Pastors: Statement on the Enactment

The State Secrets Protection Bill (6.12.2013)

Ein Freund schrieb zu Beginn dieses Jahres (2014):
"The churches in our country started to make new solidarity. As you know,  our government and ruling party have hoisted flag of militarism clearly. It is our big problem. The big problem always should support to make solidarity.  Last month, "Pastors Against the State Secrets Protection Bill" has come into being. I am one of the promoters of which number is 32. The promoters are all pastors whose denominations are WCCs and WEAs and Pentecosts and Charismatics and independents. I know in recent years it has been the challenge of WCC and WEA to make the unity in the diversity of protestant churches. In this country, we are trying to same challenge. With God's mercy, over 470 pastors of various denominations (most of them are of course Japanese) have borne their hands and two statements could be declared as this attachment.
But it is not even one month past yet, we are feeling to be facing to the old and new problem of churches, e.g. "Liberal, Ecumenical, and Plural" v.s. "Evangelical, Fundamental and Orthodox." Because of the hoarding of 20th century I believe we can overcome this futile discussion of which the base is always prejudice! Would you please pray for Japanese churches, the body of Christ in this country? I try to talk around our respectable Japanese colleagues to have the courage to take a step to 21st century for the victims of whole world including the Hibakusha (exposured) of Fukushima."

Statement on the Enactment of the State Secrets Protection Bill

(December 7, 2013)

On the evening of December 6, the state secrets protection bill was passed and enacted in a House of Councilors plenary session. We protest against the one-sided legislative and voting process, which proceeded without heeding the anxiety expressed by many citizens, let alone objections from the opposition parties.

We value the law and order of this world, respect the ruling authorities that have been appointed, and continue in daily prayer so political affairs may follow God’s will. However, this law not only tramples upon constitutionally guaranteed basic human rights, but can potentially lead to gross violations against the freedom of religion, the freedom of speech and expression, the freedom of thought and conscience, and the freedom of association, and is therefore clearly unconstitutional.

The Constitution of Japan, article 98 states “This Constitution shall be the supreme law of the nation and no law, ordinance, imperial rescript or other act of government, or part thereof, contrary to the provisions hereof, shall have legal force or validity.” We therefore believe the state secrets protection bill is void and must be immediately abolished.

We have been entrusted with the responsibility to protect, guide, and nurture each person that has been entrusted to us as pastor, based on the teachings of the Bible. Therefore, when something threatens the freedom of those God-given people, harms their consciences, or violates their dignity, we resist in adherence to nonviolence and adamantly raise our voice of opposition, “even though it is against the law” (Old Testament, Esther 4:16).

December 7, 2013
Pastors Against the State Secrets Protection Bill

 

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