The 2012 Election Results and What They Mean for “Evangelical Christian America”


Four more years.

Whether that phrase elicits joy or sorrow in you in the wake of the 2012 presidential election results says a great deal about you as a person and your future influence in America.

If you are an Evangelical Christian who votes Republican, today seems a far cry from just 12 years ago, when magazine covers and stories trumpeted that Evangelicals were hot and in control of America’s future.

No more.

woman voterThe demographics of America continue to flex, and this is what the election results tell us about who is really in charge:

  • Women
  • 18-45 years of age
  • Nonwhite
  • Urban (or college town)
  • Non-Evangelical

That demographic pwned all others and gave Barack Obama four more years. Today, we understand that the conservative white male has been consigned to the dust bin of American history. Any idea that such people run this country is now passé. Given trends in overall demographics within the United States, this will not reverse itself—ever.

Yesterday’s election showed three other trends:

  • Same-sex marriage restrictions that passed in two states less than four years ago went down to defeat
  • Legalization of marijuana passed in two more states
  • Prolife candidates who were cornered late with the question “What do you think about abortion in the case of rape?” went down to staggeringly bad defeats despite having led their opponents for much of the race

Abortion and opposition to same-sex marriage are hallmark positions for the majority of Evangelicals, with opposition to illegal drugs another definable (though less broadcast) position.

What is worrying for anyone who holds a prolife position is that despite the overwhelming opposition to abortion as a procedure, pro-abortion forces have a new weapon for derailing prolife candidates that is perhaps the most effective ever: the rape question. Until prolife candidates can answer that question without seemingly inserting foot in mouth, expect withering losses to continue.

And why is that question so effective? Because the new vote-deciding demographic is women of childbearing age who live in urban areas (or college towns). And they will mercilessly punish anyone who answers that question poorly. Worse, that question may even sway women who are not in that demographic simply because all women have a visceral reaction to anything dealing with rape. When it seems that male politicians condone certain aspects of a post-rape experience—well, the resulting backlash cannot be unexpected.

So where do Evangelical Christians stand as of November 2012?

The trends of the last few years are telling. Any political power that Evangelicals thought they wielded was always illusory, and the conceit of holding power only goes to show how low Evangelicalism has sunk with regard to genuine godly humility. What it will take for Evangelicals to wake up is anyone’s guess, though, as no amount of political pain seems to break through the arrogance.

Evangelicals don’t seem to understand the lives of non-Evangelicals, which is why Evangelicals continue to fail to connect with people who are different from them. Blame this on a bunker mentality. Honestly, how many liberal friends do most Evangelicals have? Why expect any influence at all then?

That lack of influence illustrates how Evangelicals have forgotten the root of their label: evangelism (though not to lead people to convert to a political party but to convert to Jesus). Evangelicals simply do not evangelize non-Christians anymore. And you especially will not find them evangelizing women 18-45 who are not born again and who live in cities and college towns. If Evangelicals were to stop plowing so much of their time and energy into political causes and start leading people to Jesus, that trio of causes so near and dear to them (upholding traditional heterosexual marriage, the sanctity of human life, and religious freedom) will take care of itself. How this reality continues to elude Evangelicals is damning.

Conservative Evangelicals failed miserably to help nominate a viable presidential candidate, with most of the supposedly workable alternatives proving to be ridiculously repellent to the average non-Evangelical voter. What must be avoided is a sense of persecution at being rejected. Instead, Evangelicals need to look at themselves and genuinely question whether it is Jesus who is turning off others or the personality of major Evangelical politicians. That distinction is critical, yet most Evangelicals don’t get it. Winsome Evangelicals exist, but a failure to place them on any national stage is a major failing of Evangelicalism as a whole. Instead, Evangelicals ended up stuck with a non-Evangelical presidential candidate who thinks God is an ascended man enthroned on the planet Kobol. One must ask what exactly was in that Kool-Aid they were drinking. One must also ask how much of their souls Evangelicals will sell to achieve by politics what they should be achieving through converting others to Jesus (see above).

Evangelicals must come to grips with their own diminishing demographic. Simply put, the Church is not growing in America. Having now slid into minority status, Evangelicals must pursue much soul-searching and honest reflection to find that humility they so need to rediscover. This loss of power is what it means to be a minority. It doesn’t feel good, does it? Still, if this second class position does not result in a refocusing on the main and the plain in Evangelicalism, if being a minority within a larger culture does not clean out the dross that is holding Evangelicalism back, then Evangelicalism is finished as a movement not just within American politics but within American culture, society, and religious affiliation. Period.

Evangelicals must learn that no political party is their friend. Selling out to the GOP has hurt Evangelicalism more than it can imagine, and Evangelicals must stop believing that any one political party represents them. Strange bedfellows have hurt the cause of Christ in America, and it is high-time the reflex to vote Republican stops. Evangelicals must support political candidates, regardless of party affiliation, who more accurately reflect the nature of God’s character and who perfectly answer how God can be known. Evangelicals must also realize that values voting is a major failure because it does not take into account all aspects of who God is. Picking and choosing values only further muddies Evangelicalism’s larger stance on what it means to be in Christ. All of who God is must be considered, and that means looking at aspects of God’s character Evangelicals have neglected. If Evangelicals were as well-known for championing the causes of the poor in America as they were for championing the cause of traditional marriage, perhaps those single, urban mothers who went en masse for “the other guy” might have voted differently.

I believe it is possible for America to return to greatness if born-again Christians stopped running around like headless chickens and instead focused on what is really important to the cause of Christ. If this latest election failing in the eyes of Evangelicals does not teach them anything, then we can forget ever seeing the American Church influencing our nation anytime soon.

The Mystery of Why American Politics and American Churches Resist Change


Nothing baffles me more than the intersection of politics and conservative American Christianity.

The election of 2012 promises to pit more of the same old, same old against itself, as Republicrats and Democans battle to see who will preserve the status quo for the ruling powers that be. Into this fray comes the handwringing, conservative, evangelical Christians who will go on and on about “the soul of our nation” and “if my people will humble themselves and pray….”

I’m about as truly conservative as it gets, both in politics and theology, but anymore, I can’t identify with any of my supposed Christian brethren when it comes to governing the nation or running a church.

I don’t understand how supporting a pro-life GOP candidate makes one iota of difference in overturning the demonic Roe v. Wade. Pro-life politicians have had decades to work, even having insurmountable majorities at times, yet nothing has budged Roe even the slightest.

In addition, we keep electing politicians who campaign on platforms of reducing government, only to show their true big government colors once in office. They get in power, put out the nepotism shingle, and the next thing you know, a pack of Ivy League School frat brothers are running the country (club) again. Democrat or Republican? Who cares? It’s just a different set of frat rowdies subjecting the country to the same hazing.

Worse, we Christians are running our churches the same way. The same failed programs get repackaged year after year and voted on by church councils as the “new direction for our ministry”—only to wind up abandoned on the dustheap a year later, their ashes choking us, even as we ignore the coughing.

Something in the conservative Christian mindset has congealed around a set of unchanging parameters that has us locked into being neither all that conservative nor Christian. We’ve become unable to challenge the status quo and ask hard questions about why we keep failing to meet the goals we set for our nation or for our churches.

Honestly, I can’t think of a battle we are winning on a macro level, either for America or for Jesus. And if we want to be truly depressed, try finding a winning battle that is both for America and Jesus at the same time.

The problem as I see it is an inability to take every assumption we make as Americans and as Christians and put holy fire to it. When even our brightest minds are unable to ever ask the question “Why are we doing things this way?” then how is it that we can ever expect a different outcome? Unless we start challenging every practice we have forged within American politics and the American Church, we will be lost. The amount of bovine methane production from the sheer number of our sacred cows will keep reducing the amount of oxygen to our brains, and then what hope will we have?

Anyone familiar with computer software understands the concept of “skins.” The menu bar in your Web browser may look different from your neighbor’s, but it’s still Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox underneath. You just chose different art to “skin” your personal copy.

I look at Rick Santorum, Mitt Romney, and Barack Obama and I see the same underlying person, albeit with a different skin over the top. The same goes for our churches.

The problem is what lies underneath the skin. And we are failing to address those problems, instead swapping in different skins with the hope that our experience will be different.

But as the old Southerner opined, “Ain’t no sense putting lipstick on a pig.”

I can’t sit idly by and not question what’s underneath the skin. I won’t put lipstick on a pig and tell myself she’s a beauty.

We Christians have got to stop supporting systems that are based on a foundation of repeated failure. We must question not only the silliness in modern politics but also the identical silliness in our church praxis.

This is not about assaulting the core truths of the Gospel or of our Constitution, but it’s a hope that we will get back to what is truly important, while questioning everything else.

Why do we do what we do in our church meetings on Sunday? Why are we supporting Church systems that perpetually fail to produce disciples? Why do we run our churches like businesses, with hierarchies that are not only not biblical but actually rob average people of their God-given birthright to serve the brethren and not be just a passive lump deigned to absorb another Sunday message that won’t stick beyond Sunday lunch?

Why do we continue to elect cold, calculating political animals who are only in it for themselves and their Ivy League frat brothers? Why do we prattle on about change while electing the same old type of yahoo?


Snake baring fangsIs ANYONE asking that question?

Folks, it’s time for the sheep to wake up and heed these words of Jesus:

“Behold, I am sending you out as sheep in the midst of wolves, so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves.”
—Matthew 10:16

We’ve been solely innocent doves for too long, and it has not served well either our nation or our churches.

Links for This Inauguration Day


Seeing as the incoming president pretty much trademarked the use of the word We, I thought I’d jump on the bandwagon and fire up the ol’ linkage and share the blog love, adding a few personal remarks here and there.



Proving once and for all that they are more right than God, World Net Day jumps the shark with a post by their founder that illustrates Christianity at its ugliest. And I say that as an archconservative, born-again Christian. Obviously, in WND’s view, God’s grip on his sovereignty must be slipping, as it seems He’s a little befuddled about this government thing. His word on the issue is a bit too lax as well, ITHO. (Note: The “100 percent at odds” statement is especially braindead. If you need a reason why the prevailing conservatism crashed and burned, this kind of kneejerk thinking is behind it.)


Sticking with the government theme, “Mish” Shedlock of Mish’s Global Economic Trend Analysis, the best financial analysis site on the Web, states what should be the obvious in this post. His calls are not only completely correct, they will, sadly, be largely ignored unless taxpayers demand that the powers that be shape up or ship out. My commentary: The difference between great men and cowards is that great men understand they must be the ones who sacrifice first. Cowards make everyone else sacrifice before they do. I’ll leave you to guess what kind of men we have today.


To add to the above, I have read in a couple different sources that my state, Ohio, has 37-39 percent of its citizens working for a local, city, county, state, or federal government agency. That’s insane.


If you need anymore proof that believers are fiddling while Rome burns, witness this piece of fluff. It’s this kind of crapola that occupies the minds of Christians rather than the tough issues of life. No wonder we’ve become irrelevant in the U.S. to most people.


Too little, too late?


Is it me, or are more and more “About” sections of Christian blogs noting how much the blog authors love to shop, watch TV, play video games, and go to movies? Call me shrill, but those seem like the wrong priorities in this difficult hour.


Tales of my demise are greatly exagerrated.


An odd thing started happening with this blog recently. In Google,  keyword searches  are landing people on the variable  front page rather than on the specific post page that holds the correct keywords. In the past, the front page was indexed but was not the main source for specific keyword searches. If any of you WordPress/SEO gurus out there can tell me how to restore the proper functionality, let me know. I have no idea what changed.


David Wayne of Jollyblogger is facing a difficult struggle against metastisized colon cancer. Would you take a few minutes of your time today to lift him up in prayer? Pray for healing. Come before God in expectancy.


And while you’re praying, pray that our new president will govern rightly. Unlike some, I believe that we Christians are called to support our leaders, even when we disagree with some of their policies. That kind of humility is something that God honors all the time.