That’s my message to you, pastor friend, if you’re going to become political in the pulpit.
Today is Pulpit Freedom Sunday:
More than 80 pastors nationwide will be participating in the Alliance Defense Fund’s second annual Pulpit Freedom Sunday on Sept. 27. The pastors will preach sermons related to biblical perspectives on the positions of electoral candidates or current government officials, exercising their constitutional right to free religious expression despite a problematic Internal Revenue Service rule that activists groups often use to silence churches.
Pulpit Freedom Sunday is an event associated with the ADF Pulpit Initiative, a legal effort designed to secure the First Amendment rights of pastors in the pulpit. Some of the pastors preaching Sunday will address the positions of candidates in current state governor’s races; others will address the positions of existing government officials or people who have declared themselves for office in future elections.
“Pastors have a right to speak about biblical truths from the pulpit without fear of punishment. No one should be able to use the government to intimidate pastors into giving up their constitutional rights,” said ADF Senior Legal Counsel Erik Stanley. “ADF is not trying to get politics into the pulpit. On the contrary, the whole point is that churches should be allowed to decide for themselves what they want to talk about. The IRS should not be the one making the decision by threatening to revoke a church’s tax-exempt status. We need the government to get out of the pulpit.”
Let them proclaim freedom from politics in the pulpit!
I have a modest proposal. Those preachers who want the government to “get out of the pulpit” will put their pen where their mouth is by signing a public commitment to stay out of politics.
Any pastors who do not get out of politics will “get out of the pulpit.”
Did I say that is a modest proposal? Yep. And it is. Just like it’s sensible.
But is it Biblical?
(By the way, how does anybody get into a pulpit?! I mean, it’s not like it’s a closet or a telephone booth or or a bathtub or a car or even some sort of clerical garb.)