BUZZFLASH NEWS ANALYSIS
by Jeffrey Joseph
In the past, Glenn Beck has taken his vendetta against social justice — a now-mainstream line of thought in most of Christianity — and made it public. Yet, while he had let the issue rest for some time, Beck has seen fit to redouble his efforts to convince his viewers that he is a prophet for the “real” Christianity, not unlike his favorite Tea Party media queen pushes the “real” America.
Months ago, Beck said on his radio show, “I beg you, look for the words ’social justice’ or ‘economic justice’ on your church website. If you find it, run as fast as you can. Social justice and economic justice, they are code words.” For further clarification, he added, “Now, am I advising people to leave their church? Yes!”
Of course, as previously described in great detail, Beck’s comments illustrate a total lack of comprehension of the history of social justice within Christianity broadly, and even in Beck’s own Mormon faith. As such, Beck manages to leave little conclusion other than that he must hope to begin his own brand of Christianity to supplant faith as the world knows it.
Before he could ever begin his own church, though, Beck would have to dedicate more time to explaining his conspiracy theory than simply denigrating religious leaders as “Marxists.” On Monday, Beck told his viewers to look forward to his special on the following day where he would attempt to explain his rationale against modern churches. Unfortunately, in so doing, Beck reverted back to his usual fear mongering, telling his viewers, “Your churches… there’s a chance it’s been infiltrated and it’s got some nasty things.” Of course, Beck still blames his favorite group of opponents for infiltrating the churches — the “Marxists.”
Yesterday, at the time of the special, Beck’s claims proved hardly original or supported than his usual attacks against his opponents as all Marxists. He theorized that “progressives knew, about 1915, they knew that they couldn’t get their agenda through,” but that they still managed to “put a poison in our church.” Consequently, he felt “this is the last dying breath of our churches if we don’t snap out of it.” What did he offer as proof? He contended “that the government is going to merge with churches under the Democrats,” apparently with the intent of “injecting social justice poison into our churches.”
Beck himself admits that most spectators would consider him “stark-raving insane” for his contention that the government is bonding with churches under the Democrats, and at least on the point of his ridiculousness, he may be close to the truth. With so many false allegations that President Obama had canceled the National Day of Prayer and considering the U.S. bishops opposed the healthcare reform bill, if the Democrats had somehow merged government with the churches, they had clearly done a terrible job of it.
Knowledgeable viewers should have had a hard time taking Beck seriously when he tried to differentiate churches by saying, “Your church is either for socialist government, or the living of the gospel.” Beck’s almost laughable comparison seems to forget Acts 2:44-5, which states of the early church that “all they that believed, were together, and had all things common. Their possessions and goods they sold, and divided them to all, according as every one had need.” The early church would have appeared awfully socialist to Beck. To be fair, Acts is technically not part of the four Gospels, but as a companion piece to Luke, Acts comes awfully close. Given Beck’s apparently very limited comprehension of theology or history, though, none of that may matter.
For the people out there willing to listen to a self-styled prophet like Glenn Beck, regardless of how demonstrably foolish and unsupported his claims, his special on the perils of modern churches may prove falsely illuminating. Everyone else can recognize Beck as the uninformed charlatan he continues to be. In fact, sensible viewers should continue to demand sponsors refuse to fund Beck’s diatribes and that FOX reign in his disinformation if it wants people to really take it seriously as news organization — and in the meantime, choose to Turn Off FOX.
Originally posted at Turn Off FOX.
BUZZFLASH NEWS ANALYSIS