Chicago Declaration on Evangelical Social Concern

Let’s see what other crazy things were said in the ’70s:

We affirm that God abounds in mercy and that he forgives all who repent and turn from their sins. So we call our fellow evangelical Christians to demonstrate repentance in a Christian discipleship that confronts the social and political injustice of our nation.

We must attack the materialism of our culture and the maldistribution of the nation’s wealth and services. We recognize that as a nation we play a crucial role in the imbalance and injustice of international trade and development. Before God and a billion hungry neighbors, we must rethink our values regarding our present standard of living and promote a more just acquisition and distribution of the world’s resources.

We acknowledge our Christian responsibilities of citizenship. Therefore, we must challenge the misplaced trust of the nation in economic and military might–a proud trust that promotes a national pathology of war and violence which victimizes our neighbors at home and abroad. We must resist the temptation to make the nation and its institutions objects of near-religious loyalty.

That’s an excerpt from the “Chicago Declaration on Evangelical Social Concern,” written November 25, 1973. HEREBY AFFIRMED. This is me co-signing, 35 years late.

How would our current political landscape be different if we had listened to these brothers instead of those in the Moral Majority? How would the Focus on the Family version read?
“Before God and a billion hungry neighbors, we must affirm that the greatest assault on Christian values is two ho-mo-sexuals reading The New Yorker together in Boston.”
and
“We must resist the temptation to see all humans as created equal, for those born in the US of A are more equal than others. Those born in the US of A are auto-magically incorporated into a new Divine plan in which democracy needs to be forcefully imposed on unExceptional unAmericans.”

4 thoughts on “Chicago Declaration on Evangelical Social Concern

  1. I did not read this post…and will not until you post Kevin Kuhn’s letter to the editor of Cedars. Kevin Kuhn is a great American. He has been called the song bird of his generation, and has a heart for …as My Chemical Romance states…” the broken, the beaten and the damned.”

  2. What could have been…

    I’ve been working off and on writing a lengthy essay demonstrating why the Moral Majority has been the downfall of the influence of the Republican party and of evangelical Christianity (so much so in this case that the term is now neutered). Nationalism ftl.

    In other news, see this (http://www.cnn.com/2008/POLITICS/10/13/congress.stimulus/); it’s like the GOP has given up any pretense of giving a damn about the middle class.

  3. Sounds like an essay I’d read for sure. Randall Balmer and Amy Sullivan might be good resources for you.

    re: GOP & the middle class, Eric Alterman has an interesting semi-related bit on this in “Why We’re Liberals” where he talks about the paradoxes of liberals helping the impoverished and why the GOP needs no pretense of caring (my 30-second research suggests this discussion on-or-around page 84 if you’re interested).

  4. loved the FotF version /parody. So true.. they got off track years ago. .. bought into the Christian=American myth. Are there no righteous believers in other countries? many living under totalitarian govts?

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