A Message from "Jesus Land"

11/18/2004

With the post-election revelation that "moral issues" were the highest ranked factor driving people to the polls, many Democrats, liberals, and their friends in the media have gotten themselves worked up into quite a frenzy.

Paul Krugman of the New York Times sounded off after the election by writing, "President Bush isn't a conservative. He's a radical - the leader of a coalition that deeply dislikes America as it is. Part of that coalition wants to tear down the legacy of Franklin Roosevelt, eviscerating Social Security and, eventually, Medicare. Another part wants to break down the barriers between church and state. And thanks to a heavy turnout by evangelical Christians, Mr. Bush has four more years to advance that radical agenda."

I seem to remember many Democrats complaining that it was the Republicans who capitalized upon the "politics of fear," but that's a discussion for another day. As a friend of the president and an outspoken, conservative Christian living in the heart of what Michael Moore labeled as "Jesus Land," let me just say that America has nothing to worry about. 

Radical change is not on the way. We are not the ones who have been trying to redefine marriage, reinterpret the Constitution through the court system, suppress your right to practice or not practice religion, or remove the absolute pillars of truth upon which this nation was founded.  In fact, for the first time in years, a majority of our voting population spoke up and the message is this: the social and moral values that made this nation great are the ones we want for our children and grandchildren.

Chuck Colson, who understands both politics and Christianity, astutely observed in a column entitled It's Not Payback Time, "The reason evangelicals and conservative Catholics voted for Bush, I believe, is because they know he shares many of the values of middle America...  We want an America that respects moral truths and moral values, and we reject the social chaos that results from postmodern relativism."

Our founding fathers, most of whom were religious men, understood that institutional religion should never be forced upon free people.  But they also understood that in a free society, spirituality should not be silenced.  Prayer has been a part of our Congress since its inception.  Our greatest leaders have always acknowledged Divine Providence.  Presidential candidates have always campaigned in churches, which also serve as polling places.  Even Senator Kerry concluded his concession speech with a prayer.

But when people of faith help put a man into office, we do not reflexively expect something in return.  Again, Colson puts the best when he says, "I am tired of reading articles about evangelicals voting for Bush because they want to 'get something' from him, and I disassociate myself from anyone who says, 'Now we voted for you, it's payback time.  Give us our due.' That's what special interest groups do, and we are not a special interest group.  We vote our conscience and what we believe is in the best general interest."

The 2004 elections clearly shifted the balance of power toward conservatives and the Republican Party.  But the attitude of Christians is not, "What can we take from this?"  Our attitude is, following the example of Jesus Christ, "What can we give?"

Of course, we will continue to stand for what we believe is true and just.  But that belief compels us to take action.  In practical terms, that translates into things like feeding the hungry, helping the poor, protecting the innocent, keeping the family strong, fighting for equal treatment under the law, and sharing the gift of freedom with oppressed people around the world.  After raising our hand in victory on November 2, we do not lower it to strike out at others.  We offer it, outstretched, to help those in need.



Author: James Robison

Resource: Chuck Colson's article.

Word Count: 645

About the author: James Robison is the founder and president of LIFE Outreach International, an international humanitarian aid ministry; host of the television program, Life Today; and author of The Absolutes.

Media Contact: Randy Robison, randy.robison at loi.org

Photo available upon request. Reprint rights granted with attribution for complete, unedited article. Revisions allowed only with approval.