I was forwarded the following interview from The Other Journal with Tony Campolo. This is an excerpt from it relating to the average church-goers allegiance to nation above their allegiance to kingdom.
TOJ: Do you think, then, that part of the problem is that a lot of
Americans confuse patriotism and the U.S. with the Kingdom of God?
TC: Yes, I think that one of the real fears that we have after 9/11
when our love for America became so intense, is that we tend to forget
that our ultimate obligation is not to the United States of America,
but to Jesus Christ and to the Kingdom of God. The Bible is quite
clear. As Christians, we are sojourners here. We are called in the
Bible ?ambassadors from God.? That is to say that we are in this world,
but not of it. And when in fact our patriotism takes precedence over
our spiritual commitments, we have to take a good look at ourselves and
ask whether or not we have become idolatrous. I think we are on the
verge of that in this country.
There’s a big argument right now as to whether American Flags should be
in churches. Brethren churches and Mennonite churches historically have
not had American Flags in the church because they sense the tendency to
idolatry that is in patriotism. Now I find that there are Brethren
churches that are beginning to put flags in churches. I don’t have any
problem if you put the flag of every nation in the world in the church,
but to single out one nation is to say that this Jesus that we worship
calls us to loyalty to one nation above all others? Because I’ve got to
tell you, I am committed to justice for all people, not just for
Americans. And I am committed to all of humanity, not just to
Americans. I think that Jesus calls us beyond our identity as
nationalists and calls us to be internationalists.
Go check out the rest of the interview and comment here.
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