Collision at the “Crossroads” in Indiana: Religious Freedom in Critical Condition

ATTENTION: Major social media outlets are finding ways to block the conservative/evangelical viewpoint. Click here for daily electronic delivery of the day's top blogs from Virginia Christian Alliance.

What Happened? Why Did It Happen? And So What?

“No man can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will hold to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and Mammon.” (Jesus – Mt. 6:24)

“Render unto God what is God’s and unto Caesar what is Caesars.” (Jesus — Mt. 22:21)

Indiana Collision: What Happened?

It all started with good intentions. Just like a law that Congress passed almost unanimously and which President Clinton then signed into law in 1993, Indiana passed a Religious Freedom Restoration Act several weeks ago designed to protect Christians from being forced to take actions that violate their deeply held beliefs. Furthermore, it was much like a law which 19 other states have also passed.

Unexpectedly, that’s when everything blew up. Angry homosexual activists falsely accused the legislators and Governor Mike Pence of being bigots and homophobes, and attacked them for allowing businesses to “discriminate” against gays in the name of Christianity.

Sadly, it was too much for Indiana to handle. Gov. Pence and the legislators caved by revising the bill in a way that unfortunately removed some of the religious freedom protections for individuals and businesses that were contained in the original language. In the end, it was worse than if there were no bill at all.

Indiana Collision: How Did It Happen?

This is not just about Indiana. It is the result of an extended, nation-wide effort over a period of many years to secularize our culture, to marginalize the church, and to silence Christians.

That effort has accelerated rapidly under President Obama, with his overt hostility for core Judeo-Christian values, including the sanctity of life and of natural marriage – as well as for his repeated derogatory references to Christian beliefs and practices.

It has also taken its cue from Chai Feldblum, an Obama appointee to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, who has stated that “when homosexuality clashes with religious liberty, I have a hard time coming up with any case in which religious liberty should win. … Gays win; Christians lose.”

The homosexual activists have taken advantage of this environment to portray themselves as “victims” of Christian bigotry and discrimination and thus deserving of special government protection. They have also bullied many Christians into silence for fear of being fired, of jeopardizing their careers, of losing their businesses, and of being the target of vicious public criticisms.

Against this background, homosexual activists were able to mobilize their media allies, big businesses, and hostile governors from other states in protest against this so-called “hate” law by threatening Indiana with boycotts, travel bans, and contract cancellations.

Indiana Collision: Why Does It Matter?

This is not just about Indiana or even about specific issues like abortion and same-sex “marriages”. It is about the right of Americans to live according to their religious beliefs.

It is about the right of conscientious objectors like Mennonites and Quakers to refuse to go to war. It is about the right of Jews not to serve pork BBQ’s in their delis.

It is about the right of Luis Padilla to display a hand-written sign on the back of his truck at Cargill during the Virginia marriage amendment campaign without being fired for doing so.

It is the right of a 70-year-old florist named Barronelle Stutzman in Washington, of a photographer in New Mexico named Elaine, and of many other small business owners not to provide their creative services for same-sex “wedding” ceremonies that violate their religious beliefs.

Indiana Collision: What Can We Do?

Against this background, we have several choices.

1. We can bow to this new Golden Calf of “political correctness” by accommodating it with our silence;

2. We can “adjust” our religious beliefs and re-interpret Scripture to approve what it so clearly forbids, as some church leaders have already done;

3. Or we can remain true to God’s call on us to be Salt and Light to the world in the hope that by our witness, others will come to know the true Freedom that we have through Him.    

That is the background for what Rita Dunaway and I will discuss at the Crossroads tomorrow on AM radio WSVA (550) at 8:30; WHBG/ESPN (1360) at 9:00; and WNLR (1150) at 11:30, and on WSVA/FM (92.1) at 8:30. You can also listen online HERE anytime.

Crossroads is entirely listener supported. If you would like to help, you can do so by check to Crossroads at PO Box 881, Harrisonburg, 22803. All donations are tax-deductible.

In addition, we would like to know what you think. You can write to us at

From the Crossroads Team, for God and Country!

Dean Welty


The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views the Virginia Christian Alliance

About the Author

Dean Welty
Dean Welty is Founder and Director of the Valley Family Forum, a network of families in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia that works to defend and advance issues of Life, Faith, Family, and Freedom in the culture and in the public square. He has developed and led numerous seminars on “America’s Godly Heritage” and “Capstone: The Christian’s Role in Culture and Public Policy”, hosted a weekly television program entitled “Valley Faith in Action”, and is co-host of a weekly radio program entitled “Crossroads: Where Faith and Culture Meet”. He is a former public school teacher, overseas missionary, and senior diplomat with assignments in Asia, Washington, New York with the U.S. Mission to the UN, and as a Congressional Fellow on Capitol Hill. Dean and his wife Janet live in Harrisonburg, VA.