Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

No Left Turns

Second Commandment [sic] Republicans

That’s what Joe Klein calls Mike Huckabee and Sam Brownback. Well, there’s a lot of confusion in Klein, and perhaps even some in Huckabee and Brownback, at least as they’re portrayed by Klein. Surely we can hold sin and grace together in the same thought. And surely it’s impossible to conceive of good works without thinking about the sinful creatures who at both ends of the "good works" relationship.

Still, Klein seems to me to get one thing right: a lot of Republicans have a hard time knowing quite what to make of these guys.

Discussions - 4 Comments

The (old) Book of Common Prayer comes to mind for clarification. In the order of service for Communion, this comes just after the Decalogue: Hear what our Lord Jesus Christ saith. Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it; Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.

Typically, if I remember correctly, recitation of the Ten Commandments was omitted, and instead we heard the two. The point was to lay the foundation for the Creed.

The "like unto it" may suggest that sin and grace can go together in the same thought.

Thanks, Steve, I had this in mind, too, though not drawn from the same source. It’s still an odd formulation, with no context offered in the course of the column.

I thought this might be interesting until I got to this:

And so it has been with the religious conservatives who have overwhelmed the latter-day Republican Party.

I have little patience with such dribble. If ONLY religious conservatives (by which he really has in mind a caricature of a crude, almost mindless evangelical) really had "overwhelmed" the party - that would be a problem worth having. I speak as an Eastern Orthodox who am often told I should be afraid, very afraid, of the modern evangelical....

Yes, the Gospel text is Matthew 22:39. Jesus’ translation, as it were, of the Commandments is his way out of a trap laid by a Pharisee, a lawyer. Would it be correct to say that it points to the "fulfillment" of the law? That is, to the assertion of the false choice between avoidance of sin and the promise of grace? Anyway, the liturgy suggests that to me.

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