In 2004, after the invasion of Iraq, I was alarmed by the rising trend in the Christian community toward political involvement in the name of Christ. In a letter to the Enterprise on Oct. 6, 2004, I wrote: “As an evangelical Christian, I am deeply concerned with the mixing and melding of politics, patriotism and Christianity into a brand of political religion that blends symbols and offers messages that blur the lines between what is holy and what is not. Churches and Christian bookstores flooded with these messages have become political recruiting grounds. People searching for Christ find a brand of politics instead. Many well-meaning Christians, their ears ‘tickled’ by political promises, think they are bringing this country to God by voting a certain way. Does this political movement change hearts or bring anyone to Christ? Or does it widen the divide, presenting Christians as political, legalistic, self-righteous and self-serving finger-pointers, while distracting all from the message of Christ?
Christ did not come to pass moral laws or change political systems. If we think passing laws will get anyone into Heaven, we disregard what Christ did on the Cross. He came to offer eternal life by changing hearts, not political affiliations or laws.
Christians risk being used by political parties to promote an agenda, which is more about gaining political power than saving souls. We are reminded to beware of false prophets and wolves in sheep’s clothing (Matt. 7:15). Christians have been lured into supporting immoral behavior such as greed, pride, materialism, and even war, while shunning immoral behavior of the ‘other’ political parties. Seek Christ’s words in Matthew 5 on Christian living and treatment of enemies . . . Jesus also said, . . . ‘all who take the sword will perish by the sword’ (Matt. 26:52). Why don’t we believe?
Finally, what can Christians do to heal our nation? Be politically active? Point out others' sin? Pass moral laws? . . . This is what God told the Israelites …’‘if My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land’ (2 Chronicles 7:14).”
I submit this, once again, in 2021 in response to the violence in our own nation’s capital. How did we get here? Read 2 Thessalonians 2.