Millions of Christian conservatives have the same angst I do: we’re willing to vote for Mitt Romney for president, but unwilling to compromise our Christian faith in the process.
Calling us “bigots” and claiming that any discussion of Mormon theology is “out of bounds” only aggravates our deepest concerns and makes our vote for him more difficult and perhaps less likely.
As Christians, our deepest allegiance and commitment is to Jesus Christ and His Word. We are Christians first, Americans second and conservatives third—and we’ll support the Republican Party as long as it maintains fidelity to our deepest core values.
My whole Christian life has been spent fighting to maintain a prominent place for the Christian worldview in the market place of ideas against the forces of secularism that would seek to silence that voice. Ironically, many well-meaning Christians are now unwittingly working with these forces to prevent the discussion of Christian theology in the public square—all for the sake of improving the chances of a single candidate to win a single election. My vision, and the vision of many Christians, is more long-term than the ’08 election. We’re defending a Gospel and a Kingdom, not a party and certainly not a candidate.
It is a very short step from saying, “We can’t talk about what Christianity has to say about Mormonism and politics” to “We can’t talk about what Christianity has to say about anything in public.” Christians must resist both of these attempts at what amount to a soft form of censorship.
If the Christian voice is effectively censored and rendered unable to defend itself against the claims of Mormonism in the public square in modern political discourse—which should be the most open discourse of all, seeing that religious liberty is our most precious liberty—then how will it maintain the right to defend itself in the science classroom against the claims of macro-evolution and naturalism, or the philosophy classroom against the claims of atheism and secularism, or in the ethics classroom against the claims of moral relativism and post-modernity?