Clenard Childress
Conscience -- the ultimate prize
By Clenard Childress
February 19, 2012

The call which came from President Barack Obama to Bishop Timothy Nolan, on or near the eve of Roe Vs Wade, expresses the relentless efforts of his administration to diminish and destroy the Constitution and rid of us on any dependence on faith and religion. Though used as a ploy to calm the fears of Obama Care, and the obvious mandate from the abortion industry to implement legislation which will provide taxpayer-paid abortions for all, it appears the ruse is over and the dragon has raised its ugly head. Of conscience the Webster's Dictionary says:

"The sense or consciousness of the moral goodness or blameworthiness of one's own conduct, intentions, or character together with a feeling of obligation to do right or be good. The awareness of a moral or ethical aspect to one's conduct together with the urge to prefer right over wrong."

The Obama mandate requiring contraceptives and abortion services is offered by all agencies even religious organizations who oppose the practice is just an incremental step towards the real target. Physicians who have refused to do abortions!

Though once having promised there would be a conscience clause exemption, Barack Obama has now declared there will be no conscience exemption for anyone. Soon, doctors who claim their faith and religious beliefs do not permit them to dismember and kill babies in the womb, this policy is saying essentially, "if you are going to practice medicine, you are going to kill babies, or else." Mr. Obama has demanded violation of the core element of the soul guiding our perception of right and wrong, an element of the soul which is the gift of God Himself, and if adhered to, keeps us in fellowship with the Creator... Conscience. Conscience is the first rule of law, and without robbing us of it, the president cannot alter and transform this nation into the socialistic society his ideology requires.

The Rev. Martin Luther King called for a people of conscience to rise up and address the social ills of his day. In his last Sunday sermon Dr. King said,

"Cowardice asks the question — is it safe? Expediency asks the question — is it politic? Vanity asks the question — is it popular? But conscience asks the question — is it right?"

There comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe... nor politic... nor popular... but one must take it because conscience tells him... it is right. Dr. King saw the necessity of conscience, that those who exercised it would rid the world of injustice and understood conscience is the cornerstone of the interpretation of moral goodness and what is ethical. Yet Obama demands this cornerstone be removed proclaiming the state will decide your morals; the state will tell you what is right, and the state will tell you what's wrong, even if it means mutilating babies while still in their mother's womb... You will obey the state!

Well, America, as you can now clearly see, this is his idea of "a more perfect union." A union where your conscience is regulated by government and you are reduced to willing pawns in the hands of demagogues with no regard for you or the God we pray to, sing to in our anthems — the God we continually invoke to bless us.

Ironically, in a speech Obama recently gave, he mentions the struggle against slavery stating,

"And yet words on a parchment would not be enough to deliver slaves from bondage, or provide men and women of every color and creed their full rights and obligations as citizens of the United States. What would be needed were Americans in successive generations who were willing to do their part — through protests and struggle, on the streets and in the courts, through a civil war and civil disobedience and always at great risk — to narrow that gap between the promise of our ideals and the reality of their time."

What the president omitted mentioning was these changes weren't concocted by the state, weren't enacted by Congress, and weren't sorted out by the Supreme Court. In fact, the status quo politics of the time were always late to the game. It was men and women of conscience who demanded the wrongs be righted, that slavery be abolished, that the self-evident truths be held forth for the whole world to see. They were deeply religious men and women whose ethics were molded and sharpened by the Chief Cornerstone of Truth, the Word of God, and their faith in Christ. There was Harriet Tubman and her Underground Railroad; Sarah Parker Remond, Physician, Lecturer and Abolitionist; Sojourner Truth, Abolitionist and advocate for Women's Rights a century before NOW who said, "The Spirit calls me, and I must go." There was John Brown, who sought to free and arm slaves via a failed insurrection and was hung for it; Frederick Douglass, an escaped slave who was self-educated, an orator, author, and statesman; and in England, William Wilberforce, who in the later quarter of the 18th century waged a parliamentary campaign against the slave trade for 26 years until is was passed into law in 1807. And let us not forget in our own time, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. who worked tirelessly to end segregation and whose life was ended with an assassin's bullet. Each were people of faith. Each were people of conscience, which demanded of them, they risk their very lives to bring about social justice, thus effecting change in their generations.

If there was any question before, it now appears the line is being drawn in the sand for many of our clergy who are waking up and finding out they have been supporting a regime which is in direct opposition to their values and call to ministry to preach the Gospel. It's high time we arise from our drunken stupor and defend the truth that set us free from our own iniquity — abolished slavery and segregation — and continues to be our only hope for social justice. Its time to stand up, Christian... it's time to stand up.

I end with this quote from Albert Einstein who said, "Never do anything against conscience even if the state demands it!"

© Clenard Childress


The views expressed by RenewAmerica columnists are their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of RenewAmerica or its affiliates.
(See RenewAmerica's publishing standards.)

Clenard Childress

Rev. Dr. Clenard H. Childress, Jr., is the senior pastor of The New Calvary Baptist Church in Montclair, NJ. He is the founder of the website and president of Life Education And Resource Network, Northeast. LEARN is the largest African-American pro-life group in the US... (more)


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