I was recently made aware of a social media page started by a Christian who is self described to be on the far left. As I was reading the “About” page I found myself agreeing with some of the things they stand for – especially those based in scripture.
They believe in compassion for the poor, they are against abortion and other good to great issues. They are also unashamedly socialistic and communistic, against the death penalty for any reason and for totally free health care.
I am not a big protestor or proponent of the death penalty. But the Father’s embracing of the penalty of death for sin is why I have the opportunity to live forever in heaven with my benefactor – Jesus – on whom the death penalty was carried out because of my sin.
I would love free healthcare except for the fact that I had enough math in elementary school to know that something on that scale is never free and in fact if enacted to the fullest extent would financially bankrupt the entire world.
In similar fashion I would love the opportunity to live in community where we all shared in common our housing, food, work and wages. But alas, like free healthcare, this socialistic ideal was put to the test by the New Testament church in Jerusalem and it failed miserably. Too many were not working and just living off the common kitty. It went so bad that the surrounding churches had to end up supporting the Jerusalem church and in the end they had to enact the “absurd” rule that if you are not working and contributing to the common kitty, you will not get any food (our current welfare system could sure learn a thing or two from this experience in the early church in Jerusalem).
As you look deeper into left wing themed “Christianity”, you begin to find conspiracy theories and staunch opposition to gun ownership, being against war for any reason and other more fringe issues that are more related to social and geo-political issues instead of biblical principles.
But the truth is the left does not have a monopoly on fringe issues. There are plenty of extreme right wing Christians whose agendas can be just as harmful. Although we would all (left and right leaning) like to hide when someone mentions Westboro, snake handling or clinic bombings the truth is they show up in the community of ultra conservative right wing “Christianity” and yet many of these issues have little to do with those things on the heart of the Father.
My suggestion is that we stop putting God in some of these issues and put ourselves out there in obedience of sacrificial service to the heart and message of the Lordship of Jesus in the life of the believer. If you don’t want to own a gun – fine, don’t own a gun, but don’t make it a God issue. If you support the death penalty – OK, but don’t put God in that box. And if you want to handle snakes – knock yourself out (pun intended) but why not drink the poison as well as letting us see the fruit of people being healed of sickness in your midst (Mark 16:18).
On the subject of guns, the left opposes them on the grounds that they are mostly made for use in war and killing. I am pretty sure that on any given day guns are used more for sport and hunting than for killing other humans. But using that same logic, we should oppose the use of all airplanes as there are more military planes in the world than those used for commercial purposes and it has been that way from the beginning.
Bottom line, whether left, center or right leaning in your “political” views, I think it is safe to say that we are in almost total agreement against abortion. We agree that compassion should be exhibited towards the poor with the difference being the left wants to give them fish and the center to right want to teach them to be responsible to fish for themselves. Both points of view are believed by those who hold them to be the most compassionate thing to do. Although many take positions on the death penalty, this one is not so clear. It would be hard for me to imagine God smiling at a bunch of Christians promoting the death penalty. But at the same time we can’t ignore that after Jesus’ death, resurrection and ascension, the Father carried out the death penalty on two people in the church “just” for lying.
So have your soap boxes, have your strong opinions and have those groups you join who hold similar views. But don’t invoke the name of God into your platform unless you can cite multiple chapter and verse (preferably in the New Testament) scriptures for your position. The reason I say multiple, is because Jesus only once encouraged his disciples to sell an extra coat in order to buy a sidearm and I am not prepared to start a gun ownership movement on that basis. But then neither can I oppose devises of personal protection because of that occasion when Jesus did advocate it (for the skeptics, Luke 22:36).
PS My Down Under Shelters facebook page has 85 likes – almost twice as many as Left Wing Christians