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Canadian Politics—Does Anyone Care?

Our country is quickly sliding the slippery slope into an anti-Christian environment. Our freedoms, and even our lives, could be threatened. We can do something about it!

I know, I know! Given our peace position we should try to remove ourselves from the mainstream of political activity. It could impact our ability to qualify as a conscientious objector—at least that is what I have heard over the years. How about you? Is that the message that you have ringing in your ears? Is that perhaps how you feel?

… if we don't take action to protect our countries from eroding the Christian-based heritage that we have—we deserve what we get!

Personally I think our apathy on political issues has caused us to end up in the environment we now find ourselves. I also think if we don't take action to protect Canada and the United States from erosion of our Christian-based heritage—we deserve what we get!

Both the United States and Canada have been built on Christian principles. And yet we are sliding down a slippery slope into an anti-Christian environment. Spirituality seems to be in vogue, as do most religions that do not preach biblical truth. Christianity, however, especially Evangelicalism, has been given a "bum rap" in the last few years.

Even though not all Evangelicals believe in taking military action, we are all labelled as extremists and accused of promoting violent action in order to promote or protect our country's interests. This in part is the result of the US President George Bush's action against Iraq and the fact that no evidence is forthcoming regarding purported weapons of mass destruction.

Liberal politicians in the recent Federal election in Canada were quick to point out that if we elected Stephen Harper (a professing Christian and the head of our Conservative party) then Canada would end up with it's own "George Bush" and we would be potentially looking at all kinds of unknown, violent, aggressive acts. Perhaps this fear was in part the cause for the election results. Canadians fear the "Fundamentalist" mind that is perceived as being a natural part of a Christian perspective.

Canada's environment seems to be accelerating down this anti-Christian slope at a rampant pace. We have allowed same-sex marriages in several provinces, and now the Federal Government is going to be considering whether to make this a Canadian wide "constitutional right." In addition Canada has now taken the step of making same-sex relationships part of the "hate crime" legislation.

It is unclear at this point what these changes mean for churches that preach aggressively against same-sex marriages or relationships. The Canadian church is now waiting to see how the new legislation is interpreted by the courts. Some statements have appeared to suggest that churches will not be targeted by the hate crimes legislation if they stick to just reading Scripture. However, no interpretations of the law have been made as yet, and we have seen the views of courts differ from those of politicians all too often.

Is there anyone out there who wants to step forward and become our test case? I thought not! You can see that the fear of the unknown will have a huge impact on what the Canadian church preaches in the future. Many issues are still ahead of us in regard to this legislation and other changes will be added as we continue to slide down the slope.

The Netherlands is a country that has been down this road ahead of us and we can use them to see where it is heading. Already the school systems are promoting materials to teach that same-sex relationships are part of an acceptable social cultural environment at the youngest level in the education system. In Canada the Nith valley school system in the London, Ontario area has selected for the fall a similar curriculum and parents are going to have this material dumped into their children's minds whether they approve or not.

Should we just sit by and wring our hands? If you are Canadian, have you bothered to find out what the school system in your area is planning to do about this approach? If not, why not? This is important stuff! A child's mind is a critical part of the future of the Church and of our country. If they shape it with this material now, we will easily lose the battle to keep this blight from having a huge impact on our world.

What is next? What about euthanasia on demand? It is already part of the culture in the Netherlands. Will it come here? Does it frighten you even a little that your children (taught by the public school system) may be the ones to decide if your contribution to society is still productive? What value will they place on life? What financial pressures will be placed on them to make the decision in favour of euthanasia? What will the influence of video games (and the resulting lack of respect for life), internet, television, and secular education on religion, have on the shaping of their decision? If you let your imagination go, you can paint a very fearful picture can't you? So what can we do?

Pray, pray, pray!

Canadian Christians must pray for this healing or God will turn His heart from us …

Do you know that the prayer movements in Canada and prophetic voices involved in them are saying that Canada with its multicultural background will move toward reconciliation of cultural differences and be healed? Those same voices say that Canada will be used by God as a model for reconciliation that will bring healing around the world. But … there is a caveat. Canadian Christians must pray for this healing or God will turn His heart from us just as He has done in the past with nations that were hardened against Him. So pray for healing in this land, but first be sure that your heart is right with God! Read Hebrews 3:12-19. The Israelites were left in the desert instead of entering the promised land because they allowed sin to harden their hearts. If we wish God to hear us today we must not allow sin to prevail in our lives.

In summary, know what is happening in your school system, and in the local, provincial and federal governments. Make your views known to all of these levels of decision makers; call, write, email. You may think that there is little use, but last year we at the Evangelical Fellowship of Canada saw a huge change in the views of decision makers at the federal level as a result of an e-mail campaign where many Christians responded regarding the marriage issue.

The end result of this is yet to be seen, however it was obvious that decision makers listen when Christians become vocal about their convictions! In Canada one of the ways to stay informed about these issues is through the EFC's sites ( or ).

I pray that the Church will not only uphold their belief in peaceful solutions to war and strife, but also stand firm on their convictions on other areas of social concern in Canada and the U.S. I pray that we will unabashedly make our voices known to those who need to hear from God's people.

William K. Winger is the director of administration and finance for the Evangelical Fellowship of Canada.

Originally published in Shalom, the Brethren in Christ newsletter, Fall 2004.




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