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Chained by Faith

We are God’s hands. We are God’s eyes. God’s mind. God’s heart. There are plenty of people who pray for peace, but if praying were enough it would have come to be. ~Jewel

NO!Sometimes I worry about the state of Christianity. I worry that our emphasis on the “end times” in the Church today is keeping us from creating change and doing God’s work. People are always talking about things getting worse and worse, but they throw their hands up and insist that it will be that way until the end. They assume that it must get worse and worse until Christ comes back to wage the war. The more conservative politically the Christians are, the more commonly I hear it. It happens when I bring up donating to charities and giving to the poor. They say it when I think I’m suggesting something that Christ himself would have done. It almost seems like they want things to get worse and worse, so Christ will come back. Like if things would just get bad enough, the world will end. They are looking forward to death and ignoring the living. No, no, no.

This theology is relatively modern. You see, our political climate has shaped Christian churches in America around the right wing. Rather than looking at the whole Bible and the example of Christ people look up verses to support the political causes they want to support. Other countries and communities have done this as well. In fact, to motivate people to pull themselves from slavery and oppression we have Liberation theology as presented by Gustavo Guitierrez. This was considered to be a Christianized Marxism. It’s kind of the opposite of whatever they’ll name our political theology. Perhaps I’ll call it… Dispensationalized Christian Zionism. Though I’m sure it’s more reconizable as Evangelical Christianity.

In a recent discussion with my in-laws, they told me that I should be supporting Isreal regardless of what they do wrong in the quest to build and maintain their country. Why? Because the Bible promised that land to them. It doesn’t matter how much evil they do in obtaining that land becaue it’s God sanctioned. I just kept asking them if they thought what they were doing was right. I insisted that we should only be supporting them while they are doing what is right. But that isn’t the way we do things anymore. It doesn’t matter how oppressed or wronged or hurt the other side is. It doesn’t matter who we step on. It doesn’t matter who is the right choice for President. It matters who’s the smart choice. It matters whether or not it’s strategic. It matters how much it will cost.

We are shaping our God into an American God. We are the blessed nation now. The city on a hill, annointed. This is what the forefathers may have really been worried about when they demanded the separation of church and state. Perhaps they knew that religion would be destroyed by politics. Perhaps they knew that political power corrupts everything that it touches. Maybe it wasn’t to protect the government monster, but to protect what, should be, it’s conscience.

I’m concerned about the future of Christianity today, and I’m concerned because we’ve tied our beliefs to the Ark of Nationalism. Anne Lamont says: “you realize that you’ve made God in your own image when it turns out God hates all the same people that you do.” I think that’s where American churches are today. We  search up a verse on the internet that applies, to whomever we hate at the time, cut it out of context and paste it into our divisive political rhetoric. Shame on us. And by the way, who are we to command God to bless America anyway?

So set down your chain of faith in this warped Christianity and get off your tush and do what Christ would do. I promise you’ll get to meet God more often serving others than you will sitting on your tuft watching Fox, Msnbc, or CNN. Be God’s hands, eyes, heart and mind. Show people who God really is by you actions.

You are not God, but you can manifest God every day. Please don’t do it like the people in these pictures. Make God look good, because God is good.

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