The Common Good
May-June 1997

No Popularity Contest

by Bob Francis | May-June 1997

I ENJOYED reading Duane Shank’s article in the January-February 1997 issue ("Call to Renewal" column).

I ENJOYED reading Duane Shank’s article in the January-February 1997 issue ("Call to Renewal" column). I am a first-time subscriber and I’ve also enjoyed the other articles in this magazine. I have noticed a desire to change the status quo, to move away from a philosophy of politics as usual. As a Christian I am frustrated by politics, and even though I usually vote Republican, I don’t feel represented. I think it’s great what you’re doing.

However, I have some questions about your stands. I see from your articles that you promote a social gospel. I have no problem with that, after all Jesus spoke often about helping others. He said that everyone is my neighbor and that I should treat all people in that way.

My questions center more around your stance on the abortion issue. You see, I also consider the unborn to be my neighbor. Christians shouldn’t compromise their pro-life stance in order to get along with the pro-choice side. The Bible teaches that God is the personification of love, and that a social gospel is espoused by Jesus. However, Jesus also said that he came not to bring peace but a sword, and contention between people. The gospel is going to upset people; espousing Christian ideals will upset people.

Being a Christian isn’t a call to be popular, it is a call to show the world a different way. Scripture says we are to be in the world but not of the world. I interpret this scripture in this case to mean don’t be afraid to take the hard stand.

Sojourners relies on the support of readers like you to sustain our message and ministry.

Like what you're reading? Get Sojourners E-Mail updates!

Sojourners Comment Community Covenant

I will express myself with civility, courtesy, and respect for every member of the Sojourners online community, especially toward those with whom I disagree, even if I feel disrespected by them. (Romans 12:17-21)

I will express my disagreements with other community members' ideas without insulting, mocking, or slandering them personally. (Matthew 5:22)

I will not exaggerate others' beliefs nor make unfounded prejudicial assumptions based on labels, categories, or stereotypes. I will always extend the benefit of the doubt. (Ephesians 4:29)

I will hold others accountable by clicking "report" on comments that violate these principles, based not on what ideas are expressed but on how they're expressed. (2 Thessalonians 3:13-15)

I understand that comments reported as abusive are reviewed by Sojourners staff and are subject to removal. Repeat offenders will be blocked from making further comments. (Proverbs 18:7)