Friday, January 27, 2006

Real Freedom

Yesterday I saw a car with a sticker on it that made me sort of angry. The sticker had an American flag on it, and superimposed on top of the flag was the cross. Underneath the flag in small letters, it said "God Bless America," and underneath that in large block letters were the words "REAL FREEDOM."

I thought that real freedom was found in obedience to Jesus. Jesus said that "if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed." Who are we to add the American flag to the cross of Christ? I guess people who have found freedom in Jesus in other countries don't have real freedom.

8 comments:

Tony Arnold said...

Amen JMG!

Mike Kear said...

You're talking my language, JMG. Yoking nationalism and religion weakens both patriotism and faith, IMHO.

jettybetty said...

Hmmm.....
I think I am gonna stick with the freedom found in Jesus.

ajmac said...

Your sarcasm is neither persuasive nor funny. What do Christians in other countries have to do with it?

I'm curious: Do you disagree that American Christians experience freedom in the temporal sense to a far greater degree than any Christians throughout history?

Tony Arnold said...

Ajmac, wrapping God in any flag or tying Christianity to any nationalism is idolatry.

American Christians have a very hard time seperating discipleship and patriotism and there is no relation between the two.

Tony

ajmac said...

Idolatry? No relation? Really? Have you thought much about this?

Tony Arnold said...

Yes I have given years of thought to this. I have changed my understanding greatly over the last few years. I stand by comment that wrapping God and the flag together is a form of idolatry. Two people that have helped change my views are Lee Camp in his book Mere Discipleship and several talks by Randy Harris, specifically one given recently at a Zoe conference. You can see the text of this talk at What worship is not: idolatry in the modern church

ajmac said...

I've read Camp's book. I actually devoted seven posts to rebutting it over at my blog. His simplistic polemics are rather unfortunate and not particularly thoughtful.

I still don't see the idolatry connection. How do you define that word?

Also, saying that no connection exists between patriotism and discipleship is a bit like disclaiming a connection between discipleship and altruism, ambition, or hunger. As Christians, do we not believe that discipleship involves bringing all impulses, appetites and virtues into obedience to Christ? The point is not that Christians ought to eschew patriotism but that Christ ought to OWN our patriotism.