FOX News warbler and full-time fearmonger Glenn Beck may have completely lost it for good. Last week he urged viewers to flee from churches that preach and practice “social justice,” for such was/is at the heart of Nazism and Communism.
Let that sit for just a second.
Beck said, in part,
I’m begging you, your right to religion and freedom to exercise religion and read all of the passages of the Bible as you want to read them and as your church wants to preach them . . . are going to come under the ropes in the next year. If it lasts that long it will be the next year. I beg you, look for the words ‘social justice’ or ‘economic justice’ on your church Web site. If you find it, run as fast as you can. Social justice and economic justice, they are code words. Now, am I advising people to leave their church? Yes.
Ookay. But what about Jesus? James Martin, S.J., stands behind the plate while this odd little slow-ball’s being pitched and calls it like this:
… Beck is saying something else, which might get lost in the translation: Leave Christianity. Again and again in the Gospels, Jesus points to our responsibility to care for the poor, to work on their behalf, to stand with them. In fact, when asked how his followers would be judged, Jesus doesn’t say that it will be based on where you worship, or how you pray, or how often you go to church, or even what political party you believe in. He says something quite different: It depends on how you treat the poor.
Just so. Or as Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., advised,
[T]he Christian gospel is a two-way road. On the one hand it seeks to change the souls of men, and thereby unite them with God; on the other hand it seeks to change the environmental conditions of men so that the soul will have a chance after it is changed. Any religion that professes to be concerned with the souls of men and is not concerned with the slums that damn them, the economic conditions that strangle them, and the social conditions that cripple them is a dry-as-dust religion. Such a religion is the kind that Marxists like to see – an opiate of the people.
Mr. Beck appears to be creating logic which is perfectly opposed to itself, both in the spirit and letter of Christianity. Not only that, he’s yelling “Fire!” in the crowded theater of publicly practiced religion – not only for those who follow Christ, but for the innumerable ranks of humanity inspired by their faith to make a difference.
Thank God most of us aren’t listening. But better call the usher anyway.