Randall continues, "A 'tyrannical minority' of intolerant secularists is openly contemptuous of traditional moral norms. The teachings and guidance of old-fashioned Christianity offend them, so they seek to remove all traces of it from public life."

Examples abound: In two recent best sellers, Sam Harris heaps scorn on religious believers, whose faith he derides as "a few products of ancient ignorance and derangement." Richard Dawkins, the famed evolutionary biologist of Oxford University has unleashed a vitriolic assault upon religion in his recent book, The God Delusion in which he calls for the intolerance of all religion. A recent cover story in Wired magazine entitled The New Atheism chronicles what it calls "the crusade against religion." A study in the Journal of Religion and Society, albeit it factually wrong, claims that belief in God correlates with higher rates of homicide, sexual promiscuity, and other social ills, and that when compared with relatively secular democracies, the churchgoing United States "is almost always the most dysfunctional."

Interestingly Harris, Dawkins and the growing number of those who propose that religion is the source of all evil in the world seem to overlook the more obvious examples where it was not religion but in fact the oppression of religion that led to the worst atrocities in all of human history such as Chinese and Soviet communism and of course, Nazi fascism.

Secular fundamentalists demand that public schools and government venues be purged of any hint of religious expression - be it a cross on the Los Angeles County seal, a courthouse display of the Ten Commandments, or the words "under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance.

This ground has not been taken by secularism but rather surrendered as a result of the cultural vacuum created by an impotent and apathetic Church. Thus we stand at the crossroads and we too must ask for the "ancient paths" and by God's grace recover historic orthodox Christianity and what it truly means to be a follower of Christ. We must throw off this domesticated, watered-down Christianity and return to a true knowledge of Christ as Redeemer and King and live in bold and faithful obedience.

So let us resolve to return from our time of holiday celebration and fellowship with a renewed vigor that seeks the glory of Christ be made manifest in and through His Church.

Copyright 2007 S. Michael Craven

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S. Michael Craven is the Founding Director of the Center for Christ & Culture, a ministry of the National Coalition for the Protection of Children & Families. The Center for Christ & Culture is dedicated to renewal within the Church and works to equip Christians with an intelligent and thoroughly Christian approach to matters of culture in order to recapture and demonstrate the relevance of Christianity to all of life. For more information on the Center for Christ & Culture, additional resources and other works by S. Michael Craven visit: www.battlefortruth.org

Michael lives in the Dallas area with his wife Carol and their three children.