The lady doth protest too much, methinks.
Jesus First is at it again. Earlier this month the liberal/church growth political action committee sent out a political mass e-mail, as we noted in our column, Jesus First, “Spamming the Globe . . .”. Now, this past Thursday, they have sent out another political mass e-mail, denying that they are political, even as they make a political appeal.
(By the way, the e-mail was sent by their mass marketing firm, Unified Resources, Inc., of Houston, Texas. The “From” line reads: “Jesus First,” [email protected] The President/CEO of URI is Paul Feucht, whom Jesus First endorsed for office at the last synodical convention.)
Here’s what the e-mail says (the bolding is theirs):
Recently Jesus First sent out a note concerning the election of convention delegates. This e-mail was directed toward a group of pastors who support our current leadership. The intent of this e-mail was two fold. First, we wanted to share how a small, but vocal group continues to disparage our current leaders. This group is intent on replacing our leaders. Second, we wanted to encourage you to help retain the leadership and direction of the LCMS. If we caused confusion, we sincerely apologize. If you asked to be removed from this mailing list, we have already removed your name, but wanted to share this brief apology. If for some reason you would prefer to continue receiving Jesus First information, please let us know to add you back onto the mailing list.
Finally, there are some who have attacked this e-mail stating that it is “of a party spirit”. Jesus First is NOT a political party. Rather, we have clearly and consistently stated that we exist, “for Gospel-Centered, Mission-Driven, Future-Oriented Leadership in the LCMS.” We believe supporting our current leadership, particularly supporting President Kieschnick and First Vice President Diekelmann is appropriate and something all LCMS churches should embrace. Furthermore, we call on others to stop attacking God’s duly elected leaders of the LCMS.
Jesus First Leadership
A couple of observations:
1) They claim, “Jesus First is NOT a political party.” Yet look at what they emphasize (literally) in their e-mail: “support our current leadership“; “retain the leadership and direction of the LCMS“; “supporting President Kieschnick and First Vice President Diekelmann.” If that is not an overt political appeal, I don’t know what is. (Incidentally, the “Jesus First is NOT a political party” line reminds me of the Ablaze!â„¢ program’s insistent disclaimer, “Ablaze!â„¢ is not a program, it’s a movement.”)
2) They want people “to stop attacking God’s duly elected leaders of the LCMS.” Since when is it going against God to want somebody else in office who you think would do a better job? Isn’t that why we have elections? When these same Jesus First folks (in their earlier incarnation) opposed President Al Barry, were they “attacking God’s duly elected leader”?
For the record, I think politics is a good thing. It’s how we persuade people, influence direction, choose leaders, and make group decisions, in any human organization. I just wish Jesus First would be honest and admit that politics is what they are doing. Oh, and maybe get the guy who writes their stuff to sign his name–that would be a good thing, too. Me, I’m . . .