On a both personal and general level I’ve been thinking about Religion (specifically Christianity) and Politics over the last few weeks. What role should religion play in politics? How does Christianity influence my public policy views? What’s best for Christianity (or any other religion) vis a vis politics?
This is a touchy subject with a roomful of caveats. For one it is hard to pin the nebulous word “influence.” What does influence actually mean? For second it really matters what type of political system we are addressing. For example, religion’s proper role in a liberal democracy like America will and should look a lot different than religion’s role under an apartheid regime like South Africa or an oligarchy dictatorship like Communist Eastern Europe. Christianity’s role in a political system of oppression is much clearer—a voice calling out in the wilderness. The trouble comes in a liberal democracy where the issues aren’t nearly straightforward as justice and life and death (I know, many people see issues in America as life and death). Other posts to follow will address religion in a liberal democracy, specifically Christianity’s role in the American political process. Stay tuned.