Take a look:
This bothers me, not because Beck is not entitled to his opinion, but because this was a gross misrepresentation of the complex study that is Liberation Theology! The clips of James Cone is taken out of context and then twisted to fit into Beck's political agenda. It is amazing to see how much he warps scripture such as "The Good Samaritan" to fit his own ideals. It is simply frightening.
Because many people (reading comments, blogs, and having conversations on this) take Beck's statements as if he were a true theologian or Biblical scholar. Where does the real problem lie though? Again, Beck is entitled to his opinion, and he is entitled to his voice on his own show. What frightens me most is that there is a lack of solid education going on in many of our faith communities on things such as Liberation Theology.
One reason I was called into ministry, and specifically into teaching in churches, is because I thought it was very sad that I had to go to college and Divinity school in order to get a solid education on what all is out there on scripture and theology. Bringing this same level of education to the laity is a a strong passion of mine and many of my friends and colleagues! It is my hope that when people see something like this on TV, they will think about it, weigh it against what they know based on solid education in our faith communities, find and be led to solid research sources, and know how to formulate their own thoughts and ideas.
Whether it be a charismatic TV personality, or a beloved pastor, or an opinionated blogger; we should encourage and train our fellow brothers and sisters in our communities to not settle for anything less than solid and well-informed education. We should help others to study and share within their communities so that we are having conversations to a more enlightened and responsible faith. This begins with the ministers' encouragement, training and equipping of the laity. Making a safe place of intentional diversity of opinion and encouraging healthy discussion as well as providing solid resources for people to learn more about their topics of interest.
I am a firm believer that you shouldn't simply take anyone's word (no matter how big their platform) as gospel. Instead, we should teach others to take responsibility for their thoughts and beliefs and become well-informed people of faith. Perhaps then we will have productive and more accurate conversations about things like Liberation Theology.
My prayer: that we would up the level of quality of our education in our communities of faith and never settle for anything less than the best!
Huffington Post (editorial)