Monday, December 3, 2007

The Alliance Defense Fund

One of the organizations that I am proud to affiliate with is the Alliance Defense Fund. I have been one of the volunteer allied attorneys for a year and a half.

Recently the Alliance Defense Fund (or "ADF") has won a couple of important victories around the country. For example, the ADF successfully filed an injunction in the state of Washington to forbid the state government from forcing pharmacists to dispense abortion-inducing drugs. The ADF also recently helped vindicate a Georgia man who was arrested for passing out religious tracts. The Georgia officials claimed the man was violating a "parade ordinance" which required individuals to obtain a permit before engaging in such activity. The ADF led the charge to have the law repealed as unconstitutional.

The ADF has even been busy in my own backyard. Recently in Boyd County, KY a student was reprimanded for stating that he believes homosexuality is wrong. This was after the school system required students to engage in "homosexual diversity training."

The 6th Circuit Court of Appeals agreed with the ADF and overruled the school noting that the student had a Constitutional right to state his opinion as long as it wasn't interrupting school business and that kids do not have to attend diversity training if their parents object.

Many of my younger Christian friends believe these kind of actions are misguided. They do not think Jesus would "fight for his rights." Yet, it is important to note a couple of things--(1) It is Biblical hermeneutics 101 that you must address changes in context. You cannot blindly apply Jesus' teaching (such as the Sermon on the Mount) to oppressed Jews in the 1st century who had virtually no rights under Roman law to a democratic republic where all have equal say. If you try then you must also forbid a woman to speak in church (1 Cor. 14:34) and demand that she cover her head while she prays (1 Cor. 11: 5-6). Why don't churches command women to be quiet and cover their heads when they pray? Because we recognize the difference in contexts; (2) The Apostle Paul (who was Jesus' own "chosen instrument" Acts 9:15-16) did not hesitate to invoke his own rights as a citizen (Acts 22:25-29; 25:8-12), so why shouldn't we? I won't get into a detailed discussion of hermeneutics (but I encourage you to pick up a book like "Grasping God's Word"), but the difference in contexts here is much slimmer and easier to apply today.

So check out the ADF at