Charles Honey of the Grand Rapids Press considers the age-old question of whether the church should take part in political debates, and concludes that it should:
[D]do we want to let the religious right and left get into this fray? Shouldn’t they all just tend to their flocks and let the politicians handle the dirty work? A lot of people say churches’ only proper purview is voluntary, charitable work. Of course, countless congregations do this marvelously well. For instance, United Methodist Church of the Dunes in Grand Haven recently received a President’s Volunteer Service Award for feeding and sheltering homeless families, among other good works.
But why should social activism stop at the church door and the volunteers’ hands? If Christ claims every square inch of life, as the Dutch theologian and statesman Abraham Kuyper asserted, why shouldn’t Jesus’ followers be as concerned with how the government spends money as with their neighbors who don’t have enough?
Yes, keep the line bright between church and state. But the religious voice has a place in the public conversation about societal priorities. When the prophet Amos called for justice to roll like a river, he probably wasn’t talking about food pantries.