Friday, October 30, 2015

Religion and Politics

Don't you just love this season?  I'm not talking about fall; I'm talking about election season.  Polls, debates, policies - they all just add up for a fascinating combination of mudslinging, political mumbo-jumbo, and image control.  I wouldn’t call myself a real political person, but I must admit there is something about this cycle we go through every four years that intrigues me.   It's also interesting to observe how Christians perceive this process in differing and even opposing ways.

Some Christians stay completely out of it.  The kingdom of God and the kingdoms of this world are two separate entities.  Neither Paul nor Jesus ever encouraged political action, accept to submit to the authorities, so why should we be the least bit concerned about laws and offices.  Let the people of the world take care of those insignificant details while I dedicate my full attention and allegiance to the eternal kingdom.  Real change and transformation has never been an act of government, it is solely an act of God.  It's not that they don’t want a better and more spiritual world, they just don’t think the governments of this sphere are truly capable of bringing that to pass.

Some Christians get right in the middle of it.  One way we can be the salt and light of the world is to enact change through the political process.  We have not been called to retreat from this world, but rather to engage it.  Sure, we are all citizens of the eternal kingdom, but we are also, albeit temporarily, citizens of our respective locales and our voices need to be heard.  It's not that they think government is THE answer but it is AN instrument of God to bring about righteousness and holiness.

I tend to believe this qualifies as one of the disputable matters Paul talks about.

In recognition of that, allow me to remind you that there is not only an important election next November, there is one this November.  There are several state and local propositions that will be decided this Tuesday and, if you are so inclined, you get to have a voice.

In any case, enjoy the season be it fall or election season - or both!

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