taking the words of Jesus seriously

Tonight from 9-10:30 pm EST, two men neither of whom are the anti-Christ and both of whom are sinners whom God has used to accomplish varying degrees of good in our world will get on TV and attack one another while millions of Americans watch. While this happens, hundreds and perhaps thousands of Christians will get on twitter and damage their witness to co-workers and friends of different races and political persuasions by writing snide commentaries that bash either of the two candidates. The reason I have made a fool out of myself trying to promote the is to offer a different witness of Christ to people who have been alienated by loudmouth Christians who have not spoken with integrity or represented Christ well. If you have a twitter account, I have made it incredibly easy for you to participate tonight. You can cut and paste any number of the 60 sample tweets below anytime today into a tweet scheduler called twuffer.com (yes, the name is silly) so that you don’t have to post live during the debate.

When I went to the site, it simply asked for permission to access my twitter account and let me straight in. None of you will like all sixty tweets that I have shared below. They’re not necessarily 100% bipartisan or evenly balanced. Some of them reflect the heart of a former youth pastor who worked with kids on Medicaid who are taking AP classes, since their future is my main concern in this election. I think everything I’ve written about Jesus is Biblically supportable though some of it is playful and some of it is harsh. The point is to poke holes in people’s stereotypes about Christians as well as poke Christians who are behaving like stereotypes. That’s what this is about. By all means, vote for your guy, but if you care about the fact that most people in my generation or younger have a negative view of Christianity, then please consider cutting and pasting these tweets or coming up with your own (which I would much prefer that you do but you haven’t).

The 60 Jesus Tweets

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He loves all children from when they’re conceived and doesn’t abandon them when they leave the womb.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He said blessed are the peacemakers, not blessed are the slanderers and truth-twisters.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He loves both #Obama and #Romney and wants each of them to speak the truth in love.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He even loves the Christians who have gotten sucked into a pornographic obsession with scandal.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He said “the poor will always be with you” (which means we should ALWAYS be with the poor).

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He died for all the Christians who misrepresent Him.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because His body will never be a red state or a blue state but always a purple state.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He calls us to pursue both social justice and personal holiness and not pit them against each other.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He told His disciples, “You give them something to eat, ” since justice is not a spectator sport.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He loved the rich lady who dumped perfume on His head and the poor lady who washed His feet with her tears.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He forgives the Christians who have lost their integrity to zeal for winning an argument.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He was never politically correct.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He did better than identity politics; He created a new race of people who bear each others’ crosses.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He healed a man after his friends tore a hole in His roof.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because His cross is the foundation of my culture of dependency.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because I was an illegal alien in His kingdom till His blood gave me amnesty.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He never asked for insurance before He healed.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because His exemplar for love was a heretic who stopped to help a wounded man.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He was a homeless man who was the guest of honor at the banquets of the megachurch Pharisees.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because His family values were to make all nations into one family.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He never tried to take Caesar’s throne; He ruled over Caesar from the cross.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He chose the foolish to shame the wise and the weak to shame the strong.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because we find Him in the company of the crucified and those who carry their crosses.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He dined with the people who crucified Him.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He stood up for sinners against their haters.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He told His Father to forgive His murderers.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because His love is stronger than all the hate that the Enemy uses to poison confused Christians.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He wants His people to stop fanning the flames of the outrage industrial complex.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He holds His people accountable for every lie that they spread.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He doesn’t write anybody off as irredeemably evil.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because I chill with Him every time I play spades with my homeless friends.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He died so that white Gentile people like me could join His brown Palestinian Jewish movement.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He praised entrepreneurs, dined with tax collectors, and whipped money-changers.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He has declared a ceasefire in the culture wars so we can return to sharing His love with the world.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He didn’t go around the West Bank; He went right into the middle and asked a Palestinian woman for a drink.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He never intended for His disciples to become a special interest group.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He almost got thrown off a cliff for saying that Elijah snubbed Israel for Gaza and Elisha went to Syria.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because His disciples included a zealot and a tax-collector, the 1st century equivalent of Occupy and Tea Party.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He was sassy.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He set me free from pretending that I’m self-reliant.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He interpreted scripture with an anti-establishment agenda.

#JesusIsMyCandidate even though His surrogates commit a thousand gaffes every day.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He called out the religious leaders who would rather shut others out of heaven than enter it themselves.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He destroyed the proof-texters and litmus-testers every time they tried to trap Him.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He’s the best defense attorney that has ever lived.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He’s the only judge that paid the price of His own judgment.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He’s not gonna let people into heaven who throw His name around but lack His mercy.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He replaced meritocracy with the economy of grace.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because everything I have ever used to earn anything was a gift He gave me.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because the more I learn to be grateful and generous, the more joy I receive from Him.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He has always opposed the proud, given grace to the humble, and fought for mercy and justice for all.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because in His body, the meek shall prevail.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because I’m a trust-fund kid in His grace economy.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He didn’t just preach good news to the middle class.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because His two most prominent references to hell had to do with economic injustice.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because when He said leave the world, He was talking about privilege, not public schools.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He will ram through the gates of our gated communities just like He tore the temple curtain.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He will help us rediscover the imagination we lost to the anxiety of consumption and performance.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He told us to store our treasures in heaven instead of building bigger barns for our earthly wealth.

#JesusIsMyCandidate because He will make His people rise to their vocation and render Caesar’s world irrelevant.

Morgan Guyton is the associate pastor of Burke United Methodist Church in Burke, Virginia, and a Christian who continues to seek God’s liberation from the prison of self-justification Jesus died to help him overcome. Morgan’s blog “Mercy Not Sacrifice” is located at . Follow Morgan on twitter at https://www.twitter.com/maguyton.

About The Author


Morgan Guyton is a United Methodist elder and campus minister who leads the NOLA Wesley Foundation at Tulane and Loyola in New Orleans, Louisiana with his wife Cheryl. He released his first book in April, 2016: How Jesus Saves the World From Us: 12 Antidotes To Toxic Christianity. He blogs at www.patheos.com/blogs/mercynotsacrifice and has contributed articles to the Huffington Post, Red Letter Christians, Think Christian, Ministry Matters, the United Methodist Reporter, and other publications. Morgan grew up in a moderate Baptist family in the aftermath of the fundamentalist takeover of the Southern Baptist Convention. His mother’s people are watermelon farmers from south Texas while his father’s people are doctors from Mississippi, which left Morgan with a mix of redneck and scientific sensibilities. Morgan’s greatest influence as a pastor was his grandpa, a Southern Baptist deacon who sometimes told dirty jokes to evangelize his grandson. From his grandpa, Morgan learned the value of irreverence as a pastoral tactic and the way that true holiness is authenticity. Morgan used to have a rock band called the Junior Varsity Superheroes, but after becoming a father, he turned to electronic dance music, which he performs every summer at the Wild Goose Festival in Hot Springs, North Carolina. In his spare time, he likes to throw basement dance parties with his sons Matthew and Isaiah.

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