One of the most important truths that I have learned over the last several years is that whenever you discern a problem and you attempt to correct that problem, you must be very careful to not over correct. Whenever you realize you are up to your knees in filth in one ditch, you don’t do yourself any favors by walking across the road and jumping into the filth of the other ditch. Even good roads have muddy and filthy ditches. It’s best to stay out of both of them. This is a rather simple truth to understand, however it is one that is often lost on us.
To quickly illustrate from my own life, this is one of many times I let the pendulum swing from a foolish idea to another equally foolish idea.
For some context, I grew up in a Christian family, and my father is a retired Southern Baptist Minister. I spent a brief time at a Baptist Bible college, and then I spent a good half dozen years studying and reading political theory. My two greatest intellectual passions I’ve had for over a decade have been Theology and Political Science. Naturally, the intersection of Christianity and political involvement has fascinated me for many years, and I’ll admit, my views on this have changed. I remember being nine years old and falling asleep during the Clinton vs Bob Dole Election back in 1996. My father, knowing that I cared even then, woke me up and told me about our miserable defeat. I may even have teared up just a bit. Years later, after reading The Communist Manifesto and Edward Bellamy’s Looking Backward during my sophomore year of High School, I decided to ditch my staunchly Neo-Conservative Roots, partially just out of rebellion and partially becauseof the contrarian novelty of it all. I knew the political paradigm I grew up with was fallen and irrational, and I had a deep desire for some sort of justice. So, for a brief and delusional six months or so I decided I was a Christian Socialist. In other words, I jumped from one ditch right into another. During my later years of High School and then in my early twenties I became neck deep in radical libertarianism, austrian economics, and anarcho-capitalism. Needless to say, I canvassed for Ron Paul, not only in 2012, but in 2008 also. I was a true believer. Although I still have a lot of respect for that particular “camp” of political ideology, never did I seriously consider how my Christianity should inform my political ideology or my political action. Sure, I halfheartedly ensured that my politics were at least compatible with Christianity, but I never let my faith and the perfect Law of God actually DICTATE my ideals and actions.
It is my belief that the great majority of Christians make the same error I made, and that has caused a great deal of unprincipled counterproductive political action or, filthy in the other ditch, passive inaction dressed up as spirituality. There are many theological and political errors Christians make at this interesting intersection, but the two that I find most common and most dangerous are pragmatism and pietism. The pragmatist will place his faith in worldly wisdom, iniquitous decrees, Godless regimes, and sometimes even violence. The pietist will place his faith in seemingly spiritual means, while rejecting winsome and practical methods. While the pragmatist actively partakes in evil to do good, the pietist does evil by neglecting good. Both reject God’s law in practice and belief, though in different ways. These two views are the filthy ditches on either side of the road; the two sides of the same lawless coin. I believe the Biblical and Abolitionist position is that Christians should actively attempt to politically establish justice. Justice defined by God’s law. And this establishment of justice should be made through practical and biblical methodology while never forsaking the proclaiming of the Gospel of the Kingdom. The Abolitionist puts his faith in the Sovereign Living God while actively participating in the establishment of justice by principled and biblical means. Throughout church history we can discern the fruit of both of these doctrinal ditches. From war torn nations to silent churches amidst a holocaust, the fruit of these heterodox ideologies is an unrepentant, apathetic, blood soaked nation. Much like ditches alongside a road, too often we are naturally drawn to one side or another. Certain personalities, gifts, and sensibilities will inevitably affect what we emphasize, but we must remain faithful in staying on the narrow path. Both ditches are a destructive snare to the faithful Christian, and specifically to the work of the Abolitionist.
Because I am an Abolitionist, because I am very familiar with this topic, and because abortion is the great sin of our nation, I will be writing specifically about abortion and the Christian’s political involvement in abolishing it. I assure you that these grievous errors are very relevant to other political topics, whether it be gay marriage, immigration, education, foreign policy, and so on. Much has been written on all of these topics, and much more needs to written on these topics from a Christian judicial/ethical perspective.
The predominant political philosophy of most professional pro-life activists and organizations is Godless pragmatism. pragmatism is a philosophical position that determines the truth or moral value of various tactics by examining the perceived success of their tactics. In other words; the means justify the ends. The pragmatist often does evil for good to come, though rarely do they see the wickedness of their own political philosophy. The pro-life pragmatist will likely have an admirable goal, that is, the eventual abolition of human abortion. However, the pragmatist’s tactics are not governed by the Law of God, but rather by what they perceive to be effective. As abolitionists we are very familiar with the standard Godless pragmatist of the major 501c3 Pro-life institutions. The common defining marks of this brand of pragmatism are dehumanizing regulatory bills, radical ecumenicalism, syncretism, and an utter lack of the proclaiming of the Gospel.
The great majority of incremental laws supported by the pro-life establishment do not reflect in any way the perfect Law of God. While God demands repentance and perfect obedience, laws that only seek to decrease abortion substitute true repentance with a sort of partial repentance that is no repentance at all. Only seeking justice for those older than twenty weeks, for example, is not seeking justice at all. Attempting to protect a fraction of the innocent unborn is no more the establishment of justice than acknowledging the value of only half whites would have been under antebellum slavery. It is not justice at all. It is not a step in the right direction. It is a continuation and reiteration of gross injustice. Any initiative that discriminates against children under twenty weeks, preimplantation, conceived in rape, and so on, must necessarily rely upon the philosophical and legal presupposition that the unborn themselves are not human beings created in the Image of God and thus worthy of equal protection under the law. Again, although often their motives are admirable, any bill that can functionally end with “and then you can kill the baby” reinforces the dehumanizing nature of abortion.
In their attempt to raise funds and recruit volunteers, the pragmatist not only locks arms with heretical pseudo-Christian religions, but also the LGBT community, outright pagans, and atheists. This is directly related to their end goal. Although the abolitionist desires greatly the end of abortion, the chief end of the abolitionist is to glorify God and to faithfully play a small role in bringing about the redemption of all things in Christ. In short, their cause is not under the Kingship of Christ, but rather their cause is their king. Because the pragmatists chief end is not the Glory of God, but rather the end of a terrible injustice, they will join together with mockers and haters of God who hold their common goal. The pragmatist will claim that we can work together on common goals. When the Christian calls for unity in Christ, the pragmatist will bring up examples attacking our consistency. They will foolishly claim that if we were consistent we would reject the help of homosexual medical personal or that we would be morally obligated to quit our job at a telecommunication company where one works with atheists and Muslims. Again, the chief end of the professional pro-lifer distorts and corrupts their pragmatic tactics. The Christian may justly hire the atheist plumber, use the services of the Mormon Doctor, or make lattes next to the homosexual, not because those anti-gospel views aren’t meaningful, but because one does not unclog toilets through the power of the Word of God. On does not stitch up a cut with the Truth of the Cross. And one does not pull espresso shots by the bold proclamation of the Gospel. But with the institutionally protected and publicly accepted act of child sacrifice, those are exactly the tactics required by a Christian. Those will be the exact tactics of a Christian viewing abortion as SIN, as opposed to just a political position. Because abortion is sin, the answer will always be repentance, and one cannot preach repentance if your organization is funded and employed with haters and mockers of God.
Attempting to pander to the largest audience possible, the pragmatist will only ever employ secular tactics that do not proclaim the truth of God’s Word. Now, to be fair, there are rare occasions where the pragmatist will dress up his humanistic pro-life philosophy with a few bible verses. A striking example of this is when a supposedly “gospel centered” pro-life center exposes abortion on colleges across America. This pro-life center will expose abortion on secular campuses with their standard humanistic argumentation. But on Christian universities they will include Bible verses on some of their signs and slideshows. This relegation of anything Christian to only culturally Christian environments is blatant pragmatism. But it’s more than that. Although on Christian campuses they pull out the Christian signs, their tactics do not change. It’s faux Christianity. It’s an appearance of Godliness employed to cater to the religious whims of Christian college students. The HUGE question that needs to be asked is, why is the sanctioning off of your hollow religiosity to Christian schools considered Gospel centered? Let’s pretend for a moment, and it IS pretending, that your Christian GAP displays were somehow proclaiming the Gospel. Is it not the secular schools that should hear that message the most? The pro-life pragmatist makes the Gospel of Jesus Christ just another tool in their pro-life tactics toolbox. This should disgust the Christian, yet we continue to send our financial support to such institutions
Godless pragmatism typically goes hand in hand with a dualistic belief in the Christian’s obligation. The Christian political pragmatist will agree that they are to live a holy personal life. They confess that within their homes and their private lives that they are not to compromise and discriminate. These Christians would not suggest to their brother to partially repent of adultery, to try their best, and to throw a celebration if they can cut down their despicable and elicit sin to only once or twice a month. The Christian political pragmatist would never find it sufficient for their racist grandfather to only hate and dehumanize Asians, as opposed to all non-whites. Of course not. They would call him to repent. However, if the cause is seemingly political, they feel as if they have special license to call for a sort of partial justice in order to “take baby steps” or “get what you can get”. Their “No Compromising Christianity” is not for all the world, but only for their bible studies and families. They compartmentalize their activism so that it is not subject to God’s perfect governance. Of course, I am being charitable to the professional pro-lifer. Although I do not have any specific pragmatist in mind at the moment, as often is the case, if Christ is not King over their political engagement, I would not be terribly surprised if Christ is not King over their personal lives, families, or churches. Much like in other various realms of Christian thought, beware of anyone who emphasizes “what works”. In a very real way, the establishment Pro-life organizations are the seeker sensitive churches of the fight to end abortion.
In order to maintain this sort of compartmentalization, there is a presumption of moral neutrality placed upon our civil magistrates and their actions. Only the results are judged, not the actions. The action, in this case legislative action, is presumed to be neutral. The Christian incrementalist must necessarily rely on this mythical neutrality of the state. He must not attempt to discern the justness or unjustness of specific laws, or else it becomes axiomatic that to regulate murder is no justice at all. Again, it should be plain that any measure that could functionally end with “and then you can kill an image bearer of God” is not just. Instead of examining the law itself, the pragmatist attempts to discern, by their own incomplete knowledge and fallen reason, the possible effects of the law. The Pro-life incrementalist relies on a pragmatism divorced from the Law of God to sidestep examining the justness of the laws. Instead of debating the justness of a law, the question is never even asked. It is irrelevant to the pragmatist.
As an aside, I believe this is clear in regards to abortion, but less clear in regards to other grievous institutionalized and protected abominations. I believe this is simply because of where we are in the history of these evils. For example, many Christians seem to be boldly calling the Obergefell decision unjust and wicked. However, years from now after marriage to multiple partners, children, and animals is legalized and institutionalized, a decision or a law defining marriage as between two adults of any gender will be seen as a great victory to the horde of evangellyfish Christians and their advocates at the Big Evangelicalism establishments, à la “Gospel” Coalition, conservative seminaries, and denominations. I have no confidence in these man made kingdoms to stand against an Obergefell-esq law if they feel as if it a pragmatic victory. What they denounce today will be a great victory tomorrow. This is the subjectivity of pragmatism.
In the case of our pro-life laws, needless to say, when man is left to arbitrarily determine the effectiveness of incremental laws he will not judge rightly. Especially when his job is be wrong. He will pad the stats, ignore large swaths of those who are dehumanized, and pick and choose tiny special earmarked segments of the fight against abortion to “prove” the effectiveness of their unjust pragmatist. They are forced into the tireless defense of supporting the continued dehumanization of many, all in the name of their vain and ineffective schemes to save some.
The truth is that there is no neutrality in the civil realm. There is no neutrally in any realm. The institutions are not just. The laws are not just. The laws aren’t unjust because it leads to more injustice, they’re unjust because they are inherently repugnant to God’s Law.
Justice for the establishment pro-lifer is not determined by the Law of God, but only by his or her own subjective and fallen autonomy.
Although the Christian pragmatist is seeking to do good through whatever means that are effective, it’s important to remember that their misguided tactics, based largely on worldly wisdom, do not very often reap righteous goals. Even when the pragmatist reaches his goal, the results are tainted. God can and does draw straight lines with crooked sticks, but that is no excuse or replacement of faithfulness and abiding in His Word in all things. God honors faithfulness and ultimately we rest in His sovereignty.
In history we see this with startling clarity with the abolition of American slavery. The nineteenth century Abolitionists proclaimed the Gospel of Jesus Christ. They called for national repentance of chattel slavery and the dehumanizing racism that Antebellum slavery sprouted from. The abolitionists denounced slavery as a vile sin against fellow image bearers. And rightly viewing slavery as sin, the call was for immediate abolition. The Abolitionist was the most radical social, political, and religious figure of his day. He was hated and despised by all of the respectable religious and political elites. In other words, the world hated the Abolitionists because the world first hated Jesus. Although nearly all Northern Republicans supported at least some sort of regulation upon slavery or the slave trade, no Abolitionist political party ever secured more than 2% of a vote in national elections. However, the vast majority of anti-slavery Republicans sought slavery regulations, a lessening of the slave trade, and colonization. More than anything else, the Northern Republicans desired a restricting of slavery in newly acquired Western territories and States, and in at least one case, a restricting of all African American labor, whether it be labor from a slave or free man. After the Civil War, which was the bloodiest war in American History, Northern Republicans were able to pass the 13th Amendment, legally abolishing Antebellum Slavery. The Thirteenth Amendment became the first of what became known as the Reconstruction Amendments. Abolition was not brought about through repentance, but rather through the force of violence. The fruit of this violent political abolition is made clear by even a brief look at the social situation during Reconstruction Era south. Slavery was abolished, yet injustice and institutional sin continued. Lynchings occurred in record numbers, former slaves were economically entrapped by their former owners, and Jim Crow laws ruled the South. The nation disregarded the true call of the Abolitionists, while they believed the goal of the Abolitionists was already accomplished. The root was not slavery, but the disregarding and hatred of fellow image bearers of God. After the abolition of slavery, it took our nation a hundred years to allow African Americans to vote. And fifty years after that, we are arguably at the height of racial tensions since the end of Civil Rights Movement. This is the fruit of the pragmatism of a Gospelless and violent abolition.
The Abolitionist’s Gospel message of repentance and faith was rejected in favor of the Union Army and political scheming. Yes, there certainly should be a political element in ending injustice, but not at the cost of a great many good American ideals (eg Federalism, nullification, ect) and certainly not at the cost of well over half a million American deaths. History serves as a needed reminder of the importance of repentance along with the legal establishment of justice.
While pragmatism is the common justification for whatever the pragmatist perceives as useful, pietism is the typical justification for the apathetic Christian. Pietism is commonly the justification for inaction, while pragmatism is the standard justification for wrong action. In a Church age that needs no further reason for inaction and apathy, pietism serves as bulwark against duty, good works, and obedience. But what is pietism? Well, all it means to be pious is to be devoutly religious, devoted, or holy. Not bad things. But the devil is in the “ism”. While we should all strive to live personally holy lives, and I do NOT want to belittle or denigrate that idea at all, pietism is not only a stressing of personal holiness, it’s a stressing of personal holiness over and above our Christian DUTY to engage the culture with the Gospel of The Kingdom of God. This engaging of the Culture that the pietist side steps is not some optional thing that faithful Christians can justly opt out of. I am talking about nothing less than the Great Commission.
“And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, ‘All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.’ Amen.” Matthew 28:18-20
The pietists do not “Go”, and they certainly do not teach all the nations “all things that Christ has commanded”. Instead, the pietist will replace what has clearly been commanded with his or her own “personal holiness”. Pietism has many forms and many Christians are guilty of this error to various degrees. I’m sure we have all heard “well, I’ll pray for you” whenever we have encouraged fellow Christians to good works. I’m also sure we have talked to dozens, if not hundreds, of Christians who respond to our exhortations with assurances that they are personally pro-life and they would never abort their own children. Another common retort to our encouragement is that the good works that we are encouraging are not the special calling of that individual, but no worries, the pietist may give you a thumbs up whenever he sees you. Maybe even a pat on the back. In a broader perspective, whenever faithful Christians and Christian Reconstructions encourage and exhort the churches to apply God’s Word to all realms of life, we are too often told that Christians aren’t voting for a “pastor in chief”, and that the church shouldn’t be distracted by things that aren’t “the main thing”.
Much like pragmatism, pietism relies upon either a doing away with the Kingship of Christ over all things, or at the very least a distortion or relegation of Christ’s Kingship. Although the pietist will readily admit that Christ is King of his personal life, Christ’s Kingdom stops outside of the spiritual realm. This is an almost gnostic worldview that devalues the material in order to seemingly exalt the spiritual. Certainly, living a holy life and being a man or woman of prayer is a good thing. Not only a good thing, but a necessary thing. However, our calling, not as special missionaries or clergy, but as CHRISTIANS, is outward. As our Lord and Savior made clear at the Sermon on The Mount…
“You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” Matthew 5:14-16
Now, it is VITAL to understand that Christ is King over ALL. As should be made clear by the Great Commission, ALL authority, has been given to Christ. And if that’s not clear, Christ explicitly states where this authority extends. Heaven AND earth. All authority, everywhere. As Douglas Wilson often says “If Christ is not King everywhere, He is not King anywhere”.
The pietist boxes the authority of Christ, our KING, into the narrow realm of their personal prayer lives, families, and churches. Notice, this is the very same theological error of the pragmatist. Whenever you negate the the Kingship of Christ over all things, whenever you lessen the Kingship of Christ an inch, it gives false license to buy into any number of erroneous ideas, whether it be pragmatism, pietism, humanism, gnosticism, statism, syncretism, and so on.
Although the pietist will occasionally rely on platitudes about the “sovereignty of God” and relying upon “God’s will”, the biblical truth is that we are the tools of God. We are his people. Revival sprouts forth through the Church of the Living God. That is God’s ordained, normative, sovereign means of bringing revival, establishing justice, and extending mercy. How are they to believe in Him if they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? Pure and undefiled religion is to visit orphans and widows in their distress, and to keep oneself unstained. The pietist is concerned with keeping himself unstained, but neglects the widows and the orphans, apparently because they feel as if their job is “praying”. This is a selective, and rather convenient, denial that God uses means. The pietist does not pray for Godly knowledge and then not study scripture. There’s probably a few that do that, but that’s not the most common. Surely, God is God and if he chooses to proclaim the Kingdom through a donkey, he very well could. If God Almighty chooses to miraculously change the hearts and minds of the SCOTUS, he can. However, we know from the plain and clear text of scripture that God uses His people for His purposes. Yes, we remain Holy, yes we pray. But we also GO. We remain holy and we pray because firstly, we seek to Glorify Christ, but also to prepare us to GO. To prepare us for seeking justice and mercy, ALL the while with our hearts fixed on Christ.
As an quick but I believe important aside, although the focus of pietism is personal holiness it is a hypocritical and hollow holiness. There is NO holiness without obedience, and obedience extends beyond your quiet time. It is a grotesque facade. A dressing up of apathy as spirituality.
Pietism, like pragmatism, is widespread and is not new. There could be a thousand apt examples throughout Church history of pietism causing great harm, but the one example that comes in mind the most is the German Church during WWII. The German Church was very much focused on itself, and little more. Whenever widespread persecution of the Jews began, the mainstream German churches did not concern themselves. The Jews, after all, were not part of the Church, so they were not the responsibility of the Church. The German Church thought itself as righteous because it concerned themselves with prayer, public worship, and avoiding the public scandal that may embarrass their local church pastor. However, it was clear that outside of the four walls of their church building, the weightier matters of the law were not valued. Although a remnant did stand, at least in some ways, against the Nazi tyranny, the vast majority of the German Church hid their light under a bushel. The salt of those churches lost it’s saltiness, and as the fifth chapter of the Gospel of Matthew makes clear, salt that has lost it’s saltiness is only good for being tossed outside and trampled underfoot. And that Church surely got trampled. To illustrate the absolute depravity of pietism in the pulpits, this quote from a German politician is very telling.
“Bend or break – one or the other! We cannot permit this authority, the authority of the German People, to be challenged from any other quarter. This also applies to all the churches. As long as they concern themselves with their religious problems, the State will not concern itself with them. If they try by whatever means, by letters, encyclicals and the like, to claim rights which are those of the State alone, we shall force them to return to the realm of spiritual and pastoral activities where they belong. Nor is it appropriate for them to criticize the morality of the state, when they have more than enough reason to worry about their own morals.“
That Politician was Adolf Hitler, and the German Church was all too willing to isolate itself to the realm of spiritual and pastoral activities. To be frank, the vast majority of our American churches are all too willing to do the same. If there are two Kingdoms, at least in the way that the pietists would have you believe, then there are functionally two kings. There must be two kings, and two kings reigning with authority. I will deny that.
One peculiar form of pietism comes in the form of the rejection of the Christian duty to establish justice here on earth. The fruit of pietism, like pragmatism, will vary. Pietism takes root when some means are wrongly or arbitrarily rejected in favor of the seemingly more spiritual means. Which specific means that are rejected will vary according to the sensibilities and spurious theological calculating of the pietist. Some pietists embrace a great deal of good Christian action, while rejecting other fundamental aspects of what Christ has commanded. The rejector of earthly justice is no less of the pietist than the young, restless, reformed, seminarian that just wants to keep the “main thing the main thing” by drinking an abundance of craft beer and reading Kevin DeYoung books. The foundation is the same. Like all pietists (and pragmatists at that), the anti-political Christian relegates the commandments and even the nature of God to ethereal and abstract spheres. They affirm that God is just, but only in heaven. He will have His eternal justice, but that justice is for the dead alone, not for those on earth. In other words, The Kingship of Christ is only a just Kingship in heaven. Not earth. His love is for the living on earth, and His justice is for the dead. But we know that Christ’s love for us is never absent of justice, both eternal justice and temporal justice. We know that the two greatest commandments are that we ought to love God with all our heart, soul, and mind and that we ought to love our neighbor as ourselves. This is no less than the summation of all of God’s Law. Justice, on earth as it is in heaven, is bounded up in love. Separating the two is pietism relying upon a brand of gnostic dualism that assaults the very character of the Living God.
We have two distinct errors in pragmatism and pietism. One justifies wrong action while the other justifies no action or wrongly limits action. Both different, yet the root is the same. Both errors are the result of a Kingless Christianity the usurps the just authority of Christ. That is nothing short of treasonous blasphemy. Both pragmatism and pietism reject the Law of God and in its place lift up the subjective, fallen, and fickle mind of man. Both the pragmatist and pietist are ruled by their own selfish sinful desires, though those desires are often quite different. Pietism and pragmatism are both branches of the root of antinomianism. The rejection of the Law of God leaves a void of authority that is quickly filled with man’s autonomy.
As Abolitionists, as Christians, our view of government should begin with the foundation that Christ is King over all, and any civil authority is delegated authority that is morally obligated to obey God. THAT is Christian Politics 101. We will go wrong and end up in a ditch if we don’t understand this. In Romans 13 we read that Rulers should be a terror to evildoers. In 1 Peter we learn that rulers are to punish those that do evil and praise those that do good. These texts are not, contrary to popular belief, descriptions of all governmental authority, but rather PRESCRIPTIONS to governmental authority. These texts do not give carte blanche licence to the government, but rather puts a heavy weight of duty on governments everywhere to be good ministers that honor God and establish justice. That is not negotiable. Christ is a conquering King and His Gospel is powerful to save souls and redeem all things.
So how do we apply this? We believe these things, first of all. We prayerfully hold tight to the Word of God, and His Sovereignty over all things. We not only cognitively adhere to the Providence of God as an Abolitionist Tenet, but we rely on the Providence of God. And we believe…fully believe… that He is the slain Lamb, that was murdered for our sins, and that He is the risen and reigning King.
First, If we hold these things to be true, we do not quarantine our faithfulness to the privacy of our homes and churches. Furthermore, we do not quarantine our Abolitionism and our Evangelism to only private individuals. We call ALL people, ALL institutions, and ALL nations to repent and believe, and specifically the civil magistrates to establish Justice, true justice, for our littlest and most defenseless neighbors. In this way, we can begin to kill pietism.
Second, If we hold these things to be true, we do not walk down to the capitol building and try to get the best that we can get. We do not feed on the scraps that the political elite toss at our feet. Understand me, whenever Christians demand abolition, and instead the politicians offer a hollow regulationist measure, but then Christians passively accept the bargain and retreat back into the churches, the politicians, the politicians that are COMMANDED to be the Ministers of God, are treating Christians like dogs. And yet we keep on weakly and pathetically coming to that table with our tails between our legs. This is vital. If Christ is King, WE ARE HIS ambassadors. Christ demands justice. Christ demands that all nations repent and believe the Gospel. And we should demand the same. And we can. We are His hands. We are His feet. We come in His name. And that has power. And in this way, we can, with the help of the Almighty God, begin to kill pragmatism.
More on pietism can be found here from my friend Matthew Trewhella.
More on pragmatism and viewing abortion (and other injustices) as sin, from my friend T. Russell Hunter.
This article is a revised and expanded version of a talk I gave at the AbolishOK Mission Conference in Oklahoma City in March, 2016. That talk can be found here.