Christians must stand up for hard-won freedoms, according to the leader of an American business that won a landmark religious liberty case against the US Government.
Steve Green, the President of major arts and crafts chain Hobby Lobby, said legally challenging the Government would previously have been unimaginable, but there are “struggles that people of faith are facing today that have never been faced before”.
The company took on the US Government over the Obamacare law, arguing that they should not have to provide health insurance covering abortion-inducing drugs.
The US Supreme Court backed the business, and a number of other family-run companies with similar convictions, in a 5-4 ruling earlier this year.
Speaking during a nationwide church event at the weekend, Green said: “There are struggles for religious freedoms in America.
“Just a few years ago we’d never have imagined that we would have filed suit against our own Government”, he said.
“But there are challenges. There are struggles that people of faith are facing today that have never been faced before.”
Green continued: “So there is a great need for men and women of faith to stand up and let their voice be heard through the ballot box, and if need be, to file suit, because if we don’t stand up and fight for the freedoms that our founders fought for then we very well may lose some of those”.
He commented: “The bottom line is we believe that life begins at conception, and for us to be a part of taking that life violates what our deeply held beliefs are”. In regard to abortion-inducing drugs, he added, “we just said we didn’t want to freely provide those or pay for them for employees”.
In June Hobby Lobby’s result was described as a “great day for religious liberty” by The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty – which represented the company in court.
Lori Windham, a senior lawyer for the group, said: “The Supreme Court recognized that Americans do not lose their religious freedom when they run a family business”.
The decision was welcomed by Albert Mohler, President of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, who called it a “landmark case that will reshape the religious liberty debate for generations to come”.
He described the Green family, who run Hobby Lobby, as “a bulwark of evangelical Christian conviction and generosity”.