The theological problem at the center of evangelical politics
The author may or may not be correct in her philosophy of modern Christianity but I would like to add that as an American I want zero participation in any of this. I don't believe in the repurposed fables of Neolithic mythologies found in the Old Testament or the dubious historicity of a man who may or may not have existed as a singular historical figure or even existed at all, who is the cornerstone of the New Testament.
Please leave me out of all of it. This certainly includes politics and social morality. Secular institutions and democracy are the tools modern humanity should wield to continue into our future, not a indecipherable old dusty tome of made up stories written by endless authors and retranslated hundreds of times through the grapevine over thousands of years.
Please indulge yourselves in your tax free churches, privately at home or even pray out loud whenever and wherever you like as long as it doesn't infringe on other Americans' freedoms and rights to not forcibly be a part of it. That goes for all other religions and even philosophies as well. After all, it's a free country so let's keep it that way.
Some avoid using the word "kingdom" because its implications of power, domination, and hierarchy are so strong. Yet, there does not seem to be a valid alternative. The "beloved community" is good, in itself, but does not convey the same meaning as "kingdom of God." In this essay, you use the word freely. What are your thoughts?
If the Founding Father's had had the same opinion as Andy Stanley, Andy Stanley probably wouldn't live in a country were he is free to mention Christ at all.
I've been thinking a lot about God's kingdom and how we express it here and now. Thank you for such a helpful post.
Thank you - this resonated very powerfully with me. Thinking of the laws of the King in Deuteronomy + Samuel's misgivings to coronating Saul. I think there *is* a bit of tension between God saying "You are my slaves" (as opposed to Pharaoh's) and the bottom-up polis you describe - but that tension is real life.
Administrators would not accept my post for our private FB church page because it didn't meet the new session adopted Communication Covenant. I did not listen to interview. Saddened by decision.
And still is-" The great Christian heresy was believing that Jesus Christ would be a new Caesar."
Andy Stanley let the Georgia legislature have it: https://www.christianitydaily.com/articles/15305/20220318/andy-stanley-blasts-legislators-leaders-for-stoking-division.htm
How great is the theological and Biblical darkness of people like Stanley. How do these people get away with perverting the Gospel so significantly? A clear prophetic voice standing against this pseudo-Christianity and Biblical abuse in all its inadequacy needs to be strong and constant. America is creating its own hell. Witness the Supreme Court today. Makes me proud to be a Canadian. The God worshipped by millions of Americans is becoming more and more of a useful abstraction under the guise of a perverted American religiosity. The result will not be good. American young people will continue to join the ranks of the 'nones' and 'dones' and who can blame them?
My book Escape Artists just went on sale for $1.99. They must know we're both on substack!
Love what you write here about how there is only one lane and that the manifestation of the Kingdom of God requires political acts (excuse me if I'm warping what you wrote more eloquently above). The mix of politics and religion is something my own family debates, and since we're split between conservatives and liberals, it's often a heated one. I'll be sure to send this around.
Thank you for articulating this so clearly and so well. How helpful this is!
Thanks for making the point that white evangelicalism does not equal "the entirety of Christianity."
So good Diana! Clearly said. Once again you have put words to my intuition. Keep up being courageous and loving. Thanks for your voice.
I agree mostly. I would like to see a clear distinction between party politics (the tribal stuff, including the church tribe) and the politics of the polis.
Dear Diana. It is always joyful, and thought provoking to read your comments. YES to your view of life. May we gather together as human family to uplift these values and this love. Thank you for putting out there your challenging, but loving words.
Jen-Beth ( from Canada)
I think the lanes Andy speaks of include many of the thoughts you are sharing. Could you ask him your questions directly in place of concluding he is not living in all lanes? I don't think it's fair to draw conclusions from an interview where your questions are not asked.
It's very easy, on both sides of the church / political movement, to label people black and white, when in fact some, many, are in the process of opening up and hearing how their personal understanding of God's truth is changing. And for me that is God's redemption at work in our hearts.