Friday, March 30, 2018

Is the Church Avoiding “Politics” to its Detriment?

Church leaders often express their disdain for the discussion of “politics”, especially from the pulpit.  I often hear “we don’t discuss politics…it’s too divisive.”
In the Church’s blanket avoidance of discussion of “politics” it conveniently avoids discussion of numerous teachings of the Bible that are at the heart of our cultural, governmental, and economic dissensions and divisions.
The Church appears to over broadly define politics as anything that has to do with the relationship between governments, laws, morality, personal behavior and self-discipline.
Don’t discuss homosexuality.  It might offend someone.
Don’t discuss gay marriage.  It might offend someone.
Don’t discuss abortion.  It might offend someone.
Don’t discuss out of wedlock pregnancies.  It might offend someone.
Don’t discuss the government’s incentive sapping welfare system. It might offend someone.
Don’t discuss excessive reliance on government entitlements.  It might offend someone.
Don’t discuss the evils of Islam.  It might offend someone.
Don’t discuss the overblown role of government that displaces personal and church responsibilities.  It might offend someone.
Don’t discuss rampant illegal immigration.  It might offend someone.
Don’t discuss patriotism and building a strong nation.  It might offend someone.
Don’t discuss the Christian foundations of our nation.  It might offend someone.
These are all components of what many Church leaders define as “politics”, discussion of which is to be avoided at all costs.  Off limits.  Don’t cause dissension.  Don’t offend.  Let’s avoid these topics so we can attract more members – more potential “converts” or more revenue.  This “big tent” priority sounds more like the aspiration of a political party than a legitimate priority of the Church.
The whole Bible, from beginning to end, discusses the relationships between God, governments, and mankind.  It begins with the first interactions between Adam and Eve and God, with Satan as the  foreshadow of government:  The antagonist; the interloper.  The relationship between God, the people, the Laws, the Judges and the Kings continues throughout the Old Testament.  The New Testament brings about a cleansing from oppressive Laws through Jesus Christ.  It renews the spirit of the personal relationship between God and the individual which was  intended from the beginning.  Throughout, it continues to demonstrate the tug of war between our innate evil tendencies and what God desires of us as a “higher law”, superior to all the laws created by either secular or religious laws.
But the modern Church appears to prefer to ignore these themes.  It prefers justifying our surrender to the culture and government overreach, declaring its overly broad definition of “politics” as taboo; off limits.
Instead, the Church finds a comfortable corner of Scripture concerning faith, personal salvation, and how much better we will all feel.  Sin?  What’s that?  Can it even be defined anymore since such a large part of the Church not merely excuses but embraces what was formerly universally understood to be sin.  Without acknowledgement of “sin”, how can there be forgiveness and reconciliation?  Then who needs Christ?  Wow, we are now free from the constraints of religion.  Imagine, as John Lennon did.
And now, whether a misquote or a revelation from an apostate, an official of the Catholic Church appears to have said there is no hell.
Without a “hell” there is no constraint.  Both individuals and governments can do whatever they please.  Wipe away all sense of right and wrong, don’t judge, and we have the ultimate clean slate for us to be made in the image of government instead of in the image of God.  Who needs God if there is no sin and no hell?  This is the ultimate path to Communism, the “ideal” that has led to more dictatorships, more death, and more loss of freedom than any other ideology with the exception of Islam.
The Church is allowing the culture to destroy it by its silence.
Why doesn’t the Church talk about these things?

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