I find lists that seek to synthesize large periods of time (such as end-of-year lists) helpful in providing a birds-eye view of cultural development. While it could be said that lists such as this have more in common with the particular author’s viewpoint or bias, I would venture to affirm that a magazine such as Christianity Today holds a larger degree of impartiality.
The reason that I am citing this particular end-of-year list is that the majority of the top issues directly related to an exercise of authority. Only #2 and #6 move away from this distinction. This should come as no surprise to anyone. The issue of what gives a person or a group of peaople the right to act in certain ways and affirm certain beliefs always boils down to the category of authority. We should be on guard, and teach our families to be on guard, when groups of religious people or religious institutions begin to minimize the authority of God’s Word, the Bible. We should also we wary of people or groups of people that pander after absolute solutions that are divorced from Biblical truth. Why? If we disconnect a remedy for living from a sure foundation, an authority such as God’s Word, we will simply be replacing one fickle view with another. I believe this is exactly why Christians should place no confidence in the hope that reforming our political system would lead to ensuring God’s blessing. There are no Christian nations only Christian people. We put our hope in Jesus and are responsible as American citizens to vote, act, and encourage an ethic that finds its roots in the Gospel of Jesus Christ.