By Doug Newman

October 25, 2009

I get so incredibly weary of hearing professing Christians tell me that their political party is the “Christian party” and that whether or not you support their party is a test of your Christianity.

Some Christians want you to believe that it is Christian to support, among other things:

·         Aggressive war and the wholesale mass murder of innocents.

·         Torture

·         Spying

·         Rogue police

·         Guilt without trial

·         Martial law

·         Prohibition

·         Assassinations

·         Internment camps

·         Trade sanctions and embargoes

They want you to join a party whose leaders promote these things claiming that this is the truly “Christian” thing to do.

Other Christians want you to believe that it is Christian to support, among other things:

·         Oppressive taxation

·         Redistribution of wealth

·         Aggressive environmental legislation

·         Abolition of property rights

·         Government monopolies in education and health care

·         Citizen disarmament

·         Affirmative action and racial quotas in employment and education

They want you to join a party whose leaders promote these things claiming that this is the truly “Christian” thing to do.

What would Jesus do? What party would He join? Whose candidates and policies would He endorse?

He wouldn’t join your party, my party or, for that matter, any party. He wouldn’t endorse your candidate, my candidate or, for that matter, any candidate at all.

Government is force. It forces you to do things, not do things or to pay for things. Jesus only implemented force one time: when He kicked the money changers out of the Temple. There was no doubt much sin, vice and inequality in His time. But He never once said or implied that the way to address these issues was to elect Christians to office, pass Christian laws and thereby usher in some kind of optimal Christian society.

Yet today, we hear no end of it: just elect this slate of Christians to office, support the enactment of this menu of laws and we will arrive at some kind of optimal Christian society.

This hope in the kingdoms of man is a false hope. Indeed, Jesus tells us in Matthew 6:33 to seek first the Kingdom of God.

Jesus had no political agenda. Period. Indeed, in Matthew 4, Satan – i.e. the prince of this world – tempts Jesus twice, and Jesus refuses both offers. Then, Satan makes Jesus an offer He simply cannot refuse: all the kingdoms of the world. While it is noteworthy that Jesus does not question Satan’s authority to make this offer, it is more significant that Jesus flat out rejects this offer too.

Pastor Gregory Boyd of St. Paul, Minnesota, once said that when Christians entangle themselves with the kingdoms of this world, they become worldly in the very worst way. The biblical injunction not to be unequally yoked – II Corinthians 6:14 – does not apply just to dating and marriage, but rather to every aspect of life. Christians of all political stripes have become just like secular folk. They run franticly from crisis to crisis, seeking quick fix after quick fix. And all the while they lose sight of Who their Real King is and that His Kingdom is not of this world – John 18:36. They may amass huge temporal political power, but at the cost of their very souls – Matthew 16:26.

A Christian’s citizenship is in Heaven, not on earth – Philippians 3:20. The kingdom of man works from the top down and from the outside in, by force and the threat of force. The Kingdom of God works from the bottom up and from the inside out, and does not rely on force to compel Christian behavior.

Just the other day, I read about something called the “Conservative Bible Project.” This is just as blasphemous as any “liberal Bible project.” The words “conservative” and “liberal” do not even appear in the Bible. Conservatism and liberalism are worldly philosophies and, hence, doomed to failure – I Corinthians 1:19-20.

C.S. Lewis had this to say in his classic book Mere Christianity: “If so, that brings us right up against the real snag in all this drawing up of blueprints for a Christian society. Most of us are not really approaching the subject in order to find out what Christianity says: we are approaching it in the hope of finding support from Christianity for the views of our own party.”

Stop trivializing Jesus by trying to fit Him into your partisan political box. There is zero support from Scripture that Jesus would support your party or faction or would want to control society from the top down. Let us all – myself included – get back into our Bible and see what it says rather than what the worldly media – this includes most of the “Christian” media – says. And then let us live our lives accordingly and leave the societal results up to God.

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Freely Speaking: Essays by Doug Newman