Friday, January 30, 2009

Some Good Stuff to Ponder [SK]

John Piper does what most pastors won't do: confront the President of the United States during a Sunday morning sermon. That's courage, and we need more leadership like John's if we are to turn things around.

Professor Micah Watson of Union University has a piece entitled, Obama, Abortion and the Promise of Racial Equality:

Sadly, though, that hope for a better future is not available to all young black human beings. This promise is undercut by the ugly truth that the youngest blacks in America first have to survive the harrowing gauntlet that is their first 40 weeks of existence. The latest data portray a stunning picture of gross racial inequality when it comes to the lives taken through abortions.

J.P. Moreland (Talbot School of Theology) explains why evangelicals and their pastors shoud engage the political process, not retreat from it:

I think that Christians believe the Bible has something to say about everything. The Bible has something to say about science, it has something to say about sex in marriage, it has something to say about money. Well why wouldn’t the Bible has something to say about the state? It doesn’t make any sense to me that the Bible would be silent about this one topic when it has something to say about virtually everything else including art, history and so on. So I think what pastors have to do is to simply teach their congregations and lead by example about what the Bible says about the role of the state in public life. I think it’s more important to teach a general political theology than it is to get involved in specific issues from the beginning, because it’s going to be your political philosophy that informs those issues. And so if I were a pastor, I would begin to develop a theology about what the Bible says about the role of the state.

Melinda Penner writes of the tolerance bargin.

1 comment:

  1. What does the Bible say about the state? That is a thought provoking question. It made me think, anyway.

    When we say "state" I think we usually mean government, and the Bible does say something about government. The Old Testament focuses on what right government should look like, using the nation of Israel as an example. The laws of Israel were from God and can serve as a model of what right laws for a country would look like. There were kings in Israel, and we can read their histories, and in the books of Kings and Chronicles God says which ones did what was right in God's sight and which one's did evil in God's sight. Those that did evil were simply those that did not obey God's laws and led the nation to disobey God in various ways, particularly idolotry. Eventually both Israel and Judah went into captivity (at different times) because of their unfaithfulness to God, and God rebukes the whole nation for its sins, even though the people were led into sinning by unrighteous kings.

    We can also learn from Daniel 2:37-38 and other passages that it is God who puts people in positions of national leadership, and there are times when God gives a nation the kind of leader it deserves (Isaiah 3:1-5). So if there are times when our country has an unrighteous or unwise president, it may be that it is God's judgement that this is the kind of leader we deserve, because of our sins as a nation.

    In the New Testament, we are told in 1 Timothy 2:1-2 to pray for national leaders. In the case of a president who has ideas that would harm the country if successfully implemented, I can only pray that God will lead him to make the decisions that will be good for the country in the long run.

    I notice that you have a number of posts about abortion. I am hopeful that Roe vs. Wade will be overturned in our lifetimes. The current president seems to be very liberal or socialist in his views and I think many of his policies will not work well for the country, in the area of economics, world affairs, the war against terrorism, etc. The fruits of his policies will be more clearly seen by the next congressional election in two years, and there may be a backlash that would put conservatives in control of the congress. That may be reinforced in another two year putting a conservative president in the office with a conservative congress to back him up. If that happens, there is a real chance that conservative justices would be appointed to the Supreme Court who will eventually overturn Roe vs. Wade.

    The big effect of such a reversal would be to give the nation a real choice about abortion for the first time since the Roe vs. Wade ruling was made. Up till now, it has been the choice of the Supreme Court to allow abortion, but if Roe vs. Wade is overturned, it will become the choice of the nation through its selection of the president and the members of congress. The abortion issue would heat up and move from the courts to the legislatures. The legislatures are more responsive to the public will than the courts, and if after Roe vs. Wade is overturned, if the country still chooses to allow abortion, then the population of our country would become responsible and guilty before God more than ever before for this modern holocaust. Then I would fear for this country, that God's judgement and punishment may be upon us in short order.


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