What Is Christian Politics?
What is the true Kingdom perspective on politics? We see a lot of people become divisive, distracted, or even start idolizing politics. They get obsessed with politics instead of the Kingdom of God and what truly matters.
Politics is very important to God. Throughout the Bible, we see God’s people doing His will in the political realm. Just because there are divisions or people who do not operate the way God wants them to does not mean that we should neglect it as a whole. I want to offer you a Biblical perspective of how the believer is meant to engage in politics.
“Seek the welfare of the city where I have sent you into exile, and pray to the LORD on its behalf, for in its welfare you will find your welfare.”Jeremiah 29:7
“When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice; But when a wicked man rules, the people groan.”Proverbs 29:2
“Learn to do good; seek justice, rebuke the oppressor; defend the fatherless, plead for the widow.”Isaiah 1:17
Christian Political Misconceptions
There are several things which could be leading us away as the body of Christ from being effective for the Lord in the very important realm of politics.
1. “Politics Isn’t Important; Preaching The Gospel Is”
It is 100 percent true that preaching the Gospel is the most important thing you can do. However, if satan infiltrates the politics of a nations, he can make it very difficult for the Gospel to be preached in an area. Take North Korea for example. You can face 15 years in prison and be sent to a labor camp with your family for being caught singing a Christian hymn.Preaching the Gospel is inevitably political. Click To Tweet
The Lord wants the political structure of a place or nation to be conducive for the Gospel to be preached while satan wants it to be obstructive. Jesus spoke to His disciples about the political sphere.
“Look, I am sending you out as sheep among wolves. So be as shrewd as snakes and harmless as doves. But beware! For you will be handed over to the courts and will be flogged with whips in the synagogues. You will stand trial before governors and kings because you are My followers. But this will be your opportunity to tell the rulers and other unbelievers about Me.”Matthew 10:16-18
Here, Jesus Christ specifically prepared His disciples for political engagement while preaching the Word and their testimony of who Jesus Christ is, not from being obsessed with politics itself.
Thriving Amid Political Persecution
Apostle Paul was even told by an angel of the Lord that he was going to stand before Caesar, the most powerful person on earth and preach the Gospel to him. The persecution in ancient Rome as so bad that just to go to a lifegroup or Bible study, you were at risk of committing treason and being executed. The early Christians had to find ways to spread the Gospel in such a dark, demonic, and destructive culture.
One of the ways they did this was through the fish symbol. You may be familiar with this sign. Let me tell you how it worked. Fish in Greek is Ikthys, and it is spelled with 5 letters. It is an abbreviation for an encoded message of the Gospel. It stood for Jesus Christ Son of God Savior. This is how they were able to go undercover and operate succesfully, spreading the Word of God. Only a few hundred years later, the biggest empire on earth was converted to Christianity. They took over the biggest empire on earth because they were engaging, strategizing and courageous in the face of persecution.
Current Political Persecution
In modern times, we still see great persecution against Christianity in different countries and in different ways. Even in this house, the father of our founder was martyred for his faith. He was dragged to death by a horse for refusing to renounce his faith in Christ.
There is a fight that the Christian needs to have to hold strong to the faith. The Rock on which we stand is Christ Jesus. We must continue to stand strong in the face of persecution for preaching the Gospel and continue to spread it. Whether the persecution takes the form of planned pestilence to shut down the churches, use of force to make people take things against their will or judgment, whatever it might be, God’s people will fight for the Kingdom of God and the salvation of souls on this earth.
Jesus said go into all the world and preach the Gospel. That includes every government, nation, political structure, and whatever it might be.
2. We Are Citizens Of Heaven Not Of Earth
This is the second misconception. It maintains that politics are earthly and temporary, and the things of Heaven are really all that matter. We are citizens of Heaven as it says in Philippians 3:20 says but we can also have dual citizenship and be citizens of a nation here on earth. Apostle Paul used his earthly citizenship to escape torture and imprisonment in Acts 22:25. We too can have a valuable earthly citizenship and use that for the Gospel.
The United States constitution is one of the most unique documents on the earth because of the rights it bestows on its citizens.
“We hold these truths to be self-evident that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, among those are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. With a firm reliance on the protection of divine providence, we mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes, and our sacred honor.”Thomas Jefferson, USA Founding Father
The same Thomas Jefferson also said that, God who gave us life gave us liberty. Can the liberties of a nation be secure when we have removed a conviction that these liberties are a gift from God?” Our liberties rely on a belief in God.
What is happening in today’s society is people are coming against that very notion that there is a God who is holy, righteous, and just. If you do not believe that there is a God, how can you believe that there is an absolute morality? If you think evolution is the truth, then like Machiavelli said, you have the right to oppress the weak because genetically, you are stronger and the gene pool needs to increase. Then, all these dark ideologies like Eugenics and the Holocaust are trying to ‘cleanse’ the genetics to create a master race. These only become feasible when you do not see the inherent value of a human soul and the absolute morality that we are meant to live by as placed by God in His Word.
Separation Of Church And State
People are quick to jump on the bandwagon that you shouldn’t try to influence politics with your religion. There is a separation of church and state. It is not in the constitution. What is written is a letter from Thomas Jefferson to a Baptist Church in 1802. This letter mentions the idea that the state cannot dictate or demand a specific denomination that you have to pledge allegiance to. Prior to this, the Catholic Church was the mandatory denomination. The idea of the pilgrims that got on the Mayflower and sailed to form the United States was that this would be a nation where you could truly interpret the Word of God as you wished and worship God as you saw fit. The state with whatever military or political power was not to influence you in that area. We are meant to influence the government.
In The World Not Of It
Another aspect of this misconception is that while we are not of this world as Christians, we can still be in it for a reason. Jesus gave us our identity in Him but that does not eliminate the earthly part we have here in our bodies. Jesus even prayed to the Father not that He would take us out of the world but that He would keep us from the evil one (John 17:14).
When you have been born again of the Holy Spirit and are cleansed from your sin, you have an eternal dwelling place in Heaven with the Lord, and you are sealed for the day of redemption by the Holy Spirit but God still has a plan for you in this world. Although you have been translated from the kingdom of darkness to the kingdom of light, you still have a purpose in this world. Christians are to make this world more like Heaven. That was one of the only prayer points Jesus Christ taught His disciples to pray, (Matthew 6:10).God's people must fight for the will of God to be done on the earth. Click To Tweet
Christians are meant to bring the will of God – the very values, culture, and state of Heaven where there is no suffering, pain, or tears – into the earth. We are meant to bring forth that righteousness and holiness, healing to the sick, light to those in darkness.
We are called ambassadors of Christ in 2 Corinthians 5:20. An ambassador is a political term. We are meant to represent Heaven in this fallen world. We might not all usher in the totality of God’s will which will be in the second coming of Christ when He establishes the New Jerusalem. However, that does not mean that we are not meant to be doing things here on earth. We are meant to be zealous for good works. Jesus told us to be salt and light to this world. Salt preserves what is good from corruption and makes things better. Light brings life to the earth and exposes the works of darkness (Ephesians 5:11).
If you are a true Christian, you will automatically expose the works of darkness, including deception, lies, and fake news.
What we do in this lifetime is also extremely important because it also determines our rewards in Heaven. We are not meant to be passively waiting for the second coming of Christ; we are supposed to be activated and empowered by the Holy Spirit to do the works of God. We are in a warfare. Everything we do on earth is noted and there is a reward, (2 Corinthians 5:10).
“Command those who are rich in this present age not to be haughty, not to trust in uncertain riches but in the living God who gives us richly all things to enjoy. Let them do good that they may be rich in good works, ready to give, willing to share, storing up for themselves a good foundation for the time to come.”1 Timothy 6:17-19
The will of God wants to travel through you to impact and influence the world specifically around you.
“For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works.”Ephesians 2:10
Your Local Church Isn’t A Destination
Your attendance at your local church is symbolic. The church isn’t a destination; it is a gas station. It is a place you get fueled up with the Word and Spirit of God to go out into your world and reach people for the Kingdom of God. This is where you get equipped and strengthened as a good soldier of Christ.
4. “Jesus Wasn’t Involved In Politics, Nor Were His Disciples”
This misconception omits the reality that Jesus Christ Himself and many of His disciples were crucified by the political leaders of their day. Jesus was constantly at war with the political leaders and religious leaders of His day, often calling them hypocrites and sons of the devil. They constantly tried to trap Jesus Christ to kill Him during His earthly ministry. They were not on the side of God.
When we look at the men and women of God throughout history in the Bible, we see the same theme. John the Baptist was beheaded for exposing the evil deeds of Herod and Herodias. Beheading in the New Testament is associated with the honor of martyrdom and those who will be beheaded during the Great Tribulation are those who will reign with Christ for 1000 years, (Revelation 20).
Are you saying that the greatest man to ever live, according to Jesus, somehow was not meant to make the decision to expose the sin of the political leaders? The Bible would say otherwise.
Biblical Political Influencers
Queen Esther used her political position to avert a genocide.
Prophet Daniel was highly influential in the government of a wicked nation. You might think all politicians are corrupt, all nations are corrupt and you cannot do anything for God there. Daniel was in Babylon, an extremely wicked nation, but he was a very powerful leader in that nation for the force of good. Daniel communed daily with God even when there was an edict banning it. There was a Spirit of excellence on Daniel, not corruption, faults or crony capitalism even though he served as a high ranking politician in a very wicked nation under three different kings. So many of the Old Testament heroes and prophets, including Samuel, Nathan, Joseph, Jeremiah all influenced politics for the will of God. God uses His people in the political realm to change the culture and morality of the nations.
Slavery Ended Through Godly Politics
The achievement of William Wilberforce and others who abolished slavery in the United States are a clear testament that if you are placed in a certain area and you are devoted to the Lord, you don’t have to go into ministry. God wants to do something with you life where He has placed you and that can be in any area. Politics is a huge means by which God can accomplish His will. There might still be slavery in this world but nation by nation, the very principles and values of the Kingdom of Heaven are being translated here on earth by God’s obedient servants.
5. Christians Must Obey Every Form Of Government
Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. Consequently, whoever rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves. For rulers hold no terror for those who do right but those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and you will be commended. For the one in authority is God’s servant for your good but if you do wrong, be afraid, for rulers do not bear the sword for no reason. They are God’s servants, agents of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer.”Romans 13:1-4
Many people and Christians are confused by misinterpretations of this Scripture. This forms the final misconception I will address today. They take this to the extreme saying things like even Stalin and Hitler’s governments fall under this broad statement at the beginning of the passage. However, if you read the rest of the passage, you see clearly that we are not required Biblically to submit to such bodies. It says the one in authority is God’s servant for good. Therefore, the definition of the word authority here is God’s servant for good. They cannot be God’s servant and going against the very morals and virtues of God. God’s servant is aligned with God’s will.
The Damage Misconceptions Can Cause
Nazi Germany used the common misconception of this verse to compel people to submit to Hitler’s regime. There was a slow but menacing infiltration which forced pastors to include a rule called the Aryan paragraph in their doctrines which forbade Jews from occupying any position of authority in the church.
“Silence in the face of evil is evil itself. God will not hold us guiltless. Not to speak is to speak. Not to act is to act.”
“We are not simply to bandage the wounds of victims beneath the wheels of injustice, we are to drive a spoke into the wheel itself.”Deitrick Bonnhoffer
The Bible echoes this statement in the instructional exhortation in Proverbs 31: “Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. Speak up and judge fairly; defent the rights of the poor and needy.” The reality is that Christians are meant to obey godly governments but not to submit to demonic, wicked ones. We should submit to governments in line with God’s Word and righteousness. That is the true interpretation of the Word of God in that scripture.
Apostle Paul was sent to prison by the law of the land for doing the will of God and an angel of the Lord supernaturally broke him out of jail. Rahab illegally hid the two spies and misled the king but God granted her mercy and even rewarded her and her family. Moses led an uprising against the nation of Egypt and built an entirely new political system and government straight from God. Elijah contended with King Ahab and Queen Jezebel constantly at the risk of his own life. Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego refused to obey the king of Babylon’s order to bow to his idol. What I want to show with these examples in the Bible is that throughout history, people disobeyed evil, demonic, unrighteous, unjust authority and governments.
We need to remember that our identity in Christ supersedes our national identity. Our Heavenly citizenship is more important than our earthly one. Abiding in the Word is more important that abiding in the news. Our spiritual family is more important than our political party. We are children of God and even if you think some might be deceived in some areas, we have to love them.
“For though Him we both have access by one Spirit to the Father. Now, therefore, you are no longer strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God.Ephesians 2:18-19
“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”John 3:16
No administration, president or person is going to save us apart from Jesus Christ. He is the only One and the only name in whom is salvation. He is alive, active and He is the way today!
Watch The Full Sermon Here:
- Vladimir Savchuk
- Vasiliy Parkhotyuk
- Ilya Parkhotyuk
- Martin Parkhotyuk
- Glenn Fink
- Mariana Parkhotyuk
- Brittany Hartikainen
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