Overcoming Evil

Posted: January 17, 2011 in Category - Cultural War, Overcoming Evil

Overcoming Evil
Volume 27, Issue 1
January 17, 2011

Dear Friend,

This is a spiritual world. Yes, we often forget that fact or try to ignore it or even run away from the reality. But we always have to come back, one way or the other. Sometimes it is the majestic wonder of a sunset, or the sound of a melody, or the smell of a Christmas tree that takes us back to memories long ago.

Sometimes it is the opposite.

There are those moments of evil that erupt across our path that equally remind us we live in a spiritual world. The tragic news of the shootings in Arizona causes us to stop and ponder. There are forces in this life that we do not control. We are not the only players on this field.

Dealing with the reality of evil is an inescapable duty of modern life. As hard as we may try to ignore it, the headlines give us no escape. So we turn to the ancient principles of the Scriptures and ask, “What does the Bible teach about evil?”

A few volumes could be here enclosed. We actually teach this study as part of the ongoing American Mission Class across the country. We’ll go straight to the summary for the sake of time. The Hebrew and Christian Scriptures are clear and concise. The formula for dealing with evil requires three steps:

1.) Evil must be exposed,
2.) Evil must be resisted, and
3.) Ultimately evil must be overcome by good.

St. Paul provides a truly inspired summation of point number three when he tells young Timothy to “not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” The first part of this sentence is actually written in the passive voice, translated “Do not let yourself be overcome by evil.” Or don’t let evil sneak up on you and catch you by surprise. It’s out there. Don’t deny it or try to hide from it because you cannot. Don’t write it off to the inevitable slide that precedes the end of the world. Don’t hide in your safe place built upon wealth or standing or doctrine or denial.

“But you (switching now to an active voice) go out there and take on the evil and overcome it by drowning it out with good.”

What is the good that can best help the United States Congress? How can this doctrine apply to the front page of today’s newspapers? The answer is found in another of St. Paul’s commands to young Timothy and to all who would follow in faith:

“I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for everyone – for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness.” (I Tim. 2:1-2)

Three years ago we began together an outreach titled 40 Days of Prayer for Congress. As a team we have decided to immediately begin the 2011 period of intercession for those in authority. On Monday January 24th, all of the communications assets of the Roundtable, including The Public Square® radio programs, all our online sites, Facebook pages, the American Mission Classes, print and video projects will turn to encourage all Americans to pray for the United States Congress. Our online calendar  will provide a simple way to pray for select members every day until we have prayed by name for all 535 members of the Congress.

Churches, ministries, schools, study groups and online communities will be joining us in this endeavor. We invite you to join us in this commitment of obedience to the transcendent call of the Scriptures. We invite you to partner in praying that God will deliver America from evil and have mercy on the government we have inherited by His grace. A government, like all governments that truly belongs “upon His shoulders.” (Is. 9:6)

The 40 Days of Prayer is but one example of how together we seek to fulfill the mission of restoring historic Judeo-Christian principles in the mission field of America. Recently another example played out in the U.S. Congress.

Everyone heard about Congress reading the U.S. Constitution out loud on the floor as the new session began in the House. Many were surprised to discover some elected Representatives were angered by the reading, scoffing at the significance placed upon the founding document.

But the real story is this: A portion of the Constitution that had actually been “lost” to the public was included in that reading for the first time since the 1800’s. This does sound like the movie “National Treasure” doesn’t it? But this is not fiction.

Back in 1787, the Constitutional Convention sent out a Constitution to the States for ratification. The state assemblies took issue with the document. There was great debate over the dangers of creating a federal government that would expand to the point of diminishing liberty and personal rights given by God. To overcome those fears the Founders agreed to the construction and passage of a “Bill of Rights” that would become the first Ten Amendments to the U.S. Constitution. When those Amendments were written and sent to the states in 1791 they included a carefully constructed Preamble of three paragraphs that explained the process and defined their intent. Here is the first paragraph:

“The Conventions of a number of the States, having at the time of their adopting the Constitution, expressed a desire, in order to prevent misconstruction or abuse of its power, that further declaratory and restrictive clauses should be added: And as extending the ground of public confidence in the Government, will best insure the beneficent ends of its institution…”

What is the point? It should scare us to death to think that a single word of the U.S. Constitution could ever just disappear from the recorded text (other than via the legal amendment process).

Furthermore, take a look at the First Amendment: “Congress shall make NO LAW respecting the establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.”

Re-read that First Amendment again, in light of the “lost” language of the Preamble. The First Amendment was obviously not designed to permit the U.S. Courts to grow into a regulatory agency controlling religious practice or free speech or what can be said on the radio or online or in a political campaign. The First Amendment was designed to prevent such “misconstruction or abuse” of federal power.

Try reading the 2nd Amendment in the same light. Take a look at the 14th Amendment (passed after the Bill of Rights). Consider the Founders concerns about “misconstruction” and “abuse of powers.” In that light, how in the world can the historic Roe v. Wade decision (Jan. 1973) stand up under such Constitutional scrutiny?

If you look at your Constitution, printed by the Roundtable, you will not find this language. Reason being, we did not know it even existed until about six months ago. We are deeply indebted to Dr. George Grant of New College Franklin who made us aware of this “great omission.” He has been seeking the recovery of this language since he first discovered the lost “national treasure” in 1991. When we heard the new Congressional leadership was planning a public reading of the Constitution, all of us began working to see this lost language included in the reading.

On Thursday January 6th, 2010, the United States Congress read that Preamble to the Bill of Rights back into the Congressional and public record. The lost language was found and restored to the nation.

Immediately following the reading of the Preamble, the next words of the First Amendment were read, at last in their proper historic context. In the height of irony, the member chosen to read the First Amendment was Democrat Congresswoman from Arizona, Gabrielle Giffords. Forty-eight hours later, Congresswoman Giffords would be struggling for her life, gunned down by a madman, along with a Federal Judge and 17 other souls all made in God’s image. Six of those people unfortunately lost their lives that day, including Federal Judge John Roll.

As we launch this 40 Days of Prayer for Congress we will continue praying for Representative Giffords and for all who were impacted by the tragic shootings in Arizona. We will be praying God will have mercy on America and deliver us from evil.

Dr. Grant gave us a thought to go along with the victory of restoring the Preamble to the Bill of Rights. He said: “Great battles are never ultimately won because people forget.”

Together we face a new year of challenges. Together, all of us are the American Policy Roundtable. All the staff here began as volunteers and with you we are all donors to this work. We all help carry the burden to “never forget.” Roundtable and Freedom Forum have no professional fundraisers on staff. We pay no money out for professional fundraising services. Every new donor flows from the ripple effect of each one telling another.

We have so many wonderful plans and projects for these next two years. Projects like 40 Days of Prayer cost real money —something that we cannot avoid or apologize about. Our base budget is one million dollars and then the state efforts are added to that. We have hammered down these fixed costs over the last five years. Our spending lines are flat but these base costs are not going to disappear. Together we have to carry this load.

We need one million dollars for our base operations this year and the sooner we get it raised, the faster we can get on with so many important tasks and missions, like The 40 Days of Prayer. January is the toughest month of the year for us, so it would be a great time to consider again, your part in this mission. We need your help and prayers. Thank you.

For Liberty, we remain

David Zanotti
President & CEO
The American Policy Roundtable


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s