- As I peruse the hundreds of email letters I receive,
one observation leaps out at me: in the last few years, there has been
a distinct philosophical shift taking place in the reasoning of professing
Christians. Somewhere along the way, politicians seem to have been granted
a kind of spiritual status. This trend is very troubling and portends great
problems for our country. Let me see if I can explain.
- Whenever I take issue with the policies or actions of
President George W. Bush, I am inundated with all kinds of emails from
Christians who usually tend to quote Bible passages regarding "spreading
gossip" and "not loving a Christian brother," etc. The same
is true when I dare to challenge the statements or actions of notable Christian
leaders in the politically oriented Religious Right. What is going on here?
- I will tell you what is going on: countless millions
of Christians have elevated certain politicians and their mouthpieces in
the Religious Right into a church-sphere or even into a God-sphere. In
other words, because a politician or conservative celebrity claims to be
a Christian, they are presumed to be untouchable. Such people must not
be criticized or challenged, no matter how unconstitutional or stupid their
actions might be, because doing so makes one guilty of some kind of spiritual
law against speaking ill of Christian brothers.
- However, when one seeks to become a political leader
(whether elected or not), he or she puts their words, actions, and policies
under the microscope of public scrutiny. Such scrutiny is not only healthy,
it is absolutely obligatory for a free people. Only enslaved people have
not the privilege of holding their rulers and leaders accountable.
- It is as when the bloody butcher of the former Soviet
Union, Joseph Stalin, passed away. Millions of Russian people wept and
mourned over his death, even though he had personally ordered the torture
and slaughter of countless millions of their fellow citizens. Yet, the
poor, enslaved masses of Russians, without personal inspection and knowledge
of Stalin's bloodlust, and lacking any personal ability to challenge their
Supreme Ruler, had actually come to love the bloodthirsty tyrant.
- That sounds incredible, but, on a much different level,
that is what many Christians are doing today. Because a politician or political
personality claims to be a Christian or a conservative, countless millions
of unsuspecting and gullible believers become sheep, without the discernment
or the ability to hold leaders accountable. As a result, they (and all
of us in the process) are being sold into the clutches of internationalism
and socialism by the very leaders they passionately defend.
- Come on folks, get real! A politician is not a pastor.
The American people have a sacred duty to the principles of freedom and
their posterity to hold their civil magistrates accountable for their policies
and actions. Furthermore, if the civil leader is a true Christian, he would
have it no other way.
- Therefore, it should not matter one whit whether the
political leader identifies himself as a Christian or as a conservative
or as a church member. What should matter is whether he obeys his oath
to the Constitution (and to God) and whether he faithfully follows the
historic principles of freedom laid down in the Declaration of Independence
and Bill of Rights. Everything else is smoke and mirrors.
- As Theodore Roosevelt said, "Patriotism means to
stand by the country. It does not mean to stand by the president or any
other public official, save exactly to the degree in which he himself stands
by the country. It is patriotic to support him insofar as he efficiently
serves the country. It is unpatriotic not to oppose him to the exact extent
that by inefficiency or otherwise he fails in his duty to stand by the
country. In either event, it is unpatriotic not to tell the truth, whether
about the president or anyone else."
- America's founders shared Roosevelt's sentiment. Thomas
Jefferson said, "In questions of power, then, let no more be heard
of confidence in man, but bind him down from mischief by the chains of
- James Madison agreed. He said, "[It] is indispensable
that some provision should be made for defending the Community agst [against]
the incapacity, negligence or perfidy of the chief Magistrate."
- America's most celebrated jurist, Daniel Webster, stated
it even more pointedly by saying, "There is no nation on earth powerful
enough to accomplish our overthrow. Our destruction, should it come at
all, will be from another quarter. From the inattention of the people to
the concerns of their government, from their carelessness and negligence.
I must confess that I do apprehend some danger. I fear that they may place
too implicit a confidence in their public servants and fail properly to
scrutinize their conduct; that in this way they may be made the dupes of
designing men and become the instruments of their own undoing."
- Webster was right. By simply claming to be "Christians,"
today's politicians are making dupes out of multitudes of believers. They
are trusted and revered in much the same way a faithful and beloved pastor
would be trusted and revered. No! They are trusted and revered MORE than
are their pastors.
- Pastors would not be able to get by with the lying, deceit,
and dishonesty that politicians routinely get by with. Many believers give
politicians much more honor than they give to their pastors. How foolish!
- By nature, most politicians are self-serving opportunists
who cannot see past the next election. In fact, many (if not most) of them
are downright dishonest. After all, only a dishonest man could raise his
hand and take an oath to support and defend the Constitution and then proceed
to ignore and violate it without so much as an afterthought.
- It is time that Christian people begin seeing their politicians,
not as saints who can be blindly trusted, but as sinners whose works must
be constantly analyzed and scrutinized in the light of the U.S. Constitution.
- Forget party labels. Forget church affiliation. Forget
personal claims of Christianity. Forget campaign rhetoric. Our civil magistrates
have one responsibility: obey the Constitution and be faithful to freedom's
principles contained in the Declaration and Bill of Rights. When civil
magistrates do that, support them. When they don't, oppose them in every
way possible, and then vote them out of office at the earliest opportunity.
Anything less is unpatriotic, un-American, and, yes, unchristian.
- © 2007 Chuck Baldwin - All Rights Reserved