Monday, May 02, 2011

Baptizing foreign policy

There’s a segment of evangelicalism (or whatever we wish to call it) that levels a stock objection according to which the “religious right” has become a wholly owned subsidiary of the GOP (or words to that effect). That it blurs the separation of church and state. In a word, it’s guilty of baptizing the domestic or foreign policy of the GOP.

Is the GOP God’s party? Is God a Republican?

To some extent this criticism is mediated by Anabaptist theology, which often feeds into Fundamentalist or Baptist theology–although there are notable exceptions.

This, in turn, dovetails with the libertarian, noninterventionist ideology of policy wonks like Ron Paul, Robert Pape, Pat Buchanan, Michael Scheuer, and Paul Craig Roberts.

So, for instance, when there’s an event like the death of Bin Laden, evangelicals of this stripe tend to say it’s inappropriate to celebrate the outcome. That to do so is worldly, and there’s a sense in which we brought it on ourselves by our wicked foreign policy.

Now, I’m not commenting on whether this is good or bad, right or wrong. I’m going to make a different point:

Evangelicals who say this are doing the very same thing they fault the “religious right” for doing. They are baptizing the foreign policy of Michael Scheuer, Pat Buchanan, et al. They are using their theology to retroactively justify a pragmatic political ideology that’s not inherently Christian. 


  1. I have come to like Ron Paul. he seems to be a man of integrity. I guess he could be a wonk, but I don't see it. He seems to be a very bright leader, who is Constitutional, and Biblical. He also is a doctor, and served in the Air Force.
    He said on the view to that goofy woman, Joy Behar, when they were discussing abortion, "Would you want to kill a 8 month old baby?" And she was pushed back on her high heels.
    I may be wrong, but I like this guy.

  2. He says some worthwhile things. The point of my post was not to comment on the merits of his position.

  3. God instituted government to punish the evil doers. We should be happy when the government does what it was ordained to do

  4. Sorry about commenting off topic. I agree with your point I think. It would be Shane Claiborne complaining about someone like the Falwells being too religious;y political, all the while Shane couldn't be any more religiously political.

  5. Always a pleasure to hear from you.