Monday, November 06, 2006

Why Would You?

Why would you, given the chance to preach God’s unchanging truth to people desperately in need of it, open your church to politicians to pander for votes? It is an unconscionable dereliction of duty for the pastor of a church to allow his church to become a political whistle stop.

But I suppose when politics is more important than truth (and make no mistake, there is little of the latter in the former), churches will do the unthinkable.

The hope for people is not found in Lansing, or Washington. It is not found in the ballot box. It is found in the Word of God. Until we reclaim the pulpits from poor preaching and good politicians, we will never be a light in the darkness.

This past week, politics and church came together in an ugly way for Ted Haggard. It’s old news by now, and it is hard to imagine his as anything but an “October Surprise,” but it is a horrible blight on the church.

While it would be easy to pontificate about hypocrisy and the like, others have done plenty of that, and I do not want to think about it that much.

Mark Driscoll, love him or hate him (and there are reasons to do both), has written on this topic. It is worth reading. Some have taken issue with some of his comments (and feel free to do so), but grasp the reality of what he says. He concludes,
Indeed, this is a deeply rooted gospel issue. How can we proclaim that our God is a faithful Trinitarian community if we are not faithful to our marriage covenant and family? How can we say that the same power that raised Christ from the dead lives in us if we have no holiness in our life? How can we proclaim that we are new creations in Christ if we continually return to lap up the vomit of our old way of life? How can we preach that sin is to be repented of if we fail to model that ongoing repentance? How can we say that God is our highest treasure and greatest joy when we trade Him for sin that defiles our hands and defames His name?

I do not know the guilt or innocence of Haggard. But I do know that this is a sobering reminder to take heed of, lest we fall.
I am reminded of a verse from yesterday's text in 1 Corinthians 10:12: Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed that he does not fall.

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