Tony Campolo Interview: "Red Letter Christians"

                  (approx.8 minutes) A New Man Magazine interview.

 

You may love Tony or maybe not, but he always has something to say! In this case, he is right about Evangelicals being too closely associated with right-wing Republican politics, and myself, I am guilty of all those things.

So you can imagine that I find myself at the other end of the political spectrum from Dr. Campolo most of the time. However, I do believe that he makes some good points in the interview.

One of the on-going conversations among more liberal theologians lately is question of whether Protestants are closer to being the ‘Church of Paul’ rather than the Church of Jesus. Tony Campolo touches on some of these themes in his perspectives on being a ‘Red Letter Christian’.

While I believe that all the New Testament is inspired, I also believe that over the years that more conservative Christians have surrendered social action imperatives and justice issues to the more liberal main line churches. I do believe that Black Charismatic and Pentecostal churches have carried on in this area and can probably show the rest of us a better way to serve our communities and address some of these issues and still preach the Gospel like we are suppose too.

One of the remarkable things that I remember about Pastor John Wimber, when I attended the Anaheim Vineyard, was his insistence that the church needed to be involved in promoting ‘justice’ and serving the poor. The church served over a million meals one year and had a clothing store for the poor in supposedly wealthy OC California. Most of the Vineyard churches have carried on that fine tradition in some form or another–feed the poor and pray for the sick.

I can remember being uncomfortable one Sunday morning while I was sipping on a ‘Starbucks’ as John preached on Romans and then in an illustration talked about how Christians might want to reconsider their patronage of the American coffee companies who were unjust in their dealings with the poor coffee farmers in Central and South America. This ‘free-trade’ Republican nearly choked on a Mocha that day.

When Tony Campolo in the interview says:

"when Jesus said, “Love your enemies,” He probably meant we shouldn’t kill them."

—It reminded me of a recent comment by Carl Thomas of Revival Blog who challenged my support of the Colorado church guard who cut down the shooter.  Though I don’t agree with Tony Campolo on everything, he always causes me to pause and consider. This interview is one of those.            *Top

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