On the subject of the article How Do Christians Become Conservative? by Mike Lux, I had some thoughts I believe the world would do well to read, so I figured I’d make a couple posts about it. The first one is here, which is a collection some general thoughts about the fallacy of equating a Christian worldview with political liberalism. Of course, being a non-Christian, he stepped way out of his element by trying to explain Christian principles such as the nature of God, Jesus’ mission and teachings, the content of the Bible, heaven and hell, the church, etc. So I thought I’d offer a different perspective, a Christian perspective, on these issues, and at the same time point out theological errors and logical errors in his arguments.
Understand that I’m not trying to school a non-Christian on Christian doctrine, but I’m trying to address the issue of Christians who are political liberals agreeing with arguments like this, possibly because he’s on the same side politically, rather than matching up what he says with the truth we find in Scripture and observe in human behavior. He’s way off theologically, which is excusable, but what’s inexcusable is for Christians to agree with some of the theological errors. If you read my former post, which you really should if you haven’t already, you will know that this response follows on the heels of a flurry of comments on a Facebook post. A few lines at ta time isn’t enough of a platform to state my case, so I figured I could ramble on for as long as I wanted on my own blog.
So here’s a collection of logical and theological fallacies I thought I’d expose:
- “If that [not being religious or thinking about religious stuff] sends one to hell, at least I’ll be there with a lot of my favorite people.”
Sarcastically saying that he prefers to spend eternity in despair based on his company, without the God Who is the source of all joy and significance, demonstrates that he has no concept of, or maybe no regard for, the teachings about hell that are in the bible he claims to know “pretty well”.
- “Conservative Christians’ primary argument regarding Jesus and politics is that all he cared about was spiritual matters and an individual’s relationship with God.”
False and absurd. I am, hang around with, and am taught by Conservative Christians, and we all know that He is concerned for peoples’ physical well-being, as well as economic and cultural status.
- “…if you actually read the Gospels, it is clear that Jesus’ main concern in terms of the people whose fates he cared about was for the poor, the oppressed, and the outcast.”
Blatantly false. If you actually read the gospels, you will see Him demonstrate that He cares for all people regardless of their socioeconomic status.
- His “serious class warrior” paragraph is all over the place — this could be a whole separate post. “[Jesus] didn’t seem to like rich folks very much.” So when Progressives spew their mantra about loving everyone, they mean everyone except rich people? “In Matthew 6, he focuses on the love of money as a major problem.” The love of money applies equally to people who have it and don’t have it. “In Luke 12, he says that the wealthy who store up treasure are cursed by God.” That curse is a consequence of misuse, not of being successful. “…it is the poor who will get into heaven.” Even if his beliefs aren’t as extreme as what he writes, we all know that getting into heaven doesn’t depend on a low economic status – if we thought so, we would try to keep poor people poor and make rich people poor in order for them to have a better chance of getting into heaven. “He chases the wealthy bankers and merchants from the Temple.” Presumably Lux is talking about Mark 11, which says nothing about the merchants being wealthy, and even if they were, that’s not why he drove them out.
- One of Lux’s favorite passages is the end of Acts 2. But this passage talks about an individual church of faithful believers, not about a larger society – these people are bound together by their identity in Christ, not by being under some governmental authority. Moreover, this small-group communal sharing is voluntary, not orchestrated by government.
- The thesis of his diatribe is that Conservatives do not do what Jesus taught about having compassion for the poor, because conservative politics are antithetical to His teachings. Yes, the bible is loaded with passages about helping the poor, but contrary to what he wants us to believe, Christianity is loaded with conservatives who put this into practice. Somehow pretending that it’s the political conservatives that are not doing the Word of God in this regard is just plain ludicrous, and propagating this nonsense is just plain irresponsible.
So we see that Lux is incapable of handling and applying the biblical text. Not that he should — after all he’s not a Christian and has no regard for biblical authority. That’s what disturbs me about Christians citing this article as a “great article” — how can an article that’s logically inconsistent and full of falsehoods and mischaracterizations be “great” to anyone? How can an article that mischaracterizes God and misquotes and misapplies His Word be “great” to any Christian?