Dr. Albert Mohler, the President of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, appeared on “Larry King Live” last night to discuss religion and the 2008 Presidential race. He was among a panel of guests that included Jim Wallis, David Kuo, Barry Lynn, and David Gergen.
The conversation was very illuminating not for what we learned from those representing the secular left (Barry Lynn and David Gergen), but for what we learned from those representing the religious left (Jim Wallis and David Kuo). Wallis and Kuo both argued that evangelicals should not base their vote in the upcoming election on a candidate’s views concerning abortion and same-sex “marriage.” They argued that poverty, aids, and Darfur are just as urgent as life issues and family issues.
I have talked about this before on this blog, and I will say it again. The religious left is trying to downgrade abortion on the list of evangelical priorities. They are not the only ones doing this. Ever since election 2004, many on the left side of the political spectrum have been trying to figure out how to capture or mitigate the evangelical vote. The Democrat party in particular has been trying to make inroads into the evangelical voting block by appealing to the moral conscience of evangelicals. They have been trying to convince evangelical voters that poverty, the environment, and aids are moral issues that are every bit as important as the sanctity of human life. “Evangelicals” like Jim Wallis and David Kuo are helping them make this case. The Democrat party, however, wants evangelicals to vote for them even though the party has every intention to continue their support for the right of mothers to kill their unborn children at any stage of pregnancy (0-9months).
In my view, Evangelicals should not be the lackeys of partisans when they are thinking about where to cast their vote. Rather, we should allow our political priorities to be shaped by a robust Christian conscience. For this reason, we must insist that the abortion issue is the greatest human rights crisis of our time and that we should not be distracted from the cause by politicians (Republican or Democrat) who care more about shoring up a constituency than protecting innocent human life. It’s an issue of priorities, and while the deleterious effects of poverty and “global warming” may be in the offing, the death toll of Roe v. Wade is already 40 million and counting. In my view, it’s not difficult to see which is the more urgent cause.
That is why I am so happy that Dr. Mohler was there to defend the priority of the pro-life cause:
What I don’t like and what I, frankly, find somewhat artificial and false here is the suggestion that evangelicals need to broaden their agenda, which means abandoning simple convictions on the family, on sexuality and on abortion and the sanctity of human life. I’m all for broadening the agenda. There’s a whole lot — given this country and given our responsibility that ought to be on our agenda, but evangelical Christians are not going to surrender those primary issues. We all have a hierarchy of concerns. And politically speaking, the sanctity of human life and the sanctity and integrity of the family are at the very top of the evangelical agenda. So, by the way, are issues of personal morality…
Here’s the transcript of the entire show: “Larry King Live” (May 14, 2007).