Wednesday, September 9, 2009
Steve's post on "God's politics" is, I think, very insightful. I agree that it is a mistake to imagine that "God is neither a liberal or a conservative" if by that one means "God is indifferent to the results and practice of politics." That said, there *is* a truth in the bumper-sticker bromide, namely, that the parties that are denoted by terms like "Republican" and "Democrat" and "liberal" and "conservative" (etc. etc.) do not profess or practice perfectly (or anything close to perfectly) "God's politics." Another truth that, I think, the slogan might capture, or at least gesture toward, is that many of the questions over which this world's political parties divide are not questions to which the "God's politics" answer is, or ever could be, clear or obvious to all faithful, reasonable people.
We all pick -- at least, I think we should -- our politics based on our best, well informed, conscientious, other-regarding judgment about the best means to promote human dignity and flourishing. And, if we are Christians, I suppose we have to think that God desires the promotion of human dignity and flourishing. So, we are all trying to pick our politics in a way that points the arrow of politics in the general direction of God's desire. We probably should never imagine, though, that we are (or that our politics ever could be) dead-on.