Preaching against sin is not some sort of optional aspect of the gospel ministry. Nor is it proper to draw the dichotomy that Stellman draws, when he writes:
Just admit it: the fact that you’re angry with me right now and want to engage me in political debate in the combox only proves how much you benefit from a two-kingdoms ministry each Sunday, one that refuses to oppress and wound your consciences and insists rather on preaching sermons to you about Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection on the third day. I mean, if things get a bit out of hand on this blog after a post such as this, imagine how violent things would become after church if our ministers pulled stunts like this from the pulpit?Yeah, yeah - we know. People don't like being told that they are in sin, or that their nation is dishonoring God by having unjust laws or unjust policies. They might even leave the church, if the pastor preaches against the horrors of abortion or against injustices in war.
But that's one of the duties of the gospel minister. Preaching sermons about Jesus' life, death, and resurrection on the third day are great, and there is nothing wrong with them, but ... ministers must preach the whole counsel and that includes convicting sinners of their sins. Mr. Stellman may not like doing it, it may not fit nicely in his radical version of two kingdoms theology ("radical" as opposed to the classical version of Calvin, Knox, Turretin, and John the Baptist, who had no problem speaking out against the sins of their contemporary political regime). Nevertheless, if Mr. Stellman is to be faithful to God's word, he must address sins from the pulpit.
But the Radical Two-Kingdoms (R2K) notions that Stellman is promoting are not just anti-Biblical, in that they suggest that ministers may not properly preach against the sins of the nation, they are worthless as can be seen from this:
Since my goal is not to engage specifically the Baylies' main point, I will say this: abortion is a horrific evil, and though I have no idea what should be done about it from a political standpoint, I see it as a sin for which those who participate in it will be held accountable if they do not repent. (In fact, I know of no 2K proponent who would take any other position than this, which makes it kind of weird that I feel the need to say it.)Even if someone were to say that we should just throw away the Old Testament and ignore the sentence of God against those who take human lives unjustly (Genesis 9:6 Whoso sheddeth man's blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made he man.), still one would think that R2K would be able to use the light of nature to get some idea of how to handle such matters. If, however, upon throwing away Scripture, the R2K proponent has "no idea what should be done" by the civil magistrate about such a heinous sin as infanticide, what earthy good is R2K?
Perhaps Stellman will not listen to me (and why should he - I'm just some pseudonymous guy), but perhaps he'll consider listening to Paul's inspired counsel to Timothy:
2 Timothy 4:1-2
I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom; preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.