(This is a letter that Dr. David Noebel wrote back in 2005. However, we are posting this in 2011 because it gives Christians an understanding of the battle that continues with the liberal policies of the National Association of Evangelicals.)
We are making this personal letter from Dr. Noebel to Dr. John C. Green public because: (a) Dr. Green never responded to it even though the leadership of the N.A.E. requested he do so, and (b) with the publication of Tony Campolo's Letters to a Young Evangelical the whole issue of Ron Sider and Jim Wallis' influence on Evangelicalism is again blowing in the wind. If Dr. Green finally does respond to Noebel's letter we will publish it in The Schwarz Report. If he continues to refuse to respond then the N.A.E. ought to drop his destructive, leftist, highly insulting, untrue chapter from its book on evangelical public policy or at least permit a chapter correcting it.
June 7, 2005Dr. John C. Green275 Olin HallAkron, Ohio 443251914
I have been reading the National Association of Evangelical's Toward an Evangelical Public Policy edited by Ron Sider and Diane Knippers. After reading your chapter I must admit I am totally confused and hoping you can clear up some major points for me.
Let me begin by quoting from your comments on page 30, "Yet another important figure is Jim Wallis, one of the founders of the Sojourners community in Washington, D.C., and for many years the editor of Sojourners magazine."
On the next page, after commending the Christian Left for its stance on poverty, foreign policy and the environment, you state, "The Christian Right has thus far achieved few of its policy goals - an experience common to the anti-evolution and anti-Communist movements. The latter movements failed in part because they did not mobilize very many people and in part because of their relentless negativity. Here the anti-Communist movement is notable: It was largely an exercise in destruction."
This is breathtaking, Dr. Green. Let me explain.
You are saying that the pro-Vietcong, pro-Communist, pro-Castro Jim Wallis is a great evangelical Christian leader and hero while Dr. Fred Schwarz is an apostle of destruction and negativity! What a blatant rewriting of history! What a tragedy if the NAE accepts your interpretation of events.
Jim Wallis referred to anti-Communist evangelicals "as members of the forces of darkness" (which comes close to your description - "an exercise in destruction"). Am I to assume you agree with Wallis that good Christians are pro-Communist while bad Christians are anti-Communist? Why can good Christians be anti-Fascist and anti-Nazi, but not anti-Communist?
Wallis' hatred of the "Religious Right" is evident in his work The Rise of Christian Conscience in which American fundamentalists are equated with the Ayatollahs of Iran.
Wallis has been closely associated with Richard Barnet and the Institute for Policy Studies (a radical leftwing think tank); he had The Soul of Politics published by Orbis Books in 1994, a radical left Catholic publishing arm of the Maryknollers; his Sojourners magazine has been a strong supporter of the Cuban dictator Fidel Castro; he has supported the Sandinistas in Nicaragua and every leftwing cause imaginable around the world.
Jim Wallis gloried in America's defeat in Vietnam! He said, "I don't know how else to express the quiet emotion that rushed through me when the news reports showed that the United States had finally been defeated in Vietnam." Does this mean nothing to you?
Like Jane Fonda, Wallis said little about the Communist genocide following the wars in Vietnam and Cambodia. In fact, just the reverse since he criticized those fleeing Vietnam by boat as somehow out "to support their consumer habits in other lands." I can't believe you could defend such an indefensible position and hold such a person up as someone worthy to lead the NAE into the next century.
For the record, I want you to know that Dr. Fred C. Schwarz was never an apostle of negativity or destruction and you owe him a serious apology while he is still alive. Even the Harvard historian, Lisa McGirr, who wrote Suburban Warriors: The Origins of the New American Right (Princeton University Press, 2001) never treated him in such a disgusting and cruel way. In fact, she credited him as the founder of the Conservative movement in America.
If you consider the conservative movement destructive and negative, how can you be the director of the Ray C. Bliss Institute of Applied Politics at the University of Akron? Having run for the U.S. Congress I was always under the impression that Ray Bliss was a conservative. At least those in the Republican circles I am acquainted with thought he was. Am I wrong? And if I am permitted another guess I would guess that Ray Bliss was much closer to Fred Schwarz's thinking about Communism than Jim Wallis'. Am I wrong here too?
The truth is that Dr. Schwarz left his medical practice in Australia, left his family behind (his children and grandchildren are all medical doctors) and moved to the United States to debate the Communists on American campuses and in the process founded the Christian Anti-Communism Crusade in 1953 (by the way you misspelled his name and missed the date of the founding of the Crusade).
His organization and its pro-Christian, pro-democracy, pro-human rights, pro-religious freedom, anti-Communist message influenced Norman Geisler, Tim LaHaye, James Dobson, Ronald Reagan, John Wayne, Roy Rogers, Dale Evans, Pat Boone, Phyllis Schlafly, Beverly LaHaye, Chuck Smith, Robert Schuller, Jerry Falwell, Ralph Wilkinson, and thousands of others (including me).And you claim his message was a message of destruction? Negativity? A failed movement?
Why would you so mislead the evangelical constituency unless you have a hidden agenda to deliberately hurt the anti-Communist cause - a cause that was noble and right and responsible for the liberation of millions enslaved under Communist dictatorships.
It was not Jim Wallis who said, "Tear down this wall." It was a disciple of Fred Schwarz! I'm wondering how many enslaved under Communism Jim Wallis freed.
Jim Wallis' message was a message of anti-Americanism, anti-capitalism, pro-Vietcong sentiment and pro-Communist rhetoric and you give him high marks. Fred Schwarz told the American people the truth about Communism and its nefarious ways, defended freedom throughout the world, spoke up for the Christians suffering behind the Iron Curtain and you make him out to be an enemy of Christianity.
Have you forgotten it was Wallis who said, "As more Christians become influenced by liberation theology, finding themselves increasingly rejecting the values and institutions of capitalism, they will also be drawn to the Marxist analysis and praxis that is so central to the movement. That more Christians will come to view the world through Marxist eyes is therefore predictable."
The anti-Communist President Ronald Reagan was influenced by Fred Schwarz and brought the Evil Empire of the U.S.S.R. to a close freeing millions in the process. Yet you feel this was a mark of destruction, negativity and a failed movement? The Evil Empire, based on Marx's utopian vision was responsible for the death of tens of millions (which Jim Wallis never did emphasize), and some how Jim Wallis is your hero and Fred Schwarz is an apostle of destruction.
Dr. Green, you are not being honest with the facts of history or with the evangelical community. You certainly are not a voice of evangelicalism and yet your chapter leads off the NAE's book on public policy. Would you please explain to me in simple English sentences what this all means? How all this happened?
In the meantime I recommend you read Harvard University Press' The Black Book of Communism and get a feel for what Communism costs in human terms.
Anti-Communist James C. Dobson was influenced by Fred Schwarz and today reaches millions with a pro-family, Christian message. Do you consider Dobson a voice of destruction and negativity, too? Is his a failed movement? You might call him personally 719.531.3400 and ask him what he thinks of Fred Schwarz. As you do so remember it was Wallis who makes clear his disdain for "family values." Says Wallis, "The rhetoric of family values has become especially pernicious."
Telephone Norman Geisler and ask him how Fred Schwarz influenced him while he was sitting in a classroom in Detroit going nowhere fast. He will tell you point blank that Fred was never an apostle of destruction or negativity and that his movement did not end in failure.
Telephone Beverly LaHaye and Phyllis Schlafly and see what they think of Fred Schwarz. Concerned Women for America and Eagle Forum are two very successful pro-Christian, pro-American, anti-Communist organizations, contrary to what you believe or care to share with NAE's evangelical churches.
I can assure, no, guarantee you that Carl F.H. Henry and NAE's former president Robert P. Dugan, Jr. were much closer to Fred Schwarz's understanding of Communism than Jim Wallis' understanding any day of the week. I believe that Dugan attended the Council for National Policy's special event honoring Dr. Schwarz. In 1987 he was presented the Thomas Jefferson Award for Servant Leadership.
Which reminds me, Tim LaHaye, also a proud student of Schwarz, founded the Council for National Policy. And you say the anti-Communist movement was a failure? I say it was very successful.
You write that evangelicals should embrace "the maturation of the NAE," "the rise of progressive evangelicals" and "the pro-family groups" since these three "are all cause of great optimism." (p. 32) Jim Wallis is a cause of great optimism? You have to be kidding, but if you are not I can tell you that the NAE is doomed if it follows him and his so-called poverty gospel and social justice mantra (Sowell refers to social justice as pious talk which amounts to third parties wanting somebody else to pay for something.)
When you say "the maturation of the NAE" you are speaking code, right? What you really mean is the NAE is moving toward Jim Wallis' pro-Communist/Socialist positions? I know Jim now calls his communism (small "c"), "social justice" and "community economics" but he certainly isn't fooling you, right? You know how to interpret such talk, right? When the leftwing press in America says some conservative is "growing" or "maturing" we all know what that means.
Dr. Fred Schwarz should be a national hero and Jim Wallis should be identified for what he really is - a traitor to the Christian community and the American dream with its religious, political and economic freedoms.
If the NAE is going to follow the "evangelical progressives" (translation: leftists, socialists, communists, statists, etc.) they will be making the biggest mistake of the 21st century.
The answer to poverty and the poor is more capitalism, not less. The answer to poverty is job creation, not more government welfare.
Let's admit a hard truth: Chick-fil-A has done more to fight poverty and help the poor than all the pronouncements of Jim Wallis, Ron Sider, Tony Campolo and their entire leftwing sociology friends combined. And Thomas Sowell said it even better, "It would be devastating to the egos of the intelligentsia to realize, much less admit, that businesses have done more to reduce poverty than all the intellectuals put together. Ultimately, it is only wealth that can reduce poverty and most of the intelligentsia have no interest whatever in finding out what actions and policies increase the national wealth."
Every evangelical leftist needs to read Life at the Bottom by Theodore Dalrymple and discover that Wallis' "community economics" will never lift anyone out of poverty. Creating jobs will! All socialism does is equally distribute poverty, never ends it.
And by the way I notice that Wallis has copyrighted his latest book (God's Politics) in his own name. Isn't that a mark of capitalism?
I am looking forward to hearing from you regarding the issues raised as well as receiving a written apology for your defaming Dr. Fred C. Schwarz, who is now 92 years old and living in Australia. In fact, you have defamed the entire anti-Communist movement. Both Schwarz and the movement deserve a lot better from you, and Wallis deserves the back of your hand instead of your high fives!
Sincerely in Christ,
David A. Noebel, PresidentChristian Anti-Communist Crusade
Worldview Weekend Foundation
PO BOX 1690
Collierville, TN, 38027 USA