As a political junkie, I have been following the Republican debates since they started. I get it from my mom, who got it from the Bible. I am no “two kingdoms” advocate (for a great new book by John Frame, see The Escondido Theology, Whitefield Media Publications – it’s selling like hotcakes). I am an advocate of “lesser of two evils” thinking, but that is another blog. The process of finding a Nominee is messy. It sounds like a theological battle in terms of similarity. Don’t be mean. Don’t publish “attack” adds. I found the answer by Ron Paul tonight to be quite amusing. When asked about attack ads (particularly on Santoram), he was asked if he had issue with that? His answer? The 30 or 60 seconds ads was not enough space to cram in all that he wants to say! In other words, if in reporting the facts is an attack, then attack away! Jesus did.
I have been on record for saying I like trench warfare. I recently took my strapping young boys to War Horse. Good movie. The WWI trench battle scenes don’t come close to the actual horrible situation trench warfare was. It was deplorable. And, that got me to thinking, what’s wrong with this process? Does “kindness” mean, “don’t speak the truth”? Of course, people stress, “in love”. Yes, of course. Jesus said to the Pharisees, “in love”, that they were a brood of vipers. Name calling? You bet. The seriousness of that name caused a few of them to weigh the accusation, and some of them became Christians as reported in Acts. Serious accusations and charges causes a few to re-think their position. Why is this person so angry? Why is he pushing this issue so much? Is he just mean, or does he have real, genuine, passionate concern?
If it’s good for politics (and I don’t hear any Chistians supporting Ron Paul decrying the process), then why is it not good for theology? Let’s face it, the Atheists point out the most “embarrassing” parts of Scriptural condemnation in the Bible. There is no smoothing over their quotes. And, of course, you hear the same cry in the political arena of “stop the attacks.” Well, how else is one going to show that this current Administration is abysmal? How are you “nice’ to this when it is wrecking to very foundations of our Founding Fathers? Be nice?
Nice is to be understood in terms of action, not words. Criticism is words. No one advocates not helping a Socialist, or a heretic out of a ditch. Jesus pretty much crushed that in the Parable of the Good Samaritan. However, he corrects a Samaritan woman by saying she was wrong theologically, she did not know the power of God, and that she was an adultress. See the difference?
Usually people decrying “tough love” are those wanting to be not reminded of their error. But, love points out error…..and that’s never pretty.