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Ultimate Allegiance of Christians—A Most Unique Error -
  • Ultimate Allegiance of Christians—A Most Unique Error - Ultimate Allegiance of Christians—A Most Unique Error -

    "Ultimate allegiance of Christians" is a subtly deceptive phrase because it deludes us into thinking a Christian can have a sovereign other than King Jesus.

  • Chris,I stopped "pledging allegiance to the flag" long ago. "And to the republic for which it stands" somehow just did not ring right to me.  Why? Because that pledge is no less toxic, when taken to it root core, than the "seig Heil" of Germany's millions of chanting citizens during the Third Reich.  If a person enshrines his nation as his ultimate loyalty, even unthinkingly, he has sold himself very cheaply.  Nations come and go.  They are important and powerful symbols of beliefs and ideas worth struggling for, fighting for, and serving to build up.  But they are not "the ground of Being", as Tillich called our Savior.What worries me the most is the way that so many sincere Christians have conflated party and country with righteousness and holiness. They the fasten upon a sometimes honest candidate for office who will tell them what they want to hear, vote for that person and his/her entourage, and send them up to Washington expecting miracles.  What we have got from that mistaken notion is obstructionism, unwillingness to work together, party spirit, pride, overweening pride, and gross dereliction of the sense of fairness and justice for all, not just for the rich, or the powerful, or the celebrated.  This is wrong.  It is corrupt.  And it's not working.  Indeed it cannot work.When we leave this planet for the next great journey of discovery, we will not take on microgram of American soil with us.  We will not go wrapped in the flag that may be draped on our caskets.  We will arrive there naked and transparent, unable to hide anything.  What good will all those slogans ("I'm for compassionate conservatism")  blah, blah, blah,  do us when we arrive where they have zero meaning at all? None. And it will be so because we have bought into a whole system of lies, to your point. We have enshrined the State and its trappings at the apex of our living and pulsing souls."The abundant Christian life", as my dear brother Wyn Bryant used to laughingly call it, is not about things or money or power.  Those are important in their proper place and time and context.  It is about living quietly and lovingly and generously in as much of the light of God's truth as we can bear.  Unless we are more righteous than Moses, we had better be willing to hide ourselves in the cleft of the Rock of Ages. The reflected light of that glory is more than enough to show us the way, the truth and the life.Bless you my friend.  I hope all goes well for you.S 
  • Even if "ultimate allegiance" seems to be a contradiction in terms, it has both biblical and cultural American foundations. In Daniel 2.37-8 (NRSV) Daniel does not hesitate to acclaim Nebuchadnezzar as:

    You, O king, the king of kings— to whom the God of heaven has given the kingdom, the power, the might,
    and the glory,into whose hand he has given human beings, wherever they live, the wild animals of the
    field, and the birds of the air, and whom he has established as ruler over them all—

    Daniel freely acknowledges Nebuchadnezzar as sovereign ( Dan. 4.22: ' your sovereignty [reaches] to the ends of the earth") but tells him he will be reduced to a grass-eating, crazed idiot unless Nebuchadnezzar learns that "the Most High has sovereignty over the kingdom of mortals, and gives it to whom he will" (v.25). The "ultimate sovereignty" concept is built into the Pledge of Allegiance as well: "I pledge the nation, UNDER GOD....." As for the Oath of Allegiance, a pacifist Christian would not "have to lie under such circumstances" when asked to take it. The website of the US Citizenship and Naturalization Services ( notes that " In certain circumstances there can be a modification or waiver of the Oath of Allegiance". Chapter 5, p.38 of "A Guide to Naturalization" notes a waiver can be given to those with religious objections to the military or even to noncombatant service. And while YOU may view Jesus as "a foreign prince...or sovereignty", most Americans don't. They would be appalled that anyone would think the Oath required them to renounce God or Jesus in order to become an American. In fact, I think most Americans, and particularly most evangelicals, view Jesus as a de facto American anyway, someone who would never to do anything to upset our red, white, and blue applecart. So your allegiance to King Jesus ain't no problem, bro!

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