conscience clear before God and man.” (Acts 24:16)

Perhaps this explains why there is so little zeal from the Left to defend the rights of conscience. When you have little use for God, then why would you care about the rights of conscience? In fact, without God, how does one even define “conscience rights?” What is a “conscience?”

America’s Uniqueness

America is an exceptional nation. Our Founding Fathers gave us a political society unlike any other in the history of the world. The Founders considered religious liberty to be our “first freedom.” It was the foundation stone upon which all other freedoms rest.


Because one’s religious faith was the foundation for morality. Morality was the foundation of virtue. Virtue was the foundation of liberty.

This explains why religious liberty has been protected by our civil law. James Madison, one of the chief architects of our American understanding of religious liberty, puts the point well:

“The Religion then of every man must be left to the conviction and conscience of every man; and it is the right of every man to exercise it as these may dictate. This right is in its nature an unalienable right.”
-Memorial and Remonstrance

Madison argued that it is an “arrogant pretension” to believe that “the Civil Magistrate is a competent Judge of Religious Truth.”

But here’s where the rub comes in.

Madison, like the rest of our Founders, acknowledged the existence of God and the duty of every man to worship Him. He wrote:

“What is here a right towards men, is a duty towards the Creator. It is the duty of every man to render to the Creator such homage and such only as he believes to be acceptable to him. This duty is precedent, both in order of time and in degree of obligation, to the claims of Civil Society.”

Did you hear that last phrase? The duty toward God takes precedence to the claims of government. Madison went on to say:

“Government exists primarily to protect our natural, God-given rights: “Government is instituted to protect property of every sort. . . [and] conscience is the most sacred of all property.””

Government exists for the purpose of protecting property and the most precious of all property is the human conscience! How far we have fallen from the biblically immersed worldview of our Founding Fathers.

The Bible predicted the day would come when people would be “lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God.” (2 Timothy 3:4) We are living in such a time. If we fail to demonstrate the superior pleasure of knowing and loving Christ (Psalm 16:11) our most cherished liberties will vanish before our eyes.

The Founders on Debt & Taxation

September 16th, 2011 No comments

One of the President’s incessant cries during the debt ceiling debate was for “increased revenue” also know as higher taxes. The Left’s addiction to spending leads to an insatiable appetite for more taxes. When a government repeatedly fails to live within its means, the only solution of to demand more and more from the pockets of those they were elected to serve. The end result is tyranny and oppression.

Thomas Jefferson understood the connection between public debt and the tyranny of governmental taxation. He warned:

“…this is the tendency of all human governments. A departure from principle in one instance becomes a precedent for a second: that second for a third: and so on, till the bulk of society is reduced to be mere automatons of misery…And the forehorse of this frightful team is public debt. Taxation follows that, and in its train wretchedness and oppression.”

Founding Father James Madison boldly declared:

“I go on the principle that public debt is a public curse.”

If Madison is correct, American is currently under the greatest curse in the history of our nation! As Jefferson warned, we have violated principle numerous times, extending our debt ceiling several times to accommodate our extravagant spending. If we fail to elect principled leaders who will stand firm in resisting profligate spending, we may very well become the “automatons of misery” Jefferson warned us about.