Glen Beck’s recent comments calling on Christians to leave churches that reference the term “social justice” highlight the desperate need for thinking Christians to evaluate thoughtfully claims made by those in the media. Too often we Christians are not know for our thoughtful reflection on current events. When we get our talking points from the ideologues on cable news channels and talk radio we become as shrill and reactionary as they are, and just as divisive.
The vacuum that is our failure to think independently is filled with a myriad of voices in our culture. When we merely parrot back the talking points of our culture (whether conservative or liberal), we fail to engage culture as thoughtful Christians. Feigning thinking through repetition of others thoughts is not a proper substitute for thinking.
Of course, there are occasions when someone in print or media expresses our thoughts on a subject better than we could. These articulations can and should be recognized if it is helpful in expressing our own thoughtful reflection, but should never be a substitute for thoughtful and biblical reflection.
Sometimes we also sacrifice thoughtful reflection on the altar of a quick reaction. We think that we must respond immediately to every issue that arises, even before all the facts are in. This often makes us look foolish and uninformed.
The other danger, of course, is to live in a constant state of equivocation, never taking a stand on the controversial issues of the day. Each of us by temperament is prone to one extreme or the other. By Christian commitment we must purpose to be both thoughtful and courageous, or in Biblical terms, to be “speaking the truth in love” (Ephesians 4:15). To do this, we must be able to think about the biblical and logical implications of ideas and actions and respond appropriately as the situation warrants.