By Billy Ashworth
At the close of President Eisenhower’s eight-year tenure, this nation elected John F. Kennedy President. He was the first, and as yet, the only Roman Catholic ever elected President in America. He was also the next to youngest President ever elected, at the age of 43.
In his inaugural speech, Kennedy said: “The torch has been passed to a new genera-non.” How little he could know of what was to come during his brief two years and ten months as President.
The Lawless Sixties and Seventies
For the next fifteen years after Kennedy assumed office as President, this nation experienced one of the most difficult periods of its history. There were the youth and sexual rebellions; civil, racial, and religious turmoil; integration of the public school systems, done at times with the presence of troops armed with bayonets! In addition, quite a few schools had deputies patrolling the hallways of school buildings. This nation was almost in a state of anarchy. I preached through this period, and served as Postmaster at Franklin, Tennessee. I say without hesitation that it was the most difficult time of my life.
Early in the sixties, the rock group called the Beatles came to America; Elvis Presley surfaced with his wild gyration music, which he said he learned in his church; the youth and sexual revolutions emerged; and the drug abuse culture all dovetailed. Violence was rampant in the land. Youths, aided and abetted by radical “intellectuals” (some college professors, others radical so-called lawyers) paraded in the streets in defiance of all properly constituted laws, civil and divine.
They burned college administration buildings; held professors hostage; copulated in the streets; and finally marched on Washington, D.C., with the intention of shutting down the Federal government.
At the same time, militant parties arose professing “the establishment,” and taking important people hostage, such as Patricia Hearst, heir to the Hearst fortune. She was abused, humiliated and forced to take part in a bank robbery for which she was sentenced to prison. The militant Black Panther Party surfaced with such infamous, evil leaders as Huey Newton, Bobby Seale, Eldridge Cleaver, et al.
Angela Davis, a radical Marxist and apparently a member of the BPP, was on the faculty of a large University on the West Coast. She was dismissed from her position, but later sued to be reinstated and was successful. I have an article that appeared in The Nashville Banner (February 20, 1971), written by Henry J. Taylor. I quote: “ANGELA DAVIS, the darling of the New Left, the Black Panthers, and some tragically confused intellectuals, indicted for alleged complicity in the horrible California courthouse shooting in which four men, including the judge, were killed, went to Castro’s Cuba for unrevealed talks in July, 1969.” Of course a jury found Davis “not guilty” as charged, for whom she threw a party afterwards! The court system had been corrupted with the wild, radical lawyers defending any radical criminal that was indicted.
Another radical “New Left” party was the Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) under the leadership of Mark Rudd. “The position: Leadership advocates overthrow of the US `System”‘ (Communism and the New Left, Books by U.S. News & World Report, 18). We were living in perilous times. It was a “violent crowd who committed violence to provoke violence that they might protest violence.”
The nation and world were shocked when President Kennedy was assassinated November 22, 1963, in Dallas, Texas. To this day, investigators have been trying to determine who killed Kennedy and why. Bobby Kennedy, the late President’s brother, was assassinated in California while running in the Democratic primary for the presidential nomination. Martin Luther King, Jr., was assassinated in Memphis, Tennessee. It seemed as if our society was disintegrating. In retrospect, the influence of Communist/ Marxists on the youth of our nation was, at least to a large degree, the cause of the rebellion sweeping the nation.
The ungodly influence of humanists was another major cause of the turbulent times. Their evil influence upon the Federal Judiciary has been contributory to the “law and order” breakdown. The Supreme Court of the United States began rendering liberal opinions of the Constitution with its Bill of Rights. The Court, in effect, began issuing orders to implement these liberal decisions which consisted of that august body’s becoming a law-making and enforcing branch instead of its being an interpretive body as authorized. These liberal rulings weakened the hands of law enforcement agencies, while coddling criminals. These activities were most detrimental to the apprehension and interrogation of suspected criminals.
“Because sentence against an evil work is not executed speedily, therefore the heart of the sons of men is fully set in them to do evil” (Ecc. 8:11). Liberal lawmakers have set up an endless appeals system for convicted criminals to which they are “entitled,” which has almost destroyed just punishment of criminals. Liberal law schools are turning out radical lawyers on fire to see that one who is charged with a crime gets a “fair trial.” But they are not interested so much in a fair trial as they are interested in making a name for themselves as great defense lawyers.
I heard a lawyer on a talk show some time ago say: “I will do every thing I can to keep the truth from coming out against my client.” How does such an attitude as that square with a “fair trial”? Or how does such an attitude on the part of a lawyer square with justice in the judicial system. These men are out to make a name for themselves, along with the megabucks that come from such evil activities! Covetousness is rampant in this humanistic saturated society.
Symptoms of Decay
The famous historian, Gibbon, attributed the decline and fall of the Roman Empire to five causes: “(1) Rapid increase in divorce, undermining the sanctity of the home, the basis of society. (2) Higher and higher taxes, and the spending of public money for bread and celebration. (3) The mad craze for pleasure; sports becoming every year more exciting and brutal. (4) Building of gigantic armaments, when the real enemy was within the decadence of the people. (5) The decay of religion, faith fading into mere form, losing touch with life, and impotent to guide.” Plainly, the once-great Pagan Roman Empire rotted within!
Any serious-minded, discerning person knows that all five of the above listed causes for the decline and fall of Rome, are inherent in our once-great nation. Worldly people know it. We should. I heard a worldly woman on TV, who had engaged in receiving pornographic telephone calls, refer to America today as a “morally bankrupt society.”
Consider the Following Symptoms in the USA
Since “the wicked will be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God,” we need to examine the condition of this once-great country and be alarmed at the direction it has taken. We cannot afford to be arrogant and expect God to make an exception of us just because we were once, at least to a large degree, a God-fearing, morally-oriented people. I personally am incensed at the deterioration of the moral standards that were once held by the majority of people in this country.
Cal Thomas, a conservative syndicated columnist and TV commentator and once a vital part of the “Moral Majority” that was most instrumental in the presidential election in 1980, wrote an article recently in which he affirmed that there is no longer a “moral majority” in this country.
In his incisive article, Thomas said that, in the twelve years from 1980 through 1992, the majority of people in this country no longer adhere to the Old and New Testaments as the standard of morality. How sad. I feel as Jeremiah did when he sat in the rubble of the once-great Jerusalem: “Judah is gone into captivity because of affliction, and great servitude . . . for the Lord hath afflicted her for the multitude of her transgressions . . . Jerusalem hath sinned grievously … All her people sigh, they seek bread; they have given their pleasant things for meat to relieve the soul; Is it nothing to you, all ye that pass by?” (Lam. 1:3-12a) It seems to me that the majority of people of this once great nation either do not see the grievous sins committed with no sense of shame, or they just do not care! Do we not see that this is the same condition that caused Rome to fall the decadence of the people?
“Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people” (Prov. 14:34). “Fools make a mock at sin” (Prov. 14:9). This nation has run the gamut of folly, wickedness and mockery against God. During the mid-sixties, Phil Donahue initiated a daytime talk show. He is outrageous in his mockery of God and everything good. Then along came Oprah, Sally Jessy, Maury Povich, Arsenio Hall, Geraldo, et al. All of these deal in the weird, vulgar, perverted and pornographic jungle in which they revel and “make a mock at sin.” ” What they have done is try to make every evil activity in America “socially accept-able,” which sometimes deceives even professed members of the Lord’s church.
But Paul warned: “Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting” (Gal. 6:7, 8). The word “mock” means liter-ally “to writhe the nostrile,” to treat with contempt, to sneer at. Today, we use the term, to turn up the nose at. Of course, Paul did not mean that people could not try to mock God. He did mean that one cannot get away with it, and warned of the consequences of trying. “He that soweth to the flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption.” Fools still try to “mock” God!
Consider the hue and cry by the liberal, humanistic gaggle demanding our government spend millions of dollars to try to prevent or cure the AIDS infection. The immoral reprobates who have contracted the virus because of their evil “lifestyle,” tried to mock God and demand acceptance of our society on an equal basis with the black race that fought the civil rights battle. But there is no comparison between the two. It is not immoral to be black or any other skin color. But it is immoral to try to mock God and “receive in themselves that recompense of their error which was meet” (due, ASV, Rom. 1:26, 27) The context here shows Paul was describing homosexuals/ lesbians and was affirming they got what they deserved!
I am not saying that these miserable creatures should not receive medical treatment for their sexually transmitted diseases. I grieve over the poor hemophiliacs who have contracted the disease through contaminated blood from the immoral reprobates. I think any person who knows he/ she is infected with HIV and gives blood which contaminates an innocent person who is afflicted with hemophilia, should be tried and convicted of murder! I have very little respect for all the movie stars who are feverishly pressing the government for millions of dollars to find a cure for AIDS with my taxes. Paul warned: “For the wages of sin is death; but the free gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord” (Rom. 6:23).
The Blight of Secular Humanism
As one surveys the chaos in which U.S.A. 1993 finds itself, he should be impressed with the fact that in the last quarter of a century there has been a profound change for the worse in our society. The change came slowly, insidiously. It reminds me of a statement by our Lord in the parable of the tares: “The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man who sowed good seed in his field: but while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat” (Matt. 13:24, 25).
While America was lulled into complacency by a false sense of great prosperity, good times, financial security, pleasure and inflated money, the secular humanists (atheists) sowed seeds of a God-denying, faith-destroying, codified philosophy, set forth in their own publications Humanist Manifesto I, published in 1933, and Humanist Manifesto II, published in 1973.
These two manifestos have been published together in paperback form by Prometheus Books, 700 East Amherst Street, Buffalo, NY 14215. The publication is edited by Paul Kurtz and should be bought and studied by every person who is concerned about the moral decay of this nation. I urge all gospel preachers, Bible class teachers, parents and all Christians to become knowledgeable about this destructive false religion whose propagators are deter-mined to rid the world of “faith in the prayer-hearing God.” If this warning fails to get the attention of the reader, I am convinced he/she is “sleeping the sleep of death.” My copy cost me only $2.95. Buy it, study it. It will be time and money well spent. One preaching brother reportedly said, “I have never preached on humanism. I don’t see any need for it.” This is one of the preachers and public Bible teachers who are to be blamed for the decay of our society, including decline in the church. They saw no need! GI.
Guardian of Truth XXXVII: 20, p. 8-10
October 21, 1993