Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Have Conservatives Been On The Wrong Battlefield?

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Brent Bozell, founder and president of Media Research Center (MRC), recently told a group in Washington DC that "conservatives have been on the wrong battlefield for the past 50 years."

"Our focus is always on the political with solutions always on the political," he told the audience.

He said the secular left is not fighting on that battlefield because "they understand that if you change the culture, the political is going to fall in place."

Bozell shared his thoughts as to how to "change" the culture---some are obvious, some more subtle.

We have some thoughts about that as well.

And any conversation about working to change the culture for good, invariably invites the question, especially among evangelicals---"Is that really what we are called to do?"


Bozell says the secular left progressives have not fought in the way the conservatives, and I would add many evangelicals, have to win political victories.

"Rather," he says, "they have entered all the cultural arenas." He says, "They are in academia, the arts, in movies, in TV, in books, social media, music,--- everywhere."

This is true. In fact, it was Karl Marx who advocated the "long march through the institutions" as the most effective way to destroy the capitalist American culture.

Bozell says through these institutions "they push their vision on environmental stewardship, social justice, human rights, gay rights, abortion rights, governmental responsibility, greed, homophobia and any other phobia real or imaginative."

This method of advancing an agenda is effective, regardless of the message,. In fact, Bozell told his conservative audience that they were the greatest threat to the secular progressive agenda. He said, "You have a bulls eye on you."

Why?

"Because you represent freedom," he said.

Bozell challenged his audience to enter all these arenas and live out their conservative beliefs, promoting liberty, civic responsibility, advancing the belief that America is good, not bad, we believe we are the leader of the free world, we believe in the basic concept of American Exceptionalism."

He defined "exceptionalism" as the gift that was given "to every one of you in this room by the blood of millions of Americans who shed it so you can have it, and ladies and gentlemen, it is your sacred duty as it is my sacred duty to give it to your children and to theirs and to theirs and to theirs."

Every conservative would agree---I certainly do.

Our Founders often expressed their pro-liberty, pro-freedom actions as a "sacred duty." And it was, and is.

Some Christian conservatives would agree. However, they would add, "My sacred duty is to the gospel, to sharing Christ with a lost world," not politics. They would rightly note that their citizenship is in heaven.

While some Christian conservative activists would put too much value on electing a certain politician or Party, others avoid all contact with our political process, abandoning the battlefield rather than choosing the wrong battle.

When Christians reject the idea of becoming involved in the culture, they are, in effect, saying it isn't worth saving---Jesus is coming---what ever will be will be.

I believe in American exceptionalism and agree with Bozell in his passionate challenge on how to take back the culture--- and politics will follow.

As the culture is restored, political restoration will follow.

I also believe in destiny. And in the case of America and her rise, I believe that destiny was made manifest and affirmed by miracles that can only be attributed to God.

Accurate history notes the miraculous events of America's founding and rise to power beginning with winning the Revolutionary War---a war most of the world believed could not be won by the colonists.

The term "Manifest Destiny" was first used by journalist John O'Sullivan in the New York Democratic Review in 1845 in relation to the annexation of Texas.

However, the vision of "destiny" dates back to 1630 when John Winthrop wrote that we would become "as a city on a hill."

Even secularist Thomas Paine wrote, "The sun never shined on a cause of greater worth."

Public education and secular history revisionists have, in a pejorative way, equated O'Sullivan's words with the words of Winthrop, Paine and others.

They are not the same.

Winthrop's vision was about God and His Kingdom--O'Sullivan's about real estate and expansion.

America's value is different when viewed through the lens of doing God's work on Earth.

America has become the most free, prosperous and blessed nation in the history of the world. And that for a reason.

America has also become the most generous, giving and compassionate nation in history. Regardless of what our president says, we are an exceptional nation.

It is the greatest base for worldwide Christian evangelism---the carrying out of the Great Commission---the world has ever known.

It is here that our Christian responsibility comes most sharply in focus.

It is biblical to pass the inheritance of freedom and prosperity to our children and grandchildren.

However.

It is a direct command to go into all the world to preach the gospel to every creature, to help the poor, heal the broken, all in the name of Jesus Christ.

While America is a generous nation, we citizens are blessed and have been enabled to become the most charitable people in the world.

Look at this:

  • Our government gave $4.7 billion in 2013 to worldwide humanitarian causes.

However, according to government statistics:

  • In 2013, individual Americans gave $241.32 billion to charity, with the largest amount (31%) going to religious causes and 16% to education, including Christian education.
  • 95.4% of US households give to charity.
  • The US is ranked first in the world in charity according to the "Giving Index". Our score last year was the highest ever recorded.

America has the ability and the desire to bless the world. And to share the gospel to every nation.

Generally, the "nations" referred to in the biblical commandments to share the gospel with the world refers to what mission organizations call "people groups."

There are 16,562 "people groups" in the world. Of these groups 9,715 have been reached with the gospel message.

Therefore, 6,847 "people groups" must yet be reached according to biblical mandate.

With the ability to bless the world with the gospel, give our children and grandchildren an inheritance of liberty and freedom while enjoying that freedom ourselves, I would ask: "Is it worth it? Do we bear any responsibility in this blessing?"

It is written, "To whom much is given, much more is required."

Given this, is the effort to see our nation restored not only "worth it" but required?

If doubts remain as to whether Christians should get involved, it would be helpful to read Jesus' parable of the ten talents.

Some have been "fighting on the wrong battlefield" while others have neglected to even sign up for duty.

This is the time.

Be Vigilant. Be Discerning. Be Informed. Be Prayerful. Be Blessed. Be Pro-Active. Be Free.


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