This is a small foray into a much bigger and complex topic related to the cries for social justice.
Social Justice is the burning issue of the day.
Not because it really is the burning issue; but, because it has been decided it will be the key issue by those who are the manipulators of what we hear and see via the various outlets of news and information.
Make no mistake about it: this is pure, unadulterated manipulation. When you get yourself caught up in it you can lose all perspective and find yourself down a road you never intended to go, but you are there and it is often unclear how to retreat.
We have been rather silent on the whole issue, and this is intentional.
We have many articles and videos and messages saved on the topic of social justice.
We have books we have read, and we have talked quite a bit about it privately.
With the exception of one podcast on Racism and Riots, and a few pointed comments in various other podcasts we’ve shown a reluctance to get our voices out there to be heard.
Instead we pointed you to some good sources who speak well on the subject, and it did our hearts good to then see several of our listeners begin to share quotes and articles by those people.
You cannot reason with a mob. Right now that is all there really is: a mob of little children in adult bodies running around cities having a tantrum.
They are being cheered and lionized for it by the elite who want a radical paradigm shift to occur through revolution. They just don’t want to get their own hands dirty in the process.
Add to that the fact that we live in a time where if you are unhappy and you perceive that somehow someone said something slightly off target that you can just cancel them. Shut their business down. Destroy their vehicle. Crowd shame them in every way possible. Shut down their social media accounts. Beat them. Get them fired from their job. It really doesn’t matter what is done, they just cancel you.
So how do we try to speak wisdom in that reality?
We are only speaking about the general issue of social justice at this point. What about the reality we see unfolding before us within the visible church in America?
There is a new orthodoxy that is emerging and if you can’t sign on then you are going to be canceled as well.
Sermons and blog posts and little videos abound telling us how we need to think one way or another because that is the Christian way.
We are pretty convinced that if the Church can’t figure out something as simple as believer’s baptism, then it is doubtful that we will create a unified understanding of human equality and social justice. And yes, we really do think that the issue of baptism is simple as that.
So when we see prominent pastors saying that you either get on board with their new “wokeness” or leave their church our eyebrows raise up a bit. Actually, a lot.
If we hear the idea that social justice is a “gospel issue” again we may vomit.
When you have Thabiti tweet this there is a problem: “What's needed is: 1. Solidarity with us *as Black people*. 2. Your emphasizing solidarity with Black people to such an extent that we're in turn freed to accept and emphasize solidarity in Christ. Until that happens, we'll have to choose Black solidarity b4 Xian to live.”
You can read it as a part of a larger thread of his.
In the cities we live and minister in it is a tinder box of simmering anger. And all the while we have pulpits who are either silent or help encourage people to think in a manner inconsistent with the bible all the while claiming it is biblical.
Now we even are hearing conversations about an impending civil war within the nation. And questions are being asked if it is biblical for the Christian to participate in such a war.
We have brothers-in-Christ who are police officers who wonder if they can even continue going to their church. They once were viewed as people worthy of respect, now they are the problem with racial and social injustice.
Add to this the fact of a major election coming up, the so-called pandemic that is crippling our economy and allowing state and local governments to grab even more power, and you have what is affectionately known as 2020.
In other words, there are so many ways you can deal with social justice and that is part of the challenge. So we are trying to back into this hot mess in a way that can perhaps help our church members, and perhaps those who also listen in as well.
This podcast will only serve as a brief introduction to how Christians and politics mix together, but we hope it will get us all thinking more and talking less as we consider the Christian and politics.
There are few things that affect us more than the government.
This is a reality we often don’t realize until we try to do something new.
Built a fence?
Dig a pond?
Sell a product?
Create a medicine?
Shoot a gun?
Make some food?
When you think about the upcoming election for president or your governor or Senator or Congressman you should be asking yourself certain questions.
War in Afghanistan.
Freedom of education.
Freedom of religion.
These are some key ones that have major consequences in our lives. You might include police powers, local government powers to the list as well.
Our point is simple:
Politics is not something to be casual about as it intrudes into every part of our life.
So, with this in mind we will give a few points related to government and politics to think about and then develop it a bit, including some thoughts on war. Hopefully by that time we will be able to weigh in a bit more on the social justice challenges that are before us all.
How did government come about?
Not from man, but from God.
Romans 13:1 - "Let every person be in subjection to the governing authorities. [Why? Two reasons given] For (1) there is no authority except from God, and (2) those which exist are established by God."
In fact, the first sense of emerging governments is found in Genesis 9.
After the flood God gives a series of laws out to Noah.
In Genesis 9:6 it is written: "Whoever sheds man's blood, By man his blood shall be shed, For in the image of God He made man.”
It is here that we see the beginnings of justice played out and that there was a role that society played in punishing wrongdoers.
It is also showing the harsh reality that sin exists and therefore there needs to be a structure in place that allows for issues of right and wrong to be resolved and executed.
This continued to evolve so that by Genesis 10 we see a man named Nimrod come into view...and we have the first mention of a kingdom–one that led to the tower of Babel in chapter 11.