Dear Religious Leaders –
At the National Prayer Breakfast on Feb. 2, 2017, President Trump vowed to repeal the “Johnson Amendment,” he said, “I will totally destroy the Johnson Amendment.” Our president and his evangelical counselors understand that government intrusion in the church today is destroying our religious freedom and the freedom of pastors to preach the “whole counsel of God” which will once again guide Christians to powerfully influence our culture. The flagrant and immoral social and political issues of our day need to be combated with the voice of truth from Christians, as they once were.
On April 4, 2017, your organization along with approximately 100 religious and denominational organizations sent a group letter to Congress requesting the Johnson Amendment not be repealed. For centuries, ministers would stand against (not embrace) any attempt of the state to interfere with the church’s beliefs or public religious expression. This Biblical philosophy is what the founders used to limit the state’s interference with the church or any public religious expression. The founders incorporated this thinking into the First Amendment – “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof….” Your support of the Johnson Amendment violates Biblical and historical precedents. It violates the “Free Exercise Clause” and the “Free Speech Clause” of the First Amendment – and must be repealed. The latest tax bill that President Trump just signed into law included the repeal of the Johnson Amendment. However, since the repeal of the Johnson Amendment did not directly have anything to do with taxes, Senate Democrats were able to use the “Byrd Rule” challenge to prevent its repeal.
Your continued support of the “Johnson Amendment” allows a precedent to be set approving of government intrusion on the function of the church. From a historical perspective, this creates the same form of tyrannical government that once controlled the church in Great Britain and America that our Founders risked everything to deliver us from.
I have written this letter and given you a copy of my book “The Bible is the Higher Law in America” to warn you that we have forgotten about being stewards of the government God has entrusted us with. As a result, the state controlled church has now, once again, manifested itself in current times.
Tom Hughes, President
“In all your ways, acknowledge Him…” Proverbs 3:6