Sunday, November 11, 2007

Olasky's Manifesto: A Biblical (and Practical) Theology of Politics

If you're a Christian and if you're interested in thinking Christianly about politics, then this essay by Marvin Olasky is well worth reading. Very few will agree with every point he makes, but I think Olasky makes a number of thoughtful points in this essay (originally written as part of a symposium about Ronald Reagan and the future of conservatism).
It first lays out a basic biblical exegesis that frees Christians from reacting defensively, and provides examples of how our goal should be to add, not subtract. It then explores some of the nuances, including: why America is not the new Israel, why theocracy is not biblically warranted here, what the minimal societal goals for Christians should be, how Christians can steer clear of spam evangelism, how the difficult issue of same-sex marriage should be approached, and how Christ’s expansive definition of “neighbor” fits well with the Constitution’s first three words: “We, the people.”
One of Olasky's goals is to tweak both libertarians and conservatives--the former for tending to insist on liberty irrespective of the necessity for liberty, and the latter for tending to think that being "strong and courageous" requires ideological purity.

Read the whole thing