Our house church has begun reading McLaren's "The Secret Message of Jesus" one chapter a week to discuss and I just really like Brian's writing. Its a very easy read but gives a basic overview of a Kingdom theology. I think its perfect for a community discussion format. This week is ch. 2 and the Political Message of Jesus.
I've become convinced that although Jesus' message was personal, it was not private. . . (Jesus) challenges every existing political movement to a radical rethinking and dares everyone to imagine and consider his revolutionary alternative. What is that alternative? It is to see, seek, receive, and enter into a new political and social and spiritual reality he calls the kingdom (or empire) of God, or the kingdom (or empire) of heaven. . . And you find your identity - your citizenship - not in Rome but rather in a spiritual realm, in the presence of God. . .
You won't nestle snugly into the status quo, but you'll seek to undermine the way things are to welcome the way things coud and should be.
So with July 4th right aroung the corner, when was the last time you considered the political message of Jesus?
Am I thankful to live in and raise my family in America? Yes.
Do I pay my taxes and vote? Yes.
Do I support the troops even while I disagree with the war policy? Yes.
Do I pledge allegiance to a flag? No. I swear singular allegiance to the King and cannot bow to a man-made idol.
Do I agree with the American policy in Israel (or for that matter the American evangelical church's view)? No! I pray for the peace of Jerusalem, the freedom for the Palestinian people and an end to the hatred and dehmunaization that causes terrorism.
What am I working on to be more true to my beliefs? Living more simply, eliminating all debt in my finances so that I am not a slave to this world's system. With that freedom, I can give more freely and affect change in causes Jesus cares about. (of course its not mutually exclusive, I'm just saying I could do more w/out debt)
I hardly ever talk politics, and I know its always a lightning rod, but I thought I would leak out a few of my views for folk to hit me back with.
In all things, in agreement or disagreement, peace of Christ unto you,