For the Christian left to claim connection to true Christianity is to deny its leftist tendencies, and for them to claim connection to the aims of the political left is to deny its Christianity.
They seem to share more anger for fellow Christians than they do toward evil. And this reality, while unexplainable, is nevertheless present and growing in influence.
This week I entertained one of the main spokesmen for the movement, Dr. Tony Campolo. I asked him directly why his new book, “Letters to a Young Evangelical,” seemed to have such great disdain for the Christian right.
He responded, “It’s the sense that they come across as judgmental, they come across as being the people who have the whole answer to everything and are not willing to give [credulity] to any other point of view, and it’s that absolute closed mind set that emerges from that context.”
Dr. Campolo went on to complain, as is also reflected in his book, that in the 2004 election cycle there were ballot initiatives across 11 states to ratify marriage as a relationship between a man and a woman: “In almost every case in the marriage initiatives, the ballot measures were used to deny gays all kinds of other rights.” When asked for proof of this assertion, he cited two examples, neither of which held weight under even simple scrutiny – and he admitted as much to at least one of them.
Another key figure to this group is Jim Wallis, who preaches the gospel of helping the impoverished wherever he goes. His claim is that this is the single focus issue of his life’s work. He and Campolo both do so interestingly enough while complaining that the Christian right is only a “two issue” group – abortion and gays.
Neither is truthfully representing their positions in doing so, however. Both are on record opposing the efforts to defend biblical marriage from being redefined. Both viewed the state ballot initiatives as insincere, merely meant to gin up an angry evangelical riot in the voting booth. Both have branched out to embrace the false issue of humanity-caused global warming. Both also supported the Christian left’s newest star, Rick Warren, in the controversy his stubbornness dug himself into by insisting upon the right to have Barack Obama give advice at Warren’s recent AIDS conference.
All three men shun the thought of biblically based Christians standing firm against the creeping peril of evil in our culture. “Be more tolerant,” they would advise. “Reach out with love and understanding, not judgment and division.”
The Christian left is rife with such belief.
Unity, forgiveness, mercy and constant appeasement are to be more highly favored than righteousness, holiness, faithfulness and obedience.
In doing so, the Christian left also claims to align itself with liberal ideas for the cause of helping the poor, the oppressed and the downtrodden. When I asked Campolo for an example, he actually cited “a woman’s right … to vote.” What is this, 1920?
If Wallis, Warren and/or Campolo are reading this now, please hear this. There is a divide between liberals and conservatives over the relief of poverty, the easing of suffering and setting the enslaved free. The divide is not the substance, however, but rather the methods.
The American political left believes that only Americans should have the right to live in freedom – thus their hesitation and belligerence in advancing freedom in other corners of the globe. But is not freedom a gift from God, for his creation? The American political left is not concerned with the freedom and liberation of the unborn child, but they will speak at length about the evil of slavery that ended in the 1800s. It was not leftists that marched for full civil rights in the 1960s, and it was not Democrats who granted civil rights in the 1870s.
Wallis and company will argue for the relief of poverty but give political support to liberals in America who seek to keep the poor impoverished and dependent upon government for the well-being of their family and future. Conservatives are the ones who wish to see taxes reduced so that government revenues increase and safety net programs are insured – even as lower taxes improve the economy so fewer people need those government programs.
And who was it that brought relief in record supply to Tsunami and Katrina victims? Not the leftist academics, spoiled Hollywood starlets or the National Organization for Women.
It was the Bible-believing, faith-practicing, church-going religious right.
For biblical Christians to associate themselves in any way with the progressive leftists in America today is to associate oil with water.
So take your pick. Choose to be a faithful, biblically centered Christian, or a godless, amoral leftist – but the two do not go together.
Not if you’re sincere.