I've recently become aware of the significance of an alarming trend in Christianity. Throughout our history, many have attempted to destroy Christians and the Word of God. Among the more recent threats to Christianity is Communism, which sought to persuade people that all religion was just a drug to be rejected by reasonable people.
Communism began as a philosophical ideal among a few which quickly became a national phenomenon in many countries. It tried to convince people that ideology was the essence of behavior, and one must have the correct ideology for the revolution to be successful. When Communism failed to convince everyone of its ideology, its supporters sought to impose their ideology by force. As a result, if one would not remove themselves from their religion, they would be forcefully removed from it. This has lead to much religious persecution in the last century.
Now, after the failure of Communism in nations worldwide, a new trend is emerging. Rather than Marxist philosophy attacking from the outside, now it has made inroads in the thought patterns of many Christians. It all starts with the misconception that our social ills have social sources. Rather, the source of social problems is a sinful heart.
Liberation theology has become acceptable in many South American and African nations. This is a theology that teaches that Jesus died for our race and our way of life. Therefore, anyone who is against us is against God. These groups sees social inequality as the source of evil and a revolutionary government as their redeemer. While we may not be familiar with liberation theology in the U.S. we are familiar with some of its supporters, most notably the former pastor of our future president. While I do not believe that Mr. Obama is a supporter of this theology, he has apparently been able to ignore it week after week as it was taught from the pulpit of his church.
Another similar threat comes from trends within the Emerging Church. While many of their principles are good, many adherents are adopting this Marxist philosophy that the government is the solution to all of our social problems. While no emergent Christian would dream of persecuting other Christians, this mindset is not too far removed from the experiences of Communist nations.
When people believe that their problems result from social situations and not the sinful heart of man, then we seek social solutions. The solution to the world's problems do not come from social reform. Rather, we must reform the hearts of men, which can only be done by Christ.
The government is not the redeemer of mankind, and despite the plight of many in the world, we must care for them out of a willing heart, not by the coercion of others. Government aid is not the same as private charity, and we insult our savior by claiming it is so.