Monday, April 03, 2006

Christian Political Efforts: Do They Work?

Nate Busenitz constructs a historical argument that says no. His conclusion?
What do the results of our brief historical survey suggest? The answer seems to be clear: Christianizing (or moralizing) government will never have the long-lasting, God-honoring effects its promoters so deeply cherish. Constantine’s Christian kingdom lasted the longest, but in the end it crumbled, and left two false versions of Christianity in its wake. Calvin’s Christian kingdom was both short and severe. King James [sic] VIII’s Christian kingdom dissolved into moral nothingness. And Kuyper’s Christian kingdom, or at least his Christian activism in a secular kingdom, failed to have the long-term impact he desired.

Other examples could be added to this list, but the historical lesson remains the same. Time and time again, Christian political efforts have resulted in, at most, some immediate political gains. But these gains are only external, lacking any power to change the heart of the non-Christian surrounding society. And history has shown that these gains are also always temporary, eventually resulting in both spiritual confusion and moral decline.

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