Inaugural Prayers

inaugural prayers

During the revolutionary war, a cleric delivered a fiery message about liberty. At the conclusion, he threw off his black clerical robe to reveal a uniform. He led his congregation out the door to join the patriots in fighting united empire loyalists.

For all the talk about church/state separation, faith leaders and politicians in the US have always looked to each other for support. Of course, that is different from the church forming a constitution or government for the state. It is also different than the state forming a creed or polity for the church. But the symbiosis has always been there.

The coming invocation of President-elect Donald Trump is no different. The word is that there will be a plethora of ‘faith leaders’ on hand to bask in the earthly glory of the event. No doubt, good, ‘separated’ [whatever THAT means] fundamentalists will cheer this as a good thing.

Friday Challenge:

Today’s challenge is to offer a few thoughts as to WHAT should be prayed at the upcoming Presidential inauguration. Earthly power, wealth and glory? Victory and the destruction of all our enemies? The establishment of US freedom/hegemony? Peace and Justice? The grace of God’s kingdom?

Perhaps clergy should boycott the inauguration.

In this context, what does faithfulness ‘look like?’

FWOTW — Mario Murillo Ministries

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Complete with mouse-over effect …

Meet Mario Murillo Ministries!

The big question now is what does the church do now that Trump is president?  In new blogs I will open my heart to you about the radical steps the church must take to seize this greatest soul winning opportunity in our lifetime.  Once again we must change the way we relate to government.

I know we need fresh fire.  Prayer, repentance and waiting for new orders are the keys for the American church in 2017.

One thing is certain…success will not tame this blog.  It will continue to keep its edge.  It will continue to provoke, stretch and force minds to think and hearts to examine themselves.

Wait — am I to infer that the elevation of Mr. Trump is somehow related to the greatest soul-winning opportunity in our lifetime? Exactly how are these things connected, and why am I supposed to believe that they are? Does this guy truly believe that Trump is a ‘Cyrus’ figure who ‘buys the church time to repent and return to her rightful influence on America?’

Assertions of Obama’s war with us together with proclamations of his peanuts-discovers-fwotwhatred of America, of Israel and of Christians, plus the assertions that Bill and Hillary Clinton may be involved in sex trafficking — these barely etch a scratch in the surface of the bizarre website which identifies itself as Mario Murillo Ministries.

So consistently is Mr. Murillo’s website not only political but also blatantly partisan that I’ve asked myself if he is a political operative who intentionally retains an evangelical block as a rapid deployment political force.

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More mouse-over effects …

If Mario produces the bulk of his blog posts himself, he has too much time on his hands. In any event, nothing says FWOTW quite like Mario Murillo.

[Brandy may be helpful for those reviewing Mario’s past posts].

Elevating the ‘Christian Nation’ Heresy I

Christian Nation Heresy

What Wrong With This Heresy?

It seems not to occur to us that when he refused the Satan’s offer of earthly power and glory, Jesus wasn’t leaving it for us. Rather he showed us that we like him are to shun the Satan’s offer. But we don’t get it.

That, or we refuse to get it. This is because what Satan offered is exactly what many so-called ‘conservative’ Christians want. Translation?

While they don’t admit it, many ‘conservative’ Christians believe Jesus got the Satan’s temptation wrong. They think Jesus ought to have taken the offer. Consequently, they work to gain what Jesus relinquished.

Where relationship to earthly power is concerned, many fundamentalist and broader evangelical ‘Christians’ take up a flag in one hand and a cross in the other, and declare their spiritual solidarity with Lucifer.

Dr. Ray Rooney Jr.

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What an opportunity the political landscape of America has provided for her church.

Friday last, Ray Rooney published a piece for the American Family Association. The title comes in the form of the question, ‘On the Cusp of National Revival?’

When Jesus wrote the church at Philadelphia, he said ‘I have put before you an open door which no one can shut’ [Re 3:8]. In a Biblical theology, ministry is an outgrowth of the work of Jesus. The suggestion that churchly opportunity arises from the shifting political landscape is born of rank unbelief. It also postulates US political culture as the mediator of divine blessing.

Moreover, Mr. Rooney recalls that twice, President Obama was elected. He equates those years with rising debauchery and bestial impulses bent on effecting political tyranny in the land. For his assertions, he offers not the slightest theoretical analysis. Are we to accept this because he says it?

Likewise, the church appeared to have fallen into apostasy during the Obama years. He continues…

‘And the church provided little in the way of hope for change or guidance; she was more interested in being accepted by the puppeteers of culture driven by darkness than transforming the lost through the proclamation of God’s righteousness and the powerful blood of Jesus Christ. ‘

Partisan Gospel

We should have no illusions about Ray Rooney’s partisan gospel. His unstated premise implies a correlation between partisan fortunes and faithful proclamation leading to God’s blessing. That is a lie. It is heresy. It is blasphemy. A partisan gospel is not a universal gospel. And the gospel of Jesus is for all people. This includes so-called ‘liberals.’

Mr. Trump’s election is the switch on which this twisted narrative turns. It now appears that we may stand on the cusp of a national revival. He wants us to know that evangelical leaders made a difference on Nov 8.

What ‘Christian’ Influence!

With many fine exceptions, the reality is that the North American church serves as a conduit connecting political process and the White House with the gutter. Such presidential nominations as we have seen in this election cycle are vomited up when a political order is in terminal decline. Still, this doesn’t prevent Rooney from ‘going evangelical’ and saying:

‘We will always have a welcome and needed contingent of people calling the body of Christ to love, forgive, and accept God’s love.’

This constitutes neither Mr. Rooney nor the American Family Association for which he writes as one of those fine exceptions. The narrative to which he returns about sin and salvation does not mesh with a partisan gospel. But he apparently prefers that we see it otherwise.

God willing, more on this tomorrow.

Friday Challenge — What’s Wrong With This Picture?

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Thanks to David Hayward over at Naked Pastor. I keep using his material. But how do you top this?

Church and the Anointing Power

Today’s Friday Challenge is simple.

In one sentence, what’s wrong with this picture.

Example:

Christian Fundamentalism presents itself as the alternative to and antidote for the world while it itself epitomizes worldly, humanistic secularity.

Escape clause — use more sentences if necessary.