Dear Readers of FOTM,
I am not asserting the Mr. Putin is a Christian. I’m looking into the possibility, and asking if we are missing something huge by living in the past. America has been known in the past as a nation of morals and Christian faith. That was the past. Russia has been colored by the horrors of totalitarian Atheism in the 20th Century. Could that possibly also be a thing of the past?
In the 1970s and 1980s American Christians were urged to pray fervently for the Christians behind the Iron Curtain. I obeyed, and many others obeyed this call to intercession. It was a genuine prayer of faith, because in the perspective of the times, it was impossible to see this prayer being answered. Since then, we have seen a sweeping move back to the Orthodox Church in Russia, a genuine commitment to God. And one more of these things is that the current Russian president seems to mean it when he goes to church.
Now, America is at risk of being the next totalitarian, anti-Christian, horror on the world stage. We have been taken over by a gang of thugs and international criminals, including George Soros, mysterious oil-rich benefactors in Arab nations, Eric Holder and Barack Obama. Laws are being enacted as I type, that criminalize any public acts of faith, and any faith based choices like how we view abortion. Against our express will, our government is actively building an army of islamic jihadists to overthrow stable Middle Eastern governments. These “freedom fighters” will eventually return to their countries of origin, battle hardened, and with seared consciences, to inflict unimaginable atrocities on their neighbors in every nation they come from.
So I ask you to keep praying fervently. Pray for the Christians behind the Iron Curtain, but consider the possibility that the Iron Curtain may have shifted its location, liberating the former Soviet citizens, and now enclosing an increasingly Godless America and Europe.
This is to pose the question, not yet to answer it.
~ Trail Dust
PUTIN: AMERICA IS GODLESS, HAS TURNED AWAY FROM CHRISTIAN VALUES
Russian President Vladimir Putin condemned the West, including the United States, for eschewing Christian values and opting instead for a “path to degradation.”
In his State of the Nation speech last month, Putin asserted that, “Many Euro-Atlantic countries have moved away from their roots, including Christian values… Policies are being pursued that place on the same level a multi-child family and a same-sex partnership, a faith in God and a belief in Satan.” Russia has adopted new laws that ban homosexual propaganda and criminalizes the insulting of religious sensibilities.
The law on religious sensibilities was approved in the wake of a protest in Moscow’s largest cathedral by a female punk rock group, Pussy Riot. State-run television said the group’s “demonic” protest was funded by “some Americans.” Russia’s newfound embrace of traditional values has prompted a rise in Orthodox vigilantism. Extreme groups such as the Union of Orthodox Banner Bearers, an ultraconservative faction who adopted a slogan “Orthodoxy or Death,” are gaining prominence.
It was not that long ago that the United States was accusing Russia for being a “godless nation.” On March 8, 1983, Ronald Reagan said this about Russia to an audience of evangelicals:
Yes, let us pray for the salvation of all of those who live in that totalitarian darkness–pray they will discover the joy of knowing God. But until they do, let us be aware that while they preach the supremacy of the state, declare its omnipotence over individual man, and predict its eventual domination of all peoples on the Earth, they are the focus of evil in the modern world.
History supports the 40th President of the United States’ remarks. According to a 1995 Russian presidential committee report, Soviet authorities executed 200,000 clergy and believers from 1917 to 1937, many of them crucified, scalped, and otherwise tortured. Thousands of churches were destroyed, and those that survived were turned into warehouses, garages, or museums of atheism.
Moreover, another 500,000 religious figures were persecuted and 40,000 churches destroyed in the period from 1922 to 1980, the report said. Half the country’s mosques and more than half the synagogues were also destroyed. “Clergymen were crucified on churches’ holy gates, shot, scalped [and] strangled,” said Alexander Yakovlev, head of the Commission for the Rehabilitation of the Victims of Political Repression. “I was especially shocked by accounts of priests turned into columns of ice in winter,” Yakovlev said. “It was total cruelty.”
The Enigma That is Russia
This sub commander is taking a break in the rec room for the crew, sitting beneath the print of a famous Orthodox icon of Christ. And, he’s not in just any sub. He’s in a Typhoon class, the kind written about in “The Hunt for Red October.” In the 1980s you would not have seen an icon of Christ on prominent display as a comfort to the sailors.
Lest we foolishly take up the cause of “Pussy Riot” to support their rights to speak freely on religious matters, let’s remember the American experience. Such “causes” in our country have existed for the sole purpose of crushing Christian speech. They are not freedom fighters, but would-be totalitarians. In Obama’s thugs, we are already seeing the masks removed, and looking straight into the teeth of the Beast. Note for instance, Mikey Weinstein, the man who is trying to criminalize Christianity in the military to the point where its expression could bring the death penalty.
In my brief experience on earth, and in my studies of scripture, no matter how dark the hour, God ALWAYS has a plan. He is NEVER taken off guard or surprised. If the Russians and their neighbors, including Mr. Putin, are sincere communicants at their Orthodox Churches, then they are hearing the Gospel, and the teachings of Christ, in every celebration of the Eucharist. And God has declared, “My Word will not return unto me void.”
When we come down to it, our struggle is not for the kingdoms of men, but for the kingdom of God, which exists without national boundary.
When the Soviet Union collapsed, many missionaries went into Russia and its neighbors. Some were American Evangelicals, like the Billy Graham Association, but others were representatives of all the cults that plague America. The Graham organization spent multiple millions to set up a series of public meetings to preach the Gospel in Russia. In spite of the fortune spent, with all good intentions, the Billy Graham effort flopped.
Around that same time, a small group of Orthodox priests and ministers in America set out to bring the Gospel to whoever would listen in Russia. They intended to preach the Orthodox faith as it had been, before the Soviets had tampered with it. They had little money, and no promotions. When they were allowed to speak at a local church in Russia, the few that saw them went and brought others the next day. And in turn, they brought more the next day. Before long, these few were preaching to the vast multitude anticipated by the Billy Graham Crusade. Overwhelming hunger for the true message of Christ compelled the Russian population to return to the faith of their ancestors. God had chosen this small, unfunded, group to represent His Holy Gospel in a way that the Russians felt they could trust.