Christian liberals faced off against Christian conservatives on Sunday evening with thousands rallying on either side for and against judicial filibusters at the Senate.
Some 2,000 conservative Christians packed into the Highview Baptist Church in Louisville Ky. for the highly-anticipated Justice Sunday: Stopping the Filibuster Against People of Faith event a nationwide television simulcast hosted by the Federal Research Council and Focus on the Family.
While hundreds of liberal Christians protested the broadcast outside the church and across the nation, conservatives inside applauded the evangelical heavyweights who mounted an attack against the democrat-led judicial filibusters on President Bushs nominees.
The telecast, which made its way into 61 million households in 44 states via Christian radio, television and Internet, drew heavy criticism from liberal Christians and democrats because of its endorsement by Senate majority leader Bill Frist (R-Tenn.) and its implication that people of faith should counter filibusters with by banning the practice.
According to the New York Times, liberal groups stepped up their attacks on Dr. Frist and the proposed rule change that same evening. Before a crowd of nearly 1,200 at a nearby Presbyterian church, liberal Christians that same evening called Justice Sunday a declaration of a religious war and an attempt to hijack religion
In light rising tensions and controversies, Perkins began the Justice Sunday telecast by declaring on the outset: We are not saying that people who disagree with us are not people of faith."
Perkins told the audience that minority Democrats were forcing members of the judiciary to choose between public service and their Christian views by denying them a vote.
Sen. Frist meanwhile delivered a six-minute taped speech that made no reference to faith but called on the Senate to let the stalled nominees receive a vote.
"Emotions are running high on both sides, and it reveals once again our country's desperate need for more civility in political life," he said in his taped message, he said in his message. I don't think it's radical to ask senators to vote."
Along the same line of argument, James Dobson, chairman of Focus on the Family and one of the nations most influential evangelicals, criticized the majority of the Supreme Court for being unelected and unaccountable and arrogant and imperious and determined to redesign the culture according to their own biases and values, and they're out of control."
Dobson, speaking from the pulpit, said the majority of the high court does not care about the sanctity of life, and that the matter of judicial tyranny had to stop.
Meanwhile, throughout the telecasted program, the names and phone numbers of several senators scrolled across the screen as speakers urged viewers to call.
Other speakers at the event included Dr. Albert Mohler, President of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and Chuck Colson, President of Prison Fellowship Ministries
For more information on Justice Sunday and the FRC, visit: www.frc.org.