Robert Jeffress

Jeffress: Marriage Equality Decision, White House Rainbow Lights Signs Of End Times

This past Sunday, Family Research Council President Tony Perkins delivered the sermon at Robert Jeffress’ church in Dallas. Although Perkins’ visit had been planned more than a year in advance, Jeffress was delighted that it ended up falling just two days after the Supreme Court struck down gay marriage bans nationwide, which Jeffress called “the greatest, most historic, landmark blunder in the history of the United States Supreme Court.”

Jeffress had some good news, though: The Supreme Court’s decision and the ensuing rainbow-flag projection on the White House all just confirm the Bible’s reports of what will happen before the return of Christ.

“What happened Friday was nothing short of an affront in the face of Almighty God,” Jeffres said in his introduction of Perkins. “And how did our president respond? President Obama responded Friday night by bathing the White House, the people’s house, in colors that represent what the Bible calls degredation, depravity and sexual perversion.”

Jeffress and his church, he said, are “not going to be silenced by the liberal left, Barack Obama or the United States Supreme Court.”

“We’re not despondent, we’re not discouraged in the least,” he added, “because everything that happened Friday is simply confirmation of what the Bible says is going to happen before the return of Jesus Christ.”

Jeffress has previously called the gay rights movement and the book “Fifty Shades of Grey” signs of the End Times.

Perkins also addressed the marriage equality ruling, saying he was less concerned about being “on the wrong side of history” than on “the wrong side of the one who’s going to write the final chapter of history.”

The government, he said, had “usurped” issues like marriage and turned “the sacred into the secular.”

“I cannot see a more clear visual representation of where our nation stands,” he said, “than on Friday morning, our courts turned the sacred into the secular and that night, the president bathing the White House in the colors of Pride. God have mercy on America.”

Paranoia-Rama: Abortion Caused The Drought, 'Wrecking Ball' Obama Ushering In The End Times

It seems that immigration, gay rights and legal abortion are all about to destroy America, and there is nothing conservatives can do to stave off destruction until President Obama leaves office … unless, of course, Hillary Clinton gets elected, in which case we’re all doomed.

Right Wing Round-Up - 6/9/15

  • Elliot Mincberg @ Salon: The right’s slimy new scheme: The made-up “religious freedom” protection designed to gut same-sex marriage.
  • Josh Feldman @ Mediaite: Pastor Responds to Maher over Christian Persecution: Nazis Didn’t Burn the Jews Right Away.
  • Warren Throckmorton: Missouri Baptist Convention Grateful to Help Host David Barton; Christian Historians Disagree.
  • Tierney Sneed @ TPM: Louisiana GOPers In Fiscal Mess Beg Grover Norquist To Relax No Tax Pledge.
  • Todd Heywood @ PrideSource: Anti-Gay West Michigan 'Mechanic' To Host Townhall In Jenison Public School.
  • Mark Joseph Stern @ Slate: Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback Threatens to Defund Judiciary if It Rules Against Him.

Right Wing Bonus Tracks - 6/1/15

  • Sen. Lindsey Graham is the latest candidate to officially throw his hat into the ring for the 2016 GOP nomination.
  • Robert Jeffress wants to make it clear that God forbids people from playing the "Charlie Charlie Challenge."
  • On a related note, Brian Brown's CitizenGo has launched a petition calling upon Fox to cancel a new television show about Lucifer.
  • Dinesh D'Souza is now a free man.
  • Donald Trump humbly explains why he'll make a great presidential candidate: "I’m the most successful person ever to run for the presidency, by far. Nobody’s ever been more successful than me."
  • Apparently a new poll showing that a majority of Americans describe themselves as "pro-choice" is actually good news for those who want to outlaw abortion.
  • Finally, Franklin Graham issues another dire warning about the possible legalization of gay marriage: "This is a pivotal moment in the history of our nation. If the nation's highest court decrees same-sex marriage as the law of the land, the consequences will be grave. It sets the stage for persecution of believers who are committed to the truth of Scripture. Can pastors preach against homosexuality without being accused of hate speech? Can Christian schools and colleges deny housing to same-sex couples and maintain their tax-exempt status? The ultimate danger, of course, is the devastating results of disobedience to God's Word. Continual blatant sexual immorality that shakes its arrogant, godless fist before Almighty God is a flashing red sign warning of the imminent disintegration of a culture."

War And Terrorists And Floods, Oh My! The Right's Five Worst Predictions About Marriage Equality

Mike Huckabee thinks Christianity will soon be outlawed to make room for gay rights. Ted Cruz fears “liberal fascism; and a pro-gay “jihad” are destroying liberty. Bobby Jindal believes freedom will soon be extinguished as reality stars lose their apparent constitutional right to appear on television.

These GOP presidential hopefuls are not shying away from the gay marriage issue, which comes as no surprise since the GOP’s right-wing base has been whipped into a frenzy by conservative talk radio hosts and activists who have insisted that freedom will be no more if the Supreme Court strikes down bans on same-sex marriage.

Here are five of the far right’s wildest predictions about what would happen if gay marriage becomes legal nationwide:

1) War!

Several Religious Right pundits believe that a Supreme Court ruling striking down same-sex marriage bans would spark a full-blown rebellion, if not a civil war.

Focus on the Family founder James Dobson said that the country could witness a second civil war over the Supreme Court’s decision, while Mat Staver of the conservative legal group Liberty Counsel said the court “could cause another civil war” if it legalizes same-sex marriage.

The Texas chapter of Eagle Forum warned the Supreme Court in an amicus brief that a ruling that “imposes homosexual marriage” on the country “would cause vastly more conflict” than the infamous 1857 Dred Scott decision. Not to be outdone, conservative activist Alan Keyes predicted that marriage equality will lead to mass murder and “the separation and dissolution of the United States.”

At least one conservative author thinks that the states of Florida, Georgia and South Carolina should consider seceding from the U.S. and establish their own country in order to preserve gay marriage bans. This new country, naturally, will be named “Reagan.”

2) Terrorism!

David Lane, a conservative political organizer with close ties to the GOP and several Republican presidential candidates, has warned that God will soon usher in a wave of terrorist attacks as punishment for America’s acceptance of homosexuality and abortion. Infuriated by “homosexuals praying” at President Obama’s second inauguration, Lane claimed that God can show the country mercy but it will be a “very painful process,” including “car bombs in Los Angeles, Washington D.C. and Des Moines, Iowa.”

American Family Radio host Bryan Fischer warned that because America’s “gay gestapo” is acting like the men of Sodom who tried to rape angels, God will “run out of patience with the United States” and “use pagan armies to discipline his people if they turn from him in rebellion and disobedience and descend into debauchery.”

“What if God will use the pagan armies of Allah to discipline the United States for our debauchery?” he wondered.

Neither prediction holds a candle, however, to talk show host Rick Wiles’ frequent prediction that gay rights will lead to a nuclear attack on the country.

3) Apocalypse!

Pastor Robert Jeffress, a Fox News contributor and author of “Countdown to the Apocalypse,” has called gay marriage “the greatest sign of the End Times that we see in our country right now,” warning that the Supreme Court will embolden pro-gay “extremists” to “make us all bow down and bless what God has called a perversion.”

Janet Porter, an anti-gay activist who held a rally outside of the Supreme Court yesterday, has said that “we are uniquely positioned for the return of Christ like no other time in history” as a result of the Supreme Court marriage cases.

Another conservative pundit, Linda Harvey, claimed in an interview with End Times broadcaster Jan Markell that the legal and political success of gay marriage advocates means that “we’re heading into the End Times, and it sure looks like we may be, or the end of America — or both.” 

Michele Bachmann, a frequent guest on Markell’s program, told the End Times evangelist that legal abortion and gay marriage, along with President Obama’s foreign policies, are among the signs that we are entering the Last Days. God will remove his “hedge of protection” from America as punishment for its increasingly “pagan” culture, she warned, and “and we will suffer the consequences as a result.”

4) Flood!

Gay rights advocates are not only turning America into Sodom and Gomorrah (as Pat Robertson claims), but they are also risking the destruction of the planet, argue some far-right pundits who believe that Noah’s Flood was divine punishment for homosexuality. Scott Lively, the pastor best known for his work promoting anti-gay laws in countries like Russia and Uganda, claims that “the Great Flood of Noah in Genesis 6-9 was precipitated by homosexual sin.”

“We need to remember that in the time leading up to the Flood what the rabbis teach about the last straw for God before He brought the Flood was when they started writing wedding songs to homosexual marriage,” Lively said, “and Jesus said that you’ll know the End Times because it will be like the days of Noah. There’s never been a time in the history of the world since before the Flood when homosexual marriage has been open and celebrated, and that’s another sign that I believe that we’re close to the end…. I think this is the issue of the End Times: homosexuality.”

Another pastor claimed God “brought the flood” because he “knew that the people of the earth were going to destroy themselves through same-sex marriage.” Porter has similiarly called gay marriage “the final straw that led to the Flood.”

5) Antichrist!

The destruction of freedom and America at the hands of gay rights advocates, some Religious Right voices warn, will eventually lead to the coming of the Antichrist.

Jeffress said that the purported gay persecution of Christians “will pave the way for that future world dictator, the Antichrist, to persecute and martyr Christians without any repercussions whatsoever,” while Gordon Klingenschmitt, a televangelist and Colorado Republican state representative, called LGBT-inclusive non-discrimination laws a “sign that the End Times are really upon us. When the Antichrist rises up to persecute Christians and behead us and throw us in jail for our Christian faith, you don’t think it’s going to be over things like this?”

Lively explicitly linked the coming of the Antichrist to the marriage cases before the Supreme Court, writing that “if we are on the verge of ‘birth pangs’ we will likely know it by Passover, but in either case we should brace for serious judgment on the United States in the form of natural and/or man-made disaster if the Supreme Court established sodomy as a basis for marriage under our constitution.” The one who will “not yet be exposed to the world as the Antichrist” will emerge around September of this year, Lively wrote, noting that “the Biblically literate would recognize him.”

“Even as the rest of the world lauds its ‘savior’ and embraces his government, the Christian believers (and Torah-faithful Jews) would be increasingly reviled and hunted,” Lively wrote. “I don’t think there is any question, Biblically, that the cultural celebration of ‘gay marriage’ portends judgment from God. The only real question in my mind is whether it truly signals the imminent ‘beginning of sorrows’ or is just another step in the path leading to God’s wrath at a later time.”

Jeffress: 9/11 Was God's Judgment On America For Abortion

Right-wing megachurch pastor Robert Jeffress spoke at Liberty University's convocation this morning, where he told the student audience that America's complete collapse was unavoidable, thanks to Supreme Court rulings banning organized prayer and Bible study in public schools, legalizing abortion, and striking down bans of gay sex.

These rulings, Jeffress declared, have "so weakened the moral and spiritual infrastructure of our nation that our collapse is inevitable," explaining that the 9/11 terrorist attack was God's judgment upon America for the sin of abortion.

"All you have to do is look in history to see what God does with a nation that sanctions the killing of its own children," he said. "Just look at the nation of Israel ... Because they got involved in the worship of Moloch, the pagan god, and they sacrificed their children on the altar, what did God do? He raised up the godless Babylonians and Assyrians to bring judgement on his own people."

"People ask me all the time," Jeffress continued, "'Well, I just don't understand why God wouldn't protect our nation and he would allow these radical Muslims in 2001 to kill 3,000 of our citizens and why God doesn't protect us. Surely, God doesn't use pagans to bring judgment upon his own people, does he?'"

"Just read the Bible," he said. "God will not allow sin to go unpunished and he certainly won't allow the sacrifice of children to go unpunished":

Right Wing Round-Up - 3/26/15

Paranoia-Rama: Gay Armageddon, Forced Abortions And Net Neutrality Myths

A group of GOP politicians, including two likely presidential candidates, have decided to appear in a documentary with anti-gay radicals accusing the equality movement of trying to ban religion. Such politicians already kowtow to extreme voices like Rush Limbaugh and the anti-government ideologues at Fox News, so it makes sense that they are now joining together to make absurd claims about the supposed dangers of gay rights in America.

Jeffress: Gays Ushering In The Antichrist, 'Fifty Shades Of Grey' A Sign Of The End Times

Southern Baptist megachurch pastor Robert Jeffress is out with a new book, “Countdown to the Apocalypse: Why ISIS and Ebola Are Only the Beginning,” and shared with Janet Mefferd yesterday some of the signs, besides ISIS and Ebola, that we are witnessing the Last Days.

One of the signs of the impending End Times, according to Jeffress, is the success of the gay rights movement, which he claimed is making people “desensitized” to the persecution of Christians and “will pave the way for that future world dictator, the Antichrist, to persecute and martyr Christians without any repercussions whatsoever.”

According to Jeffress, gay marriage has incontrovertibly driven down the marriage rate and is therefore undermining society.

“It is absolutely no coincidence that last year the marriage rate in the United States was the lowest it’s been in 93 years, and the reason is very clear,” he said. “If marriage is anything you want it to be, why bother to get married at all? Whenever you counterfeit something, you cheapen the value of the real thing, and gay marriage is a counterfeit marriage. What you’re doing is you’re causing all kinds of societal problems where there is not a stable family situation, where there are no marriages, partners come and go, and trying to rear children in that kind of involvement is a prescription for disaster.”

Jeffress and Mefferd also agreed that the book and film “Fifty Shades of Grey” — or as Jeffress called it, “Fifty Shades of Perversion” — is are signs that we are seeing the End Times.

Jeffress: Gay Marriage Is 'The Greatest Sign Of The End Times That We See In Our Country Right Now'

Robert Jeffress was the guest on James Dobson's "Family Talk" radio program today, promoting his new book, "Countdown to the Apocalypse: Why ISIS and Ebola Are Only the Beginning," where he made his case that acceptance of gay marriage is proof that we are now living in the End Times.

"I think the greatest sign of the End Times that we see in our country right now is the increasing moral disorder in our country that we're seeing played out in our culture right now," the prominent Southern Baptist pastor said. "Especially in the realm of gay marriage. What was thought to be unbelievable just 10 or 20 years ago, our culture is now celebrating. A perversion that was once condemned is now celebrated."

Jeffress went on to warn that the Supreme Court will most likely strike down all the gay marriage bans in America relatively soon and then gay activists "will not rest, these extremists, until they make us all bow down and bless what God has called a perversion."

The Bible warns, Jeffress said, that "in the Last Days, there will be no restraint and you see that not only in the acceptance of gay marriage, but also in abortion, you see it in the lawlessness where police officers are gunned down routinely. All of these things are a sign of the Last Days":

 

Jeffress: NPR Jesus Joke Proves 'This World System Is Under Satan's Control'

Pastor Robert Jeffress was a guest on AFA's "Today's Issues" program this morning where he voiced his offense at a joke about Jesus made recently by the host of the NPR game show "Wait, Wait ... Don't Tell Me!," saying that such attacks on Christianity should not come as a surprise considering that our society is "under Satan's control."

"There's not just only a war on Christmas, there's a war on Christianity," Jeffress said. "It began two thousand years ago when Herod tried to kill Christ and it's been continuing ever since then ... There is a kingdom of God and there is a kingdom of Satan, of light and darkness that are at war with one another and this world system is under Satan's control, at least temporarily."

Jeffress went on to say that the fact that it is "open season on Christianity while every other world religion is treated with respect" is proof that Christianity is true.

"The Bible teaches that the Gospel is an offense to people," he explained, "and I think we can point out to unbelievers, you know, the fact that Christianity is singled out for attack probably gives validity to the authenticity of the Christian faith":

Right Wing Bonus Tracks - 12/9/14

  • Rep. Louie Gohmert invited ultraconservative pastor Robert Jeffress to deliver the opening prayer in the House of Representatives today.
  • End Times broadcaster Jan Markell warns that now that the elections are over, "the White House is going to unleash unholy hell on the nation of Israel."
  • Obviously, the key lesson to be taken away from the Eric Garner tragedy is that "the tax hungry state is out of control, using police power to crack down on petty black market sales, to enforce the obscene taxation that created the black market in the first place."
  • Peter LaBarbera is scandalized: "When it comes to promiscuity and perversion, homosexual men are in a league by themselves."
  • Finally, Janet Porter says that the American Atheists' "skip church" billboards are proof that God exists because "nobody takes out billboards to attack fairy tales."

Jeffress: Christians Are Being 'Persecuted' In America Because Satan Is Trying To Destroy Christianity

While filling in for Bryan Fischer on the "Focal Point" radio program today, guest host Fred Jackson interviewed pastor Robert Jeffress about last night's "I Stand Sunday" event in Houston. Jeffress said he hoped that the event would wake Christians up to the fact that their religion is under attack by Satan and that this nation is well on its way the wholesale persecution of Christians.

When Jackson asked why Christians are being attacked in America while there are no similar sorts of attacks against Buddhists, Hindus, Atheists, or "Islamics," Jeffress said that it was obviously due to the fact that Satan "has been trying to extinguish the Christian message ever since he inspired Herod to try to kill the Christ child."

"There is a spiritual reason why Christianity is uniquely under attack like this," he said, as he and Jackson both hoped that the controversy in Houston will wake Americans up to the fact that "spiritual warfare is very real."

Jeffress admitted that the so-called "persecution" of Christians in America is nothing like what is experienced by Christians in other countries, but warned that this nation is still marching down the path toward that same sort of persecution happening here in the very near future.

"You start, first of all, by marginalizing Christians," he said, "which Christians are increasingly being marginalized. And then you paint them as extremists, which is what is happening right now. And then once you've succeeded in turning the public's attitude toward Christians as that of being extremists, then it's okay to launch a persecution against them. And I believe that's what's happening right now and I believe we're going to see it increasingly occur":

Beware The Gay Antichrist! The Seven Most Appalling Moments In Values Voter Summit History

 
Every year since 2006, Republican leaders have joined some of the country’s most notorious anti-gay, anti-choice activists and fringe conspiracy theorists at the Family Research Council’s annual Values Voter Summit.
 
 
Don’t be surprised if summit speakers venture off into the deep-end of the right-wing fringe this week. Far from anomalies, intolerant rhetoric, self-serving claims of persecution and doomsday predictions are a Values Voter Summit tradition.
 
Here, we’ve collected seven of the worst moments from previous Values Voter Summits.
 
1. The Antichrist Will Be Gay
 
The Values Voter Summit is often an educational affair, and one thing we learned at the 2006 conference is that the Antichrist will be gay. Right-wing pastor Dwight McKissic told the VVS audience that year that the gay rights movement is a “Satanic” effort birthed “from the pit of Hell itself,” before suggesting that “the Antichrist himself may be homosexual.”
 
“The gay rights movement, I believe, was birthed and inspired by the Antichrist,” McKissic added, while conservative pastor and co-panelist Wellington Boone lamented that it is no longer socially acceptable to call people “faggots.”
 
 
2. Hillary Clinton Will Imprison Christians, ‘Shut Down’ Churches
 
Remember when Hillary Clinton destroyed the Constitution, closed churches and put all Christians in jail? No? Well, 2012 speaker Kamal Saleem predicted that by the end of her term as secretary of state, Clinton would “subjugate American people to be arrested and put to jail and their churches and synagogues shut down.”
 
Saleem has made a career as a phony ex-terrorist who converted to Christianity, and has concocted several other insane conspiracy theories.
 

Of course, the Values Voter Summit regularly features warnings that the U.S. has morphed into Nazi Germany and will establish concentration camps for Christians.
 
3. Mormonism Meltdown
 
On one rare occasion, even a Republican politician couldn’t ignore the rank bigotry that takes place at the Values Voter Summit.
 
In 2011, televangelist Robert Jeffress, who introduced then-presidential candidate Rick Perry at the summit, blasted Mitt Romney in a post-speech interview as a cult member and fake Christian, comments thatcame as no surprise since Jeffress had railed against the Mormon faith and Romney in previous speeches.
 
Romney, incidentally, was set to speak that year immediately prior to American Family Association spokesman Bryan Fischer, who is notorious for his incendiary comments about gays and lesbians, immigrants, African Americans, Native Americans, Muslims and, yes, Mormons. During his speech, Romney criticized Fischer’s “poisonous language,” prompting Fischer to lash back at Romney. Romney ally Bill Bennett also jumped in, criticizing Jeffress for promoting “bigotry” while Perry went back and forth between ignoring the controversy and eventually distancing himself from Jeffress.
 
While Romney may have spoken out against Fischer during the summit, Fischer had the last laugh as he succeeded in his campaign to oust a gay official from Romney’s presidential campaign.
 
That wasn’t the last time we would see infighting at the Values Voter Summit. Last year, Rep. Louie Gohmert accused Sen. John McCain of supporting Al Qaeda, to which McCain responded: “Sometimes comments like that are made out of malice, but if someone has no intelligence I don't feel it as being a malicious statement.”
 
4. Demand Abortions Be Performed In Public
 
Lila Rose, the anti-choice activist known for her campaigns against Planned Parenthood, had a modest proposal at the 2009 summit: “If I could insist, as long as they are legal in our nation, abortions will be done in the public square.”
 
Rose, who sees herself as the Malala Yousafzai of America, said that mandatory public abortions are necessary so we can “hear angels singing when we ponder the glory of conception.”
 
Many other Values Voter Summit speakers have also shared memorable messages for the women of America.
 

 
5. Perkins Mocks Gay Soldiers
 
At the 2010 summit, in the midst of the fight over the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, Family Research Council President Tony Perkins warned that if the ban on openly gay service members was lifted, then the U.S. military would become nothing but a parade-marching force.
 
Speaking on a panel with Bob Maginnis, FRC’s senior fellow for national security, Perkins said that militaries that allow openly gay members — which by that time included Israel and NATO allies such as Canada, the United Kingdom and Germany — are the “ones that participate in parades, they don't fight wars to keep the nation and the world free.”
 
 
6. A Bigger Crown In Heaven
 
Miss USA contestant Carrie Prejean told the 2009 conference that while she may have lost the beauty competition, which she said was a result of her answer to a question about gay marriage, she knew “that the Lord has so much of a bigger crown in Heaven for me.”
 
In fact, she said, the “vicious” reaction she received following the pageant was one of worst incidents of persecution in American history.
 
Prejean later sued Miss USA for discrimination but settled the case for legal fees after a sex tape she had made materialized.
 

 
7. Obamacare 'Is The Worst Thing That Has Happened In This Nation Since Slavery'
 
Since the passage of the Affordable Care Act, Values Voter Summit speakers have been in a fierce competition to see who can come up with the most insane reaction to the law. Michele Bachmann pilloried the health law as “DeathCare,” Ken Cuccinelli blasted it as “the greatest erosion of liberty” in modern history and Rick Santorum linked it to the French Revolution.
 
 

After all this, it is no wonder that Santorum told the Values Voter Summit in 2012 that “we will never have the elite, smart people on our side.”

Rick Santorum Presents Latest 'Religious Persecution' Movie

Two current Religious Right fixations — the “persecution” of American Christians and the need for conservatives to do more to influence the pop culture — have come together in movies like “Persecuted” and “We the People—Under Attack.” The latest entry, “One Generation Away: The Erosion of Religious Liberty,” was screened by Rick Santorum at the Heritage Foundation on Monday night.

Santorum said the movie will be released in September. His EchoLight Cinemas is trying to create an alternative to Hollywood distribution channels by building a network of thousands of tech-equipped churches who will sell tickets for "One Generation Away" and other movies. He says the long-term strategy is to bring more people into churches and put the church back at the center of the culture.

"One Generation Away" is described as a documentary, but it’s really a preaching-to-the-choir call to arms for conservative Christians and pastors to get more involved in culture war battles while they still have the freedom to do so. Among the film’s producers are Donald and Tim Wildmon from the American Family Association, which Santorum said is packaging a shorter version of the movie into more of an activist tool.

The title comes from Ronald Reagan – specifically from a speech to the Phoenix Chamber of Commerce in 1961, a time in which Reagan was working with conservatives to rally opposition to Medicare – “socialized medicine”:

Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it on to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children's children what it was once like in the United States where men were free.

The thrust of "One Generation Away" is that religious freedom in the United States is disappearing fast, and if the church doesn’t fight for it now, it will soon be gone forever. Before running the film on Monday, Santorum quoted Cardinal Francis George, who said during the debate about insurance coverage of contraception, “I expect to die in my bed. I expect my successor to die in prison. I expect his successor to be a martyr.” That’s just the kind of hyperbolic “religious persecution” rhetoric we have come to expect from Religious Right leaders and their allies in the Catholic hierarchy.

At one point toward the end of the movie, it seems as if the filmmakers might be striking a more reasonable tone, with a couple of speakers saying that Christians should stand up for the rights of people of different faiths — even though the AFA’s chief spokesman opposes First Amendment protections for non-Christians— and others actually acknowledging that it is problematic for American Christians to be complaining of “religious persecution” over policy disputes when Christians and others are facing horrific, deadly persecution in many other parts of the world.

But that caution is quickly abandoned as the movie makes a direct comparison of the status of the Christian church in America with the church in Germany as the Nazis came to power. Dietrich Bonhoeffer, a pastor who tried to mobilize German Christians to resist Nazi tyranny and was executed by the regime, is held up as the model that American Christians need to be willing to follow.

Eric Metaxas, a Bonhoeffer biographer who became a Religious Right folk hero when he questioned President Obama’s faith at a National Prayer Breakfast attended by the president, warned that if the church doesn’t link arms to fight, all will be lost. “The good news,” he said, “is that the American church is slightly more attuned to the rumbling heard in the distance than the German church was in the 30s. The bad news is, only slightly, right?”

The movie cuts to Mike Huckabee saying that Bonhoeffer could have saved his life if he had been willing to soften his faith, but that instead he resisted and rebuked the Nazi regime. And then we’re back to Metaxas to complete the Nazi analogy:

 “The parallel today is simply that. You have a government, a state, which is getting larger and larger and more and more powerful, and is beginning to push against the church. There’s a window of opportunity where we can fight. If we don’t wake up and fight before then, we won’t be able to fight. That’s just what happened in Germany. And that’s the urgency we have in America now. And people that’s incendiary, or I’m being hyperbolic. I’m sorry, I wish, I wish, I wish I were. I’m not.”

Filmmakers said at the screening that they had conducted 75 interviews for the movie, and it sure feels like it.  It includes names that will be well-known to RWW readers, like Mike Huckabee, Tony Perkins, Harry Jackson, Tim Wildmon, Alveda King, Robert George, Russell Moore of the Southern Baptist Convention, Eric Teetsel of the Manhattan Declaration, and Ryan Anderson and Jennifer Marshall of the Heritage Foundation.

Also appearing are Rep. Doug Collins; Rick Perry backer Robert Jeffress; Matthew Franck of the Witherspoon Institute, which sponsored the infamous and discredited Regnerus “family structures” study; Stephen McDowell of the dominionist Providence Foundation; Gregory Thornbury of Kings College; lawyers from the Alliance Defense Fund, the Beckett Fund, the Freedom of Conscience Defense Fund; and a number of pastors.

The film also includes interviews with some opponents of the Religious Right, including Barry Lynn of Americans United for Separation of Church and State, Princeton’s Peter Singer, and Dan Barker of the Freedom From Religion Foundation. Santorum told the audience at Heritage that he wishes he had even more of his opponents included in the film because “they scare the hell out of me” and would help motivate the right-wing base.

In order to keep the movie from being one brutally long succession of talking heads, the filmmakers resort to a tactic of constantly shifting scenes, a couple of seconds at a time, in a way that feels like they got a volume discount on stock images of Americana: boats on the water, kids playing softball, families walking together. There are also odd random fillers, like close-ups of the pattern on a couch in the room in which a speaker is sitting. The endless, repetitive succession of images actually makes the film feel even longer than it actually is. (Zack Ford at ThinkProgress had a similar reaction to this technique.)

The meat of the film, or the “red meat,” mixes the personal stories of people being  victimized by intolerant secularists and/or gay activists with miniature David Bartonesque lectures on the Christian roots of America’s founding; the fact that the phrase “separation of church and state” never appears in the U.S. Constitution; the notion that the American government is trying to replace “freedom of religion” with “freedom of worship” and require any expression of faith to take place behind church walls; and the disgracefulness of making any analogies between the civil rights movement and the LGBT equality movement. The 1947 Supreme Court decision in which Jefferson’s “separation of church and state” phrase was invoked by the Court and “changed everything” is portrayed as nothing more than a reflection of Justice Hugo Black’s hatred of Catholics.

Featured “persecution” stories include:

  • a long advertisement for Hobby Lobby and its owners, the Green family, which recently won its legal battle against the contraception mandate;
  • a baker and florist who ran afoul of their state’s anti-discrimination laws when they refused to provide services for a same-sex couple getting married;
  • cheerleaders at a public high school in Texas who were challenged by the Freedom From Religion Foundation for creating football game banners featuring Christian scriptural quotes;  
  • Catholic Charities being “forced” to give up adoption services rather than place children with same-sex couples;
  • an ACLU challenge to a large cross at the Mt. Soledad war memorial; and
  • the supposed frontal attack on the religious freedom of military chaplains as a result of allowing LGBT members of the armed forces to serve openly. On this issue, Tony Perkins declares, “The military is being used as a vanguard of radical social policy. And in order for that policy to permeate and to take root, you’ve got to take out the religious opposition.”

In spite of the parade of horrors, the movie tries to end on an upbeat note, saying that the early Christian church expanded while it was being suppressed, and that it will only take “one spark of revival” to change the nation.  A familiar theme at Religious Right conferences is that blame for America’s decline rests with churches that don’t speak up and pastors who don’t preach or lead aggressively enough. One Generation Away ends on this point, telling Christian pastors it is their responsibility to wake up and challenge their congregants to live their faith “uncompromisingly.”

During the Q&A after the screening, Santorum said the fact that Hobby Lobby was a 5-4 decision demonstrated the importance of the 2016 election. “Part of me almost wishes we’d lost,” says Santorum, because that would have made the threat clearer to conservative activists. “We are one judge away,” he said, adding that “if we get a Democratic president, our five, or four-and-a-half, justices are not going to hold out forever.”

“I just worry,” he said to the young people in the audience, “that the longer we delay, and America sleeps, and your generation is indoctrinated the way it is, the harder it will be to come back.”

Right Wing Round-Up - 7/29/14

  • Jeremy Hooper @ GLAAD: Former anti-gay activist: "I've never met an 'ex-gay' man I thought was not still attracted to men."
  • Alan Colmes: Pastor Robert Jeffress: Gay Marriages Are ‘Counterfeit.’
  • Andrew Kirell @ Mediaite: Rep. Steve King: Obama Possibly a ‘Narcissist’ Who Wants to Get ‘Martyred’ by Impeachment.
  • TFN Insider: Houston Anti-Gay Leader Issues Chilling Call in Effort to Repeal Anti-Discrimination Ordinance.
  • Hemant Mehta @ Friendly Atheist: Mark Driscoll Admitted to Trolling His Own Church’s Online Forums 14 Years Ago & the Thread is Still Online. Whoops!

Rick Perry's Comparison Of Homosexuality To Alcoholism Is Nothing New From The Anti-Gay Right

Surprise! Yesterday, the same Republican politician who tried to save his foundering presidential campaign with a gay-baiting TV ad defended ex-gay therapy and compared homosexuality to alcohol abuse.

Speaking at a summit in California, Texas Gov. Rick Perry responded to questions about the Texas Republican Party’s endorsement of ex-gay therapy in its new far-right platform by arguing that homosexuality is like alcoholism: “Whether or not you feel compelled to follow a particular lifestyle or not, you have the ability to decide not to do that. I may have the genetic coding that I’m inclined to be an alcoholic, but I have the desire not to do that, and I look at the homosexual issue the same way.”

Perry is far from the only Republican figure to have expressed this view.

Another former GOP presidential candidate who is also considering a second run, Gov. Mike Huckabee, likened homosexuality to alcoholism in a 2009 interview with Esquire:

Huckabee says he doesn't know if homosexuality is inborn, but he believes you can control the behavior. He compares homosexuality to obesity or alcoholism: "Some people have a predisposition to alcoholism. Does that mean they're not responsible for getting drunk? No."

Fellow 2012 presidential contender Rick Santorum cited “people who were gay and lived a gay lifestyle and aren’t anymore” as a reason to oppose gay rights. Michele Bachmann’s husband heads a clinic that practices ex-gay therapy. Ted Cruz’s father and political adviser, Rafael Cruz, has defended ex-gay therapy as legitimate “biblical” counseling, adding, “sexual orientation is a choice, it’s not a civil right.”

Republican National Committeeman Dave Agema recently got in trouble with his own party after he, among other offensive remarks, compared gay people to alcoholics. So did top Religious Right leaders Mat Staver and Tony Perkins. Robert Jeffress, a Texas pastor close to Perry, also “equates being gay with alcoholism or a genetic proclivity toward violence,” according to the Dallas-based D Magazine.

Despite story after story about the GOP’s purported shift on gay rights, the party is still mired in anti-gay bigotry.

Jeffress: Once Gay Marriage Is The Law Of The Land, Government Will Shut Down Christian Radio Stations

Robert Jeffress was a guest on the American Family Association's "Today's Issues" radio program yesterday where he warned that it is probably inevitable that the Supreme Court will rule in favor of marriage equality and when that day comes, the federal government will then set about shutting down any opposition to gay marriage by revoking the broadcasting licenses of Christian radio stations.

"What about stations who have license that are granted by the FCC?," he asked. "Can the FCC support stations that engage in hate speech or intolerance or that discriminate against the constitutional rights of others? I think that could very well be the basis for denying licenses to Christian stations around the country that want to broadcast the truth":

Yes, this is probably exactly what will happen, just as the government systematically shut down Christian radio stations for opposing abortion after the Supreme Court ruled in favor of the right to choose back in 1973, which is why we never hear the Religious Right talk about this issue these days.

'Washington - A Man Of Prayer': Highlights From The Religious Right Prayer Event Inside The US Capitol

Last night, members of Congress and Religious Right activists gathered in Statuary Hall inside the US Capitol for an annual event called "Washington: A Man of Prayer" at which they honored George Washington by collectively praying that God would protect and defend the United States of America.

Hosted by Mike Huckabee, the two hour event featured a variety of elected leaders, such as Rep. Tim Huelskamp and Rep. Steve King, who spoke together from the podium. Huelskamp asserted that God is at the heart of America because there is a small chapel located literally in the very center of the continent in Kansas, while King proclaimed that America was established by God.

"When He moved the Founding Fathers around like men on a chessboard," King said, "it was preordained. He guided them." Asserting that both the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution were written with "divine guidance," King declared that, as such, Americans must be "very aware of how God brought forth this nation":

Among the other speakers at the event was Jonathan Cahn, author of "The Harbinger" which claims that 9/11 was God's judgment upon America and that rebuilding the Freedom Tower without properly humbling ourselves before God was an act of utter defiance.

During his remarks, Cahn made this same case, saying that America is calling good evil and evil good and passing "laws that war against the laws of the almighty" which is why this nation experienced the wrath of God at Ground Zero just as ancient Israel did:

Cahn was followed by Robert Jeffress, who asserted that while some issues such as taxes or immigration reform ought to be rightly debated by the government, other issues like abortion and gay marriage "are beyond debate, for the judge of the universe has already rendered his opinion":

Jim Garlow made a similar point during his remarks, saying that there is no way that this nation can expect God's blessings is abortion remains legal and gay marriage is accepted.

"Can we actually expect the blessing of God when we violate the ways of God?," Garlow asked. "He's God, we're not. We really need him!"

Todd Starnes Warns Gay Rights Will Lead To 'Cultural Armageddon'

Fox News pundit Todd Starnes is outraged that TV shows these days include “families with two mommies or two daddies or a mommy who identifies as a daddy,” arguing in a Charisma column today that the gay community is largely responsible for the rise of divorce and single parent households.

Starnes interviewed Southern Baptist megachurch pastor Robert Jeffress, who told him that marriage equality for same-sex couples “is having devastating sociological effects” because “when you counter something, you cheapen its value.”

“The traditional nuclear family is on the verge of disaster,” Starnes writes. “And once the nuclear family explodes, the United States should brace for a cultural Armageddon.”

I grew up in a time when father still knew best—when Mr. Cunningham was dispensing words of wisdom to Fonzie, when Andy took Opie fishing and when Cliff Huxtable declared that he brought his son into the world and he could take him out. It was a time when Hollywood reinforced the values of the traditional American family. Television shows like The Waltons, Little House on the Prairie and The Brady Bunch presented portraits of strong families where parents ruled the roost and children knew their place.

Those days are long gone. Nowadays, children know best and dads are portrayed as dithering dolts. Instead of a mom and dad and two kids, the cul-de-sac includes families with two mommies or two daddies or a mommy who identifies as a daddy—and they’ve been saddled with gender-neutral offspring.



Critics might argue that the nation’s divorce rate is actually declining. But [Robert] Jeffress believes that’s evidence of a much greater problem.

“Fewer and fewer people are getting married, so fewer people are getting divorced,” he says. “The overall health of the American family is in critical condition.”

Jeffress believes the legalization of same-sex marriage has “cheapened” traditional marriage.

“When you counter something, you cheapen its value,” he says. “When you say marriage is whatever you want it to be, people begin wondering—why bother getting married anyway? This counterfeit of marriage is having devastating sociological effects. More kids are being raised in one-parent homes. You simply cannot break God’s most basic moral law without serious ramifications.”

What Can We Do?

The solution is simultaneously simple yet challenging. Simple in that we must return to God’s pattern for the family. God is the one who created the family. Before the church, He created the family—the fundamental unit of community.

Yet re-establishing that unit as God intended it within our culture is easier said than done, obviously, because of the fervent opposition to biblical values.

The warning signs are all around us. The traditional nuclear family is on the verge of disaster. And once the nuclear family explodes, the United States should brace for a cultural Armageddon.

Can we prevent such a catastrophe by returning to God’s design for the family? Like it or not, answering that question begins with the church.
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Robert Jeffress Posts Archive

Miranda Blue, Thursday 07/02/2015, 10:53am
This past Sunday, Family Research Council President Tony Perkins delivered the sermon at Robert Jeffress’ church in Dallas. Although Perkins’ visit had been planned more than a year in advance, Jeffress was delighted that it ended up falling just two days after the Supreme Court struck down gay marriage bans nationwide, which Jeffress called “the greatest, most historic, landmark blunder in the history of the United States Supreme Court.” Jeffress had some good news, though: The Supreme Court’s decision and the ensuing rainbow-flag projection on the White House... MORE >
Brian Tashman, Friday 06/12/2015, 2:00pm
It seems that immigration, gay rights and legal abortion are all about to destroy America, and there is nothing conservatives can do to stave off destruction until President Obama leaves office … unless, of course, Hillary Clinton gets elected, in which case we’re all doomed. MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Tuesday 06/09/2015, 5:33pm
Elliot Mincberg @ Salon: The right’s slimy new scheme: The made-up “religious freedom” protection designed to gut same-sex marriage. Josh Feldman @ Mediaite: Pastor Responds to Maher over Christian Persecution: Nazis Didn’t Burn the Jews Right Away. Warren Throckmorton: Missouri Baptist Convention Grateful to Help Host David Barton; Christian Historians Disagree. Tierney Sneed @ TPM: Louisiana GOPers In Fiscal Mess Beg Grover Norquist To Relax No Tax Pledge. Todd Heywood @ PrideSource: Anti-Gay West Michigan 'Mechanic' To Host Townhall In... MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Monday 06/01/2015, 5:31pm
Sen. Lindsey Graham is the latest candidate to officially throw his hat into the ring for the 2016 GOP nomination. Robert Jeffress wants to make it clear that God forbids people from playing the "Charlie Charlie Challenge." On a related note, Brian Brown's CitizenGo has launched a petition calling upon Fox to cancel a new television show about Lucifer. Dinesh D'Souza is now a free man. Donald Trump humbly explains why he'll make a great presidential candidate: "I’m the most successful person ever to run for the presidency, by far. Nobody... MORE >
Brian Tashman, Tuesday 04/28/2015, 4:20pm
Mike Huckabee thinks Christianity will soon be outlawed to make room for gay rights. Ted Cruz fears “liberal fascism; and a pro-gay “jihad” are destroying liberty. Bobby Jindal believes freedom will soon be extinguished as reality stars lose their apparent constitutional right to appear on television. These GOP presidential hopefuls are not shying away from the gay marriage issue, which comes as no surprise since the GOP’s right-wing base has been whipped into a frenzy by conservative talk radio hosts and activists who have insisted that freedom will be no more... MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Tuesday 03/31/2015, 1:42pm
Right-wing megachurch pastor Robert Jeffress spoke at Liberty University's convocation this morning, where he told the student audience that America's complete collapse was unavoidable, thanks to Supreme Court rulings banning organized prayer and Bible study in public schools, legalizing abortion, and striking down bans of gay sex. These rulings, Jeffress declared, have "so weakened the moral and spiritual infrastructure of our nation that our collapse is inevitable," explaining that the 9/11 terrorist attack was God's judgment upon America for the sin of abortion.... MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Thursday 03/26/2015, 5:33pm
Zack Ford @ Think Progress: Indiana Governor Signs 'Religious Liberty' Bill, Claiming It Won’t Enable Anti-LGBT Discrimination. Jim Redmond @ Towleroad: GOP Budget Amendment Upholds Religious 'Right To Discriminate' Against Gay Couples. Tina Nguyen @ Mediaite: Aaron Schock Compares Himself to Lincoln in Farewell Speech: He Only Served One Term. Travis Gettys @ Raw Story: Louie Gohmert explodes at FCC chairman: ‘You’re playing God with the Internet!’ Eric Hananoki @ Media Matters: Is Fox News' Anti-Gay, Anti-Jewish, Anti-Catholic... MORE >
Brian Tashman, Friday 02/13/2015, 2:20pm
A group of GOP politicians, including two likely presidential candidates, have decided to appear in a documentary with anti-gay radicals accusing the equality movement of trying to ban religion. Such politicians already kowtow to extreme voices like Rush Limbaugh and the anti-government ideologues at Fox News, so it makes sense that they are now joining together to make absurd claims about the supposed dangers of gay rights in America. MORE >