Atheist talk show host Bill Maher is flat wrong when he says Christians should stop whining about being persecuted in America, Robert Jeffress, pastor of First Baptist Dallas, said on FOX News yesterday.
Jeffress, a guest on Sean Hannity’s program, said Christians losing their businesses because of their Christian faith and a U.S. Marine recently court martialed for having a Bible verse on her computer demonstrate Christianity is under assault in America.
“It doesn’t rise to the level of having their head chopped off by ISIS in the Middle East, but it’s all the same attitude that allows for those attacks,” Jeffress said.
Jeffress told Hannity persecution comes in stages. The first stage is marginalization, which he said is easily demonstrated by the media’s contempt for Christians.
“I want to remind people that, you know, the Nazis weren’t able to take the Jews to the crematoriums immediately. The German people wouldn’t have allowed it. Instead, the Nazis had to change public opinion. They marginalized the Jewish people, disparaged them, and made them objects of contempt,” Jeffress said.
Afterwards, Jeffress said, “the taking away of further rights will be very easy.”
On his HBO program, Maher said he understood why Christians “constantly whine about being under attack.”
“Christians love to feel persecuted. It’s part of their origin story, but we’re a long way from them getting eaten by lions in the coliseum,” Maher said.
He pointed to recent claims by talk show host Bill O’Reilly and presidential candidates Mike Huckabee, Ted Cruz and Rick Santorum that Christians were being targeted in American culture and politics. Santorum said Christians were on their way to being persecuted and killed like Jews in Germany during World War II.
“This idea that everybody on the left is plotting against Christianity and wants to wipe out religion is offensive – to me,” Maher said. He claimed to be the only media figure with a show “week in and week out” who says that and he did not want credit going “to the entire Left when I’m doing the heavy lifting.”
Psychiatrist Keith Ablow, who has debated Jeffress on the program before, agreed with the Dallas pastor that Christians are being marginalized. He said people of faith find truth outside of themselves, and when they do that they “incur the wrath of those who want the state to have authority, who don’t want you to think for yourself.”
“When we talk about self I see that as connected to ultimate truth and to God,” Ablow said.
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SOURCE: Christian Examiner