April 17, 2002

For Immediate Release Contact: Kelly A. Stokoe 1-866-866-2665


May 2 is the 50th Annual National Day of Prayer (NDP). Under the guidance of Chairman Shirley Dobson of Focus on the Family, Christians across America will be praying for our national leaders and beseeching God to provide protection, peace and direction for America.

What’s wrong with that?

Plenty, says Martin Zender, author of How to Quit Church without Quitting God. Dubbed "Martin Luther in Hiking Boots," this iconoclast charges something’s rotten in pew-land and NDP is merely the most prominent current example.

What are Zender’s objections to NDP?

National Day of Prayer is scripturally incorrect. Its foundational prayer is taken out of context. NDP’s prayer, beseeching the Israelites to, "…Seek My face and turn away from their wicked ways," was a specific prayer that was relevant thousands of years ago. One explicit condition was that supplicants were to pray toward Solomon’s temple, which no longer exists. In other words, the entire foundation of NDP is built on a false premise, which makes it out-of-touch, out-of-date and erroneous for 2002.

Secondly, Jesus condemned public prayer when He said, "Go into your own room, shut your door and pray to your Father privately". NDP directly contradicts Christ’s command.

According to Zender, "The entire premise of NDP is that God responds to numbers, and that He doesn’t know what He should do unless we tell Him—loudly and repeatedly. Rather than man needing help from God, NDP assumes that God needs help from man."

Thirdly, NDP runs contrary to the most powerful prayer in the Bible, "Thy will, not my will, be done." Shirley Dobson and her adherents say they want what God wants, but nobody bothers to ask Him what that might be.

Finally, NDP doesn’t work. Shirley Dobson has lamented in Focus on the Family, "We (The United States) are known as No. 1 in violent crime, No. 1 in divorce, No. 1 in teen pregnancies in the Western world, No. 1 in voluntary abortions, No. 1 in illegal drug use, and No. 1 among industrial nations in illiteracy".

Strange situation for a nation praying like crazy.

Indiana author Martin Zender is an experienced media personality whose book, How to Quit Church without Quitting God: 7 Good Reasons to Escape the Box, is revolutionizing how we understand spirituality.


Martin is available for interview please call Kelly A. Stokoe Toll-free:1-866-866-2665
publish@starkehartmann.com Web: www.starkehartmann.com
Media kits and review copies available on request.