#0051 Are Evangelicals pushing the un-churched further away from God?

Links relevant in today’s posting…

In the above article (the third in the list) the author talks about Ted Cruz has won a supermajority (75+%) of support by a committee of Evangelicals who like him for the Republican nomination. The article continues by saying that if it were only up to the Evangelicals, Cruz would be a shoe-in for the nomination; but there is another factor the author is failing to fully realize—The Donald. On Christmas we had family over to our house and at a point late in the day while discussing a variety of topics with my two brothers the subject of the Republican primaries was broached. In our short exchange about it they both seemed to think that Cruz is looking stronger and stronger in the polls among Evangelical conservatists. I see their point; but at the same time I get the strong sense that Trump isn’t going anywhere (but up) anytime soon. And with the momentum he gains with each and every outlandish remark he makes, there are plenty of Evangelicals in among his crowd of supporters screaming their epithets too. Don’t get me wrong, Cruz is no slouch in the self-righteous department; but by their very nature’s conservatist are most likely to go with the sure thing and that looks more and more like Donald Trump.

Evangelicals put forward the contention that conservatism is synonymous with religion is synonymous with Jesus and that same contention is held by many people even by those who see themselves as non-religious and claim no real interest or belief in God. These are those standing on the sidelines observing the antics and as they do so are dolefully scratching their heads vowing to not get baited too close to the event horizon of religious (Christian) insanity—not them! So while the un-churched souls are standing on the outside looking in, the Evangelical/conservatists go on with their main event showing of judgments, logic-denial and moral condemnation. Nowadays, the two worlds are not apt to mix—not bloody likely! In fact, the Christians are trying all the harder just to hold on to their own…

But the cold hard truth is that religion is just not as influential in most Americans’ lives as it once was. Most churchgoers no longer follow a pastor’s advice blindly when told what candidate to vote for or which position to take on an issue. Americans do their own investigations and make up their own minds, often at variance with their spiritual leaders. The sociologists Robert Putnam and David Campbell confirmed this in their 2012 study of Americans’ religious attitudes. They concluded: “In effect, Americans (especially young Americans) who might otherwise attend religious services are saying, ‘Well, if religion is just about conservative politics, then I’m outta here.’” Nevertheless, some still believe that faith should be partisan—including Cruz’s father, Rafael Cruz, who will release a book in January, A Time for Action: Empowering the Faithful to Reclaim America. The book features a foreword by conservative commentator Glenn Beck and purports to equip religious people to help the United States return to the Founders’ “Judeo-Christian values.” As the book’s description notes, “[P]eople of faith should actively participate in the political process in order to combat the debilitating and deceptive progressive mantra that there should be a separation of church and state.”

Can the religious right give Ted Cruz the win?  Jonathan Merritt Dec. 22 2015

Two points that stick out for me in this quote are 1) The quote by Glenn Beck eluding to the getting back to the nation’s Founder’s Judeo-Christian values; as Beck claims this for the rest of our nation, he is making an historical assertion that simply isn’t true and 2) there is huge turn-off potential for young people searching for God when they witness the likes of a Ted Cruz (or some other Evangelical loudmouth) inferring that God also shares these self-righteous, conservative/political views. To the first point; if the Founders were, indeed conservative (Evangelicals) their conservative views would have kept them from getting involved with the revolution movement in the first place. These conservatist types were in fact around back then and they were known as loyalists and the loyalists were against the Sons of the Liberty and were for keeping things under the rule of the British Crown.

The author also talks about the rise of the Moral Majority during Ronald Ragan’s bid for the presidency. He points out the similarities in the political climates then and now…

    The Reagan-era religious right was similar to today’s movement in that it was mad as hell. Traditionalist Christians were reeling from the sweeping social shifts of the 1960s and 1970s that produced the civil-rights movement, the feminist movement, the sexual revolution, and the gay-rights movement. This was combined with a litany of Supreme Court decisions that, among other things, banned prayer in public schools and legalized contraception and abortion. Many conservative Christians began feeling that the America they loved was morphing in the wrong direction and leaving them behind.

It’s difficult to overlook the similar indignation of their modern religious offspring in the face of a society that continues to grow more socially liberal. Many “evils” lamented by the religious right in the late 20th century—such as divorce, alcohol, and marijuana—are less culturally taboo than ever. Universal health-care reform has mandated access to birth control and emergency contraception, and the notion that Roe v. Wade will ever be overturned seems far-fetched. The civil-rights movement that so infuriated early religious-right leaders produced an African American president who is concluding his second term. Same-sex marriage is legal in all 50 states, and there is now a national conversation about the rights of transgender people. The anger of conservative Christians over the shape and likely future of the nation burns as bright as ever.

Can the religious right give Ted Cruz the win?  Jonathan Merritt Dec. 22 2015

The question I keep coming back to is: Was Jesus a conservatist? He doesn’t read like He was! Just like it doesn’t seem like Judeo-Christian values have the steam to get into motion a cause like the Revolutionary War. Wouldn’t (and don’t) those Judeo-Christian values spark little more than status quo?!

TBC: Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Purchase or preview for free The Jesus Clone book here…

Skip to toolbar