12 December 2011

Radio Free Babel Part 2

This same kind of fear-mongering has been going on since the beginning. I first noticed it when Clinton won the presidency. At the time I was a Rush Limbaugh fan and very lost. I believed all the hype...and none of it happened. America was supposed to come crashing down, and instead lots of people made a whole lot of money. Our freedoms were supposed to be crushed. Well, some were lost but it wasn't anything like what was predicted. He was just like the rest. Now Bush, that was different...but in his case the Christo-Americans found a saviour and kindred spirit. And ironically under his administration we lost many more freedoms, the things they had predicted would happen under a Democratic regime.

I am not defending Democrats or their policies, but I am very critical of the lies and manipulation employed by those on the Right regarding the Democrats. Now the Democrats and the Left are also worthy of a weighty critique...but American Evangelicals aren't clamouring after the Left. I just wish to re-emphasize, my point is not to be political but rather our contemporary politics must be commented on because they have so permeated the church. Living in society we are (like it or not) affected by politics. How do we discuss the issues? The Christian Right has given us little in the way of options. Is their stance and accompanying critique of their opponents Biblical? Are they asking the right questions? If not, what are the ramifications of the necessarily wrong answers they are providing? That's my reason for hammering these issues. Many who regularly read my materials know this, but I feel the need to continue reiterating the point for those who might be unfamiliar with the framework under which I'm operating.

One of the callers named Ed offered a 1-way ticket to anyone who wanted to leave this country....they can go off and contend with all the tyrants and fascists in other countries.

Tell you what Ed....I'll take you up on your offer. I would happily leave this country at this point and never return. I'll happily deal with the 'tyrants' in Italy, Ireland, Hungary, India, or Argentina. I just really want to get away from these folks and find other Christians who don't think like they do. I've lived overseas. No, other countries aren't utopias either but when I hear Americans say, 'this is the greatest country in the world,' or 'in the history of the world,'...I don't know whether to laugh at them or cry. America is like any other nation, it has its good and bad points. Great? Well that can mean different things to different people, but it's not a word that comes to mind. Impressive? Powerful? Mighty? Domineering? Rich? Opportunistic? Evil? Those words come to mind as well. If Great means powerful and mighty, sure. But I think when people say 'America is the greatest' they mean a little more than that.

Usually when people say that, I immediately assume they've never actually been to any other countries. There are some that still say it. Many in the American forces did when I wore the uniform and yet often these were the folks that sat on post and were afraid to venture out and experience something beyond the familiar. Some after a bit of reflection still thought of America as the preferred locale, but anyone who has traveled (even a little) realizes the foolishness, naiveté, arrogance, and small mindedness of these ultranationalist expressions.

This radio programme and others like it believe they are standing for Christian truth and warning others of the dangers to the Church.

I'll be blunt in my assessment. They do some good. There are some episodes that give some helpful information and analysis, though at this point I am disinclined to trust anything they say.

Overall, they are doing far more harm than good. They don't mean to, but the end result of their work is the promotion of idolatry. It's the age old confusion between nation, kingdom, ethnicity, empire (take your pick) and the Christian Church.

This ideology has led countless persons to confuse political documents with Scripture, place the symbols of nation alongside the symbols of the Church (flags in worship and so forth)...and to even name their children after national heroes, thinking this to be in keeping with the 'Christian' civilization they have confused with the Church.

Recapture America? Recapture the syncretism is more like it. Recapture Babylon is what they advocate when properly discerned in theological terms.

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