Christians and Politics. What does Jesus say?

Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not of this world.  If My kingdom were of this world, my servants would fight, so that I should not be delivered to the Jews; but now My kingdom is not from here.” John 18:36

Christians?  Politics?  Really, do they go together?  Jesus said his servants work for a different kingdom than of this world.  The mixing of politics with religion has proven detrimental to the cause of Christ. 

Segments of the Christian community call us to be a voice in what the government does.  How does one reconcile Jesus’ teachings in Matthew 5, 6, & 7 with the political system of America today?  A recent United States president said, “The Sermon on the Mount is so radical that it’s doubtful that our Defense Department would survive its application.”  A person cannot enter politics without compromising the values that Jesus’ taught.

Many people of Jesus’ day missed His purpose of freeing from the bondage of sin and encouraged Him to be King of Israel.  “When Jesus therefore perceived that they would come and take Him by force, to make Him king, he departed again into a mountain himself alone” (John 6:15).  Jesus knew there could not be a godly society unless the members of society were first redeemed.

Satan tempted Jesus in Matthew 4:8-9 saying, “…All these things I will give you (earthly kingdoms and the glory of them) if you will fall down and worship me.”   At Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem people cried, “Hosanna!  Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord…” (John 12:13).  But Jesus was not on earth for a political solution or kingdom.

Jesus said, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand” (Matthew 4:17).  We are here to enhance the kingdom of heaven and have a changed heart.   Proverbs 14:34 says, “Righteousness exalteth a nation:…”  The civil government has a role to fill and the church has a role to fill.  Our allegiance to Jesus must be greater than our ties to any earthly country. 

Anger abounds in the non-Christian community when Christians push their values on everyone else by the laws they back.  The entanglement of Christians in politics complicates and confuses their Christian perspective and testimony as they take sides and enter the political conflict.  This impacts the presentation of the Gospel.  When a believer puts confidence in government to reform society, they overlook the fact that it is through the church that the enemy of God is fought.  Followers of Jesus cannot afford to join the rebellion and violence of the culture today and involve themselves in political action.

Believers do not attack the “hot button” topics but rather present the gospel message and promote heart change.  The church has a distinctive nature and function in the world unrelated to politics.  Our loyalty is to King Jesus and not to any earthly government.  We are not anti-government, but neither are we proud of government in such a way that we find security there.  Our Lord was not a political Messiah.  His kingdom that every true believer is a part of is the only kingdom that will endure.


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