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In Christ & Culture podcast with Dr. Ken Keathley, we explore how the Christian faith intersects all avenues of today’s culture through conversations with leading thinkers.
Today’s Episode: How do we appropriately bring our religious beliefs into the political realm? Dr. Bruce Ashford joins us again to discuss his book Letters to an American Christian and how to saturate our political engagement with truth, grace, and the gospel.
Listen to the podcast above. Read a few exercepts below (edited for clarity).
Social revolutions are always bloody and full of enormously bad unintended consequences.Click to tweet
Why Dr. Ashford wrote Letters to an American Christian.
“The election [of 2016] revealed a significant shift in our political debates. In addition to big government vs. small government, and even more important than that, was debates about open country vs. closed country (economically), putting a priority on our own nation’s economy, limiting immigration. Many of the issues changed. There was a lot more publicization of and concern about injustices in our cultural institutions and protests and demonstrations. The rise of Marxism and progressivism in the Democratic party. I needed to write another book that was more up-to-date.”
How a social revolution is different than a political revolution.
“The Democratic party had been largely classical liberals who leaned to the left… Now you have these Marxist and progressive movements that are both socially revolutionary. A social revolution is different than a political revolution. A political revolution is limited; it wants to replace one regime with another, one political arrangement with another. A social revolution wants to burn it all to the ground and start over again. You’ve got ideologues who think they’re smart enough to get together, point out all the injustices and badness in each of the cultural institutions, and start them all over again without any negative consequences. Social revolutions are always bloody and full of enormously bad unintended consequences. You should never engage in a social revolution. That’s just a tip from uncle Bruce.”
3 questions to ask for applying your faith to the public realm:
- What is God’s creational design for the realm of politics?
- In light of the Fall, how has the political realm been twisted and misdirected?
- How can we untwist what’s been twisted and redirect what’s been misdirected?
“It’s not possible to separate your religious faith from your political views.”
“There are good and bad ways to bring your religion into the public square.”
“Our demeanor should be affected by our Christianity… What we want to do is combine truth and grace.”