Wouldn't it be wonderful if life was all about peace, love and feeding and caring for the poor of the world?
I'd like nothing more than to just retreat into my own surroundings, make life as perfect as I can for those I love in my life and to spend all my political energy in making the world a better place through purely humanitarian efforts. Wouldn't that be nice?
That seems to be the agenda of Progressive Christians. Feed the world's hungry, provide life saving medicines to the world's diseased-poor, making sure every American has free (tax payer sponsored) health care, however, many seem to be of the mistaken view that if a Christian spends any of their time fighting for moral issues which could effect the future of all Americans and have potentially great impact on our every day lives in America, that they are somehow less "holy" than those who want to focus on love, peace, nutrition, the environment and health. They make that position clear each and every time they sneer at a Conservative or evangelical Christian who opposes certain legislation based on moral reasons as though they are judging others and refusing them God's grace.
If those of us who believe in the Republic of the United States of America, look away from the political ramifications of some of the policies which activists in this country would like to implement then we will be at risk of losing the very Republic, the very United States of America that we love.
Progressive Christians hearts may be in the right place. That is why I can be sympathetic to them. That is why I can agree with them on some levels. Progressive Christians are, in many cases, promoting a beneficial Christian service to the greater community, though their position is somewhat naive if they believe they can do that solely on the issues of their choice, while being totally disinterested in other pressing moral issues. Helping the poor is a moral issue, feeding the hungry is a moral issue, showing God's grace and love is a moral issue, but isn't safeguarding our heritage a moral issue, too, when that very heritage is based and founded on Christian principles?
This week the United States Supreme Court has before it a case which will determine whether parents have the right to know when their minor daughter is going to undergo the invasive medical procedure known as abortion. They will be reviewing a lower court ruling which had struck down New Hampshire's Parental Notification Laws. The previous law had required that parents must be notified of an under 18 year old child's abortion plans, either in person or by certified mail, a full 48 hours before the abortion procedure could proceed. The excuse for disallowing parental notification has to do with "health exceptions" for the health of the minor. My question would be, if a minor child has health reasons to get an abortion the parents should have a right to notification of those health issues, as well. This is about who your children belong to...do they belong to you or do they belong to the State or Federal Government? The idea that the State or Federal government should have the authority to bar you from knowing whether your minor daughter is going to have an abortion, or has a health risk which requires an abortion, is reprehensible and should be reprehensible to every parent.
Next, gay marriage. Progressive Christians would like to reduce the argument to being one of love, tolerance and acceptance, grace, if you will, of individual gay persons. Certainly, I agree that we should show love, and grace to ALL people, not only homosexuals, and I have no problem with doing so. What I cannot tolerate is the undermining of the institution of marriage, which was established by God, Himself, by granting gays the special right to marry based upon their sexual orientation. I've said enough about this issue in the past, no need to re-hash it again, but I cannot discuss issues in the political arena which are opposed by Conservative Christians and seem to be supported by Progressive Christians without mentioning it here.
The broader issue of abortion. Conservative Christians generally oppose abortion on demand. Progressive Christians appear to be quite torn by this issue. They seem to feel that if they deny a woman the right to murder a child in their womb, for the reason of convenience, that they might be seen as being less than loving, tolerant and accepting of that person. They leave the voiceless child out of the argument, all together, because science cannot conclude exactly when life begins.
I am a CSI fan. A few weeks ago there was an episode on CSI wherein "Gil Grissam" tells "Katherine" that a spiritual argument can be made that blood represents life and that until life-blood is present in a fetus there is no life. I found that intriguing. In WHEN DOES LIFE BECOME HUMAN LIFE?, found at religioustolerance.org they make this statement:
"We assume that blood first appears at the time that the human embryo's heart begins to beat. (We are confident that we will receive a flood of Emails correcting us if this is not true.) This occurs at about 18 to 21 days after conception -- before the embryo develops limbs, a head, a brain, etc. It is about 1/12" long, the size of a pencil point. It most closely resembles a worm - long and thin and with a segmented end."
This would be a good argument for Progressive Christians to take up, in defending their position, if they would like to see abortion limited to the first 18 to 21 days after conception, but they do not seem to want to limit abortion to that stage only. They use this argument for their supportive position on embryonic stem cell research. As far as I can tell they have no good argument for a pro-choice position other than they don't want to appear to be condemning of the mother who has had an abortion because they think it will make them appear to be less than loving, tolerant and accepting of that mother.
And that's another issue, embryonic stem cell research, Conservatives oppose it while many Progressives generally support it and look for arguments to back up that support. I don't know, to me, valuing an unborn baby's life less than an adult or an already born child just isn't right. Which baby would Jesus kill? (I only throw that in because Progressives like to ask us "who would Jesus kill" when it suits their purpose, and it suited mine).
I really don't mean to generalize about Progressives or about Conservatives, it's just that that is a very difficult thing not to do. I am fully aware that there are Progressives who are pro-life, just as I am sure there are Conservatives who are pro-choice, but for the sake of argument we have to start somewhere, don't we?
My overall point, and I have made it before, is that Progressives have a purpose just as Conservatives have a purpose. Each of us can make a contribution to the calling of Christ.
There is room for humanitarianism and there is room for the rebuking of those who would subvert normal and healthy lifestyles, kill babies in the womb on demand, in most cases simply because they are an inconvenience to the mother, those who would manufacture life only to destroy is to save other life, and those who would remove parent's authority over their children and give the ultimate authority to the State or Federal Government.
So, yeah, this is sort of on the theme of the body of Christ again, and another small effort on my part to bridge a gap of, what I consider, to be misunderstanding of goals of Conservative and Progressive Christians. Christians should have the same goals, not opposing goals. God is not double-minded, He doesn't change. He will not tell one Christian that abortion, for instance, is wrong and another Christian that it is acceptable, and before you ask, no, I certainly don't claim to know the mind of God. Do you?