Home > Religious Liberty > Words and Phrases related to Religious Liberty > Phrase - Religious Liberty >
.
Phrase - Religious Freedom ( 33 )
.
Quotations from the writings of Ellen G. White with the phrase . . .
Religious  Freedom
Related phrase:  Doctrine of Religious freedom  (  )  - -  freedom of religious faith  (below )
The iniquity and spiritual darkness that prevailed under the supremacy of Rome were the inevitable result of her suppression of the Scriptures; but where is to be found the cause of the widespread infidelity, the rejection of the law of God, and the consequent corruption, under the full blaze of gospel light in an age of religious freedom? Now that Satan can no longer keep the world under his control by withholding the Scriptures, he resorts to other means to accomplish the same object. To destroy faith in the Bible serves his purpose as well as to destroy the Bible itself. By introducing the belief that God's law is not binding, he as effectually leads men to transgress as if they were wholly ignorant of its precepts. And now, as in former ages, he has worked through the church to further his designs. The religious organizations of the day have refused to listen to unpopular truths plainly brought to view in the Scriptures, and in combating them they have adopted interpretations and taken positions which have sown broadcast the seeds of skepticism. Clinging to the papal error of natural immortality and man's consciousness in death, they have rejected the only defense against the delusions of spiritualism. The doctrine of eternal torment has led many to disbelieve the Bible. And as the claims of the fourth commandment are urged upon the people, it is found that the observance of the seventh-day Sabbath is enjoined; and as the only way to free themselves from a duty which they are unwilling to perform, many popular teachers declare that the law of God is no longer binding. Thus they cast away the law and the Sabbath together. As the work of Sabbath reform extends, this rejection of the divine law to avoid the claims of the fourth commandment will become well-nigh universal. The teachings of religious leaders have opened the door to infidelity, to spiritualism, and to contempt for God's holy law; and upon these leaders rests a fearful responsibility for the iniquity that exists in the Christian world.  Great Controversy, page 586.2
 
 
"Happily they looked at the principle on which this arrangement was based, and they acted in faith. What was that principle? It was the right of Rome to coerce conscience and forbid free inquiry. But were not themselves and their Protestant subjects to enjoy religious freedom? Yes, as a favor specially stipulated for in the arrangement, but not as a right. As to all outside that arrangement, the great principle of authority was to rule; conscience was out of court; Rome was infallible judge, and must be obeyed. The acceptance of the proposed arrangement would have been a virtual admission that religious liberty ought to be confined to reformed Saxony; and as to all the rest of Christendom, free inquiry and the profession of the reformed faith were crimes, and must be visited with the dungeon and the stake. Could they consent to localize religious liberty? to have it proclaimed that the Reformation had made its last convert? had subjugated its last acre? and that wherever Rome bore sway at this hour, there her dominion was to be perpetuated? Could the Reformers have pleaded that they were innocent of the blood of those hundreds and thousands who, in pursuance of this arrangement, would have to yield up their lives in popish lands? This would have been to betray, at that supreme hour, the cause of the gospel and the liberties of Christendom."--Wylie, b. 9, ch. 15. Rather would they "sacrifice everything, even their states, their crowns, and their lives." --D'Aubigne, b. 13, ch. 5.  Great Controversy, page 200.1  Read entire Chapter 11
 
Heretofore those who presented the truths of the third angel's message have often been regarded as mere alarmists. Their predictions that religious intolerance would gain control in the United States, that church and state would unite to persecute those who keep the commandments of God, have been pronounced groundless and absurd. It has been confidently declared that this land could never become other than what it has been -- the defender of religious freedom. But as the question of enforcing Sunday observance is widely agitated, the event so long doubted and disbelieved is seen to be approaching, and the third message will produce an effect which it could not have had before.  Great Controversy, page 605.3
 
 
As long as probation continues, there will be opportunity for the canvasser to work. When the religious denominations unite with the papacy to oppress God's people, places where there is religious freedom will be opened by evangelistic canvassing. If in one place the persecution becomes severe, let the workers do as Christ has directed. "When they persecute you in this city, flee ye into another." If persecution comes there, go to still another place. God will lead His people, making them a blessing in many places. Were it not for persecution they would not be so widely scattered abroad to proclaim the truth. And Christ declares: "Ye shall not have gone over the cities of Israel, till the Son of man be come." Matthew 10:23. Until in heaven is spoken the word, "It is finished," there will always be places for labor, and hearts to receive the message.-- Testimonies, vol. 6, p. 478. (1900)  {CM 11.2}
 
Eleven years after the planting of the first colony, Roger Williams came to the New World. Like the early Pilgrims he came to enjoy religious freedom; but, unlike them, he saw -- what so few in his time had yet seen--that this freedom was the inalienable right of all, whatever might be their creed. He was an earnest seeker for truth, with Robinson holding it impossible that all the light from God's word had yet been received. Williams "was the first person in modern Christendom to establish civil government on the doctrine of the liberty of conscience, the equality of opinions before the law."--Bancroft, pt. 1, ch. 15, par. 16. He declared it to be the duty of the magistrate to restrain crime, but never to control the conscience. "The public or the magistrates may decide," he said, "what is due from man to man; but when they attempt to prescribe a man's duties to God, they are out of place, and there can be no safety; for it is clear that if the magistrates has the power, he may decree one set of opinions or beliefs today and another tomorrow; as has been done in England by different kings and queens, and by different popes and councils in the Roman Church; so that belief would become a heap of confusion."-- Martyn, vol. 5, p. 340.  {GC 293.1}
 
Making his way at last, after months of change and wandering, to the shores of Narragansett Bay, he there laid the foundation of the first state of modern times that in the fullest sense recognized the right of religious freedom.  The fundamental principle of Roger Williams's colony was "that every man should have liberty to worship God according to the light of his own conscience."-- Ibid., vol. 5, p. 354. His little state, Rhode Island, became the asylum of the oppressed, and it increased and prospered until its foundation principles -- civil andreligious liberty -- became the cornerstones of the American Republic.  {GC 295.1}
 
Let not one who believes the truth, be silent now. None should be careless now; let all urge their petitions at the throne of grace, pleading the promise, "Whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do" (John 14:13).  It is a perilous time now. If this land of boasted liberty is preparing to sacrifice every principle which enters into her Constitution, making decrees to suppress religious freedom, and for the enforcing of papal falsehood and delusion, then the people of God need to present their petitions in faith to the Most High. There is every encouragement, in the promises of God, for those who put their trust in Him. The prospect of being brought into personal danger and distress, need not cause despondency, but should quicken the vigor and hopes of God's people; for the time of their peril is the season for God to grant them clearer manifestations of His power.  {2SM 370.2}
 
As long as probation continues, there will be opportunity for the canvasser to work. When the religious denominations unite with the papacy to oppress God's people, places where there is religious freedom will be opened by evangelistic canvassing. If in one place the persecution becomes severe, let the workers do as Christ directed: "When they persecute you in one city, flee ye into another." If persecution comes there, go to still another place. God will lead his people, making them a blessing in many places. Were it not for persecution, they would not be so widely scattered abroad to proclaim the truth. And Christ declares, "Ye shall not have gone over the cities of Israel, till the Son of man be come." Until in heaven is spoken the word, "It is finished," there will be places for labor, and hearts to receive the message.  {RH, October 7, 1902 par. 13}
 
As this struggle progresses, it may appear to human sight that Satan is triumphant and that truth is overborne with falsehood and error. In the country which has been an asylum for the conscience-oppressed servants of God and defenders of His truth, religious freedom may be placed in jeopardy, and the people over whom God has spread His shield, may meet suffering and trial. But God would have us recall His dealings with His people in the past, to save them from their enemies, and trust in Him. He has always chosen extremities, when there seemed no possible hope for deliverance from Satan's workings, for the display of His power. Man's necessity is God's opportunity.  {ST, November 28, 1900 par. 3}
 
God has children, many of them, in the Protestant churches, and a large number in the Catholic churches, who are more true to obey the light to the very best of their knowledge than a large number among Sabbathkeeping Adventists who do not walk in the light. The Lord will have the message of truth proclaimed, that Protestants may be warned and awakened to the true state of things and consider the worth of the privileges of religious freedom which they have long enjoyed.  {16MR 237.2}
 
A striking illustration of Rome's policy toward those who disagree with her was given in the long and bloody persecution of the Waldenses, some of whom were observers of the Sabbath. Others suffered in a similar manner for their fidelity to the fourth commandment. The history of the churches of Ethiopia and Abyssinia is especially significant. Amid the gloom of the Dark Ages, the Christians of Central Africa were lost sight of and forgotten by the world, and for many centuries they enjoyed freedom in the exercise of their faith. But at last Rome learned of their existence, and the emperor of Abyssinia was soon beguiled into an acknowledgment of the pope as the vicar of Christ. Other concessions followed. An edict was issued forbidding the observance of the Sabbath under the severest penalties. (See Michael Geddes, Church History of Ethiopia, pages 311, 312.) But papal tyranny soon became a yoke so galling that the Abyssinians determined to break it from their necks. After a terrible struggle the  Romanists were banished from their dominions, and the ancient faith was restored. The churches rejoiced in their freedom, and they never forgot the lesson they had learned concerning the deception, the fanaticism, and the despotic power of Rome. Within their solitary realm they were content to remain, unknown to the rest of Christendom.  Great Controversy, page  577.3
 
The phrase   religious freedom  of  religious  faith
"And he had two horns like a lamb." The lamblike horns indicate youth, innocence, and gentleness, fitly representing the character of the United States when presented to the prophet as "coming up" in 1798.Among the Christian exiles who first fled to America and sought an asylum from royal oppression and priestly intolerance were many who determined to establish a government upon the broad foundation of civil and religious liberty. Their views found place in the Declaration of Independence, which sets forth the great truth that "all men are created equal" and endowed with the inalienable right to "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness." And the Constitution guarantees to the people the right of self-government, providing that representatives elected by the popular vote shall enact and administer the laws. Freedom of religious faith was also granted, every man being permitted to worship God according to the dictates of his conscience. Republicanism and Protestantism became the fundamental principles of the nation. These principles are the secret of its power and prosperity. The oppressed and downtrodden throughout Christendom have turned to this land with interest and hope. Millions have sought its shores, and the United States has risen to a place among the most powerful nations of the earth.   Great Controversy, page 441.1  Read entire chapter 25
 
 
Doctrine  of  Religious  Freedom
 
It required a desperate struggle for those who would be faithful to stand firm against the deceptions and abominations which were disguised in sacerdotal garments and introduced into the church. The Bible was not accepted as the standard of faith. The doctrine of religious freedom was termed heresy, and its upholders were hated and proscribed.  {GC 45.2}
 
 
Making his way at last, after months of change and wandering, to the shores of Narragansett Bay, he there laid the foundation of the first state of modern times that in the fullest sense recognized the right of religious freedom. The fundamental principle of Roger Williams's colony was "that every man should have liberty to worship God according to the light of his own conscience."-- Ibid., vol. 5, p. 354. His little state, Rhode Island, became the asylum of the oppressed, and it increased and prospered until its foundation principles-- civil and religious liberty -- became the cornerstones of the American Republic.  {GC 295.1}
 
 
It required a desperate struggle for those who would be faithful to stand firm against the deceptions and abominations which were disguised in sacerdotal garments and introduced into the church. The Bible was not accepted as the standard of faith. The doctrine of religious freedom was termed heresy, and its upholders were hated and proscribed.  {4SP 46.1}   {SR 324.1}
 
Return to  Phrases related to Religious Liberty  page