Podcasts Politics

Politics in Wartime -Eternity Podcast

Screenshot 2020-06-28 06.23.03The latest Life in Wartime podcast on the Eternity network is very much tied into the conversation we did with Greg Sheridan (although we recorded it before). I’ve noticed and more Christians seem to be getting excited about politics , and judging people,  for their politics.   The Sheridan conversation is one of the best things I’ve heard in a long time – I would highly recommend that you listen to what he has to say.   And this one’ is I hope not too bad either!

S1-10 TITLE: Politics In Wartime

Has the COVID-19 crisis brought about a new way of relating politically, or are we likely to return to the point-scoring of the past before too long? And where is a Christian likely to throw their support?

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David Robertson and Steve McAlpine look at the shape of political discourse during global crises, beginning with Winston Churchill’s encouragement to the British people during World War II.

Do we discover in it a unity based on our shared need to get through the crisis? And will it evaporate as soon as the crisis passes?

Most importantly, can Christians learn a fundamental truth about unity in politics from the word of God?

Unity in Wartime – Lift in Wartime Podcast.

3 comments

  1. Churchill enjoyed war both as a journalist and a leader whose World War One efforts are darkly clouded by the Gallipoli campaign.

    When one looks at London today , we , regardless of political affiliation , know by observation of contemporary reality, that had Germany won the war , the English would still have a country of their own.

    Churchill’s reward will doubtless be having his name stripped from the list of Cambridge Colleges where the old warmonger’s most lauded biographer , Sir Martin Gilbert , was a History Fellow.

  2. David you asked, “how do we get to the stage where Churchill’s statue gets defaced.”

    I think there is an eternal answer to this – just as there was punk rock in the 1970s. What I mean by this is, then John Lydon, the singer in the Sex Pistols sang “I am an anarchist, I am an anti-Christ, don’t know what I want but I know how to get it, I wanna destroy the passer by ’cause I wanna be anarchy”. Of course back in the 70’s the church had greater power and this anarchic expression was kept in check more. And John Lydon in an interview with Piers Morgan more recently has said that is was all rhetoric, he didn’t mean any of it and he actually quite likes the queen.

    So I think there is this element to every generation. And what would have been unheard of a generation or two ago with Churchill being held up as the hero that lifted the country’s moral and led the fight against Nazi Germany lives less so in the minds of a younger generation or the more eccentric of older generations. So – the statue becomes fare game in the minds of some.

    Of course this destructive nature is in all of us if left unchecked and we know what forces are behind the desire to steal kill and destroy some of which have manifest in unsavoury elements existing in so-called “peaceful protest”. Of course the converse is true as can be evidenced in law enforcement.

    Steve said “no-one is allowed for complexity… I’m complex – everyone else is simple.” Yes and when a journalist in the Sunday Times labels Churchill a racist it’s probably likely that those defacing his statue are emboldened even if claiming “he still deserves respect”. Throwing the “racist” label around in the current climate is clearly inflammatory. And sadly there are forces invested in the initialising of the populous in order to control. For who have been the people that tyrannical regimes got rid of first if not the intellectuals, poets and artists – people who are likely to critically engage rather than exhibit slavish obedience to the zeitgeist.

    So – to show grace to many caught up in a rage about certain things, I think much of it comes from fear, knowing something is not right and wanting to do something, anything to try and put things right. Which in a way shows that there is the image of God in every human – even when it comes in the form of misguided attempts at justice.

    “Taking the sacred out of life and the secular overreaching itself” – indeed and isn’t that what we are seeing? The “God is dead” Nietzsche phrase comes to mind. Of course in context is it:

    “God is dead. God remains dead. And we have killed him. How shall we comfort ourselves, the murderers of all murderers? What was holiest and mightiest of all that the world has yet owned has bled to death under our knives: who will wipe this blood off us? What water is there for us to clean ourselves? What festivals of atonement, what sacred games shall we have to invent? Is not the greatness of this deed too great for us? Must we ourselves not become gods simply to appear worthy of it?”

    So, in context it’s not a statement as some have claimed about the non-existence of God or humans becoming enlightened as a reaction against church dogma. But it is a desperate cry – what is to become of us! And him predicting disaster which came with two world wars later. And of course has been art imitating life in every Bond movie since with the villain’s desire for world domination.

    And so this being the human condition. You say “all of us are sinners and all of us are made in the image of God” David. Well – from a human and earthly perspective it can be difficult to see past the sin. But isn’t there some identifying going on there, (dare I say identity politics) in labelling everyone sinners? In spite of centuries of human tradition doing this I would offer something. I hope you will hear me out on this.

    The term “sinner” biblically is used condescendingly. Jesus was looked down upon as a “friend of sinners” for example. Jesus is the exception to this where he uses the term “sinner” ironically in a story to show someone who prayed “lord have mercy” and therefore be counted as righteous in contrast to the so-called “righteous” person who was boastful and pretentious in prayer and drawing comparisons between himself and the so-called “sinner”, looking down on him. There are other examples of course.

    To take a heavenly perspective as we are encouraged, directed to do, it is is it not to see that when God created humanity, he saw it was good? Therefore in the truest sense of being, every person is good and carrying the image of God. Though of course all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God and therefore in need of a sacred saviour. If we are honest, isn’t the first heartfelt prayer that anyone makes a simple one – help?!

    I have found it to be life – changing to perceive myself and others in our identity as primarily in the image of God – not being without sin, rather than identifying myself and others as sinners. I am less likely to beat myself up or be bitter and resentful, judging and condescending to my neighbour. And more likely to be compassionate and graceful, able to speak truth to power and function generally speaking as a human being.

    Anyway – just my twopenny worth.

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