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THE MAN who founded one of the world's greatest social service organizations, one focused on the Gospel, issued what can be seen only as a prophetic warning to Western civilization--a warning the West has failed to heed, with devastating results.
William Booth (1829-1916) founded the Salvation Army. As the 20th century began, he was asked what he saw as the greatest dangers for the next 100 years. His response is chilling when taking into account the cultural and political condition of the world today:
In answer to your inquiry, I consider that the chief dangers which confront the coming century will be religion without the Holy Ghost, Christianity without Christ, forgiveness without repentance, salvation without regeneration, politics without God, and Heaven without Hell.
His prophecy soon began to play out. The first government without God was founded in 1917, the year after Booth's death. The atheist government of the Soviet Union, trying to bring about a utopia under central control, killed more of its own citizens than died in all the wars in the 20th century. Tens of millions were slaughtered or deliberately starved
Now we have those who want godless governments in Europe and the Americas.
In predicting "forgiveness without repentance," Booth foresaw a church that would offer forgiveness not only to
Today in America as the government becomes godless, the churches are becoming Christless. Rainbow flags welcoming homosexuals adorn churches, and lesbians become deacons and pastors. Many Protestant churches promise Heaven to all with no threat of Hell. What Booth feared has become a reality.
Mitt Romney and Barack Obama are wrong to assume it is all about the economy; it is not.
The collapse of the family and the disintegration of church authority predicted by Booth have done more damage to the economy than any other factors. Government replacing fathers and hot lunch programs replacing mothers, while printing presses never stop printing money--these things are destroying our nation.
The increased social spending causes nothing but damage to the nation's families by creating a permanent underclass of fatherless children. Worse, those fatherless, unchurched children clog the jails and spur the militarization of the police force.
Politicians can't fix the economy by juggling numbers. The repair needs to be done at the family level and by the church, not government. We need politicians who will get government out of the way so the repair work can begin. Right now, neither political party offers that solution.
William Murray, of Spotsylvania County, is chairman of the Religious Freedom Coalition.