No Political Salvation

I am a liberal Democrat and therefore very much in agreement with the positions that Sojourners expresses on various political issues. But as a Christian who greatly appreciates and continually uses two of Jim Wallis’ books, Agenda for Biblical People and Call to Conversion, I do not expect the government to bring in the kingdom of God. Nor do I expect our political leaders to be Old Testament prophets or saints.

What I find in Wallis’ writings, but miss in the magazine, is the radical perspective on the nature and mission of the community of those who believe and follow Jesus Christ. While not believing that the church should withdraw from the political arena (even if it could), I am very concerned that we wrestle a lot more about the nature of that involvement. Too often in the magazine I do not find that wrestling, but simply a liberal social and economic agenda that I agree with but find inadequate for the tasks at hand.

If it were not for Jim Wallis’ involvement and the knowledge that there are sincere attempts to live a lifestyle that embodies the convictions expressed in the magazine, I would not subscribe. I support the endeavor, but do not find the magazine generally to be of the quality I would like.

While I would not classify myself as an evangelical, I would like the biblical or gospel-based perspective to be much stronger. Many people who might agree with you politically do not even realize how radical or relevant the biblical witness is to these concerns. I would appreciate a stronger emphasis on how the church can be a sign, foretaste, and instrument of the redemptive reign of God, rather than the current preoccupation with the political and governmental realm.

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Sojourners Magazine August 1994
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