In 2010, health care “reform” was discussed in the United States Congress and then a bill was proposed with the intention of providing healthcare to all Americans. California Democrat Representative Nancy Pelosi implored Congress to pass the 2,000+ page bill and then we could read it to see what it contained. That was the first indication the bill was chock-full of garbage some Americans wouldn’t find palatable. Obamacare (The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act) was ramrodded through Congress at breakneck speed, and now we’re suffering the consequences.
On January 1, 2013, the Obamacare mandate goes into effect. Part of this mandate includes abortion inducing drugs most Christians find appalling. If you’re a Christian and you don’t, that’s a whole other issue.
Among private sector business-owners objecting is the Green family, owners of Hobby Lobby. They applied for an emergency injunction based on their Christian beliefs. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayer turned them down. It seems that if you’re a Christian who runs a for-profit business (unlike a Christian university or school), you’re expected to put aside your beliefs. Apparently, Ms. Sotomayer believes Christianity is something you put on when you enter the church building and then take off again when you leave. She’s sadly mistaken. Christianity is who you are and what you are 24/7. Or at least it should be.
Hobby Lobby’s Statement of Purpose (from HobbyLobby.com)
In order to effectively serve our owners, employees, and customers the Board of Directors is committed to:
Honoring the Lord in all we do by operating the company in a manner consistent with Biblical principles.
Offering our customers an exceptional selection and value.
Serving our employees and their families by establishing a work environment and company policies that build character, strengthen individuals, and nurture families.
Providing a return on the owners' investment, sharing the Lord's blessings with our employees, and investing in our community.
We believe that it is by God's grace and provision that Hobby Lobby has endured. He has been faithful in the past, and we trust Him for our future.
According to EastonPatch.com: "A statement from The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, a law firm representing Hobby Lobby, explains that 'covering these drugs, as the government is forcing them to do under the threat of $1.3 million penalty per day, would violate [the Green family's] most deeply held religious belief that life begins at conception, when an egg is fertilized.' The statement adds that Hobby Lobby has 'no moral objection to the use of preventive contraceptives and will continue its longstanding practice of covering these preventive contraceptives for its employees.'"
The Greens have decided not to comply with the government mandate. With over 13,000 employees, this will cost them $1.3 million a day in fines starting January 1.
[David] Green maintains that Hobby Lobby, "[b]y being required to make a choice between sacrificing our faith, or paying millions of dollars in fines, we essentially must choose which poison pill to swallow. We simply cannot abandon our religious beliefs to comply with this mandate." Sounds like Hobby Lobby's David Green believes verbatim the Scripture verse that asks "What good is it for a man to gain the whole world, yet forfeit his soul?" (American Thinker)
Interestingly enough, Justice Sotomayer previously upheld a Muslim prisoner’s first amendment religious rights, as cited in The Independent Sentinel’s December 28, 2012 article:
Justice Sotomayor, however, did have a similar First Amendment experience prior to becoming a Supreme Court Justice in which she showed unusual deference to Muslim inmates when she found in favor of the Ramadan Ruling of 2003 [Laura Ingraham] In that case, she found that a MUSLIM PRISONER, who was denied Ramadan meals, must be provided with the meals on a feast day even though it was not a religious requirement…Sotomayor ruled that the inmate’s First Amendment rights were violated because the feast was subjectively important to the inmate’s practice of Islam. [Ford v. McGinnis]
If the Greens stand by their courageous decision, and the Obama administration and the judicial system continue to disrespect their religious rights, by the end of January, the Greens will owe $40 million dollars in penalties.
What say you, Mr. President? As a professing Christian, will you continue to turn a blind eye to your fellow Christian Americans and their equal rights under the law? Last time I checked, your job is to represent all Americans.
As secular progressives seek to marginalize Christians, this will become more commonplace. The Green family didn’t just wake up one day after being informed of this mandate and decide to fight it. Their moral compass is set by Christian principles ingrained in them through seeking Christ in their daily lives. Like I said in paragraph three above, Christianity is who and what you are. If it’s not, when the challenges come, and they will come more often and more intense in the years ahead, the narrow path won’t seem so clear. The Greens' courage begs the question:
What am I willing to sacrifice to uphold the Apostle Peter’s command in Acts 5:29?
If you’re a Christian, please add the Greens to your daily prayer list. Do you have a few dollars left from Christmas? Find a local Hobby Lobby and give them your business. If not, visit one just to browse and show your support.
“As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.” Proverbs 27:17
© Laura Hodges Poole
Photo Courtesy of Microsoft.com free clip art