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Friendly, but less-than-patient, Fire from within Evangelicalism

Friendly, but less-than-patient, Fire from within Evangelicalism November 12, 2012

I got a note the other day from a friend who had read Peter Leithart’s piece at First Things, with the following words embedded in the letter. This must be said to evangelicalism, at least to the sort of evangelicalism who isn’t seeing what is happening.

I also don’t think this should be about big government/small government and individual rights. Not as far as the church is concerned anyway. Either form could be argued positively. It needs to be – as Leithart said in his column a bit down – about being “prepared to read, and repeat, Jesus’ “woe to the rich” and his “He anointed me to preach good news to the poor” without wincing and hedging.

What has soured me the most on the religious right position is the anti-ACA (affordable care act) rhetoric – the oft expressed sentiment that it is bad because it robs from “me” and gives to “them/you”. We are hypocritical and most of the country (well those who pay attention) knows it. Is ACA the best option? I don’t know – probably not, and it will have problems no doubt. But the “Christian” message being heard in the outside world isn’t really “how can we best bring justice to the poor” but “how can we protect what we have, the poor can fend for themselves.” (The rhetoric on immigrant issues also provides fuel for the fire.)


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