Who Speaks for God?

Who speaks for God today? The Religious Right would have us believe that it does. The media have been very cooperative, giving right-wing fundamentalists most of the coverage when the issues of politics and religion come up. And religion and politics come up all the time these days.

For several years now, the Religious Right has virtually controlled the national discussion of politics and morality with the help of the media, who have virtually ignored alternative voices. And with all its money, the Religious Right literally has been able to buy its own microphones and broadcast its message around the world.

The time has come to challenge the Religious Right and offer a deeper perspective. A clear, visible, public alternative is vitally needed today-one that lifts up another vision of the relationship between faith and politics.

Among many sectors of the church's life, a new conversation is taking place. Dissenting evangelical voices seek a biblical approach to politics, not the ideological agenda being advanced by the Religious Right. Strong Catholic voices assert their own church's social teachings as a vital alternative to the Religious Right and the secular Left. Many African-American, Latino, Asian, and Native American church voices combine personal and family values with a commitment to social justice that leads them to embrace neither the liberal nor the conservative program. New voices from all the Protestant churches feel represented neither by old religious liberalism nor Religious Right fundamentalism.

Together, we proclaim an evangelical, biblical, and catholic faith that must address a nation in crisis; and we will not be dismissed as "liberals" or "secular humanists" as the Religious Right always characterizes those who disagree with it. We do not challenge the Religious Right's "right" to bring its religious values into the public square as some political liberals have.

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Sojourners Magazine March-April 1995
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