Reported by Bill Bumpas, Steve Jordahl (OneNewsNow.com) | Monday, November 5, 2018
Evangelical Millennials are grappling with how to integrate their faith and their politics, as highlighted by a recent article in The New York Times.
Six young Christians, all raised in evangelical homes and now breaking with their parents over how to deal with issues such as same-sex “marriage,” immigration, and race. Those are the profiles the Times chose to highlight out of about 1,500 responses when young evangelicals were asked about the relationship between their faith and their politics:
“Here’s what we learned,” says the Times. “Young evangelicals are questioning the typical ties between evangelicalism and Republican politics. Many said it had caused schisms within their families. And many described a real struggle with an administration they see as hostile to immigrants, Muslims, L.G.B.T.Q. people, and the poor. They feel it reflects a loss of humanity, which conflicts with their spiritual call.”
Evangelical apologist Dr. Alex McFarland says those same discussions are going on in tens of thousands of Christian home across the country.
“[These young evangelicals] do love Jesus. I don’t dispute that,” says McFarland. “But they don’t understand that Christian love doesn’t mean having open borders. Christian love does not mandate that we have universal healthcare. Christian love does not mean that we allow a secular government – or any government – to redistribute wealth.”
And he says it certainly doesn’t mean questioning clear biblical teaching on sexuality.
McFarland – founder and president of Truth for a New Generation – says if these young people want to wear the evangelical mantle, they have to have a high view of scripture. “Young people also need to have maybe a little bit more robust understanding of the fine delineations between church and government, personal piety, and the responsibility of good, ordered civil government,” he adds.
Having spoken in more than 1,500 different churches in North America and internationally, he says churches could be doing more to teach these young people what it means to honor God with both their faith and their politics.
“Seventy-four percent of parishioners want their clergy to speak to moral, social, political issues and how does the Word of God speak about today’s issues,” he notes. “In evangelical churches, roughly only 12 percent do.”
Faith fuels voting decisions
If McFarland is right that churches could be doing more to educate young voters, some of that slack is being picked up by groups attempting to educate Millennials on college campuses. As part of this election season, a campaign has been under way on more than 100 Christian college campuses to encourage hundreds of thousands of students to cast a ballot.
The “Because I Care” voting initiative was collaboratively launched by two organizations with the same goal of encouraging Christians to vote: Im2moro and My Faith Votes.
Audrea Decker, president of Im2moro, says the effort provided Christian universities and Bible college students with all they need to register to vote, request an absentee ballot, and access a full non-partisan sample ballot and candidate information to be fully informed of each candidate’s positions.
Decker tells OneNewsNow that “Because I Care” is the message they want to send to the next generation.
“You don’t need to vote because you like a particular candidate or a particular party,” she shares. “You vote because of your faith and because you care about your community, your nation, and bringing God’s truth, his proven biblical principles, into the public square – because that is where it’s best for our society and our culture and our world today.
“And so it’s really our faith that fuels our political involvement – and we do it not for ourselves, but for others in the way that policies affect people in our country today.”
Decker says 117 Christian colleges have utilized the “Because I Care” materials on campus, reaching a student population of 325,000. In 2016, the group’s materials made in onto 41 campuses and reached 135,000 students.