Political ‘discussions’ go on all the time, everywhere a person goes. Turn on the tv to any channel and you will hear something about politics. Watch any tv show or movie and there will nearly always be some political point in it. Walk into the break room at work and someone is usually there giving a political opinion. Read the FB feeds and people are talking about something political, for or against. Some say it is bad, others say it is good.
Politics are a part of life. All politics are just the activities of a government or governing authority over a given area. Government is required. If no one is overseeing what is going on, there will be chaos.
Judges 21:25 New International Version (NIV)
25 In those days Israel had no king; everyone did as they saw fit.
There was a time in Israel when they had no king or ruler. It was right after God had stopped using various people to be judges (rulers) to guide and lead the people in what God wanted for them. During this time that they had no one lead them, everyone did what they wanted. It would bring chaos to the nation.
When everyone is doing whatever they want to do, there is chaos. There is no rules to go by, so anything goes.
Many today want this kind of life. They want to be able to do what they want, when they want, and how they want, regardless of how it affects anyone else. This is what the world tries to call true freedom.
Now comes the problem for many Christians, how much should they be involved with the politics of their city, state, nation? Some are on the front lines, fighting hard for Christian beliefs and principles. While others refuse to even vote or have anything to do with any politics.
There are good points and bad points about whether or not to be involved in politics. There are pros and cons about being involved with politics. A lot of what makes it good or bad is the focus. Why are you involved or not involved? If you are involved, what is your purpose? If you are not involved, what is your purpose?
Romans 13:1 New International Version (NIV)
13 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.
One of the most common arguments that many believers state about not being involved in politics is that the government is corrupt and not following God. They state that they only follow God and not man.
While it is true that you should follow God, that does not mean you do not obey man. God has placed every person in authority that is currently in authority. The difficult part for many, is this also means that person that is in leadership that does not follow God and does everything that is against God’s ways. Those that are in authority are to be obeyed. The only time you have permission from God to not obey those in authority, is if they are telling you to do something against His word.
Acts 5:29 New International Version (NIV)
29 Peter and the other apostles replied: “We must obey God rather than human beings!
Peter had been taken in by the authorities, some of whom were of the temple of God, and told not to speak about Jesus in public. His answer was that he must obey God first. This is the only time that disobedience of public authorities is acceptable according to God’s word.
Now the question comes as to how much a person should be involved in politics. Should a Christian be on the front lines pushing for rules to be passed that honor God? Should a Christian be fighting against policies that do not honor God?
Jesus never got involved with any politics. He was focused on doing what God had sent Him to do. Outside of paying His taxes, the Bible does not show Jesus doing anything politically.
Does that mean that a Christian should not be a part of any political party or decisions?
There is no straight answer on that question. You must find out what God has for you to do in this life. The first, and most important thing for you to do in this life is be a witness of who Jesus is and what He has done and can do.
Jesus called the disciples to be His witness:
Matthew 28:19-20 New International Version (NIV)
19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
Is that your primary focus in your life? Or is your focus to change the political scene?
Standing against bad policies will only do so much, then it will fall short. All the policies against sin will never change a person’s heart. The only one that can do that is Jesus.
If every person who claims to be a believer was to go out and make disciples of Jesus, how much would the world be changed?
If every where disciples were being made on a daily basis, those who get into political positions would be believers also. Believers in those positions can make a difference in the policies made.
Changing the heart of a person begins with getting to know Jesus. God will create a new heart in a person and change the way they do things. Outside of that, no one will ever really change, they will still be set for sin.
There is a place for politics in this world and believers have a place with politics. The issue is not whether politics is good or bad, but what you do with what you know. Politics should not be the main focus in the life of a believer. Bringing people to Jesus should be your primary focus, then if God leads you, be involved in the politics of your nation.
As you work in politics, your work should not mirror that of the world, one that crushes or demeans the other person to gain control or get your way. Many that are in the political world bad-mouth or climb over other people. They bash others to make themselves look good.
Every believer is to be a servant, building others up, not themselves. Work politics in the way God would–with love, compassion, and mercy. As you do that, you can allow God to change the lives of many people through you. Hearts can be truly changed, rather than just some more rules made.
So it is not about whether politics is good or bad, but what is done with politics. How is it used to help others, and not about how it helps yourself. What can you do today to build this world to be better and more ready for Jesus’ return?