January 14, 2020 | Shelley Hendrix McLaughlin
Last year we reported on the issue of states that were seeking to eliminate religious freedom when it comes to vaccines and what that might mean for those who believe in God. We encouraged everyone across the United States to become familiar with this topic through our Special Report. Any time laws are passed to restrict or eliminate the expression of religious freedom should be alarming to all believers, especially intercessors.
Late in 2019, the state of New Jersey became the latest state to aggressively move on legislation to remove religious exemptions from vaccination for individuals attending any educational facility in the state – setting up New Jersey to have one of the most restrictive laws in the nation. Believers in NJ fought back – in prayer, praise and song. People not only from around the country, but across the world fought in prayer with them – because this is a world wide initiative to remove religious freedom in this area.
Thanks to one legislator, when the bill came up for vote in the Senate, it was stalled until after the holiday break – but legislative sponsors and leadership came back fighting after the new year. Late last week that same senator agreed to support an amended version of the bill allowing private education facilities to determine on their own if they would, or would not, accept a student’s religious exemption. This measure left NJ special needs students who rely on federally protected educational services through the public school system, as well as students who cannot afford a private education, at risk of losing their placement which alarmed other members of the Senate.
On Monday, thousands of protesters peacefully gathered outside the state capitol at Trenton – praying, praising, blowing shofars, singing, reading Torah and the Bible – God’s people working in unity for the preservation of religious freedom. State troopers remarked that they had not seen anything like this in over a decade.
According to Romans 13:1, governing authorities are appointed by God and Proverbs 21:1 informs us that He moves the king’s hearts like a river. These spiritual warriors called on the name of their living, sovereign God to save them, He heard them and a reprieve was granted again at the end of the day.
It’s not over and the legislature still has some time on Tuesday to try again – and bill sponsors, according to this New York Times article are committed to reintroduce the legislation as soon as the next session begins.
No doubt that God will continue to watch over His word to perform it. He also seems to be watching to observe how the community reacts – will they praise themselves and leaders of men for a job well done or will they continue to thank the Most High God for His saving mercy and grace? In the case of New Jersey, as soon as the gavel fell on Monday night, outside the protesters beautifully chose to praise God in unity and shouts of “Thank You God!” rang out over and over as seen here.
“Behold, how good and pleasant it is when brothers dwell in unity!” – Psalm 133:1
New Jersey residents need your support as this fight continues to maintain their first amendment rights. Please pray that God will continue to uphold them with His victorious right hand to preserve their religious freedom and guide the hearts of their legislators in His justice and righteousness. Please pray that the individuals in New Jersey who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength, mount up with wings like eagles, run and not be weary, and walk and not faint. Please pray over your own state for the same because we believe this issue will be a hot topic throughout the country this spring – stay alert and be prepared to engage. Most of all sing praises to the Lord for His mercy and sing one of the smallest songs in the Bible this morning for our NJ friends and families which according to 2 Chronicles 20 has the power to rout our enemies: “The steadfast love of Yahweh endures forever.”