The Common Good

Billy Graham Meets Martin Luther King Jr.—Again

Date: April 30, 2013

Historically speaking, there is little new in The Lamb's Agenda. John Wesley, Charles Finney, and William Wilberforce's Clapham Sect also married evangelism, moral reform, and social crusades. Rodriguez is certainly not the first to argue that Christians must not be captive to any political party and that we must not let them use us as their "useful idiots." Instead, we must let Jesus' prophetic call to justice and compassion judge both parties and render all ideologies relative.

Just before the 2004 election, Jim Wallis and Sojourners conducted a high-profile campaign to liberate Christian activism from enslavement to political parties. Their ad campaign cum petition headlined "God is not a Republican … or a Democrat" gained 40,000 signatures. Immediately after the election, Wallis attacked the media identification of Christians with the Republican Party in his book God's Politics.

Rodriguez, ever the preacher, reframes Wallis's slogan in zoological terms: "As followers of Christ, we stand committed to advancing not the agenda of the Donkey or the Elephant but only the Agenda of the Lamb." (If you haven't heard Rodriguez preach, you should start with his keynote address at the 2013 National Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration at King's Ebenezer Baptist Church.)