Friday, December 19, 2008

Conservatism Is NOT the Gospel

I know that when I write posts on my Blog there are times when I write specifically about things pertaining the Kingdom of God. For instance, when I proclaim the Gospel or write specifically about the Bible's message, I am not attempting to be political or merely moralistic.

There are other times when I write specifically about the Kingdom of man. For instance my last post was not about the Gospel. It was about the Law of God as it pertains to our government and the rule of law. Hopefully I have been clear over the years that even though I am a Christian and that my Christian beliefs inform my views, they are not the same thing as politics.

Over the years I have grown in my understanding of the Two-Kingdom model that the New Testament teaches. The church is not the government and vice versa. The Preacher of the Gospel is never to be confused with the Magistrate and his duties to the State. Each has their duties in separate Kingdoms.

Today I received an email that not only confuses the Two-Kingdom model, it betrays the Christian faith. In this article of CitizenLink, Radio Talk-Show host, Glenn Beck, is interviewed as if he were a Christian. This article states that Glenn Beck "has been spreading the conservative political gospel through his syndicated radio program." Please note the phrase "conservative political gospel". Let me be absolutely clear. There is no such thing as a political Gospel!

Christianity is not Democrat nor Republican. It has nothing to do with the United States. As wonderful as the united States has been to Christians, it is not the Kingdom of God. Christians from our founding have disagreed over the methods by which we should govern ourselves (even the phrase governing ourselves is a new idea). Christians have disagreed over the best means by which the laws of God should be enforced and to what extent. Even the Constitution Party (which clearly seeks to defend the laws of God) differs over the manner of the Two Party system as being unconstitutional and takes a stand against the War as violating the Constitution.

As a Christian I know that I live in these two Kingdoms simultaneously. I am a Conservative because I believe overall that Conservatism stands for the institutions that have given us the most freedom to succeed or fall and the most liberty from a government that seeks abuse power and become despotic.

As a Christian I also live under the Kingdom of God. This Kingdom is in the hearts of believers everywhere. It is the rule of God that is not of this world. Until this world passes away, we will not see the rule of God on earth in its consummate form.

I say all of this because so often non-Christians hear Christians and think they are trying to force their religion upon people through political means. I know we are simply seen that way and quite often there is not much we may do about it.

I also say this because Citizen Link is an arm of Focus on the Family. Focus claims to be an organization that supports the church As wonderful as Focus may be, they need to either go totally Kingdom of man or join a church and get out of politics. Psychologists should not be theologians. To send out a mass email talking about Glenn Beck as some kind of Christian that Christian Conservatives should model is absurd. I don't mean to say that as citizens of this world we shouldn't work with non-Christians such as Glenn Beck. We should and ought to to make a better society. But the confusion of promoting him as a Christian in order to do this and to involve this as a mission of Christians is also absurd. More on that tomorrow.

If you have bothered to read this far I will leave you with this. At the recent Together 4 the Gospel Conference, Mark Dever gave an excellent lecture on keeping the Gospel separate from politics and other areas of life. It is a must listen. When we attempt to make the Gospel into social action, Conservatives fall into the same trap 19th & 20th century Liberals have already done. Download Here.

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