Engage in Public Policy

More Than Politics

We know the hot-button political issues—abortion, same-sex marriage, immigration, healthcare—but how often do we talk about them with our family, friends, or neighbors? What if we engaged in healthy and gracious debate instead of distancing ourselves from culture? In this 10-minute video from The Gospel Coalition Women’s Conference, Mark Mellinger sits down with Jennifer Marshall to to talk about Christian engagement in public policy. 

Jennifer Marshall is one of the vice presidents at the Heritage Foundation where she runs and oversees research for the Institute for Family, Community, and Opportunity. She is nationally recognized for her work on social choice and education reforms. Jennifer is also the author of Now and Not Yet: Making Sense of Single Life in the Twenty-First Century. 

How would you describe your public policy engagement? What motivates you to be informed and engaged, or what keeps you on the sidelines? Why?
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Jennifer attributes the last 30 year's progress against abortion to growing support for mothers and babies,  as well as Christians who have creatively engaged people more relationally and with common values. 

Jennifer advocated for a gentle and thoughtful approach to others—rather attacking with the Bible. When have you known Christians to bully with the Bible, or use it as their only argument in public policy discourse? How do nonbelievers typically respond?
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What are some values all humans share? How do you know? Instead of blanket biblical statements, why might it be more effective to argue with common human values and experiences?
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Jennifer encouraged us to learn how to articulate what marriage is and how it influences society. How would you define marriage? How would you describe its societal influence? What might be some consequences of the 2015 Supreme Court decision?
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What are some areas of public policy that you would like to learn more about, or research in the Bible? Who or what resources could help you develop a "biblical social framework"?
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Jennifer said that any questions about human life, marriage, sexual identity, and religious liberty are not political issues. She said they are human issues that “strike deeply at the heart of what we believe.” May we engage in debate and seek public policy that reflects kingdom ethics.

To learn more about The Gospel Coalition, click here