Politics

From the Archives – Why Christians Must Be to Loyal to Truth, Not Tribe

(Posted in July of 2020)

My thoughts below predate COVID-19, masks, hydroxychloroquine, or churches defying public health emergency orders. Last fall, different controversies were exposing problems in how believers evaluate conflicting claims and decide what to believe.

But those problems are still with us, and the current raft of controversies is exposing them even more painfully.

Many Christians who claim to revere the Bible lack biblical habits for evaluating truth claims and consequently lack skill in judging the ethics of situations in a biblical way. It seems almost ubiquitous now—the habit of putting the political/culture-war lenses on first, and embracing or rejecting claims based solely on source classification (friend or foe). The result is that ideas are accepted uncritically if they’re perceived to be from “our people” and rejected reflexively if they’re seen as from “the other side.”

What’s missing is weighing ideas and claims on their own merits—on things like evidence and sound reasoning. Increasingly, what’s completely missing is any nonpolitical consideration of what Scripture teaches and what sound application requires of us.

More than ever, believers need to meditate on a genuinely Christian view of truth and on a genuinely Christian approach to evaluating truth claims. At least five principles are are fundamental that effort.

1260 reads

Is Evangelicalism Due for a Hundred-Year Schism?

"The specific issues are many, some comparatively new (critical race theory, former President Donald Trump), some all too familiar (racism and race relations beyond the one theory, roles of women, sexual ethics, Christian nationalism, church handling of abuse), all with a political edge." - C.Today

561 reads

Conciliation With the Colonies

Edmund Burke, on moving his Resolutions for Conciliation with the Colonies. House of Commons, March 22, 1775

Below are excerpts from the first fifth of the speech. The speech is public domain. All 24,000 words are available at Project Gutenberg.

I hope, Sir, that notwithstanding the austerity of the Chair, your good nature will incline you to some degree of indulgence towards human frailty… . We are at this very instant nearly as free to choose a plan for our American Government as we were on the first day of the session. If, Sir, we incline to the side of conciliation, we are not at all embarrassed (unless we please to make ourselves so) by any incongruous mixture of coercion and restraint. We are therefore called upon, as it were by a superior warning voice, again to attend to America; to attend to the whole of it together; and to review the subject with an unusual degree of care and calmness.

2085 reads

Cruz, DeSantis Portray the Left As Demonic, the Right As God’s True Followers

“You’ve got to be strong,” said DeSantis at the end of his speech. “You’ve got to put on the full armor of God. You’ve got to take a stand, take a stand against the Left’s schemes. You’ve got to stand your ground. You’ve got to be firm. You will face flaming arrows, but take up the shield of faith and fight on.” - C.Leaders

638 reads

Should Christians think biblically about our politics or think politically about our faith?

"The church, the body of believers, has a key role in the political process. But that role has to be marked by humility and reflection. It also has to be marked by a commitment to be more faithful to the Word of God than we are to either political party." - Bill Haslam

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Let Us Reason Together

For those who hoped that our experience of living in times of crisis might end with 2020, I do not need to tell you that your hopes have already been dashed.

We might consider the string of crises that date back to last March as separate events, or we might think of them as one multi-faceted whole. We might also discuss those who appear to have engineered them, manipulated them or benefited from them.

But one thing is for sure: We are living in a time of national crisis, and our way of life has been altered—likely forever—in ways that we could not have imagined 12 months ago.

The latest round of crisis erupted before us on Wednesday, as a day that many anticipated would bring high political drama somehow escalated into life-and-death chaos through an unprecedented assault on the United States Capitol building.

We who are only able to watch these events from afar wonder how many of them are largely gamesmanship—distractions to take our eyes off of the Great Reset that world leaders promise, beginning this month; or whether the promised reset itself is merely political theater.

It is very difficult to know what to say about any of these issues. First of all, do any of us have enough of the facts to say anything meaningful at all? Secondly, what might we say that cannot be disproven—or, at least, found to be obsolete—by the time it is posted? And what is there to be said, really, that has not been said a million times already?

Ah, there is the point!

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