Lutheran Pastor Wolfgang Schuch was one of the giants of the 16th century. According to Charles Spurgeon’s The Treasury of David, Schuch was imprisoned for denying “the Church and the sacrifice of the mass” and was sentenced to be burnt at the stake. Upon hearing his sentence, he began singing the 122nd Psalm, “I was glad when they said to me, ‘Let us go into the house of the Lord.'”
In fact, it was in the 19th-century Baptist preacher Charles Spurgeon’s aforementioned commentary on the Psalms that I read about Schuch. But Spurgeon read about Schuch from within the pages of Foxe’s Book of Martyrs. When Christians stand with courage and conviction—even in the face of death—their testimony inspires others for generations to come.
Kentucky Clerk Kim Davis faced her own trial and dilemma in 2015. She would either knuckle under to secular judicial elites and compromise her beliefs as a Christ follower, or she would go to jail. Confrontation with evil is nothing new; John N. Oswalt says believers throughout history have been “flayed alive, impaled, mutilated and killed” (Isaiah Commentary). Theology can make for splendid Bible study discussion in the safety and comfort of a yet-free society, but the real question is this: Will you bet your life on it?
Secularism is a pagan ideology, a religion. According to Harold J. Berman’s Law and Revolution, secularism divorced itself from Christianity, and yet still retained “from traditional Christianity both its sense of the sacred and some of its major values.” But a rival now challenges secularists in the form of revolutionary totalitarianism.
For instance, homosexual militants once lobbied for a libertarian acceptance of its lifestyle with this mantra: “Allow us to live our lives in the privacy of our homes.” But then, the homosexual movement shifted to a totalitarian posture: “Bakers, photographers and Christian retreat centers will take part in our weddings or be bankrupted.” Finally, the situation Kim Davis faced introduced us to the next chapter: Fascism, with its declaration, “You will ceremonialize and pay homage to our weddings, or you’ll spend time in jail.” …