Starnes: “Have Christians Lost the Culture War?”

FoxNews commentator Todd Starnes reports on a LifeWay survey that says 59% of Christians believe they are losing the “culture war.”

“Ten years ago we were talking about who would win the culture war and now we’re talking about how will Christian rights be protected after the culture war,” Ed Stetzer, the president of LifeWay Research told me…

Starnes lists examples of “religious persecution in the United States,” and he starts with the US military: 

The military labeled evangelical Christians and Catholics as religious extremists. Christian organizations like Family Research Council and American Family Association were labeled by the military as domestic hate groups. Bibles were briefly banned from Walter Reed Medical Center.

Starnes’ list is accurate, if incomplete. Equal Opportunity briefings — purporting to present policy — did, indeed, call Christians extremists. Another military briefing cited the Southern Poverty Law Center’s list of “hate” groups, which included Christian organizations.  (The military restricts members from participating in “hate” groups but does not independently list them.)  And Walter Reed did have an ill-written policy that effectively banned visitors from bringing Bibles.

The quotes in Starnes’ article from Christians largely blame the “loss of the culture war” on one group: Christians.

“The primary reason Christians are losing the culture wars is that pastors are AWOL when it comes to informing and energizing their congregations,” Jeffress told me.

“Christians have slowly given away their impact on culture by becoming more and worldlier instead of confronting the culture to become more and more godly,” he said…

“Sadly, Christians have often wimped out and grown silent instead of being bolder for the Gospel,” he said. “Christians get subdued into thinking they’re not supposed to rise up.”

Starnes’ connection of the “culture war” to the military is entirely appropriate. Not only does the military represent the culture from which it is drawn, but the military itself can also be used — rightly or wrongly — as a tool to influence the culture.