Quite a lineup, indeed:
- Richard Land--President, Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention
- James Dobson--Founder, Focus on the Family
- David Barton--Founder, Wallbuilders
- Ted Haggard--President, National Association of Evangelicals
- Donald Wildmon--Founder, American Family Association
- Lou Sheldon--Founder, Traditional Values Coalition
- Richard Doerflinger--Director of pro-life activities, U. S. Conference of Catholic Bishops
Oh, the report did throw Jim Wallis into the mix as well, even though he represents "a progressive Christian philosophy," definitely a minority in this group.
It is interesting to "unpack" the concerns of these Christian leaders. Actually, they only have a couple of values on their list--sort of slim pickins when you have he entire Bible to select from it seems to me!
But, it is true. The values debate boils down to two issues: abortion and homosexuality. That's it for these guys, underscore guys!
The challenge to the President is clear: appoint Supreme Court justices who will overturn Roe v. Wade and work for a Constitutional Amendment that bans same-sex marriage in the United States.
For these leaders of the faith, no concern whatsoever is expressed concerning poverty, racism, education, health care, housing, equal opportunity, war, violence or homelessness. You choose the media--spoken, print, electronic--you will find no concern for anything but these two issues or matters related to them. In fairness I am quick to admit that the U. S. Conference of Catholic Bishops does share other concerns, but not from the office listed above.
I have to say these guys cause me to scratch my head in disbelief.
Here's a challenge for you.
Run a word search in any exhaustive concordance to the English Bible on these words: poor, oppressed, rich, abortion, and homosexuality. You can even do your research online these days!
Count the verses in each category. Make yourself a "values scorecard." Tally them up. See what you find.
No matter what one thinks about abortion or gay marriage, no legitimate discussion of values, can occur in this nation if those are the only two issues under consideration.
Further, no conversation about national values can omit from consideration issues associated with poverty, wealth and injustice, and at the same time contend that it stands in the historic Judeo-Christian tradition.
Bible believing churchmen and churchwomen should be speaking out today as never before for the sake of a legitimate values discussion, a discussion American despartely needs to have.
After all, literally millions of our fellow citizens and fellow believers do not enjoy the luxury of such debate. They are too busy trying to scratch out a life for themselves and their children in a world made almost impossible by the very poverty so many others want to ignore.
[Just ahead: the values of Jesus]