One of the surprises to come from the political race to secure the Republican nomination for President is Donald Trump’s ability to garner the majority of the evangelical electorate when running against someone like Ted Cruz, “who more clearly identified with and spoke the language of religious conservatives” according to Scott Waller.
Waller who is the Associate Professor of Political Science at Biola University gives a cogent explanation for this in his recent article Blame Pastors For Evangelical’s Trump Support. Waller says of the evangelical community “few of its leaders speak about the public importance of faith and the implications of that faith in the public square.”
He goes on to suggest this creates the “idea of a public-private dichotomy,” in our listeners. We give the impression that what we believe privately should not be lived out publicly. But Christianity, while its tenets can be held privately, must be lived and declared publicly in what we say and how we live if we hope to be “the light of the world” and “the salt of the earth.”
They do try to bully us into silence. I commented on an article written by a homosexual activist recently. Another commentator told me I should “keep my religion within the four walls of my church. They have no place in the public domain, not now, not ever.” I responded that he and others like him should “keep their perversions within the four walls of their bedroom. They have no place in the public domain, not now, not ever.”
Of course other commentators called me homophobic, un-Christian, and intolerant. I wasn’t trying to be hateful or argumentative. I was simply trying to share the truth of how detrimental their actions are to themselves and the rest of society. But it was not received with the same concern it was offered. The LGBT community wants Christians put in the same closet they came out of.
This is because they fear their actions being exposed to the light of God’s word. Paul told the Ephesians, “Do not participate in the unfruitful deeds of darkness, but instead even expose them; for it is disgraceful even to speak of the things which are done by them in secret.”
Some pastors fear to speak up about political issues that overlap into areas of morality and biblical truth because under the Johnson Amendment they think they will loose their 501(c)(3) tax exempt status. But it seems to only be applicable when endorsing a candidate for public office or making political contributions.
I do not make political endorsements, and any church that uses the tithes and offerings of God’s people as a political contribution should loose its tax exemption. God’s people give to support the spread of the Gospel not political candidates.
Paul enjoined Timothy, “I solemn charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead…preach the word.” If we don’t preach it, who will?