Political Change Is Not Enough
|In America and the West
everyone seems obsessed with
political change. The benefits of political change are
romanticized and over-emphasized. Very few seem to realize
the limited benefits of political change. It is not
political change that is needed. Spiritual change is
what is needed all over the world.
What is the real use of changing laws nearly everyone
has real contempt for anyway? The spirit behind the laws
remains soured, cynical, apathetic, contemptible and
materialistic. Does it really count which laws people with
contempt for law have? What does it matter what policy sour,
cynical, mean and small spirited bureaucrats afraid of their
own shadows enforce? The problem lies in the spiritual roots
of the tree, not clipping the political branches. Pass a law!
Elect a new candidate. What nonsense. Like putting band-aids
The fight over political candidates and political laws America
and the world fight over is fighting over which pots sour
tea is brewed in. It is not the pots souring the tea.
It is spiritual attitude, but when this fact is made known, then
advertisements are taken out on the television and internets
about how wonderful the structures are. People are so backward
they believe it. The old illiterate could not read. The new
illiterate believe what they read. Through television many
people see, and believe propaganda, clap trap and nonsense.
But I often wonder if it is not good that the people are
bound up in all this irrelevant political nonsense, debating
which romanticized fantasies are going to take place because
of superficial political changes. What might happen if people
realize the irrelevance of what they are, arguing, fighting
and dying over. They might get down to basics. Then God knows
what would happen. But that is what we need to awaken people.
What if the Western churches came out of the coma they are
sleeping in? What if the churches faced the needs of the people
instead of being prissy social creedal club meetings?
What if the churches tried to meet the total needs of the people
and not just backed materialistic fantasies driving people
to destroy the world to gain advertised goods they want but
don’t really need? What if the world governments faced the BASIC
NEEDS OF MANKIND INCLUDE SPIRITUAL NEEDS. People need a
spiritual relationship with God to help fulfill them emotionally. People need some meditation on God’s Word honing
consciences. They need spiritual interior lives to illuminate
and civilize them. They need spiritual harmony in group lives to work together.
Would this mean church theocracy? No, never, ever, it will
mean a theocracy of consciences that are a minority, but a
creative spiritual minority, that recognizes the deeper
needs of human nature.
Do we have now a theocracy of spiritual consciences from all
faiths? No, in the West there is leadership that is a gaggle
of liberal geese, quacking endlessly, an arrogance of
intellectuals, an insolence of plutocrats, an exclusive club
of politically corrupt and capitalist bourgeoisie.
Should we then desire atheistic communism? Just because the
West is so materialistic as to be spiritually grotesque does
not mean we wish it to be Stalinesque. In Stalin the world saw
where non-spiritual communism ends, but then it is in atheist paranoia,
that spiritually unchallenged anything, ends. But it is far
better to be spiritually grotesque than to be Stalinesque. But who, with any natural common sense about the nature of mankind
could be either?
That is the problem today. Where shall a godly person go? Oh,
yes, the churches make a witness but what kind of witness? The
churches in the Western countries are Comatose. Nobody much
attends churches in England, Denmark, Scandinavia, Germany,
France, etc. But then, after all, who can blame them? (In England
there is the Anglican priest who holds a parish but doesn’t
believe in God. In American his contemporaries aren’t actually
atheist. They just have no time for God in busy church rounds.
In many American churches, social going is churchy, but no one
has time for God. He’s but a hanger on to the church going social
In America liberals are a group of the godless elite in control
of the Washington bureaucracies, government departments, access to elite jobs and education. They generally hold traditional
religionists in absolute contempt. Those liberals in religion
want to tear up the needle-pointed creeds of the traditional churches.
The traditional churches spend most of their time needle-pointing
creeds never to be much more than historic preservation. Thus the
true believer is between a rock and a hard place. Which secular
nonentity playing church shall a seeker for God embrace?
I am on the side of the doctrinal needle-point clubs if
they ever apply Christianity; only generally they do not. They
teach needle-pointed creeds displayed on Sundays. It is a sort
of museumed Christianity. Picturesque, historic and touristy,
but unlived. (As liberals doubt there is a God, their churches
are boring and colorless on religious subjects, as they discuss
how a God not there, doesn’t do whatever anyway).
The churches seem dead, comatose, social clubs or liberal.
None of these say anything relevant. What then is to be done?
We must take the Historic Christ learned in Bibles on Sundays
out into real life. The churches of today seem rather like
bad schools. The need is to graduate from them. Then to start
applying the New Testament Christ in real life situations.
I suggest the trouble may be members don’t get the idea, the
church is more like a school. You are supposed to take what you may learn there out into life later. If you never take what you
have learned in church out into life, you think Christian living
is only church services over and over until you collapse
from the Word of God being made mediocre, boring and preachy.
I hope you will not be so foolish as to look for God and
all your answers in churches. The churches truly have some
answers. But the duty of the church is to put people in
touch with God. Then ask them to work out their own answers
with diligence, working out their own salvation with care. As
far as I can evaluate, this is the advice given by both the Apostle
to the Gentiles as well as Buddha. (If here I am wrong, then that merely shows, as I have always maintained that I am God’s imperfect servant.)
I often inform God that I am imperfect for the spiritual task
He has laid before me, and that I am far from perfect at it.
The job chaffs at times. “I AM”, the early name for God, seems
to have a marked ironic sense of humour about this. He instructs
me to keep a sense of humour about it. But I argue, I may be
wrong, I may mislead. Once it seemed to me God put in my mind,
“Imperfect servant, let one who is perfect cast the first stone.
Do not answer fault finders.” (Job 40 1-5 RSV) And “surely vexation
kills the fool.” (Job 5:2 RSV) So that was that.
I stood up to life. I saw that too much worrying is the wrong way to live. I would live by grace. If mistaken, I would laugh at myself,
not live in a revoltingly righteous way, taking the mocking
path, but regularly refresh myself in the flow of recycling divine energy that moves and streams about us in the
elemental rhythms of grace in this spiritual universe.
If you are nervous and under stress, overly concerned with
being wrong, I suggest you lighten up. God knows the imperfect
nature of mankind. He allows humanity to be very human if we
but let God be God. That is the only answer for our human
condition. “Man is born to trouble as the sparks fly upward.”
(Job 5;7 RSV) Commit yourself to God and your causes to God
who does great, numberless and unsearchable things. If a stitch
is dropped, God will pick it up later. Jesus says God’s eye
is on the sparrow. He knows every link of creation.
Remember the invisible Risen Christ stands behind us as well
as works with us. He will pick up where we lack or may be
mistaken. In the short run we may fail, but in the long run
the Lord Jesus never fails. On earth there are positive
solutions. If these fail, in Heaven there are spiritual
completions. While man is man, God is God.
Dr. James MacLeod may be contacted through the Neill Macaulay Foundation.