image I started reading a book by Greg Boyd, pastor of Woodland Hills Church in St. Paul, MN and founder of Christus Victor Ministries, that was written in 2005 called The Myth of a Christian Nation: How the Quest for Political Power Is Destroying the Church.  Right off I want to preface that he isn’t saying that Christians shouldn’t be involved in politics; he clearly states that in his book. 

I also want to say that I’m likely to disagree with some of Boyd’s conclusions in this book, as I’m in disagreement with different theological positions that he has taken (like open theism for example).  The fact it it’s a library book will spare it from getting thrown across the room on occasion, a fate not spared Velvet Elvis.  Yes, I do read things that I think I will disagree with.

In his introduction something he wrote leapt out for me – especially in light of Iowa’s current Republican Gubernatorial primary race.  Boyd is stating the distinction between the Kingdom of God and any earthly kingdom, and he shares an implication of that (both for those on the right and left):

What the distinction between the two kingdoms does imply, however, is that citizens of the kingdom of God need to take care to distinguish between their core faith and values on the one hand and the particular way they politically express their faith and values on the other.  While the way of the kingdom of God is always simple, straightforward, and uncompromising, the way of the kingdom of the world is always complex, ambiguous, and inevitably full of compromises.  Hence, kingdom people who share the same core faith and values can and often do disagree about how their faith and values should inform their involvement in the kingdom of the world, (pg. 15).

Very true, I can agree with him on this.

2 comments
  1. Good excerpt, thanks for posting, Shane. I’ve seen this book for years and haven’t picked it up yet. Admittedly, Dr. Boyd’s wrong theology on the character and knowledge of God do make me bump his work down on the priority list. But the premise of this book is very thought provoking. I would also wholeheartedly agree with his statement about the differences between the two kingdoms, but I would also ask “how are kingdom people to be different and unique if we sometimes don’t speak things clearly, cut and dried to the people of the kingdom of the world?”

    I know we need to be wise and restrained, but it sounds like Boyd is somewhat arguing that we ought to change(?) what we say, not necessarily how we say it? That, to me, would be a big problem.

    Paul at the Areopagus (http://allthyngs.wordpress.com/2010/04/05/reaching-a-biblically-illiterate-culture-with-the-gospel/) is a great example of speaking the truth but to a specific audience. never compromising on the truth, but also not blasting his pagan audience in a way that would’ve got him killed before he could’ve gotten to the demands of the gospel. I know he was preaching and not necessarily politically debating, but the principles from his approach apply in multiple realms.

    -paul
    .-= paul dare´s last blog ..Oh, the Grace and Gentleness of Christ! =-.

    1. I guess that wasn’t my take away from the intro… rather remember that your core doctrinal beliefs and your political beliefs are not one in the same.

      But like I said, I’m sure I’ll disagree with him in certain instances when I read.

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