Should Christians Be Worried About Government Surveillance?
Religion & Liberty Online

Should Christians Be Worried About Government Surveillance?

Ed Stetzter thinks so. In a Christianity Today article, Stetzer says our fundamental rights – rights enumerated in the Bill of Rights – are getting abused. He says alarm bells should be sounding among Christians, but that doesn’t seem to be the case.

Our Founding Fathers saw the Bill of Rights as providing barriers against government overreach and abuse.

People (particularly people in governments with power) could not be trusted to have no checks on their power. Why? Well, some of it had to do with history. For example, a bill of rights was an English concept preceeding the American experiment. But, some of those colonists held the view because of biblical convictions about fallen nature and the need to protect rights that some might want to take away.

Yet, Christians today do not sound much like the Christians then.

While Big Brother’s eyes grow stronger, some Christians just shut their eyes tighter. Perhaps if we better understood current events, we might consider their skeptical approach to the government power.

From the NSA scandal to TSA airport scrutiny to police scanning and tracking our license plates, our personal data is being tracked and stored at unprecedented rates. Stetzer believes that Christians should be not only concerned, but resistant to this type of government action.

Unless we admit there are some limits to Romans 13, the government becomes like a god, rather than an instrument of God.

So, my issue here is not only to speak up against government overreach, but to speak out against Christian under-speak.

Stetzer wants Christians to be silent no more, although he acknowledges that some Christians have chosen this route. He says Christians have an obligation to speak up when their government does something wrong, and that this type of intrusive action on the part of the government is clearly wrong.

We cannot sit idly by while they decide to store the phone numbers and names of people we call, touch the private parts of 13-year olds in the name of airport security (using a system that is more about “security theater” than safety), track every piece of mail we send, or know where we drive…

Stetzer wants Christians to sound the alarm, saying Americans have been lulled into a false sense of security that such government actions appear to bring to us. He says Christians are not being discerning enough when it come to Big Brother’s activities, and that needs to stop.

Read “Why Christians Should Be Speaking Up About The Surveillance State” at The Exchange Blog at Christianity Today.

Elise Hilton

Communications Specialist at Acton Institute. M.A. in World Religions.