A Comparative Analysis of Latin American Liberation Theology and Lutheran Two Kingdom Doctrine
Liberation Theology, to its credit, posits an unwavering commitment to the suffering of Latin American peoples. Liberationists, many of whom are from impoverished areas in Latin America, take the conditions of the poor as their foremost concern. Their entire theology revolves around God's love of the oppressed, and they find in Scripture an overarching political theme of justice and liberation. It follows then, that there can be no evaluation of Liberation Theology without an understanding of the struggles of the Latin America people. One should attempt to sympathize with their struggles, to even be open to addressing the tension between the West's enormous wealth and its lack of solidarity with the poor. However, an honest examination must also reveal the limits of what Liberation Theology has to offer as a means of liberation and, more importantly, salvation to the poor. A thorough comparison of this theology to Lutheran, Two Kingdom theology will reveal its weaknesses on both counts. Because Liberation Theology is so clearly identified with the cause of the oppressed and the fight for their liberation, a Two Kingdom analysis must also pay particular attention to the poor. This paper then seeks to show the unfortunate reality that Liberation Theology does not truly liberate, and that a Two Kingdom approach not only addresses the eternal concerns of every human being completely, but also the temporal concerns of Latin American peoples more effectively.