Christians: Do Not Get Waylaid by the “Wrong Road to the Kingdom”
“I’m a Christian…but I will NOT turn the other cheek!”
“I’m locked and loaded…bring it on!”
“We are taking back what Satan has stolen from us!”
“We are at war!”
These comments pop up now and then on articles I have written or have read. I have always been puzzled at the vitriol spewed against those on the left or the personal attacks against others with whom they disagree that emanates from the so-called “Christian Right”. What happened to ‘Love your neighbor as yourself’? There is an attitude of superiority that becomes apparent: We’re Christians, you’re not. We have God on our side; you do not.
Even when someone on “our side” is clearly in the wrong, there are those who will rise to defend because we “don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater”. (Usually, someone will go on the defensive when challenged and quote: ‘Judge not, lest ye be judged’. Wrong. Why would God have given believers the gift of discernment if they were not to use it in judging the words of Christian leaders?)
The militaristic thread that consistently permeates the conversation for regaining traditional societal mores has more than puzzled me; it has disturbed me to the point that I began spending hours researching different political and religious leaders in the conservative movement (some I have written about out of pure ignorance) along with the theology driving so many to jump on the bandwagon of “taking this country back”–all in the name of Christianity. Naive to the world of politics and the effect of religion, I wanted to know how there could be justification for the joining of hands across religious sects in the name of “unity” (compromise) to purportedly accomplish shared goals. I wanted to know where the “purist ideology” was originating from that now dominates elections, and how “taking culture back” became more important than sharing the Cross with unbelievers.
The more research I did, the more concerned I became. We all recognize Islam for the dangers it presents. We bemoan the price society has paid for allowing secular humanism into our families, schools, and government. But, somehow, Christians are being misled into believing that ours is a “holy mission” to retake our country and impose our values on this once “Christian” nation.
The underlying theologies spouted as a defense to call Christians to action have many names, which include Dominionism, 7 Mountain Theology, Christian Nationalism, and Christian Reconstructionism, among others. Whatever you want to call these theologies, It is HERESY. Don’t believe me? Do your own research. Test the spirits. Stop accepting words that would “tickle your ears” and measure them according to God’s living Word. Many of those caught up in these movements follow blindly or try to “chew the meat without swallowing the bones”. Those that teach and adhere to these false doctrines do so at their own peril. Some on the right have scoffed for years at discernment ministries and those that have warned and reported about this twisting of God’s Word to accomplish the goal of shepherding in a physical “Kingdom of God” through any means possible. Craftily calculated words are used by politicians to appeal emotionally to Christians–usually for votes.
I make no claims to be a Biblical scholar, but one thing I know: We are called to be salt in this evil world, not by “reclaiming” it, but by the way we live our lives individually to bring others into a relationship with God through the blood of Jesus Christ. We are told, by God, that we have dominion on this earth as stewards. We do not have a mandate to subjugate mankind in the name of Christianity so that Jesus can come back and set up His earthly kingdom. We are told in the Great Commission to make disciples in other nations–not through nation building, not through militaristic might, and not by economic stimulus–but by meeting individuals where they are and sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ. There are those that truly believe in collective salvation and are spending millions upon millions of dollars in their goal to make nations (and the United States) more “Christ-like”, negating the importance of the individual salvation experience. Why?
Do not offend…
The Cross is offensive...
Therefore; do not mention the need for the redemptive work of the Cross to accomplish the individual salvation of man.
Am I saying that Christians should play no role in politics? Absolutely not. Am I saying that all leaders of the Christian Right have ulterior motives? Again, absolutely not. Am I saying that we should not speak out against evil? Uh…have you read anything I’ve written?
Hear me clearly.
I am saying do not be blinded, do not be deceived, and do not fall away from sound teaching because false teachers in “sheep’s clothing” are preaching false doctrines filled with fallacies designed to control the masses and gain power. I promise: The end does not justify the means. Souls–not political parties, not elected officials, not culture–should be our upmost concern if we truly strive to accomplish God’s will as Christians. Only when that becomes our first priority will we truly see a change in society.
Let me emphasize one point: I am just as guilty, if not more so, for falling into deception in the name of Christianity. I mean– if it walks like a duck, sounds like a duck, then it must be a duck! What I have discovered is–not necessarily.
I leave you with the words of Oswald Chambers as he discusses the third temptation of Christ (all emphasis mine):
“The kingdom of God cometh not with observation”: it is at work now; the manifestation of the kingdom of God externally is another thing….
- The Mental Road of Dominion. (Matthew iv. 8-10.) This is the temptation to compromise— ‘Evil is in the world, compromise with it, work with it judiciously.’ “All these things will I give Thee, if Thou wilt fall down and worship Me.” This temptation is the most subtle of all. ‘Don’t be so strait-laced; we have passed the day when we believe in a personal devil.’ May God forgive us, I am afraid we are past that stage. Will the Church that bows down and compromises succeed? (Of course it will.) It is the very thing that the natural man wants, but it is the lure of a wrong road to the kingdom. Beware of putting anything sweet and winsome in front of the One Who suffered in Gethsemane…” — If Ye Shall Ask, Oswald Chambers, pp. 20-21.