In today's church service, our pastor delivered a message about the biblical sacrament of baptism. After the message, the congregation was invited to the front of the church to participate in what the United Methodist Church refers to as the "Congressional Reaffirmation of the Baptismal Covenant." Following the process outlined in the UMC Book of Worship, I reaffirmed my baptism in Christ today. Before approaching the baptismal font, I read the following:
Renunciation of Sin and Profession of Faith
On behalf of the whole church, I ask you: Do you renounce the spiritual forces of wickedness, reject the evil powers of this world, and repent of your sin?
Do you accept the freedom and power God gives you to resist evil, injustice, and oppression in whatever forms they present themselves?
Do you confess Jesus Christ as your Savior, put your whole trust in his grace, and promise to serve him as your Lord, in union with the church which Christ has opened to people of all ages, nations, and races?
According the to grace given to you, will you remain faithful members of Christ’s holy church and serve as Christ’s representatives to the world?
This past year has been extremely trying for me in my faith in the wake of the 2016 Presidential election. Each passing day, I watch as many evangelicals enable injustice and oppression, and fail to reject the evil powers of this world, as the President of the United States spouts overtly racist, isolationist, and sexist words. I watch as many churches and Christians say nothing as the President pushes policies that harm the poor and deepen racial and gender inequality. Evangelicals, especially white evangelicals, voted hugely in favor of this man, and are enabling him every step of the way. I'm personally sick of it.
As I walked through the process of reaffirming my baptism today, I also am renewing my commitment to resist this despicible administration. I have made a promise to God to serve as Christ’s representative, to reject the evil forces of this world, to resist evil, injustice, and oppression in whatever forms they present themselves, and to do it all together with the church, which is open to all ages, nations, and races. Therefore I choose to resist this President, his hateful and isolationist agenda, and all who support him. I wish to do this together with the church, just as I am called. I encourage you to join me.
Note: I am not advocating that the Church should be "democrat" or "republican," or even political. I'm advocating that Christians, as Christ's representatives in the world, are called to fight injustice, oppression, and evil, no matter what form it takes. Right now, one of the most pressing forms of oppression and injustice in the world is Donald Trump, and his administration. Resist.