Filed under: Uncategorized
“The separation of religion from practical affairs of society is a convenient doctrine for those who fear that social change would threaten or modify their own political or economic or social self-interest.” William Stringfellow
It is time for us to be honest. The privatization of spirituality is hindering followers of Christ’s voice in the public square. I blame the personalistic Evangelical practical theology of private salvation. When you ask Jesus into your heart (a concept alien to the Bible) this makes salvation a private and exclusively interior act. This however runs counter to most if not all of the holy text. Salvation is a corporate act graciously bestowed upon communities of faith. From Moses, to the prophets, to Jesus and Paul this strange individualism is not really a part of their context. This is why it is so disheartening to hear people of faith retreat to these private faiths when great societal issues come to the fore in our society.
Martin Luther King Jr. rightly observed that “An individual has not started living until he can rise above the narrow confines of his individualistic concerns to the broader concerns of all humanity.” There is no private spirituality in the golden rule. It assumes that as a spiritual being we will be connected with our neighbors and their concerns.
We need a new movement of courageous voices in the church who are going to witness their love of neighbors by speaking out against the myriad of injustices in our society. Homelessness, bank fraud, predatory lending, usury, unemployment, rampant economic hoarding, hate crimes, dehumanization of immigrants, civil rights and pay disparities (especially in the church) can no longer be ignored by a people who claim to care for their neighbors.
You do not have to be a part of a certain political party or ideology to follow Christ’s clear message of hope. A message that his coming amongst us is to bring life and to bring it more abundantly. I would pray that we might look to the areas in our world where we are being convicted of injustice and no longer remain silent.
1 Comment so far
Leave a comment