Friday, October 29, 2010

Voting the Bible

Recently, I have been receiving all sorts of urgings from folks I know to "vote the Bible." Not exactly sure what to make of them. Does the Bible speak with a clear and unequivocal voice on the issues we face? Are they urging me to vote in accordance with a certain set of narrow predetermined criteria traced back somehow to the Bible's pages? Is this what Christians are called to do, proof-text voting?

My take is simply this, Biblical faith is intensely personal but it is never private. Biblical faith is lived publicly; therefore, as much as I hate politics, Biblical faith is political. It involves making choices in the realm of politics rooted and guided particularly in the prophetic literature and culminating in the person of Jesus. Issues of social and economic justice; how those who live on society's margins are protected and cared for; decisions made out of compassion rather than fear; how we care for God's creation so that it may sustain us as God intended; how differences are settled with respect and dialogue rather than vitriol and force.

These are among the principles that guide me as I vote for candidates. Do these coalesce into a certain political agenda? Perhaps, but I'm not really interested in labels, just being faithful and true to the path to which I feel called to follow. It may not be the path my "biblically voting" friends had in mind, or it may be, it is simply how I feel called to walk this world following the path of Jesus my Lord and Savior. I am the Unlikely Pastor, welcome to my world.