Category: Spiritual/Godly Comments


Christianity or Competence? by Chuck Colson

A few days ago I was on the air with Los Angeles’s outstanding drive-time host, Frank Pastore — a keen worldview thinker. Frank told me his phone lines had been burning up over the comments made by a prominent evangelical pastor who said that presidential candidate Mitt Romney belonged to a cult.

Should Christians vote for a Mormon? Is Mormonism a cult? Let me say right off: These questions are an enormous distraction in an important presidential campaign. The secular media is using the pastor’s comments to paint evangelicals as bigots. The Chicago Tribune is calling this “hate speech.”

 I want to say this to every Christian listening to my voice: Let’s stop criticizing candidates for their religious convictions.

And let me make a few things, as my former boss used to say, perfectly clear.

 First, there is no religious test for public office. If you don’t believe me, check out the Constitution of the United States, Article VI, Paragraph 3. The public statements of some evangelicals that they wouldn’t vote for Romney because of his Mormonism would cause the Founding Fathers to spin in their graves.

Second, as voters we are to choose the most competent people to be God’s magistrates to do justice, restrain evil and preserve order. That’s what the Bible calls for. And in our country, where we have the precious liberty of choosing our leaders, we are responsible for picking competent men and women. See Jethro’s advice to Moses in Exodus 18. While choosing men to help him judge the people, Moses was to select first of all competent men. Those men were also to be godly — that is, men of good moral standing and character.

Third, let me answer the question that is causing so much angst. Is the Mormon faith Christian? No. It is not. There are significant and un-reconciled doctrinal differences between Mormonism and Christianity, like the sole sufficiency of Christ and the exclusivity of the Bible.

For me to say there are such differences in not “hate speech.” To deny that there are differences would be disrespectful of the truth claims made by Mormons and degrades my own truth claims. No one in good conscience can do that.

Having said that, there may be no other group of people I appreciate more as co-belligerents than the Mormons. They are stalwarts on life, traditional marriage and religious liberty issues.

To sum up, I’m with Luther, who reportedly said that he would rather be governed by a competent Turk than an incompetent Christian.

Now I’ve never publicly endorse a candidate, and I’m not doing it now. But I would personally vote for a competent nonbeliever who would protect life, liberty and marriage, before I would vote for an incompetent Christian — or even a competent one — who would not stand for those overriding moral issues.

Our ultimate decision has to be based on what Augustine taught. We must live obediently in the City of Man as the best of citizens, doing our civic duty, which includes voting responsibly, as a reflection of our primary citizenship in the City of God.

Where does this leave us? Come on: Stop talking about the candidates’ religion. It’s distracting and it marginalizes Christianity in the public debate. Let’s continue instead to work to advance the Kingdom of God and pick, to the best of our ability, a candidate of competence and sound character who will preserve order and promote justice in our land.

I find lately that I am happiest when I am able to do or give something to someone else, expecting nothing in return, and for no other reason except to bring God glory…

Returning to Conservative Principles
Chuck Colson

As I told you last week on BreakPoint, Congressman Frank Wolf of Virginia, in an act of uncommon political courage, took to the floor of the House and openly exposed and denounced the special interests that have been holding Congress — and all of Washington — hostage.

And he named names. Unafraid to take on his own Republican party, he decried its blind obedience to uber-lobbyist Grover Norquist, a man who represents an array of special interests but who has worked his way into the inner councils of the Republican party.

Norquist and pledge supporters consider closing ridiculous tax loopholes to be the same thing as raising taxes. They will seek to block any effort to reform the tax code that will harm their clients: Mega-corporations and other moneyed interests. And they will seek to punish any politician who has the guts to try to close those loopholes. It’s outrageous, it’s destructive and it’s preventing Congress from putting our fiscal house in order.

But Wolf also made another argument in his bold speech that I think is important for every Christian to understand.

Wolf warned his colleagues that taking such a pledge violates the principles of true conservatism. He points out that the father of modern conservatism, 18th century British parliamentarian Edmund Burke, refused to take political pledges and denounced their “coercive authority” over elected officials.

Burke said that leaders must be free to employ their “unbiased opinion … mature judgment … [and] enlightened conscience.” They must not be held captive to any ideology or pledge.

Wolf also pointed out that the great American conservative thinker, Russell Kirk, held high the virtue of prudence among virtues for a true conservative leader. Kirk wrote that “to be prudent means to be judicious, cautious, sagacious. … A prudent statesman is one who looks before he leaps; who takes long view; who knows that politics is the art of the possible.”

Let me quote from Wolf’s magnificent speech:

“Conservatives, of all people, should not be locked into any ideological position. We are bearers of a conservative tradition. Conservatism is not an ideology; it’s not doctrine or dogma. It is a way of seeing life. It draws on the wisdom of the past to view events of the present. We all stand on the shoulders of the great people who have gone before us. That is why G. K. Chesterton described our experiment as ‘democracy of the dead’ because we care about the foundation laid by our forefathers.”

And I would add: Christians, of all people, should understand this, because all true Christians are, in a sense, conservative. We rely on revealed truth, we stand on the shoulders of that great cloud of witnesses who have gone before us. Today on my “Two-Minute Warning” video commentary, I talk more about the biblical understanding of taxes and justice — and how they apply to the issue of tax reform. Please go to ColsonCenter.org to watch it.

And listen to the words of Edmund Burke and to Frank Wolf.  I truly believe if we would return to conservative principles, stand on the shoulders of giants and be guided by prudence, we’d quickly see our way out of the ideological gridlock that is endangering our economy and our republic.

 

If Jews didn’t exist, the world would single out some other ethic group to blame everything on…like the Russians…or the English. I, for one, respect and bless the Jews whenever I can. One of my deepest fears is that the U.S. will turn its back on the Jews in their darkest hour. Ever since I learned that God said, “I will bless them that bless thee…and curse them that curse thee…” to Abraham referring to his descendants, I have felt obligated to maintain loyalty to their race. I certainly wouldn’t knowingly bring harm to, or even badmouth a Jew. Having said these things, There is no denying that the Jews are different. Practicing Jews are the first to admit they really are different from any other race. But their really not a race. Some would argue they are not even a religion at all. While they have a national identity, they are more distinct as a culture. And I believe the Western free nations must stand behind Israel, come what may…

 

I was asked to: Name a documentary that you think everyone should see. The one I want everyone to see is, “The Case For Christ” by Lee Strobel.

I am so thankful that God loved the world (including myself) enough to send Jesus of Nazareth to pay for its sin, that WHOSOEVER wants to, can turn to Him in repentance and be SAVED!

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