The annual Pray, Vote, Stand Summit in Washington, D.C., hosted by the Family Research Council in mid-September, brought together pastors, presidential candidates, members of Congress, elected state officials, local school board members and Christian citizens from around the country to rally for the sanctity of human life, marriage and the family.
Messianic Jewish pastor Jonathan Cahn, bestselling author and founder of Beth Israel Worship Center in Wayne, New Jersey, likened the current state of America to Biblical times when Israel succumbed to idol worship and reaped the whirlwind of paganism. Now, like then, all manner of sexual perversion and child sacrifice is celebrated because America has increasingly rejected the Judeo-Christian values it was founded on, Cahn told conference attendees.
“It’s a war for the future of America, for the future of your children, for the future of your life,” Cahn warned. “It’s a war of life and death. The spirits seek destruction and we must stand. It’s time to stand and be bold and not afraid.”
Calling for modern day Daniels, Jeremiahs, Pauls and first-century Christians to turn back the evil advances of a post-Christian culture, Cahn said “it is time for you, the lights of God, to shine even brighter.”
“Now it’s our turn,” Cahn said. “Now it’s time to fight in the power of the Word. Fight in the power of the Spirit of God. Fight in the power of prayer, in the power of faith, and hope, and righteousness, and holiness, in the power of our God.”
U.S. Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) said that rather than being dismayed and disillusioned by America’s precipitous moral decline, he remains encouraged and hopeful by God’s calling on his life.
“We live in a time of enormous consequence,” he said, “but that means we have the privilege to act and stand and be bold. The Lord has called us to this time. He’s placed us in this time. He’s given us a voice in this time, and He’s given us the opportunity by being bold, by taking a stand, by praying and fighting with the weapons of faith and putting on the full armor of God … to change the direction of this nation.”
The former Missouri attorney general said the left’s relentless quest to intimidate and silence Christians will be challenged on his watch.
“This administration is sending SWAT teams to the homes of pro-life demonstrators,” Hawley said. “You know that’s an incredible violation of our constitutional rights. The FBI is putting informants in the churches in this nation, in this day and age. The whole agenda of the enemy is to always want us to be afraid.”
Hawley said that now is not the time for fear, intimidation or self-pity. “I think what we need as believers is we need a baptism of courage,” he said.
And he prays that his future grandchildren will find him to have been faithful to God’s call on his life.
“We’ll speak for Him no matter what it costs us,” Hawley promised. “And if we’re denounced and disliked and cast out by the elites, then so be it. I mean, what a privilege to get to stand for the Lord in this time.”
On the state level, some elected government officials are successfully opposing the transgender ideology infiltrating public school systems around the country.
Oklahoma State School Superintendent Ryan Walters said the federal Department of Education is executing “a clear attack to push radical gender ideology in the classroom, destroy American history and take all rights away from parents.
“This is Joe Biden’s war on our kids, on our schools, on our faith and on our country,” Walters said.
But Walters is leading Oklahoma to fight back by establishing the first religious charter school in the country, while also allowing a “full minute of silence” in public school for students and staff to pray as they like.
“We know that the Judeo-Christian faith was vital to making this the most exceptional country in world history,” he said. “We will protect that in our schools.”
And Christian nonprofit organizations like the Family Policy Alliance and their 40 state chapters across the country are finally seeing their persistent advocacy to protect children from harmful gender transition surgeries come to fruition.
Autumn Leva, senior vice president of strategy with Family Policy Alliance, cited a Columbia University report that 36,000 body-altering surgeries on otherwise healthy children were conducted in the U.S. between 2016 and 2020.
But since 2021, 22 states have passed laws that ban the use of puberty blockers, cross-sex hormones and surgical procedures on transgender minors. “They would have been sent down a one-way road to transition if those laws had not been in place,” Leva said.
Meanwhile, California and Minnesota have passed laws authorizing their states to take custody of children from parents in other states when they come seeking gender transition surgeries and abortions.
“Normally, that would be called kidnapping, but in this case it’s legal in those states to do that,” Leva said.
Yet it’s in these times, Cahn said, God is raising up defenders of truth and righteousness. “For these are the days that will produce greatness and mighty men and women of God for those who will stand,” he said.
Several Republican presidential hopefuls—former Vice President Mike Pence, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy and former President Donald Trump—also addressed the summit, each lauding the work of family values conservatives. ©2023 BGEA
Photo: Ronald G. Walters/Light Productions, Inc.