Why Praying in Jesus Name Offends the Politically Correct Crowd
A recent story by Todd Starnes outlined yet another desperate attempt to silence Christians praying in “Jesus name” while in public.
Starnes articulated the position of some Pennsylvania Democrats who were offended in March when State Rep. Stephanie Borowicz was invited to deliver a prayer at the beginning of the legislative day. Mrs. Borowicz, a freshman lawmaker and the wife of a Christian minister, gladly accepted the invitation, and invoked the name of Jesus as she prayed.
By chance, the state’s first female Muslim lawmaker was scheduled to be sworn into office on the same day. There were many Muslim visitors in attendance. Also on the agenda was a prayer that was delivered by a Muslim cleric, but of course that was not offensive. I’m glad it wasn’t, but I wonder why?
The words used to describe Borowicz’ prayer included, “horrified,” “Islamaphobia,” and “beneath the dignity of the house.”
Starnes provided a brief lesson in history:
William Penn established a colony where people of faith could practice whatever religion they desired. Pennsylvania became the only colony without a state-run church.
Penn’s gift to America was freedom of religion, the right to practice one’s faith in the public marketplace.
“All Persons who also profess to believe in Jesus Christ, the Savior of the World, shall be capable…to serve this Government in any Capacity,” the Charter of Privileges declared.
Nearly 318 years later, that fundamental bedrock of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania has all but crumbled. And the statehouse has now become a place where those who profess Jesus Christ face public rebuke.
As sad as it is, we should not be surprised when political correctness shuns Christ. It is nothing new. Although America has experienced a rich history of religious freedom, and we should do what we can to maintain it, the spiritual battle lines were drawn long ago.
By God’s providence, I found myself studying John 11 today. This passage speaks to the issues that Christians are experiencing.
This well-known passage describes the account of Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead.
It is important to note, there are two things present in many of Jesus’ miracles. Faith was a key factor; and the illness, or in this case death, was “for the glory of God, so that the Son of God may be glorified through it” (John 11:4).
There is an interesting parallel between the time of Christ and modern day political correctness. It is noteworthy that the presence of Jesus threatens those who seek power by human authority and refuse to yield to his Lordship—whether in the time of Christ or present day.
The Pharisees—religious leaders of the day—were continually intimidated by the influence Jesus had with the people. They didn’t recognize him as the Messiah, and believed they would lose power … hmmm, mysteriously similar to those claiming victimhood today. So they needed to eliminate his presence—just like modern times.
“What are we to do? For this man performs many signs. If we let him go on like this, everyone will believe in him, and the Romans will come and take away both our place and our nation” (John 11:47-48).
Oh my, we certainly cannot have people believe in him. That would be catastrophic (tongue in cheek).
This is why the apostle Paul wrote, “For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth” (Romans 1:18).
Nevertheless, Christians can be confident that God will make all things right in his time.
Paul went on to quote the prophet Isaiah, “As I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God” (Romans 14:11).
For the time being, people of faith in Christ should live with the hope that Jesus promised Lazarus’ sister, Martha, “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?” (John 11:25-26).
For the haters, nothing in this article supports or encourages the suppression of other belief systems. Actually, I welcome it because I believe in the lessons of Elijah from 1 Kings 18.