Per Fidem Intrepidus means "Fearless Through Faith". My courage isn't my own, it comes from the Holy Spirit, it's my faith in God and my personal savior Christ Jesus that calms my fears and allows me to move forward in this fallen world. Personally I'm afraid of a lot of stuff, but having the faith that Jesus adopted me as his little, sin filled, brother keeps me going.

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Spurgeon Thursday - Church & Politics

Spurgeon believed that religion should be carried into politics:
 “We are now called upon to exercise one of the privileges and duties which go with liberty, let no man be neglectful in it. Every God fearing man should give his vote with as much devotion as he prays.” 
“I often hear it said ‘Do not bring religion into politics.’ This is precisely where it ought to be brought, and set there in the face of all men as on a candlestick.”
We owe our liberty to men of religion, to men of the stern Puritanical school - men who scorned to play the craven and yield their principles at the command of man. And if we ever are to maintain our liberty (as God grant we may) it shall be kept in England by religious liberty - by religion. This Bible is the Magna Charta of old Britain: its truths, its doctrines have snapped our fetters, and they never can be riveted on again, whilst men, with God's Spirit in their hearts, go forth to speak its truths.
 But politics should not intrude into religion:
“Ministers do well to give their votes and to express their opinions for the guidance of the people, but in proportion as the preaching becomes political and the pastor sinks the spiritual in the temporal, strength is lost and not gained.”
Outside the pulpit Spurgeon was vocal about his political beliefs. In 1880 he addressed voters:
 “Are we to go on slaughtering and invading in order to obtain a scientific frontier and feeble neighbours? ... Shall all great questions of reform and progress be utterly neglected for years? ... Shall the struggle for religious equality be protracted and embittered? ... Shall our National Debt be increased?”
In the 1860's England found that rapid population growth was outpacing the private sector's ability to provide education and the government must take over. To avoid government interference in religious teaching it was decided that Christian education should be left to home and Church. Spurgeon didn't like this. In 1870 he conducted a rally calling for Bible teaching in state schools.
“How can religion be eliminated from education, unless it be eliminated from the teacher himself?”
Although Spurgeon sided with the liberal politicians of the time, he voted against them when his conscience required him to do so. Rather than follow a party line Spurgeon voted "as unto the Lord":
“Do not give yourselves up to party spirit. It is a pity when a man cares only for politics, when the one grand thing he lives for is to return a Liberal for Parliament, or to get in a Radical, or to lift a Tory to the top of the poll. To live for a political party is unworthy of a man who professes to be a Christian.” 
Spurgeon involved himself in political issues that transcended the borders of the Empire, such as slavery in America. Keep in mind that slavery was a much hotter political issue in the 1860's than abortion is now (back then about half the politicians had no problem enslaving their fellow man, while today the majority of politicians have no problem with murdering our children)
“Slavery is the foulest blot that ever stained a national escutcheon, and may have to be washed out in blood. America is in many respects a glorious country, but it may be necessary to teach her some wholesome lessons…better far should it come to this issue, that the North and South should be rent asunder, and the States of the Union shivered into a thousand fragments, than that slavery should be suffered to continue.”
“Some American divines seem to regard it, indeed, with wonderful complacency. They have so accustomed themselves to wrap it up in soft phrases that they lose sight of its real character…It is, indeed, a peculiar institution, just as the devil is a peculiar angel, and as hell is a peculiarly hot place. For my part, I hold such miserable tampering with sin in abhorrence, and can hold no communion of any sort with those who are guilty of it.”

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