Consistency in public life
For God does not show favouritism. Roman 2.11
Question Time last night was a frustrating business. The politicians on the panel vied with one another to avoid addressing the questions put to them directly, in favour of spouting policy mantras or trying to score points off each other. It was plain that they had been briefed not to get drawn on their own views. It's not only depressing, it's dangerous. If we cannot expect honest answers from those who represent us, then we cannot hold them to account and that opens the door to corruption and mismanagement. And the reason for our politicians' reluctance is being laid bare by the scandals which threaten to eclipse the succession battle in Scotland: party allegiance trumping public service.
That is why we need a new kind of politics, where we can elect representatives in the reassurance that they will continue to prioritise the interests of their constituents and serve the nation as a whole, without getting sucked into party agendas and single-interest groups. Similar could be said of the Church. Is it not time we left behind our tribal loyalties and identified more overtly with our fellow believers across the denominational spectrum? As the institution continues to crumble, there is much talk of reversing the trend through mission. But, in his high-priestly prayer, recorded by the apostle John in chapter 17 of his Gospel, Jesus reminds us that to be effective in mission we must be united in faith.
If God does not show favouritism, should we not be more open, inclusive and collaborative?