James Dobson should read the Bible! (1 of 2)

Let me start by saying that the title is for shock value and to lure you in (full disclosure).

For those of you who don’t know who Dobson is, he is founder of Focus on the Family , a Christian organization that promotes conservative public policy, along with serving as a coaching resource for families.  He is regularly called upon by various media outlets to voice his opinion on public policy and current events.  He is a conservative Evangelical and speaks openly about how he believes Christianity should influence government and society.

Before I go any farther, I want to show you what he said following the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting.

I mean millions of people have decided that God doesn’t exist, or he’s irrelevant to me, and we have killed fifty-four million babies and the institution of marriage is right on the verge of a complete redefinition.  Believe me, that is going to have consequences too.

And a lot of these things are happening around us, and somebody is going to get mad at me for saying what I am about to say right now, but I am going to give you my honest opinion: I think we have turned our back on the Scripture and on God Almighty and I think he has allowed judgment to fall upon us.  I think that’s what’s going on.

Several things could be said in response to this, but my main  focus is on the political theology set forth by Dobson.  Dobson, and many Evangelicals like him, advocate for a legislated spirituality.  There is an intrinsic belief that if we could get prayer back in schools and have the Ten Commandments in front of public buildings, along with telling gay people they can’t get married…well then God wouldn’t let crazed gunmen to mow down six adults and twenty first graders.  The solution, Dobson claims, is Law enforcement!  This is where I part ways with my fellow Evangelicals, in the area of mandated faith, which isn’t a faith at all!

It becomes clear after a while that the god of many über conservative , fundamentalist-leaning Christians, is not the God of the Bible.  Their god, is the forceful institution of public policy, not the God that changes the world through suffering, love, and faithful obedience by personal conversion (the indwelling of the Spirit).  I also want to point out that the New Testament attributes suffering more to the act of obedience than disobedience.  My mind goes quickly to the Apostle Paul who isn’t called to be a great legislator (he had already self-appointed himself to that role), but rather to a ministry of suffering.

This man is my chosen instrument to carry my name before the Gentiles and their kings and before the people of Israel.  I will show him how much he must suffer for my name. (Acts 9:15-16)

If Dobson were to encounter the Apostle Paul today would accuse him of turning his back on God?Would he see Paul’s affliction and think, “Now there’s a guy who doesn’t believe in the Scriptures.”  I don’t even know what he would say to Jesus and his “way of the cross” known as a  man of sorrows.

More to come.