(click above to play “A King & A Kingdom” by Derek Webb)

republican jesus from strk8

there are two great lies that i’ve heard:
“the day you eat of the fruit of that tree, you will not surely die”
and that Jesus Christ was a white, middle-class republican


There’s nothing like the election season to remind me how we can use Jesus as a token sidekick. We wear him like a flag-pin on our breast that is supposed to be some great symbol of identity and character. He is like some Vice Presidential candidates, seemingly chosen only to expand the voter-base, a tool for the presidential candidate to achieve the office.

Candidates use him as a step up, and we complicate matters with our ridiculous assertions that Jesus affiliates himself with a particular American political party. But it’s not just a matter of politics. It seems we have a long history of Jesus being a token emblem in our lives to achieve certain status or power or self-satisfaction. And perhaps many of us, if not all, have a personal history of doing the same in our individual lives.

Is Jesus a token Lord? A token faith? A mere religion? A means of greater self-esteem and self-actualization? A sticker or a fish on a car? A stepladder for success and fulfillment? I mean, in terms of our current political climate, is Jesus our preferred Vice Presidential candidate?

Jesus has to be more than a token in our lives if we are going to ask other people in our culture to follow him as well. I suppose I tend to offer more questions than constructive solutions, but here it goes anyway: How do we do this? I mean, how do we live out an authentic, integral faith in a society so shallowly immersed in Christian superficialism?