Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Theology and Ideology

I was thinking today at work about some things I want to do with the blog and, as is my usual custom, I was also listening to talk radio. It occurred to me that I would like to blog on things political, but I'd like to find my own voice amidst the existing cacophony of political punditry. Most of what I listen to on the radio or see on television consists of people yelling past each other--shallow soundbytes. What I would like to see and hear is some depth, some reasoning. Maybe that could be my niche.

Our thinking about any given topic is driven by our presuppositions. Two people, for example, can look at the same evidence and draw two different conclusions, both of which seem logical to the individuals to whom they belong. Why is that? The difference is in the underlying presuppositions, the prisms through which we all view the world.

So what I would like to do is lay a groundwork, a foundation. I'd like to look at what is behind our political thinking. I'd like to advocate what I refer to as the American Ideal, a bedrock of ideological thinking which will help us to determine what is right or wrong in any given political situation. I think of it as American political orthodoxy and I find it in the founder's writings and in the great documents which underlie our republic.

I'm no expert. I come as a student--but also an idealist. I think the American ideal, the American form of government as envisioned by our founders, is the best possible scenario for fallen men in a fallen world. I did not say it was the solution, nor did I say it was perfect, but it is the best possible way for men to govern themselves within the gospel age. I'm no utopianist. Utopia cannot and will not exist as long as men have evil in their hearts.

And now you see how our theology and our ideology cannot be separated. The former must, and always does, inform the latter.

So look for posts along these lines in the coming days and weeks--along with a few other things. (After all, we couldn't possibly call ourselves eclectic, here, unless there was some variety.)


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