God and politics: starting the conversation

voteIf you’ve seen the Gospel.com homepage this week, you know that our focus this week is on God and politics. Is there any aspect of public life (save perhaps religion) that can energize, outrage, and divide like good old politics can?

Nobody will argue that politics isn’t divisive, and that the political arena doesn’t get vicious and unpleasant these days. But as tempting as it might be to divorce ourselves from these day-to-day political debates and candidates and votes and scandals, this isn’t a subject that Christians can ignore. Politics is an integral part of living in our society today, and if Christians are called to reflect the light of Christ into every part of our lives, that means we’re called to behave politically in a way that honors God.

And so this week, we’ll be featuring a few ministries and other resources that talk about how Christians ought to engage politics. We aren’t taking sides, and we’re not telling you how to vote—we just want to encourage you to think about government, political parties, presidential candidates, and the voting booth as a Christ-follower, not just a citizen.

We’ll begin by noting a blog—one that’s actually not precisely about politics, but which focuses on an institution that in the eyes of many Christians is is inextricably intertwined with the Culture Wars. The blog is GetReligion, and the always-controversial subject it covers is the portrayal of religion in the media. GetReligion doesn’t just sit back and complain about the media—it looks at how Christianity is discussed in the public sphere and how that discussion might improve.

Contributors like Terry Mattingly, Douglas LeBlanc, Daniel Pulliam, and others offer detailed analyses of how journalists talk about Christianity and religion—and since religion is front-and-center in a lot of political discussions these days, various political and public-square topics crop up a lot. See recent posts that talk about media coverage of the California marriage ruling, sex scandals in the church, and the religion in the US presidential race. And if you’re hungry for yet more, GetReligion contributor Terry Mattingly writes the weekly “On Religion” column, which addresses many similar issues in a slightly different format.

Take some time to explore GetReligion (and perhaps add it to your RSS reader), and tune in tomorrow for more politics!

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