Southern Baptist scholar and author Jonathan Leeman is encouraging Christians to “rethink” the way they engage in the public square and urging them not to lift up certain gifts from God, such as the gift of freedom, higher than God Himself.
Leeman, a research fellow at the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission and editorial director for the Christian ministry 9Marks, released his new book Tuesday, How the Nations Rage: Rethinking Faith and Politics in a Divided Age.
In an interview with The Christian Post, Leeman said the book aims to help Christians who are confused about how their faith should impact how they think politically during a time when the majority of political engagement on both sides of the political aisle has seemingly turned into an us-versus-them battle.
“My fear is that many Christians go into the public square with utopian hopes,” Leeman told CP on Wednesday.
Leeman, who previously served as an elder at Capitol Hill Baptist Church before he recently planted a new church in a Maryland suburb of Washington, D.C., explained that he has met many Christians who have migrated to Washington with those “utopian hopes.”
“I do think Christians can go overboard in imposing more than the Bible authorizes them to impose,” Leeman contended.
One source of confusion for many Christians, Leeman said, is the fact that so many American principles — such as freedom and justice — “overlap with Christianity.”
“There is a lot of overlap there. These are good gifts from God,” he said. “The trouble is when we start to worship these good gifts over the giver. We lose track. Something like freedom becomes God. When something like freedom becomes God, it becomes tyrannical ironically and begins to dictate everything.”
Leeman argues that many might “confuse Christianity and Americanism,” which, he says, is a form of “idolatry.”
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Source: Christian Post