Formerly known as “The Protestant Hour,” a religious radio program called Day 1 billed itself as an affiliation of what it referred to as “mainline” Protestant churches that embrace “the progressive worldview.” In other words, Day 1 is an affiliation of churches led by people who vote Democrat.
By describing itself as “mainline,” Day 1, unwittingly or otherwise, projected the scurrilous notion that churches not led by progressives—in other words, ones led by conservatives—are outside the Christian mainstream, and are therefore of suspect religious virtue.
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(Note: Perhaps because I sent an earlier version of this article to several of its guest pastors, Day 1 no longer refers to itself as an affiliation of “mainline” churches led by progressives; it now self-identifies as an affiliation of “historic Protestant denominations that proclaim a positive, passionate faith for the real world.”)
Many sermons delivered by Day 1 guest pastors are steeped in religious virtue-signaling, especially on the politically charged issues of race, LGBTQ & transgender rights, illegal immigration and climate change. The often holier-than-thou undertone of Day 1’s guest pastors comes across loud and clear: we are morally superior Christians because we are tolerant and inclusive progressives; conservative Christians are not really Christians at all—they’re racists, bigots, white supremacists, homophobes, xenophobes, etc.
Day 1 guest pastors never come out and make such hateful accusations directly, but that is what they’ve been taught to believe by the identity politics election strategy of the political party they support. The Democrat presidential nominee in 2016 summed up the progressive view of conservative America when she denounced those who voted against her, including millions of devout Christians, as “a basket of deplorables.”
How has America come to have a branch of Christianity whose members see themselves as morally superior because of their political affiliation? The answer requires understanding the frightening extent to which Marxist ideology has been quietly infused throughout the entire spectrum of American society, including an uncomfortably large segment of organized religion.
In his best-selling book The Naked Communist, former FBI Special Agent W. Cleon Skousen listed 45 communist goals to subvert America from within. One of those goals calls on communist warriors to “Infiltrate the churches and replace revealed religion with social religion.”
Revealed religion is religion based on Scripture. The communist concept of social religion teaches citizens to look to government, rather than to God, for their daily salvation. Scripture-based religion is about individual salvation. Social religion is about collective salvation, a concept that does not exist in Christianity.
In many churches on the religious left, the communist goal of replacing revealed religion with social religion has largely been accomplished, as evidenced by the constant refrain of progressive pastors who sanctimoniously sermonize about their undying commitment to the cause of “social justice,” as if their counterparts on the religious right couldn’t care less about a just and fair society.
Social justice is a progressive term used to describe justice within a society as meted out by a socialist government that allocates wealth, opportunity and privileges according to the Marxist directive “from each according to his ability, to each according to his needs.”
An innocuous-sounding term that suggests the utopian concept of fairness and equality for all, social justice and its pernicious offshoots—economic justice, housing justice, food justice, migration justice, health justice, climate justice, etc.—are progressive code talk for forced wealth redistribution, the central tenet of communism.
In pushing the alleged virtues of Marxism, social justice crusaders in progressive-led churches tell parishioners that socialism is about sharing, a subtle way of advancing the fallacious notion that socialists are morally superior because they believe in sharing. Christian sharing is a voluntary act of love; socialism is forcedsharing.
Since the 1960s, the tentacles of communism have snaked their way throughout the fabric of our culture, including its Judeo-Christian heritage. Marxist infiltration of America’s churches has had remarkable success on the religious left, where parishioners are taught the absurd notion that the values of socialism are in sync with the values of Christianity. Anyone who believes that need only ask Christians who fled the Soviet-dominated countries of Eastern Europe.
So who came up with the plan for Marxist warriors to infiltrate America’s churches? His name is Antonio Gramsci, a 1920s Italian communist known as a leading Marxist thinker of the 20th century. Disappointed that communists were unsuccessful at inciting a Bolshevik-style revolution in Italy, Gramsci came up with a plan to overturn capitalism in western countries by non-violent means. That under-the-radar plan is known as Cultural Marxism, the process of gradually infusing Marxist doctrine into a society through its culture.
Realizing that communism faces an uphill battle in Christian nations—where citizens look to God rather than government for their daily salvation—Gramsci developed a stratagem to assault and diminish Christianity in western societies. Part of that stratagem calls for infiltrating churches with closet Marxists who use deceit, manipulation and misinformation to quietly supplant revealed religion (religion based on Scripture) with the communist concept of social religion. Gramsci summarized his stratagem for subverting Christianity in western nations thusly:
“Socialism is precisely the religion that must overwhelm Christianity. Socialism will triumph by first capturing the culture via infiltration of schools, universities, churches and the media by transforming the consciousness of society.”
Gramsci referred to his stratagem as “the long march through the institutions,” i.e. infiltrating a society’s cultural institutions and surreptitiously replacing their traditional values and principles with those of communism. Operating via stealth and deception, Gramsci’s disciples in this country have diligently labored to grind down every cultural institution in America, including its predominant religion, Christianity.
Gramscian Marxists have infiltrated the leadership of every major branch of Christianity, including the Catholic Church. In February 2020, Pope Francis announced his support for the Global Education Pact, a United Nations-backed initiative to usher in a “new humanism” under which God “withdraws” so “all of humankind can be free.”
Under the Pact, children of the world will be indoctrinated with social justice propaganda designed to pave the way for a New World Order under the banner of global communism.
Marxist infiltrators have seized control of the Vatican in a way that went virtually unnoticed by most Catholics until after the fact, just as Gramsci planned. Pretending to do God’s bidding, Marxist pastors hiding under the ecclesiastical robes of the Christian faith are knowingly subverting their professed religion from within.
In contemporary America, social religion is connected at the hip with social justice, a noble-sounding code term that’s self-righteously trumpeted by religious-left pastors who cleverly weave the universally failed promises of socialism into their sermons.
A false idol ideology pursued with religious fervor by its proponents, socialism is doomed to fail where ever it is tried, because it is in eternal mortal conflict with the basic human instinct that those who work hard, educate themselves, employ their ingenuity and risk their capital have an inborn expectation to do significantly better than those who don’t. That is an immutable human condition that will never change, even in the face of socialist lies propagated by virtue-signaling pastors on the religious left.
By John Eidson
A 1968 electrical engineering graduate of Georgia Teach and now retired, John Eidson is a freelance writer in Atlanta and a regular contributor to The Blue State Conservative.
Photo by Adam Fagen at Flickr.