“Many of us feel that our faith has been stolen, and it’s time to take it back,” writes Jim Wallis, editor of Sojourners magazine. “An enormous public misrepresentation of Christianity has taken place. Many people around the world now think Christian faith stands for political commitments that are almost the opposite of its true meaning. How did the faith of Jesus come to be known as pro-rich, pro-war, and pro-American? And how do we get back to a historic, biblical, and genuinely evangelical faith rescued from its contemporary distortions?
“That rescue operation is even more crucial today, in the face of a social crisis that cries out for prophetic religion,” continues Wallis. “The problem is clear in the political arena, where strident voices claim to represent Christians, when they clearly don’t speak for most of us. We hear politicians who love to say how religious they are but utterly fail to apply the values of faith to their public leadership and political policies. It’s time to take back our faith in the public square, especially in a time when a more authentic social witness is desperately needed. When we do, we discover that faith challenges the powers that be to do justice for the poor, instead of preaching a ‘prosperity gospel’ and supporting politicians that further enrich the wealthy. We remember that faith hates violence and tries to reduce it, and exerts a fundamental presumption against war, instead of justifying it in God’s name. We see that faith creates community from racial, class, and gender divisions and prefers international community over nationalist religion, and we see that ‘God bless America’ is found nowhere in the Bible. And we are reminded that faith regards matters such as the sacredness of life and family bonds as so important that they should never be used as ideological symbols or mere political pawns in partisan warfare.”