I notice on Facebook Christians who line up with either Democrats or (mostly, in my case) Republicans. And the other side is either stupid, evil, or both. Or maybe just un or anti-Christian. I want to shake my head (and I do). Although I tend to see the overall picture and specific issues in certain ways, the politic I line up with is God’s kingdom come in King Jesus as played/worked out in the church through the gospel. A politic not just for the church, but for the world. A politic which puts all other political entities on notice that their days are numbered, that judgment and accompanying salvation is coming when King Jesus returns.
In the meantime the politics of this world go on, and it seems like too many Christians line up with entities in it practically speaking as if all depends on how it goes, who (and who does not) get elected, etc. The politics of this world are quite important on a certain level, to be sure. But it all ends up being quite unhelpful when they are given a place that they don’t deserve. Which I’m afraid is the case too often in our thinking.
Am I suggesting that we shouldn’t speak out on issues or vote? Not at all. Again, the politics of this world have their place and import. But we must not divide from other Christians or from people when participating in such. Completely possible? Not really, but insofar as we ourselves are concerned, we should see no cause for dividing or looking down on others who disagree with us on such matters. Some of the issues of disagreement may have import in and of themselves with reference to the faith and the gospel. We may have to patiently work through such things. But holding to different views concerning the politics of this world should not divide us since we are united under King Jesus in the politic which is rooted in the gospel and spelled out in scripture. I am not Democrat, Republican, Independent, Conservative, Liberal, Progressive, Libertarian, you name it. I’m Christian, that is what I want to be, and I do try to critique all the politics according to the kingdom come in King Jesus through the gospel, now present in the church. And I know such critiques are complex and surely not all that cut and dried, even though I believe some matters are more or less clear enough.
What unites us should be our focus, so that no matter what we may think about the politcs of this world, our essential unity in King Jesus is not affected. Our differences in thinking in the politcs of this world give us the opportunity to show the power of the gospel, the only gospel that can save poltically, even in this world. Even while we continue to pray for governing authorities and hope for the best. Our main focus is to be on the politic that will last, that found in King Jesus and God’s grace and kingdom come in him and now played out, be it ever so imperfectly, although perfection is present since God in and through Jesus by the Spirit is with us- in the church.