Minister runs for House as Democrat

‘Faith without works is dead,’ pro-choice, pro-trans pastor says

Rev. Devon Thomas

By Rev. Devon Thomas

I am a small-town minister with a family of four serving three churches. There is a lot going on in my life but this year I chose to throw my hat in the race for my local State Representative position. 

I did this because I feel our nation’s democracy is in need of a new generation of participation, and if we wish to see America stand as our world’s best example of democracy in action, we need to recognize that democracy thrives on the work we put into it. Running for office may not be a calling for each and every one of us, but as we approach these midterm elections, I would urge all of my Vermont neighbors to register and get out to vote.

Despite its difficulties and divisions, I take pride in being a citizen of this country. We are part of a 246-year-old experiment to build a nation that operates under the principles of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness for all people. I feel that recently these promises of freedom have become increasingly out of reach for everyday folks. I have struggled as a minister to help folks in the communities I serve to deal with issues ranging from housing affordability to auto repairs and even buying groceries. It is hard to ask people to take the time to vote when they are struggling to find a place to sleep, or to get formula to feed their baby. It is understandable that voting may not be the first thing we think about when we start our days, but in these hard times I think voting is one of the few things we have left to make things better.

James, the brother of Jesus, had something to say about this sort of thing. “If you tell a neighbor ‘Go in peace; keep warm and eat your fill,’ yet you do not supply for that person’s bodily needs, what is the good of that?  Faith by itself, if it has no works, is dead.” (2:16). 

I apply this to our faith in the American dream. We are living in a time when we often tell our neighbors to go out and live the Dream, but what are we doing to help them do that? What are we doing to give our neighbors food and sustenance in a time when everyday folks are struggling to buy and afford a home where they live, or are working several jobs just to live paycheck to paycheck? Are we going to tell a single mother that she is not working hard enough when she struggles to raise her child and get an education? Is that struggle a lack of effort and hard work on her part, or rather our inability as a community to contribute to the American dream?

Many of us have faith in this country but fail to take time to help our neighbors with their struggles by not allowing workers to have fair representation, or taking away a woman’s reproductive rights; by telling parents they can’t give their children gender affirming care, or telling teachers they cannot teach fair and factual history. 

We are seeing a growing movement in our country of people who have faith in our nation but have forgotten that the promise of America cannot live by faith alone. We need to be willing to put some work into it. This faith-alone outlook is starving our nation of justice, and for this reason I am asking folks to vote in these coming midterm elections to make a difference.

We live in a nation where our voices still live in our vote. Getting out to vote may be difficult but the direction our country goes from here will represent those who are willing to work the most for it. I personally chose to run for office in my community because I believe faith without works is dead, and this is what I can do to contribute to a nation that works for us all.

Rev. Devon Thomas is running as a Democrat for State Representative in Franklin-1 Georgia and Fairfax. He and fellow Democrat Alan Maynard will face Republicans Ashley Bartley and Carolyn Whitney Branagan in a two-seat race in which none of the candidates are incumbents. He is also a minister serving the United Church of Bakersfield and Fairfield, The Second Congregational Church in Hyde Park and the Second Congregational Church in Jeffersonville.

Categories: Commentary

10 replies »

  1. Just where was this pastor trained? He doesn’t know his Bible and “Faith without works” means that you do what GOD SHOWS YOU to do. The ‘works’ is doing what God shows you, not what you might THINK is good.

  2. I wish Rev. Thomas was running for office in my town. I am tired of folks, including family members and friends, who claim to be Christians, yet openly profess political positions which totally lack empathy for those in need.

  3. Dear Rev. Devon Thomas, It might be time to lead your flock to listen to the likes of Dave Ramsey
    I have worked my buns off for years and I am still working. Instead of complaining I just work harder or smarter to find solutions. Life is filled with choices. It is important that people know that their choices are what lead them to certain outcomes. If you are going to GIVE anything away, give out the smarts, the tools, the education to make the choices that will best uplift lives.
    I would not vote for you. You seem really confused in your role and you will be even more confused in a legislative position. Legislators need to be small business owners so that this runaway VT legislature reduces spending and represents the working people of the state.

  4. We have to admire the Rev. Thomas. It is encouraging to see such Christian sensitivity to the plight of others. Like Bernie Sanders, he is tuned into the difficulties folks face and he wants to help. He has the vision that, what we don’t need ought to go to helping others. We are called upon to elevate this insight so it’s a moral imperative in our lives. We have a plethora of Saints in our heritage who have been animated by this revelation. We ought to be helping others. Yes…agreed. HOWEVER —- he, like Bernie, appears to be using a template which is exasperated with the personal results of this. Their perspective is to off-load the burden onto the community at large as a mandate…a requirement. Their template calls for taking resources from others and making laws to force us to take care of our neighbors. That is, we’ll be REQUIRING people to love/care for each other. How does that sound to you? Is it still loving/caring if it’s required? Have you ever tried to force your spouse to “love” you is some specific way? Doesn’t the “IMPARATIVE” mode contaminate the act? Doesn’t passing it along to others give you pause? Your loving/caring arises from your character. Is it a self-serving delusion to make it a government mandate?

  5. Yes, people need to get involved. It’s not up to everyone or someone else. Look into the mirror, stand up, speak up, show up. Vote for candidates that will serve the interests of ordinary Vermonters by defunding the Global Warming Solutions Act.

  6. Yes Michael. Defunding that burdensome, costly GWSA (aka, carbon tax) is one of my top priorities when I get voted into the Statehouse. VT is not ready for electric everything with penalties of all kinds for not being compliant. I believe in taking great care with our environment but let’s go more slowly until technology catches up when we don’t have to empty people’s hard-earned dollars.

  7. However, regarding “gender affirming care”. Simply labeling children without a thorough assessment of what is actually occurring in their minds is not proper “care”. It is abuse and exploitation.
    As a victim of behavioral health abuse in childhood, and a victim of horrible familial dysfunction, I’m well aware of the arbitrary nature of any labeling as ofeten arbitrary if not downright false.

  8. Many in the ministry are declaring there are men and women of the church who are changing or omitting the word of God to suit man’s directives (i.e. the goverment, playing politics) The time has come that God will be removing them if they do not repent and change their ways. He will destroy many for their deeds against his Word. The wolves in sheep’s clothing will be exposed.

  9. This “minister” is not a minister of the gospel of the Judeo-Christian Bible. He is a minister of a gospel, all right, but NOT the Gospel of the Bible. This is the social gospel of a man-made worldview and philosophy. No true Christian religion teaches these positions. Those are his own man-made worldviews. Since Jesus came to earth in Mary’s womb as a human fetus, both fully human and fully divine, this pastor has decided it is okay to support the killing of the very symbol Jesus used to come to us, while at the same time quoting the words of Jesus?? Wow. He is seriously off-track. He needs to repent and ask Jesus for forgiveness. This is nothing but a secular social “gospel”. These are NOT the works Jesus spoke of (supporting the killing of unborn babies that God created), for example. Jesus said to love your neighbor as yourself. The unloved and unwanted are our neighbors. This “minister” has written off the unborn as one of our neighbors. He is a false teacher who is using his ministerial position to bolster a run for political office. Not okay if he is false to the teaching of the religion he claims to follow. And the Bible does say that “God created them male and female.” It says NOTHING about trans humans. That is a man-made choice. God does not make mistakes. He DID NOT deliberately create a man’s body and put a woman’s mind into it. God is not confused. This sad example of a minister is. Am I too harsh on him? No. He himself is claiming to be a Christian minister and calling on Jesus for validation. He is leading his flock down the devil’s path. He needs to repent. This is NOT the Christian gospel. If he wants to run as a Democrat who supports abortion rights and trans agenda, then for God’s own sake don’t use a Christian ministerial position as a shield. God created those babies. Rev. Thomas is okay with destroying them. As a minister who appeals to the words of God, he is mocking the God he appeals to. I am appalled. I will pray for him that he repents.

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