Dec 15, 2008

Cizik Resignation Not Enough To Restore National Association Of Evagelicals

By Bill Wilson

He was the Washington, D.C. face of the National Association of Evangelicals. He flirted with liberal causes considered by many to fly in the face of sound Christian doctrine. And finally, the spirits of deception came home to roost. On a December 2 National Public Radio "Fresh Air" program, NAE VP of Governmental Affairs, Richard Cizik essentially endorsed homosexuality. The man who defined the NAE for some 28 years said, "I'm shifting, I have to admit. In other words, I would willingly say I believe in civil unions. I don't officially support redefining marriage from its traditional definition, I don't think." And with that the sands of political salvation shifted and Cizik has disappeared under the gravity of his remarks.

Global warming, homosexuality, illegal immigration, abortion and supporting candidates that were cross ways of Biblical standards marked the waning years of Cizik's career with NAE. In covering several news conferences in 2005 as a Washington correspondent, I noticed that more often than not, Cizik was not on the conservative side of the culture battle-something that I found uncharacteristic of what I believed to be the image and tradition of the National Association of Evangelicals. There were several times that Cizik appeared at news conferences in agreement with people like Barry Lynn of Americans United for Separation of Church and State.

Indeed, on the Americans United website, one of Lynn's disciples, Joseph Conn, takes a slap at Focus on the Family, the Family Research Council and the Southern Baptists for calling for the ousting of Cizik. In my opinion, these organizations were years late in wanting Cizik gone. The damage done to the NAE and its image among those who take the Bible seriously will take a long time to repair. And its not just Cizik who was at fault. The mindset of the organization appears to have changed over the years to drift away from basic conservative Bible truths and to support the more seeker friendly Christianity without commitment, sin without consequences dogma that is permeating the Church.

Leith Anderson, president of the NAE said in a web post, "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." It is now a perfect time for the governors of the NAE and Mr. Anderson to conduct a complete audit of the issue and policy positions taken by Cizik to ensure that the NAE not only espouses Biblical truth in its writings and positions to its members, but also practices them in their relationships in Washington, D.C. and other places. Jesus said in John 8:32, "And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free."