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Something is Rotten in Evangelicalism

Posted by admin in January 31st, 2020
Published in Uncategorized

WOKE /wōk/ – adjective – [informal] alert to injustice in society, especially racism; referring to a perceived superior awareness of issues concerning social justice. A perceived recognition of social, racial, economic, and gender inequality.

If you’re a woke Christian in modern evangelicalism, you’re intimately familiar with the alphabet soup all the in crowd is consuming: SJW, #LOVEWINS, #WELCOMETHESTRANGER, LGBTQ, AFAB/AMAB, DACA, POC, #METOO, PC, and #BLM. There’s also an entire minefield out there on the environment, global warming, and even what we eat. Plant-based is the new term for, “if you eat meat, you’re a horrible person and I hate you.”

There is an elitism in modern-day evangelical circles that is starting to spread faster than any pandemic I’ve ever seen.

You’ve heard of body shaming, Trump shaming, and the fast rising virtue shaming or more commonly known as virtue signaling. This is when a person takes an obvious, but essentially useless action seemingly to support a good cause, but actually to show off how much more moral they are than you. It’s an odd kind of show-offy judgmentalism.

Virtue signaling is more popular in Christian circles, because there’s a trend among evangelical leaders to appear WOKE and hip enough to see that Jesus was nothing if He wasn’t a Social Justice Warrior. Their mission is to spread the social justice gospel because that’s the only gospel worth knowing.

It’s elitism. Plain and simple. And it has nothing to do with the Gospel and everything to do with self-serving.

Most recently, Mark Galli’s Christmas editorial shamed Trump supporters. Galli wrote it on his way out the door at Christianity Today, right before retirement. I can’t know Galli’s heart, only God can. Galli said he had to write the piece as it was his moral obligation. Okay. I’ll accept that. But what about Galli’s words in Shaine Claiborne’s book, Still Evangelical-Insiders Reconsider Political, Social, and Theological Meaning?

Galli wrote that Christian Trump supporters were “morally unethical.” Then he oozed elitism out of every pore when he declared, “I know hardly anyone who voted for Trump. I describe evangelicals like me as ‘elite’ evangelicals…These other evangelicals [Trump voters] often haven’t finished college, and if they have jobs (and apparently a lot of them don’t), they are blue-collar jobs or entry level work. They don’t write books or give speeches; they don’t attend conferences of evangelicals for social justice or evangelicals for immigration reform” (p. 141-142).

Both Galli and Claiborne are demonstrating pure arrogance. But Galli and Claiborne are just a small part of an ever-increasing snobby, prejudiced, illusions-of-grandeur, insider, pretentious Christianity which flies the banners of Social Justice and Wokism.

Sadly, other woke Christian SJWs are surfacing in some of the most unexpected places. In fact, I’d say the biggest pond of SJWs and Elites can be found in the Southern Baptist Convention’s (SBC) very own Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission (ERLC).

If this WOKE Christianity is really a pandemic, then the ERLC is at the center of the outbreak and it’s the kind of leaven Jesus warns about, “A little bit of leaven (false teachings) can permeate the entire loaf.”

Russel Moore, president of the ERLC, is not your friend. One problem with Russel and ERLC is that they tend to jump on any bandwagon being pulled by Jenny Yang (World Relief). My biggest issue with Russel’s being unequally yoked with Yang centers around her theology. Yang asserts, “To be partisan is to be tools of an empire to perpetuate injustice. National security is the new prosperity gospel. The rule of law can be elevated too high.” I’m choking on that sentence.

Russel Moore and Jenny Yang partner together on everything from pro illegal immigration, hastily opening doors for refugees (reduce the vetting process), and the socialist themed, “from womb to tomb” care government should provide for its citizens.

“Political engagement, not partisan engagement, is the key to alleviating injustice,” Yang said at a November panel discussion at John Brown University. You don’t have to be schooled in political theory to recognize where she pulled that catch phrase from. That smacks of “Viva la revolucion!” right out of the Che Guevera playbook.

Russel Moore said at a side-rally at the March for Life 2020, “If you stand up and say ‘the image of God’ it also applies to this immigrant family that’s moved into your community, that people are screaming at and calling ‘anchor babies’ and ‘Go home!’ It takes a good deal of courage to stand up and say, ‘I’m going to take the long-term [view] and not to follow whatever the mob is doing right now.’” What mob is he talking about? And I’ve never heard anyone scream at immigrants! I’ve got five legal immigrant families in my neighborhood – ain’t nobody screaming at them.

The logic behind these statements is based on a false narrative. First of all, Christians are not opposed to immigration! We’re opposed to illegal immigration! We’re not opposed to refugees. We’re opposed to hastily (or non) vetted refugees who have caused great harm to innocent citizens in the past 10 years. For more information on this, see my blog http://terimccarthyblahblahblog.com/part-iii-the-truth-about-illegals-in-our-nation/

One dozen terrorists committed nine attacks in eight years leaving 97 US citizens dead, 444 injured, and over 20 individuals maimed by loss of limbs. Each was here under refugee status and not properly vetted. 

Russel Moore wants to broaden the definition of pro-life to “pro-all-life.” To promote his new definition he started his own march called, Evangelicals for Life (which takes place simultaneously with the March for Life in DC). Why is this bad? It’s code for “pro illegal immigration, open borders, pro-affirmative action, and universal health care.” In one of his speeches at the march, Moore said, “It’s often risky for faithful Christians to raise unpopular ideas…But that doesn’t mean they should stay quiet. You stand up and say that everyone is made in the image of God and that also applies to the immigrant and refugee.” i.e. illegal immigrant and unvetted refugee.

LIFE IS A RIGHT–IT IS A GOD-GIVEN RIGHT. CITIZENSHIP IS NOT A RIGHT AND TO COMPARE THE TWO AND SAY THEY ARE EQUAL IS BOTH ILLOGICAL AND UNBIBLICAL. 

One of Russel Moore’s followers said at the March for Life, “Today, we’re marching for life. Tomorrow, we should march for ‘Dreamers.’” (Referring to the approximately 800,000 young people brought to the US illegally as children and now facing possible deportation). BTW, Arizona claims that research there shows DACA dreamers are 200% more likely to commit violent crimes than citizen peers. TWO HUNDRED PERCENT! They are not all the valedictorian college-bound models we see in the main stream media, unfortunately.

WOKE Christian leaders like Russel Moore wrote an open letter to Trump, along with World Relief (Jenny Yang’s group). They described their efforts as, “Convening a Christian conscience on behalf of refugees.” They published it in the Washington Post, a newspaper so liberal that it is often referred to as Pravda on the Potomac! https://rcusa.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/10/Washington-Post-Letter.pdf

They also ran an anti-Trump ad in 2018, signed by people like Beth Moore, Ann Voskamp, and Max Lucado.  https://worldrelief.org/blog/a-letter-to-president-trump-and-congress Both of those pieces in the Post cost $30,000 each.

As I read over the names of leaders who signed that letter I suddenly become very ill at ease. It is their books I have read over the decades; it is their sermons I have listened to and their conferences I have attended. It is their influence that discipled me and mentored me. I have to ask the question, “How could they get such an important issue so terribly wrong?” In modern terms we’d say, “How could they drink the Kool-Aid?”

Stuart and Jill Briscoe? Richard Mouw? Joni Erickson-Tada? (Not to be snarky, but Anne Voskamp signed the letter too and she’s from Canada–a nation that has one of the strictest immigration laws in the world).

Open Letters to Trump, secret meetings at Wheaton (https://religionnews.com/2018/04/17/evangelical-leaders-discuss-future-of-their-movement-in-trump-era/), Welcome the Stranger videos, and op/eds by the popular kids telling the hoi polloi that we need to be more enlightened, to embrace social justice, and to stop disgracing the word evangelical. In fact, Baylor Professor Thomas Kidd, in his book, Who Is An Evangelical? The History of a Movement in Crises, writes, “‘Evangelical’ is fast becoming code for a red-blooded, Fox News-watching, white Republican who likes to think of himself as religious.” Ouch. Just saying it Thomas, doesn’t make it so.

These elites appear to think that if we’d only listen to them, follow them, adhere to their gospel, we’d become WOKE too and better followers of Jesus.

According to Bible teacher and popular tweeter, Beth Moore, (a very woke Christian), one cannot be pro-life unless they “care about the life of the immigrant, care about sick people, and care about the welfare of black people” — all hot-button social justice issues. (see blog http://terimccarthyblahblahblog.com/whats-my-beef-with-beth/) As if the Church doesn’t have a 2,000 year history of caring for the stranger, the sick, and ethnic minorities. It was the Church that led the Abolition Movement, built hospitals, and fought for Child Labor Reform here in the US. Stop virtue signaling. It’s evangelicals that are at the forefront of the battle against human trafficking–all are pro-life theology.

Between the two Moores (Beth and Russel – not related), the higher you are on the elites list, (one blogger called it “the intersectionality scale”), the more you care about their definition of pro-all-life–immigrants, blacks, POC, confused LGBTQs, and sick people.

Then Russel Moore goes full-blown socialist on us, “To care about human life doesn’t mean that we’re necessarily going to agree on what healthcare system model ought to look like, but it does mean that we agree that sick people matter. It doesn’t mean that we’re necessarily going to agree on what sorts of affirmative action programs we ought to have in our colleges and universities, but it has to mean that we understand and know that black lives matter, black people matter. It doesn’t necessarily mean that we agree on how many immigrants ought to come into the country every year, but it has to mean that the lives of immigrants and strangers and sojourners matter to God and ought to matter to us. So we can’t be the people who say these people are parasites. We have to say, ‘These are people created in the image of God.’” Has anyone reading this ever called any of these people groups “parasites?” I haven’t; nor would I. Hyperbole is a great tool for WOKE folk.

If you listen closely, you can see that Russel Moore’s comments are very carefully chosen and they assume a system that already embraces socialism. He doesn’t say that we’re going to disagree on whether or not to have affirmative action programs — he says we’re going to disagree on “what sorts” of affirmative action programs. He doesn’t say that we’re going to disagree on whether or not we should implement a healthcare system — he says we’re going to disagree on what kind.

And nobody — literally nobody — has argued that these people are not created in the image of God. This is a highly irresponsible and foolish argument from one of the most influential men in the most influential Protestant denomination in the world. It should shake us to the very core.

It’s an accusation against an entire group of people who reject social justice and paints a picture of “white supremacy” where it simply does not exist. The argument is essentially to be for these social programs or be a nationalistic, unbiblical, failure as a Christian.

We’re broken here in America. And sadly, what happens in the Church in the USA seems to spread overseas and thus the term pandemic.

Let me say clearly and without reservation, my brothers and sisters in Christ are wrong on these issues. They’re wrong to imbibe the alphabet soup of our culture and to embrace these false dichotomies and perversions. First of all, I can love God and love my country. They are not mutually exclusive. Secondly, there is a micro and a macro application of Scripture–one relates to a personal relationship with Christ and the other is for the governing bodies. That’s why we say “Thou shalt not kill,” and yet we can defend our nation in war. That’s why we say, “Jesus is the only way,” and yet we have religious freedom under the Constitution. That’s why we declare, “The best is yet to come, ” but still work on this earth to preserve it, care for it, and to be good stewards.

People saying that as Christians, as evangelicals, we must help refugees are missing the point. I believe as a follower of Christ I must  help refugees. This is the very reason my husband Daryl and I worked in Afghanistan in 2003 and 2006. There are refugee camps around the world crying for workers and resources. Go for it! What an opportunity for Christians to live out their faith and the Scriptures’ commands by going and living sacrificially among the “least of these.”

But America is a nation, not a church. And as one wise man put it, “I lock my doors at night, not because I hate the people on the outside, but because I love the people on the inside, and it is my responsibility to protect them.”

In Joshua 9, Joshua didn’t properly vet the saddlebags and the enemy came in. Careful vetting is simply checking the saddlebags for moldy bread. We are living in a world never before seen or experienced in our history and proper vetting is wisdom, not abuse. Check the saddlebags!

Please don’t be shamed into thinking that patriotism is unbiblical or that sovereign borders are evil or that defending babies in the womb is the same as defending refugees. We are to be as wise as serpents and as gentle as doves. God tells us that if anyone lacks wisdom, he can ask of the Father who gives wisdom liberally and without criticism. And never has discernment been more important for followers of Christ than in these times. Today it’s immigration, ant-Trump, open borders and tomorrow it will be affirmation of all things LGBTQ. And laugh if you will, but that meat thing is coming. Watch for it.

Today we must know what we believe and know why we believe it. It’s your only defense. Think it through and wrestle with these hard issues. Check everything through the trustworthy grid of Scriptures, because it matters. It really matters, because truth matters most.

Whether it’s Social Justice Warriors, or the #LOVEWINS movement or a church leader telling you that Black Lives Matter most, or someone telling you that Jesus was an illegal immigrant, it all boils down to one specific thing: another gospel. “But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach a gospel other than the one we preached to you, let them be under God’s curse!” (Galatians 1:8) In the 1990s, it was the prosperity message; in the 1980s, it was the New Age movement, and today it’s this, but God and the Body of Christ are indestructible and for over 2,000 #TRUTHWINS. Every.Single.Time.

Peace.

 

 

2 users Responded In This Post

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53948. Lisa Torry said,
February 1st, 2020 at 10:28 am

I’m growing more fond of you with each blog post I read. So well articulated – thank you.

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53954. Barb said,
February 2nd, 2020 at 7:12 am

Amen to this article! I’m sick and tired of being called immoral and ignorant for supporting my President. I had a Christian friend tear into me last night accusing me of being immoral for supporting President Trump.And like the many others he’s very soft on abortion and homosexuality.
Is President Trump a sinner? You bet he is and, trust me, I don’t give a *wink-wink* to sin. But he is our President. He has acted for and worked to promote Godly moral issues like no other president I know. I pray for his salvation and I thank God every day for him.

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