A number of years ago, a highly respected Christian educator and communicator said, “Readers make leaders.” I have been challenged over and over by that statement. I love to read, but only God will know how much that has developed into leadership. I confess I do not do much reading for pleasure, at least as some would define it. Other than having so many books I would love to read but lack the time, which gives rise to some frustration, my pleasure in reading comes from three areas. First, there are those books that confirm my thinking and encourage me that I am not out in left field. The other area that brings me pleasure comes from reading those books that challenge, encourage, and enable me to think more clearly and deeply about life and reality. I pray regularly for a teachable spirit as I read. There is a third area that challenges and gives me pleasure regarding reading and that is encouraging others to read, to think through issues, and sharpen their world and life view from a kingdom of God perspective.
Why this personal confession? The following comments relate to a book that I must admit when I read the manuscript, I struggled. First of all the author is a personal friend whom I admire, appreciate, and highly respect. He is a faculty member and part of the administration of a seminary where I serve on the board. He has demonstrated deep commitment to truth in some most insightful ways in the years that I have known him. He is a thinker, willing to think out of the box if this enables him to arrive at truth.
You must also know that Carl Truman is from Britain. His background will come through quite clearly in this provocative little book. His comments reflect that cultural setting while at the same time challenging him and us to think biblically. As the title and subtitle suggests, this little book is about politics, and we realize that people have gone to war over religion and politics. Carl does not pull punches with his challenges. When Dr. Peter Lillback, to whom the book is dedicated, wrote the forward, he made a “right on” statement: “I heartedly recommend you read this book. But you do so at your own peril.”
Having read the manuscript and now the book, I concur with that statement. As a matter of fact, Dr. Lillback’s foreword has helped me realize what Carl Truman was attempting to do. Both are dear Christian brothers and colleagues, and there is a demonstrable affection and respect for one another, even at points where they differ.
This would be a good place to say something I have said so many times for years and that is that two Christians can be attempting to operate from a Christian kingdom world and life view and come to different conclusions regarding application, but rather than create conflict or raise a barrier between them, they can be “iron sharpening iron,” at those points of difference. You will find that to be the case in Republocrat. Read it and do not be afraid to think and even re-think where you believe necessary the author’s positions. Also, let the witness and testimony of Dr. Truman’s relation with Dr. Lillback be an encouragement and challenge to us to be willing to work through issues with those in the family of Christ with whom there is a difference of opinion and thought.
The entire political scene in our country and throughout North America could not be more uncertain, divisive, and fragmented. We need a clear Christian perspective on the political philosophy and its application.
Rather than pointing out those places that cause me concern in the book and definitely move in a different direction, read the book and let it challenge you to think. Enjoy letting this little volume challenge you to do some fresh and refreshed thinking on politics, how and where it fits within the Christian framework. I must say to Carl, “I do appreciate Fox News.”