This Constitution was made for a moral and religious people; it is wholly unsuited for the governance of any other" – John Adams
From the decks of the Arabella before debarking to the shores of America, John Winthrop delivered his famous and moving sermon repeated by future generations of Americans. In this sermon, Winthrop warned his congregation the eyes of the world would be upon them as they started life anew in America. He specifically repeated the words of Jesus Christ as it was to apply to Americans: "You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden."
In the 1830s, Alexis De Tocqueville, a French writer visiting America as it rose to greatness, wrote in his treatise Democracy in America: "There is no nation on Earth in which the Christian religion retains a greater hold on men than in America."
Many observers of America noted the uniquely Christian character of the nation as the basis of American exceptionalism. As English historian Paul Johnston wrote of American exceptionalism being the result of Christianity, and further that "America is a God-fearing nation, with all that implies."
Unfortunately, recent statements by 2020 Democratic candidate Pete Buttigieg attacking Vice President Mike Pence show how far the nation has moved from previous biblical Christian understanding. Buttigieg is the first openly homosexual candidate for president, who decided to marry his male partner. Pence had not spoken a word of criticism over Buttigieg's actions since coming out as gay and getting married, and yet Buttigieg decided to attack Pence's Christian faith gratuitously.
In defending his gay marriage, presuming an objection by Pence, Buttigieg said: "Your quarrel, sir, is with my creator." Buttigieg also criticized President Donald Trump's Christianity directly and held himself out as a sincere and passionate Christian.
The mainstream media predictably gushed praise on Buttigieg. New York Times columnist David Brooks wrote: "He has conservative family values. It’s just that his spouse is a husband, not a wife.”
Kirsten Powers of USA Today went so far as to claim Buttigieg's "approach to Christianity is what America needs now." In essence, she praised Buttigieg's un-biblical and arrogant approach of claiming to understand God's intentions in a way counter to the Bible.
Interestingly, Pence handled the criticisms of his faith without retaliating with the same judgments as Buttigieg. Pence responded: "All of us have our own religious convictions. Pete has his convictions, I have mine." Pence later asserted, "I hope that Pete will offer more to the American people than attacks on my Christian faith."
Buttigieg's assertion that the God of the Christian Bible intended him to marry another man is just wrong. Jesus spoke directly about marriage in Matthew 19: "For this reason, a man will leave his mother and his father and will cleave to his wife, and the two shall become one. Therefore, what God has joined together, let no man put asunder."
Regardless of political winds that have now brought same-sex marriage to a legal status in the United States, it is clear that God does not intend it. Not God as we know from scripture. The Bible allows for no scriptural argument that a person opposed to same-sex marriage is thereby opposed to God, which is what Buttigieg erroneously argues. Media pundits praising Buttigieg either don't know basic facts about the Bible or don't believe it holds authority.
America has moved a long way from its biblical anchor with marriage in just the past decade. In 2008, to win election to the presidency, then-candidate Barack Obama made clear with all other Democratic candidates, including Hillary Clinton, that marriage was one man and one woman. Then came Obama's 2011 "evolution" on homosexual marriage and resulting support. Also in 2011, the Supreme Court struck down the DOMA, and the same year the military was forced to drop "Don't Ask, Don't Tell." By 2015, the Supreme Court deemed same-sex marriage a Constitutional right.
By June 2015, we saw not only the U.S. Supreme Court forcing homosexual marriage on the nation, but the president "bathing" the White House in the rainbow colors of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender movement. Within weeks, the military was mandated to accept transgender members.
Insulting to the idea of “a city set on a hill" was the abrupt change in the United States becoming the enemy of nations holding to traditional marriage. In Obama's July 2015 speech in Kenya, he chastised the Kenyan government and people for not being more open about homosexual behavior and homosexual marriage.
However, in a stunning rebuke, the Kenyan president spoke for his people in reply to Obama on the same stage. “We share so many values, our common love for democracy, entrepreneurship, value for families. But there are some things we must admit we don't share, our culture, our societies don't accept,” he told an embarrassed Obama. “It’s very difficult to impose on people that which they themselves do not accept.”
In July 2015, developing nations with strong religious sentiment helped the United Nations pass a resolution in favor of traditional families. Austin Ruse of the Center for Family and Human Rights called the resolution “a tremendous victory for the pro-family world.”
And conservative Lifesite News reported the resolution as "a defeat for the small but powerful group of anti-family groups supported by developed countries and the United States." Several attempts were made by feminist and pro-LGBT groups to first defeat and then amend the resolution by inserting "reproductive rights" – a euphemism for abortion -- and by replacing "the family" with "families" and by inserting inclusive language to apply the resolution to sexual minorities [LGBT movement].
We have now moved to the point of Buttigieg being praised for criticizing orthodox Christians -- Christians who believe the direct words of Jesus Christ in Matthew 19 about marriage. Even more astounding, Buttigieg has become a media folk hero for claiming God opposes the faith of men like Mike Pence, solely for the perception that Pence believes what Jesus Christ exhorted about marriage. This is being watched by the world, and America is losing a right to claim to being a city set on a hill spoken about four centuries ago. We will lose a great deal of respect throughout the world if we continue in this direction
America's loss of moral authority and respect. America's "soft power" influencing other nations is being squandered as we demand others take a path seen as depravity to many.
It is not too late for America to repent and return to the "hill" we were set upon so many years ago -- to return to the good and God-fearing nation that made us great. It's where our nation belongs, and it is what God surely intended for us when John Winthrop spoke in 1630. It's time to go back to anchoring ourselves in the Bible, as Americans have been throughout history.
"Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people.”
Let's strive for righteousness again.