Ask the Editor: Religious and political beliefs

NICK EICHER, HOST: Next up on The World and Everything in It: Ask the Editor.

MARY REICHARD, HOST: This time Marvin Olasky answers a common question around here: how do our beliefs inform our reporting.

MARVIN OLASKY, EDITOR IN CHIEF: We get lots of questions that boil down to this one: Does WORLD have a defined set of religious and political beliefs?

Yes and no. WORLD reporters come from a variety of denominations, but our common denominator is faith in Christ and agreement with the Nicene Creed. We all realize we are sinners saved by grace. We rely on the Bible as God’s inerrant Word.

We also understand that WORLD is not a theological journal. Most of our editors and many of our writers are Reformed. That means we stress God’s sovereignty and His lavish grace. But we do not take sides on infant vs. believer’s baptism or other secondary matters.

WORLD reporters believe God created the world out of nothing, and later He created Adam and then Eve miraculously. Following what the Bible teaches on creation and everything else is crucial, because Scripture defines who we are as people—and who God is as our Creator.

Politically, we try not to be partisan or to place ideology above theology.

We are pro-life, which means we sometimes work along with Republicans. We also believe Christians should be concerned for the welfare of the family, our neighbors, and those who lack power and influence. That means we often don’t have a political party.

We believe the fall has corrupted everything, so we are skeptical of grand schemes and concentrations of power. We see our governing system as dysfunctional in part because dysfunction pays: Interest groups that feel threatened are faster to contribute campaign money.

For that reason we favor smaller, more decentralized government. We put no confidence in princes, so we do not endorse particular candidates.

We see America as a country that once was exceptional. It avoided the mistakes of others. But it’s now regressing to the mean. Many Americans have lost faith in God’s intelligent design of life. But they still have faith in the ability of supposed experts to design our lives.

Over the past three decades, WORLD has allowed these principles to shape our political coverage.

First, we aspire to be followers of Christ. That means we look for leaders with integrity.

Second, we have one character standard for all leaders, whether Democrats or Republicans.

Third, since we all sin and fall short of the glory of God, we look for statements of repentance about past sin—and, we look for changes in behavior.  

Fourth, we know politics is not ultimate. We do not sacrifice evangelical witness for electoral desires. We do not sacrifice long-term cultural goals for immediate gratification.  

It’s easy for all of us to poke at the sins of our political opponents, but we need to remember that we also are sinners. We’ve been around long enough not to be shocked at corruption. We avoid panic. We know the sky is not falling, because God holds up the sky. And we thank him every day.

For WORLD Radio, I’m Marvin Olasky.

WORLD Radio transcripts are created on a rush deadline. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of WORLD Radio programming is the audio record.

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