My last post was my best attempt to explain why Christians have a responsibility to engage in politics and government, and that by doing so we are not diluting the Gospel. I received an e-mail response from a friend who has worked diligently in the public arena for many years now. He pointed out one very significant fact I failed to emphasize, one that I wish I had included. So, with his permission, here is his response. Read for edification:
As someone who is regularly criticized by my fellow followers of Jesus Christ for daring to apply my faith in the political arena, I thank you for your blog post. It’s not that I need affirmation, but it is always good to read something insightful about what God has called me to do.I would add one comment to your post. When I am chastised for being involved with “political issues” that “drive people away from Jesus,” I always ask to which issues they refer. Of course, the common responses are abortion or marriage or both. To which I respond: No, I asked which political issues. Those aren’t political issues, they are issues of fundamental Biblical principle concerning who God is, who we are, His design for us and for social order. Yes, they happen to be debated within the political realm, but that doesn’t make them political issues. I believe Christians fall for that trap all the time. We allow that which is spiritual in nature to be labeled as secular (or political) only to find ourselves then on the defensive when in fact what we are discussing is spiritual.Of course, the dichotomy is in and of itself, for the believer, a false one anyway, since there is nothing “secular” to God. But good luck explaining that concept to most believers!Anyway, I say all that to say simply that I don’t deal with political issues. I deal with spiritual issues that are being debated in the political sphere. But, of course, if they are “political,” then they are open for debate and compromise.
He is absolutely correct, and I appreciate his amendment to what I wrote. The murder of innocent children is first and foremost a spiritual issue because it is blatant immorality. Marriage, as I noted, is a God-ordained institution, so any tampering with it is tampering with God’s order of things. Both are political only when politicians try to alter eternal right and wrong. Christians, therefore, cannot be silent when moral atrocities become ever more prevalent and accepted by society at large.
God simply calls us to be faithful and to take His truth into every corner of the world, even corners we would like to avoid.