I recently came across this article, about how police chaplains in Charlotte, North Carolina, are forbidden to mention the name of Jesus in prayer. I have read similar things before, happening elsewhere; I’m sure this is not unique; moreover, I think we can expect it to become more common, rather than less, as time goes by.
Today, I came across this article, about how chaplains in the American military are increasingly coming under pressure, as to what they can read from Scripture, how they are to pray, etc. There, too, chaplains are being strongly encouraged to toe the politically correct line, or consider resigning; no doubt in time, they’ll be forced out, if they can’t abide the government’s regulations on them.
Now, conservatives of the kind who are inclined to support the police and the military in all that they do, no doubt find these kinds of pressure on police and military chaplains distressing, and would like to see it stop. So would I, but I think a bigger question, that perhaps Christians should start asking, is whether we should even bother. Given the pointlessness in wasted lives lost overseas for no good reason, and billions of dollars spent on such operations; and given increasing police idiocy and tyranny in society today, I think churches ought to take a more critical look at State institutions such as the police and the military today, and consider whether (a) they should really be encouraging, rather than actively discouraging, their members from becoming part of the tyrannical system (and therefore being in need of having spiritual support from chaplains in such professions), and (b) whether they should continue to send chaplains into the police and military services, given that they are increasingly being put under pressure to deny Christ’s name, and Christian teachings – we are, after all, to ‘obey God rather than men’, as Peter said, when there is a conflict between the two.
Perhaps churches should both speak out against the evils of such state institutions today, and discourage their members from newly joining them – but also keep their chaplains in them as long as they can, to support those Christians still in them, and to bear witness for Christ – and have their chaplains actively defy and disobey government edicts, by reading Biblical passages against sodomy, by praying in Christ’s name, etc., until they are either kicked out or jailed; perhaps the time has indeed come, for Christians in the West, to courageously stand actively against the evils of our time, in bold defiance, regardless of the cost. For we know, our reward in heaven will be great.
BTW, for now, it seems hospital chaplains and prison chaplains aren’t coming in for the same kind of treatment (at least, I haven’t read or heard of many such cases) – but no doubt, it will come, too… We should prepare ourselves for that eventuality.