The right to free speech is under attack today, and Christians should fight for it. Here's a reason why.
Marissa Hays, host of Foundations from The Stream and LIFE Today, explains why the First Amendment must be preserved because it protects people's God-given right to practice their faith as well as their right to free speech.
She elaborated on why Christians must support the preservation of the first amendment in the United States constitution, stating that it is interwoven with the sharing of the gospel.
"If you cannot bear witness, if you cannot share the gospel, neither your speech is free nor is your practice of religion," she said in a video published by The Stream.
"We need free speech to be able to share the reason for your hope at a high school graduation, free speech to be able to offer a prayer for someone in need, free speech to be able to sing, 'O holy night,' and free speech to be able to carry a sign outside an abortion clinic," she added.
She asserted that attempts were made to silence Christian voices in the public square.
Some of the examples she gave are as follows:
A soldier was reprimanded for putting a faith-based sticker on his desk, and a real estate salesperson in Virginia was thrown out of business because she persisted in posting biblical passages on her company website.
There was also a Muslim convert to Christianity who was questioned about his beliefs, so he started to tell his story, but a Muslim lady overheard him and reported him to mall security, who detained him.
She further said that pastors who openly support traditional marriage risk attempts by government officials to seize their sermons and losing their tax-exempt status.
Paul as an example of good reasoning for free speech
"We fight for free speech so we can carry out our assignment," said Hayes. "Look at the apostle Paul. The book of acts tells us at least seven times that Paul used reasoned argument to carry the day."
One example she cited was from Acts 17: 2-4. For three Sabbath days, Paul walked into the synagogue and explained to the people why the Messiah had to suffer and rise from the dead. Several Jews, god-fearing Greeks, and influential ladies were persuaded by his and Silas' courage in speaking forth about Jesus.
Other examples from the Bible include Paul exercising his rights as a Roman citizen by informing authorities that they had been wrongfully punished without a hearing, as well as his appeals before magistrates to speak before "Ceasar" when he was arrested and imprisoned on false charges.
Fight for your rights but speak "life"
Hays acknowledges that in the name of free speech, Christians will have to put up with a lot of slanderous speech. Nonetheless, she said that in the midst of "political correctness, cancel culture, and fake news," the tongue of the "righteous in Christ" must be a "fountain of life."
"We are in a society starving for truth, and truth is a Person," she said referring to Jesus Christ.
"May we boldly proclaim the name of our Savior. If our speech brings life then being silenced brings death," she concluded.