Well, not really, although his latest post strikes quite the obnoxious tone, one that is not new.
At the same time, I’d say he needs to give the conservative Christians some credit here: at least someone is standing up for what is right. Had Christians been more vigilant in the 1950s and 1960s, we probably wouldn’t be finding ourselves on the losing end of the culture wars today, at least not to the extent that we currently find ourselves.
At seminaries–and particularly among liberal Christians today–Chase’s tone is common: just shut up and pray more. This tone is directed by those who support liberal causes–or who are otherwise ambivalent about them–against those who represent the proper Biblical viewpoint.
For lack of better words, it’s a bullying tactic.
While there is definitely a need for Christians to pray for their enemies, it also remains that much of the Christian discussion of these issues involves admonition to other Christians. After all, if not for the Christians who support abortion and gay “marriage”, both would be far from legal today.
I can tell you–having worked on the front lines regarding these issues–that there is a mother lode of Christian women who have had abortions, and who tacitly support abortion, in spite of their outwardly conservative leanings. They won’t argue with you on abortion, but–when it comes time to vote–they’ll vote to support abortion. This is because–while they know it is wrong–they want it available for everyone else “just in case”, just as it was there for them. They won’t carry the picket signs, but they’re every bit in the same league with those who do.
I can also tell you that there is no small number of people in otherwise conservative churches who engage in all manner of sexual immorality–including homosexuality. For some of them, it is a struggle of the flesh that they battle–as they accept that it is sinful–whereas for others, it is something that they flippantly accept and justify. They may not argue this with the pastor, but they’ll support people who carry their own viewpoint.
If you don’t think these types are corrosive for the Church–and for the nation in general–then I’d say you need to read the Old Testament and get back to me.
This is why–in my time discussing prominent issues at places like Boundless*–I directed most of my attention to those who counted themselves Christians, and yet were supportive of sins (abortion, homosexuality) and destructive ideologies (Biblical liberalism, macro-evolution), or were otherwise in the right camp but not reasoning well with those who were not. Christians–as much as anyone else–need to hear the truth, and need to be in a position where they can effectively articulate it.
Don’t believe me? Then read the New Testament and get back to me.
This is because it’s not an either/or proposition. It’s not about “shut up and pray more”, nor is it merely about “stand up for Jesus”. It’s more about “get the logs out of your own eye, get in the Scriptures, gain wisdom and understanding, train and admonish one another, and proclaim the truth.”
Wisdom will always be a howling reproach to the world; there is no pretty way to dress that up. While many Christians do a terrible job and come off like the pastor in Footloose, let’s be honest here: even if Christians did everything right–and they almost never have in their 2,000 year history–the Truth is offensive to many.
The response to those is not so much to call Christians to “shut up” about these issues, but rather to repent of their practice and support of these sins, even as we proclaim the truth about them.
*To my good friends Lisa and Martha: I have not abandoned you at Boundless; at the same time, my work schedule has been nasty and time has not been on my side.