Monday, April 16, 2012

Ground Rules for Christians with strong political opinions

Click pic to enlarge

Red Letter Christians are likely to have differences of opinion with other deeply committed Christians - and even with each other. In the give-and-take between Christians with differing political priorities, there have to be some ground rules if we are to live as citizens of God's Kingdom even as we seek to expand it. While I have been challenged by my students to rethink my positions on social issues, I have, in turn, challenged them to consider carefully how they engage those with differing points of view.

First, I tell them, we must avoid name-calling or demonizing those who disagree with us. There is something terribly wrong when Christians with liberal political ideas call those on the Religious Right "fascists," and some EQUALLY wrong when the retort of political conservatives is to call those who lean Left "communists." Such name-calling is condemned by Jesus Himself (see Matt 5:22)

...Most Christians will affirm that politics are far too serious to be left in the hands of politicians. We should be agreed that God holds all of us responsible for making decisions that determine our national and global destiny. In the end, we will all be judged by our answer to two questions: What have you decided about Me and the say of salvation I have provided? and What have you done to allow My Kingdom to come on earth, even as it is in heaven?

Only where God's Kingdom has come to earth can there be justice for the poor and oppressed - for any of us. - Chuck Colson - Red Letter Christians: A Citizen's Guide to Faith and Politics

Chuck Colson seems to have a firm grip on productive conversation. I grow weary of hearing name-calling on both sides of issues. But, I grow burdened by my fellow brothers and sisters in Christ doing it all in the name of Jesus. Social justice? Sure - go ahead and argue your heads off, but if you're a believer - if you really honestly understand the ways of Jesus, then it's time to stop the ugliness.

No comments: