This post explores why the United States is not a Christian nation. This also looks at why there is no covenant between God and the United States, and why Paul did not desire to change Rome through political means. Next why we Christians need to stop engaging in party politics permanently. Also this looks at the latest commentary by Bill Maher on evangelical Christians and hypocrisy. Is it a coincidence that we have gone from Mark Driscoll’s pussified nation to Donald Trumps’ grab them by the pussy culture? This post is the closest I will look at Christians and politics, and its created in part due to an event at McLean Presbyterian Church this Friday night.
“I think every good Christian ought to kick Falwell right in the ass.”
“The glory of Christianity is to conquer by forgiveness.”
And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.
1 Corinthians 13:13 NKJV
Lincoln Memorial at night
Screenshots of the Dr. Os Guinness event at McLean Presbyterian Church.
I have been thinking of doing this post for a while now, and what triggers this post is an event this Friday at McLean Presbyterian Church here in the D.C. area. Dr. Os Guinness is going to speak about how Christians should respond to culture. After all in the email sent by the C.S. Lewis Institute Staff it says that with a upcoming Trump Administration now is a time to reflect on the role Christians should play in the days to come. I have written previously about McLean Presbyterian Church, in “How to Respond to a Faith Crisis? An Agnostic Tries the Church and Learns the Church Cannot Help.” In that post I talk about an agnostic showing up and a church that commits an epic fail in how to engage an outsider. But having written that there are a number of things that need to be stated, because the simple fact is that we are not a Christian nation. Its bad theology, its hurting the faith, its keeping people from the Christian faith, and its hurting people in general.
There is No Covenant Between God and the United States
Lets clear something up and come out and state it. The United States is not a Christian nation. The Constitution and the Declaration of Independence state nothing about the Christian heritage or role God plays in the United States. As a Christian we can say that there was a covenant between God and Israel, as that is in scripture I believe. But there is nothing in the Bible that talks about a covenant between God and the United States. After all when the Bible was created the United States did not even exist. Do a lot of Christians realize how arrogant and pompous they are when they act and believe as if there is such a covenant? So God cares about the United States…but not India? God cares about the United States but not Kenya, Zimbabwe, or Nigeria? God cares for the United States but not Kazakhstan? This is just bad theology and it amazes me that a large number of people have bought into this. You know what it means? It quite clearly states that many Christians do not know their Bible.
Did Paul Try and Change Rome?
Here is another point of contention that needs to be claimed. One of the reasons why I struggle with the Washington, D.C. area is that it attracts a lot of interesting and unique personalities. But this is especially true in the church. Here it attracts people who want to engage the government and for many in some form the culture wars. I have never understood why so many Christians act like this. After all when Paul traveled to Rome did Paul seek to change the Roman political system? Did Paul engage in party politics and form organizations to lobby for his values? Or did Paul work within the system and submit to it and live a life that resulted in love and bold concern and compassion? After all didn’t Paul pray for those around him? Didn’t Paul stay near his prison cell after an earthquake so his guard would not have to commit suicide? Paul didn’t set out to change the Roman political system, yet what do we see today? We see many Christians who engage in this. They feel like they have to engage in the political system to try and change the government. Do many of these people have faith? If so, is it in God or political power? Its absolutely disgusting that this happens.
Why Christians Need to Permanently Disengage From Party Politics
Christians choosing to engage in party politics is causing incredible harm. Quite simply it needs to stop. You can not mix politics and faith and not create something toxic. The message of the Christian faith is simple….we are broken, sinful and we need God for redemption. The Christian faith should not be about engaging in politics, using the Bible as a weapon, or playing to the fears of others. Christians should be known for their love. Philip Yancey has written before about the lust for power that Christians engage in, and Phil is quite right. He talks about how politics and faith corrupts both the faith, the church and also the state. There is a reason why Europe is so secular today. There was a time when the state was married to the church and that created profound problems. The backlash that created in time is still being felt today.
But there are additional ramifications. It keeps people from the Christian faith. It creates unnecessary problems and division. It builds walls that otherwise would not exist. Its turns people off and it creates profound harm. The engagement in politics I would also suggest is sinful. Its a modern form of idolatry. You can’t serve two masters which is exactly what many Christians are doing.
Bill Maher on Evangelical Christians
Recently Bill Maher had a video about evangelicals and politics. This post is the closest I am going to get to when it comes to politics. Because simply I have no desire to open that can of worms here. I have the video above and Maher spoke about evangelicals in the context of the election. After all he said that the election revealed the hypocrisy of evangelical Christians. This is so true…after all for years many evangelicals spoke about character. Character. Character and character. So after all these years of character what did many evangelicals do? They decided to throw their support behind a man who boasted of grabbing women by the pussy. In the end it was the pussy grabber who they supported. Its rich when you consider that we had Mark Driscoll’s rants about a pussified nation, and have since then had to contend with evangelicals supporting a pussy grabber. Is there a link? Is evangelical Christian culture flawed in that one sense? Does this also help explain why Mark Driscoll is up and running again in Phoenix after his profane teaching in Seattle? So here is the situation….at McLean Presbyterian Church this Friday many Christians who likely voted for a pussy grabber are going to attend and listen about how they can impact culture. Is that how Christians can sleep at night? Create feel good programs and lectures that allow them to feel like dutiful Christians? Meanwhile Jesus is weeping over this kind of action in the church. Bill Maher correctly points out evangelicals being hypercritical. We should start out by admitting the that we are wrong to have married politics. We should renounce that we have engaged.
What Should Christians Do?
One of the things I love about this blog is that I love the people I get to interact with on a regular basis. I get to exchange ideas with people all across the board, from those who have been abused in a church setting to those who will never go to a church who are outside the faith. I love them all…my hope is that this post will give organizations like McLean Presbyterian and other churches an opportunity to self reflect on why they exist and consider things from a new perspective. After all according to Warren Throckmorton 81% of evangelicals who will show up at McLean Presbyterian this Friday will have in all likelihood supported a pussy grabber a few days beforehand. For those outside the Christian faith can I say that I am sorry for their behavior. I am sorry for this representation of faith.
So what should Christians do? How should they engage and move forward? Its simple live a life of unconditional love with no strings attached.
What does that mean?
It means loving the atheist and caring for them with no strings attached. It means that you love the annoying cube neighbor who keeps cooking fish in the office microwave that is revolting to you. It means that you befriend the Muslim and hang out with that person. It means visiting your neighbor who is in the hospital and helping them out when they need help. It means helping an older person with grocery shopping from time to time. Its the simple and smallest things that scream the loudest. Can you imagine if this is what Christians were known for? Would I be embarrassed? After all I am more to the edge of the movement anyhow. This will be my only and final post on this topic. Thanks guys and I love you.