'Jesus is not a Republican' | Arkansas Blog

Thursday, June 29, 2006

'Jesus is not a Republican'

Posted By on Thu, Jun 29, 2006 at 2:59 PM

Randall Balmer, an evangelical and professor of religious history, has written a new book, excerpted in the Chronicle of Higher Education under the title above. On a day when professed "values" candidates are trampling each other to be the first to marginalize Arkansas people on account of their sexual orientation, these words from "Thy Kingdom Come: How the Religious Right Distorts the Faith and Threatens America: An Evangelical's Lament" offer an antidote. A small slice:

By the late 1970s, the leaders of the religious right felt their hegemony over American society slipping away. One reading of the religious right is that many evangelicals believed that their faith could no longer compete in the new, expanded religious marketplace. No wonder the religious right wants to renege on the First Amendment. No wonder the religious right seeks to encode its version of morality into civil and criminal law. No wonder the religious right wants to emblazon its religious creeds and symbols on public property. Faced now with a newly expanded religious marketplace, it wants to change the rules of engagement so that evangelicals can enjoy a competitive advantage. Rather than gear up for new competition, as Beecher did in the 19th century, the religious right seeks to use the machinations of government and public policy to impose its vision of a theocratic order


The Bible I read tells of freedom for captives and deliverance from oppression. It teaches that those who refuse to act with justice or who neglect the plight of those less fortunate have some explaining to do. But the Bible is also about good news. It promises redemption and forgiveness, a chance to start anew and, with divine help, to get it right. My evangelical theology assures me that no one, not even Karl Rove or James Dobson, lies beyond the reach of redemption, and that even a people led astray can find their way home.

That sounds like good news to me. Very good news indeed.

From the ArkTimes store


Comments (31)

Showing 1-31 of 31

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-31 of 31

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

  • Mississippi school will replace Jefferson Davis with Barack Obama

    The Jackson, Miss., School Board has decided to rename an elementary school named for Jefferson Davis, the president of the Confederacy, for Barack Obama. That inspires an idea for Little Rock.
    • Oct 18, 2017
  • Environmental group finds agricultural chemicals in Arkansas drinking water

    The Environmental Working Group released a report this week that asserts that the drinking water for about 200,000 Arkansans contains unsafe levels of chemicals related to industrial agriculture and a related effort singles out Tyson Foods to do something about it.
    • Oct 18, 2017
  • Little Rock to reveal bid for Amazon headquarters

    Thursday is the deadline for cities to make a pitch for Amazon's second headquarters and Little Rock will unveil its proposal at a 10:30 a.m. news conference Thursday in the Venture Center in the city's Technology Park development on Main Street.
    • Oct 18, 2017
  • More »

Readers also liked…

  • Auditor Lea caught not telling the truth

    State Auditor Andrea Lea, who began her tenure in statewide office with a degree of competence unseen in some other Republican counterparts (think Treasurer Dennis Milligan particularly), is becoming more deeply mired in a political scandal.
    • Mar 4, 2016
  • Mitch Landrieu on the removal of Confederate tributes in New Orleans

    You want to hear the words of a strong mayor? Read the speech delivered by New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu on the removal of the last of four Lost Cause tributes in the city. THIS is a strong mayor. Brilliant.
    • May 22, 2017
  • Another Republican miracle-working governor

    Great piece in Washington Post on the budget crisis in Louisiana. Big tax cuts and corporate welfare will do that to a state, particularly to a state whose previous governor, Republican Bobby Jindal, refused to join the Obamacare-funded Medicaid expansion. There's a lesson there for Arkansas.
    • Mar 4, 2016

Most Shared

Most Viewed

Most Recent Comments



© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation