Dominionist teachings have been in the news quite often lately. The Houston based meeting, The Response, brought quite a bit of attention to this issue. Various cable TV commentators such as Matthews and Maddow ran stories on the more extreme preachers that are proponents of dominionism. They also tried to tie Republican nomination candidate, Rick Perry, to these aggressive preachings (Maddow’s clip is even called, “Rick Perry, conduit to radical Christian overthrow of US government?”).
I have no idea if Rick Perry is a dominionist. I sincerely hope not since, as you will see in this article, this is a false teaching. If Mr. Perry’s goal is to govern the US as a theocracy where punishment is delivered due to lack of adherence to biblical teachings then he would be failing to follow the teachings of Jesus. I have tried to find evidence that Gov. Perry is dominionist by his actions as Governor or scripted speeches (I try to avoid non-scripted off comments in political analysis as these are frequently misspoken, mistakes of wording, or simply out of context comments). As of this writing, while I am not sure that Gov. Perry is qualified to be the President of the United States, I find no evidence of dominionism aside from some people that are dominionists were at a religious gathering that he helped kick-start.
First, what is dominionism? It isn’t the worship of dominion. Well, actually, it is kind of close to that. According to the best definition that I can find (Wikipedia) it is:
“the tendency among some politically active conservative Christians to seek influence or control over secular civil government through political action, especially in the United States. It is also known as subjectionism. The goal is either a nation governed by Christians, or a nation governed by a conservative Christian understanding of biblical law.”
The key point of this definition is the concept of a nation governed by Christian understanding of Biblical Law.
I will dig into the concept of Biblical Law in a bit but first a bit of understanding to the viewpoint. In a world where several influential nations are governed by Islamic Law (or Sharia), it is not surprising that in a nation that has a large population of another religion (Christianity) for those people to feel threatened and therefore try to entrench. Also, in times of hardship, it is easy to think back on younger days when everything is remembered (or rumored) to be wonderful and blame the changes in religion for the hardship. I don’t want to dismiss the frustrations of many people that feel that our government could be more ethical or more fair and think that if there was more religious observation in the world, that could be a good thing. However, the ends doesn’t justify the means – a government or a empowered constituency cannot make others be Christians. It just doesn’t work that way. Continue reading Dominion preachers are not preaching Christian teachings
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