As the day draws near in which the United States may default on its debt over failure to raise the debt ceiling, we see in play, pressure politics. The Republicans are trying to force President Obama’s hand, even though arguably the president has made major concessions to them already. And in this process, in my view, there is nothing of the art of compromise, which is arguably a needed staple in American politics, something the champion of today’s Republicans, President Ronald Reagan, knew and practiced quite well on his way to getting most everything done, he wanted.
In the church there is no place for power and pressure politics. First, the church is indeed a political body. Politics is defined as “the art or science of government” along with another meaning: “the total complex of relations between people living in society”. Acts 15 gives an example of politics at play in the early church. Leaders were involved, giving testimony and their wisdom, and also the congregation at large. The Spirit was active in this process, helping the Body reach a consensus. Both were involved. We’re told in Ephesians 4 to make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace, as the one body in Christ.
Yes indeed, the church is to be the alternative as a body politic for believers in Jesus. We should not align ourselves with either the Democratic or Republican party as to our identity, (though being registered either way, or as an Independent, is another matter). Our identity is in the kingdom of God come in Jesus, the people of that kingdom being the church. Not following the ways of this world, but endeavoring to be led by the Spirit through godly, humble, servant leaders, together working toward the goal of conformity to Jesus in this world.
Working through our differences, indeed even beyond them, in our goal in mission in living as God’s people in Jesus in and for the world.