Conservatives vs Liberals – Part One
I originally wrote this in 2009. With another election speedily headed our way and the Cruz vs Trump brouhaha, I thought it would be a good time to revisit this topic.
The news is dominated by President Obama’s actions as president and the outcries of those who oppose his agenda. You can be assured that there will be no Fox guarding the chicken coop at the White House. Significant coverage has been given to the Townhall meetings where people stood up to vociferously protest the health plan of our president. Other watch groups are reporting every suspicious thing that happens and every potentially dangerous word spoken in Washington. Some of this activity borders on the ridiculous. The term fear monger might be applied. However the rest of the grassroots movements to keep America the home of the free and the brave appear to be justified. This is the government of the people, by the people and for the people after all. If citizens are prohibited from voicing concerns, and news media outlets that criticize the president are marginalized or worse, we’ll find ourselves with the kind of government we have always fought against. The fact there are so many people in high positions in our government with Marxist leanings is very scary. More on that topic in later editorial. Today I want to discuss the difference between a conservative and a Christian.
This political activity of fighting for a conservative worldview is labeled right wing, wing-nut, fundamentalist, ultra-conservative, etcetera (choose your label du jour). Somehow the right wingers have become associated with Christianity. While it is true that many of those being labeled as such are Christians, this is not inherently a Christian movement. Pundits like Ann Coulter, Glen Beck, and Rush Limbaugh have not been reticent to make inflammatory comments about those who seem to be on the other side of the fence. Does that make them defenders of the faith? Not necessarily. It makes them defenders of freedom and the republic and some forms of morality, but those things don’t necessarily equate to our Christian faith. Most of the older generation will recognize the name Archie Bunker. Some of the political commentary from today reminds me of the rants of Archie on his show All in the Family. In comparing Archie to the image of a man of God portrayed by the Bible, I find very few similarities.
Jesus had a word for people who told everyone else how to behave and looked down their noses at everybody who didn’t toe the line, but failed to observe the very things they criticized others for. They were called Pharisees. I hazard a guess that almost all of us (I’ve had a lot) have had Pharisaical moments, but hopefully we don’t lock ourselves into that position. There are lots of enemies of God’s people coming out of the woodwork right now. It is hard not to get upset and to vent our frustration with them. Does that mean that we have free reign to take out all of our frustration on those who have opposite opinions than ourselves? Don’t hold anything back? Tell it like it is? Let it all hang out? I don’t think so. Self-control is one of the fruits of the spirit which will allow people to recognize the genuine Christians. Now is the time to shed abroad a radical love for all, but without compromising our principals. Perhaps we have created the right wing media monsters by encouraging them to spew out the venom we would ourselves if we were not attempting to be pious. If so, we need to repent and gently persuade these spokespeople to put the velvet coverings over their talons. We can’t afford to have the difference between Christian love and secular judgmentalism confused and overlooked. I truly think that people like Rush and Ann are clever enough to combat their adversaries with truth rather than put-downs.
But keep in mind that Jesus did not harangue the Roman soldiers or the sinners. His outbursts of righteous indignation were directed at the Pharisees. I’m against abortion, and same-sex marriage, and special rights for homosexuals, and pornography, etc. just like so called conservatives. Was Jesus a conservative? Was he a liberal? I know for sure that he was the son of God. His worldview filtered down directly from the Father. The life of Jesus defied labels and so should ours. I’ve arrived at the conclusion that we must turn our eyes on Jesus and quit focusing on the enemy – real or perceived. When we do that, He will do the fighting for us. And we will be in a position to testify of Jesus rather than testify of the evil within those who oppose our ideology. The Bible says that “love never fails”. Maybe we should put that doctrine to the test.