Updated: Mar 26, 2021
"A Christian Essay On Politics verses The Gospel"
In this hyper season of political controversy and conflict, it is of paramount importance for Christians to view this subject in the light of God’s word and not popular passions or private opinions. Though Christians certainly have the liberty to take up a political cause, participate in a moral crusade or the liberty to vote or not to vote, it is a serious mistake for Christians to dogmatically claim that politics and moral agendas are an integral part of the gospel or God’s purpose in the earth. Those who strive to mobilize the church to do so are making a grievous mistake as well. Let’s underscore a few Scriptural perspectives about some of the erroneous, man‑made assumptions concerning the Church and politics: * 1. Christ did not come into the world with a political agenda. He is never referred to as the “Great Statesman”, the “Great Emancipator”, the “Great Civil Rights Activist”, the “Great Legislator”, or the “Great Political Reformer”. Christ did not come into the world to legislate morality, reform governmental systems, change unjust laws of the land, involve himself in the political affairs of this world, promote parties, candidates or social causes, or lobby for political agendas no matter how morally superior they may have been. Timothy states it simply and exclusively; "This is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners." - (I Timothy 1:15) Jesus personally announced the nature of His Messianic ministry, that it was Spiritual in nature when He stood at the opening of His public ministry and quoted from Isaiah 61:1‑4. Jesus Made it clear before Pilate That His Kingdom was not of this world. (John 18:36) A fundamental failure to recognize the Spiritual and redeeming mission of the church inevitably leads to all forms of corruption of the Gospel * 2. Jesus’ final charge and exhortation to the church is referred to as the “Great Commission” It is a call to save and disciple the souls of lost mankind. It IS NOT a call to politicize the Gospel. He did not say, “Go forth and change all the unjust laws of men, install new governments, vote this or that, reform unrighteous social practices or throw your support behind political agendas.” The mission Christ has given to the church is not to recruit legions of political activists, moral crusaders or social reformers. Neither was it to enlist an army of morality police to enforce morality or deputize a posse of moral detectives to investigate sinful activities. The churches mission has always been to “equip the saints for the work of the ministry, for the building up of the body of Christ”. (Eph. 4:12) * 3. Nowhere in the life of Christ or the letters of the Apostles do you find a single shred of evidence supporting the advocacy of political agendas or moral crusades even though injustice was rampant in the Roman empire at the time (governmental corruption, morally corrupt leaders, anti-Christian policies, temple prostitution, infanticide, patricide, slavery, rampant idolatry, sexual perversion and sadistic gladiatorial spectacles etc.) If it had been, we would expect to find some clear evidence where the Apostles exhorted the church to political activism, protests against slavery, the public denunciation of corrupt leaders, the boycott the gladiatorial atrocities, the picketing of slave markets, the support of anti-infanticide rallies, marches against Roman corruption or the backing of Christian candidates for the Roman Senate or other political offices.
* 4. Paul makes it absolutely clear in Romans 1:16 that the Gospel of Jesus Christ and NOTHING else saves men; “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Jesus Christ, for IT IS the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes.” He also affirms that it alone is the wellspring of any and all righteousness in the earth and affairs of men; “For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith.” (Romans 1:17). In the entire history of the world, there has never been a case where politics, political agendas, party platforms, political parties, governments, kingdoms, legislation, laws, worldly rulers, moral crusades, social causes or “political correctness” has saved a single soul. That’s because only the gospel is the “power of God to salvation for everyone who believes”. When you politicize the gospel, you corrupt the gospel. You’ll get a “secular gospel” and “another gospel” but no longer THE GOSPEL. When you add politics to the gospel you emasculate the gospel. · 5. As the old adage goes, “You cannot legislate morality”. Sure, you can change laws but changing laws never changes the heart. If overnight you changed all the laws in the world in favor of the right‑wing Christian agenda you would have succeeded in establishing a cosmetic, moral veneer over society without transforming a single heart or soul. If laws could have saved mankind, Christ wouldn’t have died on the cross. If the “Ten Commandments” could have transformed the world, The Jews would have succeeded long ago with their legalistic agenda. If legalizing Christianity was the answer, Emperor Constantine would have succeeded in turning the Roman Empire into a Christian utopia when he made it the official state religion. Instead, history proves that it only changed laws and not the hearts of the unregenerate who brought all their pagan corruption and practices into the church. The world is transformed, and history has proven, that real change and real righteousness comes one heart at a time through the Saving power of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and nothing else. * 6. When it comes to us as men and women of God in our spiritual warfare, we would do well to consider Paul=s exhortation to Timothy; “No one engaged in warfare ENTANGLES himself with the affairs of this life, that he may please him who enlisted him as a soldier,” ( Timothy 2:4) If His kingdom is not of this world and we are truly citizens of His kingdom then our allegiance and responsibilities should be directed to the purposes and priorities of His kingdom and not the kingdoms of this world or the affairs of this present world. What makes this subject so distracting is the fact that political causes often seem so morally right and wholesome. There are many causes in the world that Satan would love the church to get involved with if it pollutes, dilutes, undermines and distorts the purity of the “Great Commission.” If he can sidetrack or derail the primary mission of the church, he will use any and all means to do so. Why spend ourselves digging for fool’s gold when God has shown us the path to the Motherlode of the Kingdom message? Getting the church to squander its energy and resources on social causes and political issues is tantamount to a heart surgeon removing a hangnail when the patient is dying from congestive heart failure. If Satan can successfully bog the church down in anything other than the Gospel, He will. It boils down to a matter of personal conscience, but to insist that this should be the corporate conscience of the church and a part of the “Great Commission” entrusted to us is not only a grievous error, but it is also an argument that cannot be supported by either the example or teachings of
It’s time for God’s people to wake up! Its time to stand up and ask ourselves, “Where is the faith of our fathers?”, “Where is the sacrifice of the martyrs?” “What cross are we picking up to follow Him?” “What is the ‘good fight’ we’ve been called to fight?” “What is our Father’s business which we are to be about?” “Why do we waste time in the beggarly affairs of this life when we are called to a far more noble, everlasting and heavenly calling?”