August 2022, Antioch - Notes from the Gospel and Culture forum on how Christians ought to interact with politics.
- When were all stressed out we're not at our best (and we're all stressed so don't assume others are at their best)
- Conflict is not the problem. Our ability to handle conflict is the problem. We can engage in hard conversations if we develop the tools
- We have a kingdom responsibility to leverage our votes to help people on the underside of power
a conflicted allegiance
- Nation vs kingdom
- Cross and country - Christian nationalism - an errant belief that America is God's chosen nation and must be defended as such
- says God will save the world thru the US
- When we say God has put a person in power, we can attribute their actions as the will of God, and unquestionably go with it.
- This can lead to using violence to try to make our nation more like how we think it should be as a Christian nation
BILLY GRAHAM AFTER WATERGATE: "in my earlier days... I tended to identify the kingdom of God with the American way of life. I don't think like that now."
going too far the other way
- Don't get apolitical or impartial. Keeping the church out of politics is not helpful to people under oppression.
- You're not taking responsibility if you say "Jesus not politics"
- Our relationship with Jesus should not be static. We should be willing to evaluate and reconstruct or faith.
- Democracy may not be perfect but it is our tool
MARTIN LUTHER KING JR.: "It may be true that the law cannot make a man love me, but it can stop him from lynching me, and I think that's pretty important."
- We have a responsibility to change laws.
- Be generous without compromising our core convictions
- Be willing to be misunderstood. If others don't think you're following God correctly they may be wrong
- Negative means never lead to positive ends
- Proximity and story, build relationships
BARBARA BROWN TAYLOR: The only clear line I draw these days is this: when my religion tries to come between me and my neighbor, I will choose my neighbor because Jesus never commanded me to love my religion.