Monday, August 09, 2010


     GOD'S POLITICS-WHY THE RIGHT GETS IT WRONG AND THE LEFT DOESN'T GET IT was written by Jim Wallis, editor of Sojourners magazine, and published by HarperSanFrancisco in 2005.  This book is a thoughtful examination of personal faith and how it should influence one's politics.  Though Wallis writes mainly about the U.S. political scene, the faith principles he lays out can easily be applied to other countries as well.
     It doesn't take long to figure out that Mr. Wallis is not a fan of the Religious Right, represented by suich televangelists as Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell, and Focus on the Family head James Dobson.  He is an evangelical Christian though.  He feels, as do I, that the Religious Right has hijacked American Christianity.  In their version of Christianity, it almost seems like abortion and homosexuality are the only issues Christians are interested in.  Dangerously, this is often combined with a strong support for war as God's means to bring about peace.  Wallis, thus, was not a big fan of President Bush either.  Walllis sees no Scriptural proof that Jesus would support war, especially an unjustified one. Can  you say 'weapons of mass destruction'?"
     The Republicans are not Wallis' only target however.  He criticizes Democrats for not being willing to discuss spiritual and moral issues more openly.  He makes a strong case that neither party is properly addressing to the full the problem of poverty on home turf-this while millions are being spent on war.  Both parties need to tackle the environmental issues of our day as well.
     Wallis believes one can be morally conservative, but liberal when it comes to social issues.  One can support 'civil unions' but not 'marriages' when it comes to homosexuality.  There should be room in both political parties for people who hold these beliefs.  Furthermore, various faith groups in the U.S. must join together to fight for a better America.
     My only complaint with GOD'S POLITICS is that there is a fair bit of repetition when it comes to Wallis' major points.  This should not deter one from reading it though.