This is an article originally posted by Ken Eckerty that served as an inspiration for my posting about Christianity and Politics
God is not a Republican
By Ken Eckerty
For most of you who are reading this article, the title “God is not a Republican” will bring a response like, “No duh!” In fact, this is the very response I received when recently posting an excerpt of this article in the religious section of a political bulletin board. “Of course, God is not a Republican,” they said. However, I contend (and will show in this article) that according to the way most Christians in America live (both in word and deed), we very much support the Republican party, and in fact, chide other Christians who either choose not to vote or vote instead for a Democrat.
I’ve been a Christian for almost 25 years and for 21 of those years I was a registered Republican. I don’t know what the statistics are, but I would venture to say that the majority of evangelical Christians are also either registered Republicans or vote primarily with the Conservative Right. This is not to say that there aren’t “Christian Democrats,” and there are many who would say that they are neither Republican nor Democratic, but simply vote for the best candidate. However, what is the heart of God concerning a Christian’s role in politics? Almost every pulpit in America preaches political involvement. While most do not promote a specific candidate (lest they lose their church’s tax exempt status), most pastors will tell us that it is not only a privilege and a right to vote, but it also our Christian responsibility, and therefore (they tell us), we should be actively involved in the politics of our community and nation lest we be guilty of not doing the will of God. I do not deny that it is a right, privilege, and a responsibility of an American citizen to involve himself politically, however, does God really expect the Christian to be involved in effecting change through means of the political process? As believers, are we to consider ourselves American citizens? Church leadership will say that Christians are American citizens too, and therefore, it is their “God-given” right to vote. While I would agree that the American Constitution gives this right to all Americans, I disagree that it is “God-given.”
For those familiar with my writings, you know that I put a great emphasis on the calling of an overcomer. I’m not talking about those who are called “saints,” but rather, those who are chosen as “the elect.” The Bible makes a clear distinction between those who are content in their calling (kletos) and those who are pressing toward the high calling of Jesus Christ (ekkletos). I will not take the time in this article to explain the difference, but you can read more about this in my article titled “Press on to Maturity” which can be found at: http://www.savior-of-all.com/presson.html. Every believer should strive to be an overcomer, however, the sad truth is that most Christians will die in a state of unbelief never having overcome the world, the flesh, or the devil. They have enough faith to believe that Jesus died for their sins and not much more. They are not only trapped in the religious system, but see it as God’s best. They involve themselves in all the activities and programs advocated by the religious system including heavy political involvement which includes voting, supporting candidates, writing local congressman and senators, boycotting companies, and marching in anti-abortion rallies. While these things may be considered noble and may even bring about some change, my contention is that this is not how God wants the overcomer to spend his or her time.
The Kingdom Within
The kingdom of God cometh not with observation: neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for behold, the Kingdom of God is within you. (Luke 17:20b-21)
Those who spend their time trying to change their nation through external means simply do not understand what Jesus is saying in Luke 17. It is clear throughout the New Testament that real change can only come about through the changing of the heart. True and lasting change always starts from within and then spreads outward, not the other way around. Jesus condemned the Pharisees by calling them “white-washed tombs full of dead men’s bones.” (Mt. 23:25-27) Cleaning up the nation through external means (voting, legislation, etc.) is like taking a scrub brush to the outside of a coffee cup but leaving the inside filthy and to rot.
Nowhere in the New Testament is there any exhortation or commandment to change the government through external means. The only exhortations we find are to obey those in authority (Rom. 13:1-2), and to pray for them in these positions (1 Tim. 2:1-2). Paul exhorts us not to entangle ourselves in the affairs of this life. (2 Tim. 2:4) Men concern themselves with laws and rights; however, this idea should be totally foreign to those who are pursuing the high calling of Christ. Nowhere does Jesus encourage political involvement. Nowhere!! Instead He commands us to preach the gospel to all creatures. What kind of gospel is He talking about? A social gospel? A gospel of political legislation? No! He is talking about the power of the Cross and Resurrection of the Christ. This is the power that will change men’s hearts, and then in turn, change the way they live. Legislation, no matter how good and right, is only temporary. What the Republican Party does today will be reversed with the next election. The 104th Congress will be contradicted by the 105th Congress, etc. Certainly God has a purpose for authority and uses government to keep evil men in check and to execute His justice (Rom. 13), however, this will never change men—only the gospel of our Lord can do this.
The best thing the Church can do to effect change in America is to live as if we really believed that Jesus Christ is Lord. Romans 6:4 tells us that we are “raised to walk in newness of life.” Newness of life means walking in the power of the resurrection wrought through the work of the cross in our life. This work slays any desire to do things man’s way, and instead, seeks to proclaim the gospel of the kingdom WITHIN. It does not include protesting or boycotting. It does not include voting or political demonstrations. These are the methods of men, not God, and they are a cheap substitute for the true gospel.
A common phrase I hear from Christians in relation to politics is it is “my right” to have security, or it is “my right” to have low cost health care, or it is “my right” to have lower taxes, or it is “my right” to have religious freedom, etc. etc. It is not our right at all! As Christians, we have no rights. The apostle Paul uses different words as it relates to the so-called “freedom” of the Christian. In 1 Cor. 4:1, Paul uses the Greek word “huperetes” to describe our calling. This word was used to describe a 2nd or 3rd level galley slave who had no rights. If you’ve ever seen the movie Ben Hur you will understand that a lower level rower was treated as worthless and had absolutely no rights whatsoever. In Eph. 3:7, Paul uses the word “diakonos” which means a lowly table waiter. A waiter is at the beckon command of those to whom he serves. In Rom. 1:1, Paul calls himself a “doulos” of Jesus Christ. This was one who was in the total service of another. This same idea is spoken of in Exodus 21 when a servant had his ear pierced in order to forever bind himself to his master. As Christians, we are totally at the command of our Master, the Lord Jesus Christ. The days of us having personal rights are gone forever.
As a result of this “I’ve got rights” mentality, we get offended when profanity and nudity make it onto our television screen. We cry out that it is our right to have “family friendly television” and so we boycott those companies that support the things we find distasteful. There are even Christian organizations whose main purpose is to review Hollywood movies and encourage mass boycotting of the companies that sponsor them. First off, why do we get so offended when wicked men produce wicked fruit? How else do we expect unredeemed men to act? Secondly, do we somehow think that boycotting is going to change the hearts of those men whose only desire is to fill their pockets with the money they make from these ungodly things? If we are that concerned about having that type of material in our home, why not just get rid of the television? Certainly if there are enough people who complain, things might improve for a short while. But how long will these changes last? Will they last only as long as it takes those Christians who complained in the first place to slip back into complacency, or until these men no longer care what Christians think? Don’t get me wrong—I do believe that God wants us to be good stewards with our money, however, I don’t believe we are to spend our time organizing Christians in some massive protest in order to change Hollywood or the companies that support them. This type of methodology simply does not work in bringing about long-term change.
When so-called “religious rights” are taken away from us, we are shocked to think that this could happen in America. Fueled by such radio programs as “Focus on the Family,” we write our Congressman and Senators and cry that our rights have been violated. Dear Christian, we have no rights! Oh, you may say that we have rights as American citizens, but beloved, we must make a choice. Jesus said that “no man can serve both God and money,” and while I am not talking about money here (though, perhaps I am, since American materialism has stolen the hearts of many Christians), we cannot serve both God and America. Either we are strangers in this world or we are not. Either our citizenship is in heaven or it is here in America. (Heb. 11:13, 16; 1 Pet. 2:11) We are not Americans first, then Christians second. We are not even Christians first, and Americans second. We are Christians, period! The “red, white, and blue” is not our home. America is not our provider and we should not expect the government to grant us rights—that privilege belongs to God alone. If we are blessed, let us thank God. If we are in a period of tribulation, let us seek God and submit to the chastening work He has brought our way. When disaster struck Job, he understood who was the Source of all things. He responded by saying, “The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away. Blessed be the name of the Lord.” (Job 1:21) If God blesses us through America, then let us praise Him. However, if He chooses to discipline us through America (by taking away personal freedoms), let us not cry “foul” but instead, look to God for the explanation as to why these freedoms and privileges have been taken away.
God is not a Republican
In the fall of 2000, I was a campaign worker for the George W. Bush campaign. At that particular time in my life, my heart was far from the Lord and I needed something to fill the void. I can remember making phone calls and telling people that Governor Bush was the answer to America’s problems. I told them that Bush would restore integrity back to the White House and would work hard to lower our taxes and restore confidence back to our military. Four years later, I realized that my so-called “noble” desire for lower taxes, less government, and a more powerful military was nothing more than my own selfish desire to pad my own pocket, keep the government out of my business, and help me feel safe each and every day. In other words, my goal was to satisfy my own flesh, and I trusted more in the provision of the government than my own God. I, like many other Christians, had fallen for the lie that Christianity and Republicanism (or Conservatism if you like) were compatible—and even ideologically equal. However, nothing could be further from the truth. We have been deceived into thinking that God is going to somehow use the Republican party to bring in His Kingdom. Is it really God’s policy for the Christian to support the lowering of taxes so “Americans can keep their own money?” Does God really want Christians to pursue the idea that we should have lesser government in order to “give more power to the people?” Is it God’s purpose for the Church to be in support of a stronger military and promote the spending of millions of dollars on weapons programs when there are people all over the world who are homeless and starving? Are these the things we should be concerning ourselves with? Are these Christian principles? Well, they certainly are the principles of the Republican Party, but I see nowhere in scripture where God wants us to pursue these things. God wants us to pursue those things that are “lovely, pure, and of good report.” (Phil. 4:8) He wants us to be consumed with living the gospel of Christ, not the external reformation of a culture.
You might argue that by supporting George Bush, we are supporting a pro-life and anti-gay rights agenda, and by doing so, we are making our children’s lives better. I cannot argue that there are some good things that President Bush has done. My argument has never been that there are not good men in politics who are trying to do some very good things. My point is, however, that for the most part, these men are unbelievers who are involving themselves in an earthly system seeking to change things in order to make men’s lives better. (It must be noted, of course, that more often than not, politicians care nothing for others and simply want to pursue their own desire for power and riches.) Additionally, who is it that we trust more to bless us, Bush or Christ? Is Bush the answer to the world’s problems? Is the Republican or Democratic Party the “savior of the world?”
Another point to consider is whether George W. Bush deserves the support of a Christian despite the fact that he has, through the use of the strong arm of the military, killed thousands of innocent men, women, and children in Iraq. In other words, can we honestly support someone who has done good things, but also done evil things as well? (I am not speaking of Bush’s motives, but his the result of his decisions). Those of you who support the war in Iraq (or the military action in Afghanistan) will no doubt remind me that Bush was only defending America from an enemy, and that Saddam Hussein was an evil man who needed to be removed. I, like most Christians, believe it is probable that God is using America to judge the nation of Iraq for the sins of the evil Hussein regime. This is why I am not out protesting the war or speaking out against George Bush. He is the man that God has chosen for this time in history. However, this still does not negate the fact that thousands of innocent people have died at the hands of George Bush, and because of this, I cannot support a man who has been so destructive (regardless of the fact that this indeed may have been God’s judgment against Iraq).
Let me ask you a question. Do you think George Bush’s reaction to the 9/11 incident was the way a Christian should respond to an enemy? When another person commits a sin against us, should we be quick to point at and judge them or should we instead look to ourselves and see where we might be falling short? Doesn’t the Bible tell us to “consider ourselves lest we fall?” Doesn’t it also say that “before we look at the speck in our brother’s eye, we should first look at the log in our own?” So instead of calling for a time of reflection and repentance for America’s own sins, Bush instead lashed out against his enemies and vowed to take vengeance against those who viciously attacked us. Instead of looking inwardly at why this may have been allowed to happen, Bush chose, instead, to praise America’s virtues and vow retaliation against the enemy.
As Christians, should we not seek to turn the other cheek, forgive our enemy, and repent of our own sins? Why should a nation be exempt from this? You may interject here and point out that God has a different purpose for the nations than He does for individuals, and that what is unacceptable behavior for individual Christians is perfectly within the plan of God for the nations of the world. I won’t deny that there is some truth to this, however, it is for this very reason that I believe it is impossible for a Christian who is called to love and forgive his enemies to involve himself in the affairs of a government that does the exact opposite of a Christian’s calling. It doesn’t matter whether God is using the evil actions of a nation to execute His justice—believers are to promote love and forgiveness—and they should leave the judgment to God. If He uses America to do this, then so be it. However, let God be responsible for the judgment; let us be responsible to walk in the humility of Christ. George Bush has done things that an individual Christian should never condone in their own life, and therefore, our attitude and response should NOT be to support George Bush (or any other candidate), but to submit to and pray for our leaders (as commanded in God’s Word). Our concern should be with the affairs of the kingdom of God rather than the affairs of men. Let the nations take care of carnal affairs, and Christians take care of spiritual ones.
I’ve often heard it said that if we don’t vote for a “good” man, even though he may have some “bad” policies, we are only allowing a more evil man to come into power. In fact, I was told that very thing this past election. Supposedly, my non-vote was going to help elect Senator John Kerry (as if God somehow had no say-so over who He had already chosen as America’s next president). Why should I compromise my convictions in order to vote for someone who has done things that Christians should be against? Why should I vote for someone who has a priority to be successful in politics or to make a name for himself? Do you really think that it is good to vote for a man who is the “lesser of two evils?” Does God want us to compromise our principles in order to elect a man who is good or “mostly” moral? Didn’t Jesus say, “there was only one good, and that was God?” Do you really think it is possible that there could ever be a man in a position of governmental authority who would be allowed to uncompromisingly preach and live the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ? I’m sure there are many Christians who would love to see this, unfortunately, the political climate just doesn’t allow for such a thing. It is true that President Bush has spoken of His faith in Christ; however, it has usually been done either privately or at a predominantly Christian event (such as Christian Coalition rallies or the National Day of Prayer Breakfast). In a speech of national importance, though, where all Americans have interest, have you ever heard George Bush speak of either repentance or putting our faith in the Lord Jesus Christ? No—and you will not hear him do so because he does not want to offend Muslims and peoples of other religious faiths. With a country as large and diverse as America, you can’t preach Jesus Christ without offending many, many people. To my knowledge, President Bush has never asked the nation to pray and weep for the sin of abortion and pornography in this nation. Perhaps he has done so privately, but he has never done so publicly. Do you really think someone who has political aspirations would ever speak in such a way? Of course not—if he did, he would never get elected! Additionally, President Bush has promoted the re-election campaign of men who support abortion rights? Do you think it’s OK to be against abortion yet support men who believe it’s acceptable to kill an unborn baby? Why does President Bush do this? Very simple—he is promoting his political party. Make no bones about it, President Bush is a Republican. He may be a moral man, and he may indeed be a Christian, but he is also a politician who wants to be re-elected and see his party maintain control of Congress. Again, you may say that it is not a president’s job to preach the gospel or cry out against the nation’s sin, and you are right. This is but another reason why Christians should not be involved in the support of political candidates. Let the president take care of presidential affairs, and let the Christian take care of Christian affairs.
My point is this: If a man is going to compromise his convictions (no matter how small) in order to please men or to aspire to a position of power, is he worthy to be supported? Please do not misunderstand me. I am not against George W. Bush. I am sure he is a fine, upstanding, and sincere man. However, let me be equally clear that I am neither for him. I am for Christ! God wants us to follow Him, not men. All of us fall short, and we should only look to Christ for our hope and salvation. God wants us to trust Him, not the American government. Let God be responsible for choosing who should the lead the nations of the world, and let us choose rather to pursue the good things of the kingdom within. There will always be “good” men who will pursue the things of the kingdom without. There will always be those men (Christians and non-Christians alike) who will seek to make change through the political process. Let the world (including political Christianity) take care of the affairs of the world, and let the overcomer take care of the affairs of God. George Bush will be held accountable for the things that he has done as president, as will all those who are in positions of authority. Ours is not to support or be against “God’s anointed,” but to obey those God has raised up in these high positions, and to do the will of the Father by ministering to the orphans and the widows.
Finally, I must add that God is not a Democrat either. He is neither a Libertarian, a Constitutionalist, nor a member of the Green Party. No, God is not pleased with the fact that millions of innocent children have been murdered by those who seek convenience in their life. But instead of taking up arms side by side with unbelievers who are against abortion—trying to change the laws of the land—let us instead concern ourselves with the ministry of reconciliation that we have been called unto. (2 Cor. 5: 18-20) Instead of being political, let us spend our time sharing the truth of God’s love with those who are lost and hurting—for this is our true calling in Christ.
God is not an American
Not only is God not a member of a political party, He is also not an American. “God is no respecter of persons,” and yet while we are bombing and killing Iraqi citizens, Christians have no problem promoting the slogan “God bless America” while hanging American flags from their houses and cars, and at the same time telling others that we must “pray for our troops.” What about God blessing Iraq? Has God forgotten them? What about praying for the poor in this world? What about weeping for the sins of America? Is God concerned that Iraqi men (women and children) are dying or is it only “our troops” that concern Him?
God loves Americans, but He also loves Iraqis, Palestinians, Russians, and Chinese. I am aware that most Christians understand this, however, I’m not sure we are living this principle. We are too comfortable here in America. Yes, we should pray that God blesses America, but instead of praying that He would bless her by winning a war, perhaps we should pray that He grants her eyes to see her own sin and gives her the gift of repentance. (Acts 3:26) We should also pray that He brings life through the gospel of Christ to those poor Iraqi’s (and the other nations of the world) who are suffering hardship created by the governments of the world (including the United States).
We must stop this promotion of America. It is not America, but Jesus Christ we should be promoting. He is the source of our life and the focus of our vision! (Heb. 12:2a)
Our Founding Fathers
Most Christians believe that America was founded on biblical principles and therefore feel that we must do all we can to protect our godly heritage. I am not going to question the integrity or the faith of any of America’s founders. According to what I have read, the founding fathers were very religious and very outspoken concerning their faith. Some were Christians, others were Deists, and others simply believed in a “higher power.” However, I believe that the primary reason for rebelling against England was unscriptural. According to our history books, the Boston tea party was the beginning of the rebellion of the colonies against the unfair tax practices of England. The colonists were upset that they were being taxed without having representation. While this may certainly seem like a noble cause, it is not a biblical one. Paul tells us,
Let every soul be subject unto the higher power. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.
Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves judgment. (Rom. 13:1-2)
Certainly England was oppressive to the colonists, and I’m sure it was a difficult time for them, but so was Rome during the time of Paul, yet Paul told the Christian to submit. Even Peter tells “servants to be subject to their masters, not only to the good and gentle, but also to those who are wicked.” (1 Pet. 2:18) Yes, there may come a time when we must refuse to obey (as individuals) if we are commanded to do something against the law of God (but we must also be prepared to suffer the consequence of our action). However, an oppressive (even evil) government using the taxpayer’s money for it’s own lusts is NOT a legitimate reason for rebellion. I cannot find one reason as listed in the Declaration of Independence that gave the colonists a scriptural reason for the rebellion, (in fact, the Bible goes so far to say that “rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft”–1 Sam. 15:23), and so if this be the case, then why are we so supportive of what the colonists did? Just because someone speaks of God and the Bible doesn’t necessarily mean they are living an obedient Christian life—for to do so means we must submit to those authorities that God has placed over us—be they good or evil. Jesus knew full well that Rome was an evil government who used the people’s money for their own selfish ambitions; however, He also knew that it was a government raised up by God to use for His own purposes. Jesus did not advocate the refusal to pay taxes or to rebel against the government. Instead He told us, “We are to render unto Caesar the things that belong to Caesar, and to God, the things that belong to Him.” There are many evil things that our tax money funds, but no where in scripture can we find any exhortation that we should refuse to pay our taxes or rebel against an ungodly government.
Those of you who are skeptical might say, “If America was not founded on biblical principles, then why should we obey anything she says—for it is an illegitimate government.” This argument ignores the fact that God raises up both godly and ungodly nations for His own purposes, and it doesn’t matter if a nation is good or evil—God tells us to submit to both. He raised up Pharaoh to do His bidding, and certainly raised up Babylon and Assyria to bring both Judah and Israel into judgment. America, like it or not, has been established by God, and it is only by the grace of God that He has blessed America as He has, as well as showing her mercy by delaying the judgment she deserves. Some might respond by saying that America’s prosperity and religiosity proves that God’s hand has been on this country. However, Jesus said that God sends rain on the just and on the unjust (Mt. 5:45). While I’m not saying that America is unjust, I am saying that a nation’s wealth and prosperity does not necessarily prove the it is being blessed by God. Additionally, being religious doesn’t necessarily mean favor with God either. The Pharisees were extremely religious yet were condemned by our Lord. The American colonists’ actions may have been noble according to human standards, but I do not believe they were scriptural, and so to say that “what they did was sanctioned by God” is forcing God’s Word to conform to history in order to justify the false idea that the Bible promotes “Christian patriotism.”
Some of you might think that I am anti-American. This isn’t the case at all. I am glad that I live in a country that has the freedoms that we have. I pay my taxes and am glad that there are policemen to help keep my family and I safe. I appreciate the fact that I can go where I please, and speak my mind on any issue I choose. It was here in America that I was introduced to the gospel message, which I will be forever grateful. However, I thank God (not America) for blessing me with the truth. I don’t thank America for my blessings, nor do I look to her for my security or freedom. America is here because God wants her to be here. He has used her for both good and evil and when her time is through, she will be brought to nothing just as all flesh will be.
Some trust in horses, and some in chariots, but I will trust in the name of the Lord my God. (Ps. 20:7)
In no way am I saying that the colonists were insincere or immoral men, and I fully understand that in the sovereignty of God, He allowed those men to sin thus bringing forth the United States of America. What I’m saying is that we should not look to those men as heroes who should praised, honored, and followed. They may be courageous men who defied the odds by forming a new nation, but they were not (and are not) heroes in the Biblical sense. They were wrong in their rebellion and it is high time we get our eyes off of them and back onto the Author of all things.
No, we should not seek to protect our “godly heritage,” but we should thank God for all the blessings we have while they are still ours, and pray that America repent for the evil that she is doing. If God should continue to allow me to live in a free society, then I will praise Him. If He should choose to take all my freedoms away, I will still praise Him no matter what harm may befall my family or me. No one can take away my freedom in Christ—which can only be found within!
2 Chronicles 7:14
If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.
Undoubtedly, this is the most oft quoted passage by Christians when speaking of America’s sin. First of all, “my people” applies to God’s “called.” Under the Old Covenant, it was Israel. Under the New, it is the Church. This passage is NOT referring to any of the heathen nations of the world. This is one of the many verses that the Church has misapplied at the expense of repentance in their own lives. Instead of looking at its own shortcomings, the Church instead is pointing its finger at others. Another well-known verse that is also taken out of context is found in Rev. 3:20 where Jesus tells the Church at Laodicea, “Behold, I stand at the door and knock….” Millions of evangelicals apply this verse to “the poor sinner who doesn’t know the gospel, and if they would only heed the gentle, persistent knocking of our Lord, He would come into them and sup with them.” Instead of Jesus being outside of the sinner’s heart, the context shows us that Jesus is outside of His own Church knocking. It is the Church who needs to heed the knock of the Lord and let Him in, not the world! It is the Church, first and foremost, who needs to “humble themselves, pray, seek God’s face, and turn from their wicked ways.” It is the Church that has left her first love and followed after other pursuits—and in my own life, it was Jesus Christ who was not preeminent causing me to pursue politics to help fill the void that only He could fill.
Secondly, even though the passage was clearly speaking of Israel (and now the Church), I do believe its general principles can be applied to other nations as well. It should be clear to any discerning Christian that America is full of evil and corruption. However, the key to this verse is that it is through prayer and repentance that a people will be spiritually healed—not by being pounded on the head by Christian activists who are bent on changing America through legislation. Yes, of course Christians should be concerned about the spiritual welfare of the nation in which they live. However, it is through prayer and a recognition that the battle being waged is not in the realm of the visible, but in the invisible realm of the spirit. Instead of church leadership supporting the American government in the pursuit of Muslim extremists (and believe me, they certainly do), and self-righteously judging the world (which they also do quite well), they need to first examine their own hearts to see if they have fallen short, and then pray for revival in their own life, and in the lives of “their flock.” Before the gospel can be powerful for others, it must first be operating in the lives of those who proclaim it, and thus we come to the real problem in America—it is the Church itself. If the Church were not so arrogant and presumptuous concerning its own righteousness, perhaps the world might be moved to repent of its own wickedness. The Church, while preaching Christ, rejects His Lordship in their own lives, and so if the people of God are not broken, how can we expect the world to follow suit?
“Judgment begins in the house of God.” This is where it must start. We must tend to the affairs of our own house before we start pointing out the flaws in others. Let us not live as “Christian patriots” who want to change the morality of this country, but rather as broken servants of Jesus Christ who desire to live the gospel of love in order that men may be moved to repentance by our example.
There is a way that seems right to a man, but the ends thereof are the ways of death. (Prov. 16:35)
There will be many who will vehemently disagree with what I have written. It may seem good and right to try to change the culture through the political process, however, as I tried to point out, there is no such exhortation or command in the New Testament that even hints that we should try to change our society through external means. Jesus and all of the apostles tell us to submit even to those who are evil. Common sense tells us that it is a good thing to try to change America through the means that she herself has established (democracy). However, God’s ways go against the common sense of men, and those who truly are walking in the Spirit understand that “we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, powers, and the rulers of darkness.” (2 Cor. 10:3-5; Eph. 6:12)
If you are satisfied with involving yourself in the temporal affairs of men making short-lived change in government, then continue to pursue “Christian politics.” This is “the good.” However, if you are concerned with the kingdom within then concern yourself with promoting the Lordship of Christ by exalting His cross and resurrection—this is the calling that God has entrusted to us as His stewards and ambassadors. This is “the greater.”
It has been said that “the good” often prevents us from doing “the greater.” This is the difference between the “called” and the “elect.” The “called” do good things and make some change, but it is the “elect” who will be used by God mightily to make lasting and eternal changes. God is not looking for “Christian patriots,” or “Christian activists,” but men and women who’ve had their “ear pierced” for their Master and are committed to doing the things that please Him.