Late Sunday evening I received an e-mail asking me to appear on Huffington Post Live, which is the video arm of the Huffington Post. Several other guests and I discussed the role clergy should play in the voting decisions of their congregants. My view is basically that there is a difference between politics and party politics, and clergy need to be especially cognizant of it. Christianity is inherently political because we believe in something called the kingdom of God, but the kingdom has not yet fully come. Therefore, it is dangerous to associate our anticipation of that kingdom with a short list of legislative objectives. Politics is fundamentally about tactics, and we have to think about which tactics will best prepare the world to receive the future for which we hope.
I am not sure if I was being too theological for the format, but that’s what I do.
Speaking of which, I owe Abby Huntsman a debt of gratitude. As some of you know, I have struggled to navigate different perceptions people have about the meaning of the word “theologian.” Our gracious host offered me a solution. You’ll see what I mean when I’m introduced. (-;
5 thoughts on “My Appearance on Huffington Post Live”
In consequence of your views on this matter, Dr Dunn, will you henceforth foreswear government involvement in:
Do you still plan to vote? Or encourage people to do so?
And, could you also explain why the Orthodox Church – in her *divinely inspired* services – extols Emperor St Constantine as “equal to the Apostles”?
I know that’s a lot of questions for one comment. Thank you for your kind reply.
I’d be happy to respond if you could explain which of my comments lead you to the conclusion that it would be logically inconsistent for me to favor welfare, healthcare, and voting.
Constantine is not a villain or crass opportunist, but neither is he a hero (which we should not confuse with a saint). The title Equal to the Apostles is an honorific about what God does through the work of an individual (i.e. “one who is sent”). Constantine is rightly to be praised for ending the persecution of the church and passing the Edict of Toleration, but he is to be praised according to the terms his history will allow. That does not mean the situationally conditioned actions of the past dictate out present. It also means we can look at the actions of our saints and say, “Let’s not do that again.”
highlights why tax exemptions for churches are a hindrance.
Given the long standing practice of Democrats to openly campaign in Black Churches, it is very interesting that Huffpo has suddenly become interested in whether or not this is proper, only when many Black pastors are saying that their people should not vote for Obama because of his views on gay marriage.