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March 2, 2021 (LifeSiteNews) — People who try to dismiss the Bible as an artifact of the past often fail to recognize parallels between the circumstances under which Scripture was written and conditions in our own time. The Gospel story read recently at Mass (Mark 9:2-10) illustrates the point.
This is the famous Transfiguration scene, where the disciples, Peter, James and John, are given a vision of Christ’s divine nature.
It’s impossible for us to know the exact order in which events occurred in Jesus’ ministry. Nobody was maintaining a diary at the time. At least we have no evidence of any such record.
But in Mark’s telling, this mountaintop revelation is recounted immediately after Peter’s objection to going to Jerusalem where, Jesus predicted, he was going to die. Why did Mark link these two incidents?
The earliest of the four Gospels, Mark’s account was written in Rome sometime between 65 and 70 A.D. Those years were the period of the Emperor Nero’s persecution of Rome’s Christian community.
This was a truly horrific event, complete with crucifixions, people being thrown to ravaging animals, or burned alive, and other inhuman acts, all perpetrated on those who wouldn’t accept the pagan ideology of that time. It’s easy to understand how Christians would have been intimidated, discouraged, and left to question whether following Christ’s teaching was such a good idea.
By pairing Jesus’ expected death with the Transfiguration, Mark was making an important point: The reality of evil may appear to overwhelm faith in the near term — with plenty of suffering in the process — but Christ, the ultimate reality, triumphs in the end.
In essence, Mark was giving the discouraged Christians of his day a “booster,” reminding them of how, on the Mount of Transfiguration, the voice of God stated, “This is my beloved son.” Mark was trying to raise people’s spirits, encouraging them to persevere, in spite of the difficulties they faced.
The parallel with our current situation should be obvious. Satan is having a field day right now. He has convinced all of our would-be Neros to get behind an ideological agenda which Christian’s cannot accept.
The latest item on that agenda is the so-called “Equality Act.” This bizarre piece of legislation, passed by the House of Representatives, would protect a whole menu of sexual aberrations, and penalize all objections to them.
We got a glimpse of how little regard our congressional leaders have had for the concerns of believers in considering this law. Rep. Greg Steube (R-FL) raised a religious concern that the act would allow men to dress as women in public. “It’s not clothing or personal style that offends God,” he said, “but rather the use of one’s appearance to act out or take on a sexual identity different from the one biologically assigned by God at birth.”
To which Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-NY) responded: “… what any religious tradition describes as God’s will is no concern of this Congress.” In other words, you religious folks can just go to you-know-where.
There are many people who dismiss the idea of religious persecution. They may grant that it happens in other places: in China, in the Middle East, in Socialist/Communist “Third World” countries (where, of course, it does). But this is America, they insist. We’ve got the First Amendment.
Such people need to take a closer look. Religious persecution is indeed gearing up here in the good old U.S.A. Right now it’s taking the form of “cancel culture.”
Those whose faith or ethical scruples won’t allow them to accept the perversions of morality and human nature celebrated in the “Equality Act” are being silenced. Jobs are being lost. Books are being banned. Media voices are being “de-platformed.”
Things haven’t reached the bloody extremes of Neronic persecution. Not yet. But it’s getting harder and harder to resist the madness to which most of our leadership class has committed itself. And a lot of folks are feeling very dispirited.
Still, just as Mark encouraged persecuted Christians to continue in their evangelizing efforts throughout the Roman Empire — efforts which eventually made Christianity the official religion of Rome — we are called to embrace the Gospel message, and not lose heart. Even as the prospect of persecution becomes ever more threatening, we must stand up the way those early Christians did, and face whatever may come.
This insane and unjust law presents a danger to all of us, especially to our children and grandchildren.
The so-called 'Equality Act' contains deadly poison for Christian democracy in the United States. And, its harmless-sounding name tries to hide this insidious reality.
But, unfortunately, Pelosi and company have JUST PASSED this morally repugnant bill in the US House of Representatives.
Pro-life and pro-family organizations, as well as Christian churches and the US Conference of Catholic Bishops, and freedom-loving groups everywhere, are now sounding the alarm.
Wake up, America, this is RED ALERT time!
This petition, therefore, calls on every US Senator to vigorously oppose and reject this bill.
Yes, it's THAT important.
The bill has nothing to do with "equality," or with extending the 1964 Civil Rights Act, which is how it is being touted by the leftists in the mainstream media.
It is, rather, one of the MOST EXTREME anti-life, pro-LGBT indoctrination bills ever proposed.
It has been described as a short-list of the worst possible elements of the Radical Left's agenda in Congress...and, REMEMBER, it has just passed the House!
We need to tell all US Senators, in no uncertain terms, that WE WILL NOT ACCEPT this outrageous attack on our freedoms and on life, itself!
SIGN AND SHARE THIS URGENT PETITION, TODAY!
And, after you have signed this petition, please CLICK HERE to DIRECTLY CONTACT YOUR U.S. SENATORS, and tell them to oppose this assault on our freedoms of thought, speech, conscience and religion.
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Below are some of the devastating critiques of 'Equality Act,' leveled by some of the best conservative, Christian minds in the country.
Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council (FRC), has written that the 'Equality Act' will include, "the largest expansion of taxpayer-funded abortion this country has ever seen.”
"Under this big new umbrella of 'discrimination,'" continued Perkins, "any American who doesn’t want to fund, offer, perform, or participate in abortion on demand will have no real choice. They can conform — or they can be punished."
"Every wall that’s been built between abortion and the government would come crashing down, including the Hyde Amendment, the pro-conscience Weldon Amendment, and several international barriers that keep our country from exporting abortion."
ON CHRISTIANITY, RELIGIOUS FREEDOM and LGBT INDOCTRINATION:
Lloyd Marcus, of the American Thinker publication, has written about the 'Equality Act' in the following terms:
"LGBTQ enforcer and homosexual Democrat congressman David Cicilline is sponsor of the Equality Act. Cicilline's evil bill is the most aggressive assault on our constitutional religious liberties in U.S. history...If the Equality Act becomes the law of the land, every outrageous, tyrannical demand [of LGBTQ activists/enforcers] will become reality."
And, Liberty Counsel Action, a law and policy education, training and advocacy organization which, among other things, advances religious freedom, the sanctity of human life, and the family has extensively criticized the 'Equality Act'.
On their webpage, dedicated to analyzing the 'Equality Act', which you can access below, Liberty Counsel Action state: "The 'Equality' Act' elevates 'sexual orientation and gender identity' to the same protected category as race. It will violate the religious freedom of Americans in numerous ways."
The go on to list the areas of life which this will affect: "It will impact all employers, including religious and non-profit organizations; contractors; houses of worship; public, private, and religious schools; curriculum; bathrooms; sports; daycare providers; shelters; hospitals; places of gatherings; entertainment providers; counselors; foster care and adoption; biological parents; landlords; anywhere providing a “good, service, or program,” including those advertised online; transportation drivers; and all local, state, and federal entities and many other areas."
And, as they note: "[T]here is NO RELIGIOUS EXEMPTION to this bill!"
Taking into account all of these potential threats to Christian democracy, Life and religious freedom, it is easy to see how the so-called 'Equality Act' has been called a "poison pill."
It is imperative that the US Senate vigorously reject this bill, AND EXPOSE IT FOR WHAT IT REALLY IS.
Please SIGN this urgent petition, TODAY!
The following links will take you to more information about the 'Equality Act'
The House version of the so-called 'Equality Act' (HR 5): http://lc.org/PDFs/Attachments2PRsLAs/2019/031819EqualityActHR5.pdf
Liberty Counsel Action's full analysis of the so-called 'Equality Act': https://www.lcaction.org/HR5 and https://lc.org/newsroom/details/022421-equality-act-guts-religious-freedom-1
LifeSiteNews opinion and analysis of the so-called 'Equality Act':
The “Equality Act” now goes before the Senate, and we must do everything we can to stop it there. Speak with friends and relatives. Express your views in whatever clubs, organizations or social circles with which you’re associated. Check out where the politicians who represent you stand on this legislation, and communicate your views to them.
It works. My own congressman voted in favor of an earlier version of the “Equality Act,” but after receiving an avalanche of objections from constituents, he voted against it this time.
Don’t fall for the “politically correct” nonsense that claims human beings can redesign themselves any way they feel. Rather, tell people about God and his plan for humanity, how he created us male and female, and has given us a fundamental human dignity of which our gender is the most basic part.
Do not be afraid. As Jesus put it in one of his beatitudes, “Blessed are you who suffer persecution for the sake of righteousness.”
We know who wins in the end.