As We Near November 6

I’m sure there are other places where this comparative information can be found, but I appreciate what Joseph Slife at MethodistThinker.com has done with two recent posts.  He takes the United Methodist Book of Discipline statements on specific topics and lays them alongside both the Republican and Democratic Party Platforms on the same issues.

Here are the two links, if you’d like to have a look:

1.  http://methodistthinker.com/2012/10/22/party-platforms-and-the-umc-part-one/

2.  http://methodistthinker.com/2012/10/29/party-platforms-and-the-umc-part-two/

As Joseph Slife says in the first of the two blogs, Christians are called upon to exercise responsible stewardship in voting.  In a way, this means more than responsible citizenship.  This distinction keeps clear whom we serve and it orders our thinking as we go to the polls.

I think we should worry when Christians so identify with either party or candidate that they are willing to torch other Christians who disagree with them.  The caution clearly does not suggest that we should have no opinions or, if having them, they must be so lightly held that they mean nothing.  I have a party affiliation and I have a few opinions (though, I admit, with these campaigns I’m baffled by how to cut through the gristle to get to the meat).  We have to take stands and state positions.  I like a good critique, even when it’s shredding my viewpoint.  As I told a friend of mine, I don’t even mind the sarcasm.

But I don’t like name calling and cruel ridicule and there is far too much of it happening between and among Christians.  There is a line – hard as it is to find, sometimes – that Christians should not cross and we’re crossing it far too much.

So, I appreciate what MethodistThinker.com has done here.  Have a look.  And God bless you as you prepare to vote.  Eight days and counting…

About Stephen Rankin

Professionally I am an ordained elder in the United Methodist Church. I currently serve as University Chaplain at Southern Methodist University. Personally I am married to Joni and we have four grown children and four grandchildren. You can find my personal thoughts on this site, as well as on twitter at @stephenwrankin.

Comments

  1. Stephen, do you think something like Election Day Communion (or some other service of Christian worship) might serve as an effective witness on election day?

    • It certainly might, Drew. I’ve seen references to Election Day Communion in various Facebook groups. Since the Eucharist is a means of grace, I pray I believe God can do an important work. Likewise, since “we who are many are one body in Christ,” I think those who join such moments reveal and reflect that truth. At the same time I worry that we have these moments that are good, but isolated. Receiving the sacrament binds and obligates us to be the Body of Christ in the world. So, after taking communion, if we go back to biting and devouring one another then I’m not sure the Election Day Communions will accomplish what people envision.

Speak Your Mind

*