Moral Contradictions

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Sum-up and rant

Bailout has a good summary based on first hand interviews of the Excommunication saga at East Waynesville Baptist Church. Something I didn't realize was that the pastor didn't have communion served since October, not even during Easter. Ouch. Additionally, the 40 supporters of the targeted 11 are both Republicans and Democrats. They're against having a church where members sign cards stating that they go to a Republican church. It sounds like Pastor Chan Chandler got a little too caught up with the fiery rhetoric and irresponsibly used his pulpit to condemn and judge, not to save.

As a good friend says, "the power of the church to direct and advise people on their moral beliefs and actions is its greatest force for good and its most terrifying way to abuse."

How can you point at others, say they're evil, and then hope to minister and save them? What happened to "love your neighbors"? What happened to civility, respect, and honest and frank discussion?

The "Big 6" seminaries of the Southern Baptist Convention have impressed upon its male pastors-to-be that they are the authority in church and to preach only on political matters and salvation. What happened to serving the poor, widows, the elderly, the sick, the starving, the "sinners"?

Folks, you simply cannot go to church and then vote Republican and feel like you did your Christian duty. We answer to a higher calling... We answer to God. Nowhere in the Bible does it say "Vote Republican" yet as Jim Wallis says - poverty is mentioned over 3,000 times.

Jesus and his disciples did their work under an authoritarian and pagan Roman empire. Did they exert their efforts on winning school board elections, work for campaigns, try to prove Creation, and write letters to their politicians? No. They changed the world by working on the ground... with people, for people. They preached. They served. They loved.

Somehow the true meaning of Jesus' teachings and ministry gets lost in all this rhetoric... while potential Christians are turned off by the incessant shouting and denunciations flowing daily from the mouths of so-called evangelists.


  • I'm agnostic. But it is Christians like you that keep me defending faith to my friends who reflexively reject it.

    I knew sane, good people who attributed at least part of their moral character to christianity when I was growing up. I later found my own piece with the metaphysics question, and it didn't involve church. But I was left with respect for people who honestly came by what they believed.

    It would be easy for me to laugh at all the pseudo-religious political games, and to tar all christians with that crap. But that would be unfair to those who are actually good people.

    In an age where some televangelists are all but calling for violence against judges, thank you for reminding me that there are sane christians, and good people, too. I had nearly forgotten.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at Tuesday, May 10, 2005 2:22:00 PM  

  • Chan Chandler does not have a degree from a Southern Baptist seminary.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at Tuesday, May 10, 2005 5:27:00 PM  

  • First comment: I sincerely thank you and appreciate your sentiments.

    Second comment: While you may be stating a fact, you leave the truth out by mincing words. I did not state such a fact. However, he is currently attending Southeastern Baptist Seminary at Wake Forest, one of the big "6". Thus, the statement still applies.


    By Blogger Nathan, at Tuesday, May 10, 2005 9:48:00 PM  

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