Evangelist Franklin Graham recognizes the long-term spiritual implications of this electoral decision. On Wednesday November 7th, Rev. Graham warned Americans that re-electing Obama could send the United States down the path of destruction, saying that unless we’re willing to repent of our national sins, we will stand in the Lord's judgment. Specifically, Rev. Graham said “I want to warn America: God is coming around. He will judge sin, and it won’t be pretty.”
Rev. Graham said that many Christians share his concern about America's moral decline, in particular, President Obama's position in favor of homosexual marriage. Further evidence of America's moral decline was manifested when voters in Maine, Maryland, and Washington State voted in favor of homosexual marriage in their respective states on Tuesday. Graham, who supported Romney, also noted that had Romney won on Tuesday, the secularization of America would not have stopped, but would have at least slowed down, perhaps enough for Christians to launch a moral counteroffensive that could prove successful without requiring America to undergo national tribulation. Rev. Graham concluded by saying “We have God’s blessing as a nation. Scripture is clear. God blesses countries, but God also brings bedlam when countries turn their back on him. If we don’t obey his laws, he will withdraw his hand of protection.”
Rev. Graham is absolutely correct. Doctrine & Covenants Section 88 clearly states that when people ignore the testimony of prophets, pastors, and evangelists, then comes the testimony of the elements themselves, such as what we saw in Katrina and Sandy:
88 And after your testimony cometh wrath and indignation upon the people.
89 For after your testimony cometh the testimony of earthquakes, that shall cause groanings in the midst of her, and men shall fall upon the ground and shall not be able to stand.
90 And also cometh the testimony of the voice of thunderings, and the voice of lightnings, and the voice of tempests, and the voice of the waves of the sea heaving themselves beyond their bounds.
The natural disasters are becoming more frequent, severe, and expensive; New York Governor Andrew Cuomo now estimates Sandy's price tag could be as much as $33 billion. And if the trend continues, the day will come in which America will receive catastrophic national judgment, such as a nuclear explosion in the upper atmosphere generating a crippling EMP pulse which would take down most of our infrastructure. Such an event could be followed by a physical invasion of our country by unfriendly foreign powers, such as the Prophet Joseph Smith envisioned in 1844.
And on November 8th, we learn of yet another outrage. Jared Lee Loughner, who killed six people and wounded former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords in a mass shooting in Arizona, has been sentenced to life in prison, even though Genesis 9:6 states that "whosoever sheddeth man's blood, by man must his blood be shed". Unfortunately, many of those who oppose capital punishment for capital murderers have no problem with the practice of elective abortion, which has resulted in the extermination of 50 million unborn babies in the United States since 1973. A nation that places more value upon the life of a convicted mass murderer than an unborn baby cannot expect the blessings of God.
The re-election of Barack Obama means that we Christians need to go back on the offensive. We need to let the greater society know that the Christian community is populated with lions as well as lambs. We need to quit apologizing for and diluting our beliefs and speak out unashamedly for the cause of Jesus Christ. And when our opponents call us racists, sexists, and homophobes, we should rejoice that we have been placed on Earth at a time when we can confront Satan and his kids directly. As Sarah Palin once said, when you're taking flak, it merely means you're over the target.
Our Savior endured excruciating agony when he first took upon Himself the sins of the world at Gethsemane, then gave his life for those sins at Calvary. If our Savior could endure such punishment despite living a sinless life, how can we expect a free ride? Opposition and adversity, handled properly, result in spiritual growth and transform us into lions for the Lord. Bur handling adversity properly means distinguishing between sins and sinners; we condemn sin, but we avoid condemning sinners. This is why Franklin Graham also said it was time for both Democrats and Republicans to work more closely together. There are still many God-fearing people within the ranks of the Democratic Party. Recognizing this latter principle, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints issued an official statement on November 7th in which they congratulated Barack Obama on his victory, called for unity among the people, and commended Romney for stepping up to the plate and setting a worthy example during his campaign. They also urged people to pray for the President, for his administration and the new Congress as they lead us through difficult and turbulent times.
In Alaska, we are indeed fortunate to have such powerful, positive, and articulate advocates for traditional cultural values such as Pastor Jerry Prevo, Pastor Ron Hamann, Catholic Archbishop Roger Schweitz, the Alaska Family Council, and Alaska Right To Life, just to name a few. These entities are worthy of our support. Franklin Graham guest-preaches at Anchorage Baptist Temple from time to time; the next time he appears here, we should show up and demonstrate our support for him.