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May 20. 2012 8:28PM

Where are Christian leaders to stand up to straying politicians?

For most people, I suspect that the recent endorsements of same-sex marriage by our President and vice president are regarded as nothing more in an election year than pure politics. It is one more example of the long history of many of our politicians who sacrifice religious belief on the altar of expediency.

However, in this unprecedented action of endorsing same-sex marriage by the President and the vice president, both professing Christians, there is a change which should be alarming to the people of faith.

It used to be the norm that politicians, in endorsing a practice which was questionable to their faith, would add that although this position was not their personal view, they were supporting the views of the majority. One clear example of this from the past would be in supporting abortion on demand. Many would say, “Although I don't believe in abortion because of my religious beliefs, many women in America are pro-abortion and therefore I must support them.”

From a spiritual standpoint, the problem in either approach is that the powers that be in our religious institutions have been complacent in letting the politicians get away with conduct that is diametrically opposed to the ordinances of the Christian faith. Most seem afraid to exercise any form of church discipline for fear of some sort of retaliation.

The early Christians were not such cowards. They were willingly prepared to suffer any consequences rather than defraud the faith. So I ask, where are the clergy today who will have the backbone to hold politicians responsible for their actions? When one of the chief executives of our nation can bring himself to say he is “absolutely comfortable” with same-sex marriage, the church has a duty to call him to account.

It is vital to note that few subjects in the Christian faith received more attention from Jesus than the traditional marriage between one man and one woman. The lord of the church did not allow for differences with His teachings. Rather He warned that “He who is not with me is against me” (Matthew 12:30 NIV).

Jesus put the truth, His truth, uttered by Himself beyond dispute, “Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will never pass away” (Matthew 24:35 NIV). “I am truth” (John 14:6 NIV).

Therefore, shame on those who have the responsibility to uphold the ordinances of God and fail to act.

Rev. John M. Taylor of Northumberland is a retired minister in the American Baptist Church.

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