Friday, September 8, 2006

SO MUCH FOR ALL THAT

I am finding, based on e-mailed responses and comments to my postings on bikehiker, that readers can't seem to understand how an evangelical minister could dare not wholeheartedly support the Bush Administration or its war on Iraq. Sorry to either surprise or disappoint anyone.

LET ME BE CLEAR. Let me be clear: based on what I understand of Biblical theology and the basic tenets of evangelical faith, I cannot support the war on Iraq or the agree with most of the policies of the Bush Adminstration. This is nothing new with me. I have conveyed this throughout my postings. I gave Bush the benefit of the doubt in the early days of his Presidency, but it became clear within a year that his personal experience of faith and his policies and decisions on domestic and international affairs intersect only at the point of political opportunity. That Bush and many of his cohorts claim to be evangelical Christians means little to me; it is their words, attitudes, policies, actions, directions, and outcomes--most of which I observe to be decidedly not Christian--that matter to me.

SO MUCH FOR THAT. Further, it's clear that most readers who respond to my sporadic comments on the Bush Administration and America's war on Iraq have no intentions of challenging their own notions or to be bothered with broader facts. They don't even ask questions. They just want to vent their disagreement with me. That's fine. Sad, but fine. So much for the possibility of healthy dialogue. So much for the possibility of exploring what might have been or what might yet be in a future of a nation that chooses not to act in violence in the face of enemies. So much for the possibility of exploring an understanding the followers of Jesus Christ as standing apart from passing national regimes, decidedly unchristian policies, and mere national allegiances. So much for envisioning an alternative to the way we've always done it, the way that serves to protect and perpetuate empty material avarice, the way that foments xenophobia and fear and violence. So much for all that.

WHAT ARE YOU LOOKING FOR? I will continue to draw upon and feature the best resources and credible representatives I can find to explore progressive and Christian alternatives to community, national, and international quandaries. That's one positive contribution I feel like I can make here. I have no interest in protecting any partisan political policy or leader. I have no interest in carping criticism; in most cases, I offer some progressive alternative to what I see as troubling in the world. I have interest in being as authentically Christian in this complex world as I can be. So, if you're up for that, then bikehiker might be a blog you occasionally browse. If you're looking for mere reinforcement of your own closed convictions, you'll likely be frustrated by what you read here. Either way, may God's grace go before us all in lead us into all truth.

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