I have been writing a series of articles about the recent interview which Richard Cizik gave to a National Public Radio (NPR) radio program. Cizik was the chief spokesperson and VP of Governmental Affairs for the National Association of Evangelicals (NAE). Below is the content of an email that I sent last week to Cizik and the key officials in NAE. This email sums up the reasons that Cizik's remarks during the interview are so abhorrent.
Rev. Richard Cizik, VP of Governmental Affairs –
I listened to your interview on the NPR radio show, Fresh Air. I was dismayed at how you represented Jesus Christ and true Biblical Christianity in your responses on that nationally broadcast show. You claim to be a conservative, a Christian and pro-life. What I heard from you was the opposite.
I agree that we must pray for President-elect Barack Obama, but support him, help him succeed? ." I wonder, Rev. Cizik, what do you mean by success? Do you mean passage of the Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA), granting amnesty to illegals, higher taxes, taking guns away from the people, increasing the national debt, surrendering our sovereignty to the United Nations through treaties such as Kyoto and LOST, surrendering victory in Iraq, permitting openly homosexual behavior in the military, keeping our borders unsecured, creating a Hitler-style youth brigade to "protect" our neighborhoods, or buying into the global warming craze? That, sir, would not be success. Obama must be fought on these social and fiscal issues that matter to true conservatives and Christians.
Are the positions you championed on the radio your own positions, or are they the official positions of the NAE? If they are the official position of the NAE, then organization has compromised and failed to live up to its motto, "cooperation without compromise." I heard a lot of compromise.
Young evangelicals who place the opposition to the immoral homosexual lifestyle and behavior; opposition to any abortion; and who place faith in Jesus Christ and Scripture as of secondary import to such things as the global warming hoax and the animist respect for "Mother Earth" have been poorly prepared by our churches. Our failed governmental schools and lax churches have helped to indoctrinate our children to consider faith, life and morality to be less important than those things that drive the secular humanistic worldview.
The NAE should be helping churches to educate our young people in taking Biblical positions on the issues and not helping them to conform to the world's standards.
I am very disappointed in you and the NAE. I am ashamed to be a member of a church and a denomination that belongs to the NAE.
Here is the content of an email which I received today from the National Association of Evangelicals (NAE). I will have more to say about this overdue resignation as well as to what true Christians must demand of this now suspect and now incredulous organization. This resignation is only the first necessary step . . .
To be continued
This response comes to you as follow-up of your recent email to the National Association of Evangelicals regarding Richard Cizik . . . .
An announcement of the resignation of Richard Cizik from the staff of NAE has been released. Here it is for you to read:
Richard Cizik resigns from NAE
Richard Cizik resigned as Vice President of Governmental Affairs for the National Association of Evangelicals (NAE). His resignation, which takes effect today, concludes 28 years of service and leadership in the Washington, DC office of NAE.
Over the past three decades he has been a tireless advocate for a broad variety of issues important to the evangelical community including freedom of religion, laws against human trafficking, nurture of family life, protection of children, justice and compassion for the poor and vulnerable, sanctity of human life, opposition to abortion on demand, peace and the restraint of violence in our world, creation care and others. He gave leadership to the writing and implementation to the landmark document, For the Health of the Nation: An Evangelical Call to Civic Responsibility.
Leith Anderson, President of the National Association of Evangelicals, explained in a letter to the members of the board of directors of NAE that “in a December 2, 2008 broadcast interview
on National Public Radio Richard responded to questions and made statements that did not appropriately represent the values and convictions of NAE and our constituents. Although he has subsequently expressed regret, apologized and affirmed our values there is a loss of trust in his credibility as a spokesperson among leaders and constituents.”
Anderson also wrote that “because Richard traveled to a previously scheduled international conference in Europe shortly after the airing of the broadcast it was not possible to meet with him until his return. He and I have recently met together and mutually concluded that his resignation is a difficult but appropriate decision.”
A December 5, 2008 letter to the board had already reaffirmed that “our NAE stand on marriage, abortion and other biblical values is long, clear and unchanged.”
The National Association of Evangelicals began in 1942 and today is composed of more than 50 denominations representing about 45, 000 churches. The association membership also includes parachurch organizations, colleges, associations and individuals.
President, National Association of Evangelicals