Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Colbert on "Pulpit Freedom Sunday"

I thought Colbert had some interesting insights last night into the intersection of politics and religion.  This is true particularly in his interview (see second clip).

Background Info:

The Colbert ReportMon - Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
Pulpit Freedom Sunday
Colbert Report Full EpisodesPolitical Humor & Satire BlogVideo Archive

Interview with Pastor Jim Garlow:

The Colbert ReportMon - Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
Pulpit Freedom Sunday - Jim Garlow
Colbert Report Full EpisodesPolitical Humor & Satire BlogVideo Archive

Insightful quotes:
“Yes I don’t need the government protecting me from speech.  I am a mature free-thinking American, capable of making my own rational decisions about which candidate my priest says God wants me to pick.”   
"I do believe that preachers or priests or any other religious leader should be able to say anything they want because freedom of speech should be absolute and I believe that.   But one of the reasons I really love it (i.e. Pulpit Freedom Sunday... Note Cobert's signature sarcasm) is that A. I don't believe there is enough religion in our politics, but more importantly there's not enough politics in our religion.  Because I know now if a preacher says vote for X candidate or Y candidate and that candidate loses I know I've got a loser God.  Okay.  Or if that candidate turns out to be corrupt, I know that my God was false and I can move onto a new one.  Don't you think that is one of the nice things about getting politics all over religion is that we can get that kind of acrimony and hate toward each other over our religions in a fresh way."
On a personal note, I'm not too big of a fan of "Pulpit Freedom Sunday." On the surface I get and even agree with their complaint (i.e. free speech and separation of church and state), but in practice I believe it falls into American power religion (i.e. a Theology of Glory) and runs counter to the Apostle Paul's advice:
Romans 13:1-4  Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God.  Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment.  For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad. Would you have no fear of the one who is in authority? Then do what is good, and you will receive his approval, for he is God's servant for your good.
Also, I think it runs counter to what Pastors are commission to do.  We are to make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that Jesus has commanded.  We are not called to endorse Candidate X or Candidate Y!

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