The Christian church in the spotlight again

The controversy in the Southern Baptist Convention over systemic racism (critical race theory) points to the politicized nature of Christianity from the beginning.

The earliest issue was whether or not to fellowship with heathens. By the time of the Reformation, the church had been on a 1,500-year quest to amass wealth and influence in the world through political means.

When modern nations enforced separation of church and state, the church asserted its share of power by trying to control matters like marriage and family life, crime and punishment, and the building of happy and healthy cities. These things it tries to achieve by bringing more folks into the society of the church, teaching proper lifestyle, and promising life in the hereafter.

But the process of separation has gone so far that many evangelical churches today see the larger society almost as an enemy, and so they are late comers, if they arrive at all, to social improvement efforts like the civil rights movement.

Jesus himself, however, dove into problems and solutions dealing with all sectors of society. He taught a kingdom of God that emphatically requires individual civic involvement in the secular realm as well as effort in the church realm.

-- Kimball Shinkoskey, Woods Cross

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