Friday, May 25, 2012

15 down, 11 more to go

So I just finished reading Hijacked: Responding to the Partisan Church Divide.  I always have a little bit of a hard time with books where people tell you how things should be in an ideal world....why?  Because we do not live in an ideal world and unless everyone in the world reads this book, not much is going to be done.  But it is somewhat about personal change, I have always seemed to think that politically, I am very open-minded (do not read that as liberal...two different things).  I am open minded to the topics at hand and am willing, in fact, wanting to hear both sides.  So the fact that the majority of Christians are following one belief and holding it to be truth and not wanting to hear both sides to the story seemed out of place to me.  The book talks about the role that the church has taken in preaching political party sides in the past couple of decades.  After reading the book, I do agree with most everything in it--yes, I think people are one sided on their issues, yes, I think the church tends to think that Jesus is republican or democrat, and yes, I think there needs to be a change.  But I am at a loss for how that change is going to happen.  So I am left somewhat disappointed.  But if you are interested in the role of politics in the church, it would be a good read for you!

A few of my favorite lines in the book are as follows:  "The kingdom of Jesus is neither red nor blue, left nor right, tea nor coffee.  As followers of Jesus, we represent an alternative party, the party of the kingdom of God....Love transcends political and doctrinal ideologies.  So we must put that love into practice in the church, demonstrating to the world that differences do not have to bring contention or division.  If we can't love our brothers and sisters in Christ, how can we show love to the rest of God's hurting world?"  

I also really like this part, " Left and right, blue and red are but imperfect worldly systems that are passing away.  These systems, by their very nature, create barriers of division.  The way of the cross is eternal and tears down the dividing walls that stand between us...We must not allow this polarization of extremes to pollute the message and mission of Jesus."

The book talks about how as followers of Jesus, it is okay, if not healthy to have political debates among each other, all along keeping the idea of love and respect in mind.  Jesus preached about LOVE, not about specific issues.  Jesus LOVED all of his sons and daughters, what better example is there to follow in the world?  Certainly not any president I have ever known.

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