#5: What exactly are Christian Conservatives?

On twitter, I often post in my 140 character straight-jacket that I see the term Christian Conservative as an Oxymoron. To be fair, I’m sure those on the right who place that in their bios along with references to “tea party” “NRA” “Birtherism” etc truly believe that they are Christians. However, I do have questions and would like some clarification.

When saying they are Christian Conservatives, are they also implying that Jesus Christ was himself a Conservative? If so, a fiscal or social Conservative? I debated this once on a Twitter Time Line with a man who called himself a Christian Conservative and I asked him to quote, chapter and verse, exactly what Christ said or did that fell under the tenets of conservatism. He couldn’t but instead cited that Jesus wasn’t political which I found amusing. From my reading of the Bible it would seem to me that he was clearly a political figure. At least those in Judea who were in power at the time thought so, saw him as a threat to public order, both religious and secular and had him crucified, but I digress.

By acknowledging that Jesus wasn’t a political figure, he did acknowledge that by his standards, Jesus wasn’t conservative. If he thought so, I would believe he would cite something in the Bible to back that up. As @JohnFugelsang, who Stephanie Miller calls the Ecclesiastic Mook would point out, Jesus never said anything about homosexuality, was against the death penalty, offered free healthcare, commanded of his followers to sell everything and follow him, told them to feed the starving, clothe the naked, etc. All of which would appear to indicate a liberal bent on Jesus’ part. Of course, those on the right would add that Jesus demanded that of the people, not government. A fair point. But in today’s world, not exactly practical. God bless those who personally go out of their way to help those in distress within their reach, but there are literally millions just in this country where that isn’t feasible and were it not for a structured social safety net managed by the government, these people would be suffering all the more. And this net is paid for via taxes paid in by those who do have the ability to pay in. In this case, I do see taxes to aid fellow humans as a moral issue demonstrated by and demanded of Christ, using government to implement. I don’t see where Jesus would argue against this, in fact did he not say, “Render unto Caesar that which is Caesar’s.”?

The moral issues the right-wing bring up, all come from the Old Testament, not the new. Though Jesus was a practicing Jew (something the Right appears to have problems with too) he proposed in his teaching a new sect of the Hebrew Faith that centered more on seeing to the humanity as a way to honor God. Keep in mind that Christianity began as a Jewish Sect. It wasn’t until the Council of Nicaea when the Romans adopted it as a new State religion, full of many of the pagan believes enjoyed by the people of the time, did it become a faith of its own, separate from the Hebrews.

So to wrap up, if you want to call yourself a Christian Conservative, be prepared to cite chapter, verse and context to show how Jesus lived and preached to tenets of today’s social conservative beliefs. If you can’t accept that most if not all of his teachings fall under the liberal context and as a result, to slam liberals you have to acknowledge that you slam Jesus. Jesus was far more forgiving of Gentiles than today’s Gentiles have been of people like him. A little tolerance of those who don’t follow within your stated sense of morality is very Christ like, ie Christian. Just saying.

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