Should our religious beliefs inform our political views? Of course.

The notion that our political views shouldn’t be informed by our religious beliefs is absurd. Those who hyperventilate about “theocracies” and “separation of church and state” (a phrase that many people now realize wasn’t in the Constitution) are just trying to silence Bible-believing Christians. If you take their views to their logical conclusion it would mean we should always do the opposite of what our religious beliefs would dictate.  Our Christian views inform our political views about stealing and murder being wrong, so do we have to be silent on those as well?

And it would mean that those people would have to use the same arguments against religious people on the Left.  But Leftists have used those canards for years in the most hypocritical ways.  Here’s a recent example:

Good Morning America’s Sara Haines responded that she “loved” that “we’re standing together” on support for the LGBT community but warned religion needed to stay out of politics. Considering Islam was the religion which drove the shooter to commit mass-murder, you would think that particular one would be getting the lecture. But Haines followed Goldberg’s lead and scolded Christian conservative politicians to keep their religions “at home” and “in your family” but not in “our politics.”

Here’s a simple response to anyone who says things like that: Please show me one place in recorded history, including anywhere on the Internet, where you used the same reasoning to silence the “Christian” Left.  After all, they attempt to “force” their religious views on us at every turn: They insist that Jesus is so pro-abortion that it must be legal to kill the child up to her first breath*, that you have to petition the government to redistribute wealth by force, that you must teach 5 yr. old children how great the gay lifestyle is and how they might not “really” be their biological gender, that Jesus is against capital punishment, that you can’t control your borders, that you can’t go to war to protect your country, etc.  They are loud and proud about “forcing” their religious views on the populace, so why don’t you apply your beliefs to them?

As you can imagine, all you will get is crickets chirping.  They live 24×7 in their Leftist education / media / government / entertainment echo chambers so they don’t realize that they are being so transparently hypocritical.  If voting in line with your religious views is always wrong then they should apply that to those on the Left as well.  But they don’t, because they are just using a rhetorical trick to shut you up.

Don’t let them get away with it.  We are self-governed, in the sense that we elect our representatives. Therefore, we are obliged to let our morality influence our political views.

Also consider that one of the complaints about Christianity is that parts of the church were “silent” during the Holocaust, slavery or civil rights movements, which in some people’s eyes implied approval.

The “wall of separation” argument has been misunderstood and misapplied. It is not in any founding government documents. Even when Jefferson wrote about the “wall” in a private letter, it was not in the context of the government limiting religious activities in public. It was to limit the power of the government to prohibit or interfere with religious expressions.

If you want to bring Jefferson’s letter into the debate, then fairness requires bringing in the background letters of the founders which reflect how they really felt about God and government.

Here is the First Amendment in its entirety:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Now focus on the complete portion of the first amendment relating to religion: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof . . . ” That’s it!

Was the intent of the 1st Amendment to restrict religious liberties or protect them?  You need to answer that before addressing any related issues.  The Bill of Rights was written to give rights to citizens, not government.

The first freedom in the First Amendment is religious freedom. The Amendment was made to give religious freedom to religious people so Congress could not pass laws limiting their freedoms. It was not written to protect atheists from religious expression in the public square. If you look at successive drafts of the First Amendment, this becomes more and more clear.

According to the Constitution, any state could have their own religion (provided that their own constitution permitted it). Not that I think that would be a good idea. Also, there is nothing to suggest that churches can’t partner with the government (though I am leery of churches that come to rely on government aid).

But do I want, for example, religion taught in public schools? Definitely not. There are countless theologically bankrupt churches I wouldn’t send my kids to on a bet. So why would I trust that any government sponsored religious teachings would be doctrinally sound?

The U.S. does not become a de facto theocracy if our religious beliefs inform our politics. We still need go in the public square to persuade the countless non-Christians that our views make sense. For example, when I train people in pro-life reasoning at the pregnancy center where I volunteer, I always break the reasoning into secular and religious arguments. It is actually quite simple to argue the pro-life position without using the Bible.

If atheists or people of other faiths disagree with us, that is fine. It is part of the process. But anytime someone acts as if your religious beliefs shouldn’t inform your political views, they are wrong.  The 1st Amendment protects that right, it doesn’t restrict it.

So while I wouldn’t want pastors endorsing candidates from the pulpit, the notion that the Left gets to label something as political to prevent us from talking about it in church (e.g., abortion) is ridiculous.  Why would any Christian think that something is outside the sovereignty of God?

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*The “Christian” Left is far more extreme in their pro-abortion agenda than the average pro-choice person.  They insist that life begins at the first breath and insist that Jesus is fine with killing unwanted children until that point.  I realize how ridiculous their views sound and how many people must think I’m making a straw-man argument.  But that is just because their own words are so clear and extreme:”According to the bible, a fetus is not a living person with a soul until after drawing its first breath.”  More here about how to respond, with full, in-context quotes from them.

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16 thoughts on “Should our religious beliefs inform our political views? Of course.”

  1. How come it’s okay for secular humanists (including the liberals who don’t realize that is their religion) and atheists to have their religion informing their political views — including forcing their political views on the rest of us!

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  2. Recently, Obama claimed his support for men in women’s restrooms, locker rooms and changing facilities was supported by his “Christian” beliefs. I don’t know that he actually cited which passage does the trick, but regardless, he had no trouble insisting his edict was based on his religious beliefs. Oh. The. Horror!!! The real horror of course being that he actually expects real Christians to buy into that line of BS.

    I would also point to the many cases where a Democratic politician (both Obama and Bubba Clinton come to mind) speaks politically from a church pulpit during a Sunday service. Oh. The. Horror!!!! The real horror being that any self-respecting pastor would invite either to speak to his congregation.

    Now for a couple of disagreements:

    I don’t believe that there were any real arguments that justified putting an end to religion in public schools. That is to say, it was specifically the result of atheist whining, not any real problems that resulted from teacher-led prayers or things of that nature. I can’t recall any, though there may have been isolated incidents. Had it never ended, I don’t think our culture would be quite as decayed as it so clearly is now. Now that it has been eliminated for so long, I doubt it could be re-introduced without even louder whining that what led to its elimination in the first place. I see no reason why it must be outlawed, however, as I don’t believe schools should be ruled by federal regulation (banish the Dept. of Ed. to oblivion now!), but governed locally, where some may want it while others don’t.

    I absolutely want good pastors to make a religious case for supporting or opposing political candidates. I don’t see what the problem is. I don’t want politics to replace the Gospel, but there is an absolute need to constantly stress how Christianity has a place everywhere in life. To demonstrate why a candidate is not a proper choice for a Christian (or why another one might be) is a legitimate endeavor. Applying Christianity to such selections is a righteous teaching. For example:

    Bernie Sanders is a socialist. His policy proposals are socialistic. There is a legitimate reason why Christians should oppose socialist policies and of course those who would push them.

    Both Bernie and Hillary support a variety of policies that are (or should be) anathema to Christians. One cannot preach against policies and then pretend there’s a problem preaching against those who would enact or mandate them.

    Don’t forget the Black Robed Regiment. I don’t think they avoided talking about King George as they rallied the citizens to fight for independence.

    I have begun reading a book I’ve had for a while, written by Dr. Wayne Grudem, entitled “Politics According to the Bible: A Comprehensive Resource for Understanding Modern Political Issues in Light of Scripture”. In light of a discussion at Stan’s regarding voting, and a more recent one at Timothy’s on the subject of religion and politics, I’m more motivated to read this to get Grudem’s perspective. I’m thinking he’s in favor of Christians influencing politics at the very least. I’ll try to give a review when I get through it.

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  3. It’s true. “Keep your religion (the one we don’t like … if it’s one we like, it’s okay) to yourself” is the rule. What I cannot fathom is how ANYONE would think that ANY deeply held beliefs would be ABLE to be relegated to “private only”. Just a broad one as an example, if “Love your neighbor” is a deeply held religious belief, we ought to keep that private? If we do not make public decisions from deeply held beliefs, what DO we use?

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  4. What do we do when the greater society moves beyond the rules of logic?

    We point out the errors in the thinking and speech of these dupes and wolves again and again. Do they care? No. They hate us even more.

    Do the young people listen to what we’re trying to say? Perhaps some. But I’m not so sure those few that do are not just “being polite”.

    So what exactly are we doing with our blogs? I know we are encouraging each other in our increasing isolation in the new America. Thankfully we have this.

    Is my reasoning off in some way? I’m sure feeling pretty blue.

    Alec

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    1. All the logic and reasoning from God’s word has no affect unless it is also accompanied by the work of the Spirit in the heart of a man. “He who has ears to hear, let him hear”. It does not mean that we must stop proclaiming. It only means that we are dependent upon the work of God.for it to be effective. Therefore, let us proclaim boldly, as Eternity Matters does well, and look to the Sovereign God for his work of mercy and grace in men’s hearts to believe.

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      1. Bret, yes of course. I agree with you 100%

        What gets me is the mental crippling. We see it in the inability of people to even understand basic parts of the gospel, which is the most important thing for any of us. But it’s greater than that. We’re witnessing a devolution of a whole class of human beings.

        Thought, speech, intelligence are the gifts of God. To see the stunting all around us is worse than the intentionally broken and poorly set legs of children beggars in places like Calcutta. In both cases, something irreplaceable has been taken away. But how much worse it is to reduce people to a level lower than the animals.

        It sounds like hyperbole, but I’ve been watching this for years now. The only reason we all don’t see it is because we’re so close to it – and the implications if the Lord tarries are too terrible to contemplate.

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    2. Hi Alec,
      You have a keen insight about this. I am impressed. Sure, it is discouraging. What we see echos the predictions made by Jesus in Matthew 24 and by Peter in 2 Peter 2.

      In the meantime, our conversation (meaning our online interactions and our lifestyle) should seek to warn the lost and encourage and lift up the believer. Be strong, my brother. Never give up doing what is good.

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      1. I meant incoherent in not taking into account that Trump is a pathological liar. That’s completely illogical. How can anyone take anything Trump says at face value?  

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      1. This writer does not prove his point at all. His premise is that the Christian leaders are power seekers not piety seekers but he shows no proof of it. He does mention the odd things that Trump says about Christianity and Christmas, but that’s Trumps problem not theirs. I see no evidence that these men are seeking power and influence. What they are seeking is to be heard. The Left are power seekers.

        It’s not a sin to support Trump for election over and against an even more vile opponent as Hillary Clinton. And it is certainly not wrong to talk with Trump and ask him what he thinks about issues that concern many Christians.

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