Thursday, March 8, 2012

One Nasty Stew

This past Sunday a Tulsa church hosted Republican Rick Santorum to be its guest speaker. People held up political banners to enthusiastically rally their support for the candidate, cameras rolling of course. This marriage of church and political candidacy has increasing become a disturbing trend in my eyes. I personally feel it has no place in a church. A social cause--yes. Encouraging people to vote, why not. But pushing political views such as promoting a particular candidate for presidency, or bashing President Obama's healthcare plan--no. By the way, I did not support President Obama in the previous election--shocked?

This church/politic blend increasingly strays away from the Gospel. Church hierarchies (pastors, clergy, etc) promoting their own political agendas, and the candidates most happily promoting theirs in church services under the banner of God. Myself, I can see churches discussing the oppression of certain groups--the poor for example. Nowadays, it seems quite the contrary however. It has become more like bashing the poor.

Mr. Prophet: "Tonight, we have a most important message. Detoxifying the planet by electing the right public official, in the name of Christ."

Mr. Unbeliever: "Why did you not step over that homeless man on the way into the sanctuary? He yelled out when your foot crushed his hand!"

Mr.Pastor: "Let me interject. Of course, he stepped on him. We got a presidential candidate speaking in our service tonight! Do you think we have time for the likes of the homeless when we got a tea party candidate coming here?"

It is not a good witness, contrary to what a lot of people think.

As a former atheist, I can tell you what I would think. I would think how I used to think--people are promoting their political agendas under the guise of religion. As an unbeliever even adhering to a different faith, my head would reason relatively the same. My next thought would be to dismiss any other message this group adhered too--including the Gospel. So not a good witness.

Two entities meet in the darkness of the night: one person's presidential platform and a more than willing church merge to promote personal political beliefs in a church service. The publicity might do wonders for both!!

Lord Jesus, please come quickly.