Themes of Politico-Theological Activism

You can put them all into a single picnic basket: theological mainline liberals, Michael Moore political activists, right wing political afficianados, and conservative evangelical theological power brokers.

They all taste the same to me. Two sides of the same power bar.

It’s called power mongering. No other word for it.

It’s also sinful and fleshly and worldly and directly contrary to the cruciform way of our Lord of glory.

  1. Make the consequences of your issue sound apocalyptic and ramp it up with passion and emotion and tears and anger and vitriol.
  2. Toss in some conspiracy theory: “They want to control it all, and if we don’t act now…” Create fear. Lots of it. As much as you can.
  3. Operate behind the scenes by pressuring those in power: Go to the executives, contact Board members, call in the heavies for support, organize a day of protest and have everyone write to the same person for some strong arming, write to radio hosts and major media outlets… that is, act the part of a bully.
  4. Work to silence your critics; don’t answer them. No, silence them. Attack their character. By all means don’t question your own character. Pretend they don’t exist; tell others not to speak to or about them; tell a narrative without them; tell a narrative against them; press for critics of them. Revise the narrative if you have to.
  5. Forget the value of publicly observable evidence-based argument, biblical theology, and transparent argumentation. Go behind the scenes else you might just learn your case isn’t as clear as you think.
  6. Don’t quit until you get what you want. Don’t listen to what others have said; don’t listen to the people; don’t listen to tradition.
  7. Call it the work of God; call it defending the faith. By all means, assure yourself (or don’t even call into question) that you are right.
  8. Pat yourself and your buddies on the back when you get what you want. GroupThink is always right after all. Newspeak creates the narrative.

A sad, satirical commentary on too much of what I see.

Read George Orwell, Nineteen Eighty-Four or Animal Farm or both.

About Scot McKnight

Scot McKnight is a recognized authority on the New Testament, early Christianity, and the historical Jesus. McKnight, author of more than fifty books, is the Professor of New Testament at Northern Seminary in Lombard, IL.