Saturday, August 05, 2006

Influence

Love this from over at notmywill

"Does your Christianity determine the kind of American you are, or will your patriotism influence what kind of Christian you are?"

By the way, you need to substitute American for whatever applies to you.

3 comments:

dinsy said...

If you are genuinely living life in the Kingdom of God,(or seeking to) then your nationality should be completely irrelevant beyong the simple matter of which "local rules" you have to live by. ie. wto hich local Caeser you have to render his due.

You yield allegiance to your country where it does not conflict with your belief system. Where it does conflict, if you can, you follow your beliefs and take the consequences. But it should be a personal thing and you should not try and force anyone else to do the same, as their convictions, even if they are of the same religion as you, may be very different to your own.

Whatever religion (or "highest truth") you live by, I think it should rank higher than patriotism (unles your highest truth is "my country, right or wrong").

Meg said...

If your highest truth is "my country, right or wrong," as we would say here in some parts, "you in a heap o' trouble, boy!" (Eternal trouble, that is.)

Romans 13... I agree with everything you said, Dinsy. You cannot force people to hold any particular convictions.

I do admit this: I had a lot of angst in the fall of 2004 when, week after week, we were parking our car in the church parking lot next to one that had a "Kerry-Edwards" bumper sticker on it. I know this is not the place to discuss American politics, and I won't, but in fact, that election was more about upholding overriding moral principles than it was about economics or about who served in Vietnam and who dodged it. It was certainly about future U.S. Supreme Court appointments, and I based my vote on that.

I think in our church situation, certain moral realities and Biblical guidelines should have been addressed from the pulpit, without attempting to direct people's votes, and they were not.

We cannot simply live our lives, even as Christians, any way we please; we do not, as one better minister put it, have the right to do what is wrong.

In the end, we must concede that it's the work of the Holy Spirit that changes people's hearts and we must also stay in prayer at all times, both for individuals and for our respective countries.

Shieldsy said...

Not always easy to distinguish between our faith & our culture. Oh, I know we all like to think we can, but it's so much a part of us that we don't even reliase ... just like a fish probably doesn't feel wet. Not until we find ourselves in a completely different culture that we realise what-was-what.

e.g. I think most western Christian would be surprised at just how materialistic they are just because that's the 'water' we swim in!

 

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