The Christian and Politics

This is a year of presidential elections in the US. Our chief influence is from prayer, not the ballot box. We need to be reminded of our relationship to the powers that be. We must submit and obey, but nowhere are we told to attempt to change the world. “Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers… the powers that be are ordained of God… Wherefore ye must needs be subject… for conscience sake” (Rom 13:1-20).

A major reason for Christians not being involved in politics is that God’s Word teaches the total failure of all human government, and God is not in the business of repairing it, nor should we be. The nations are fast approaching a time of complete chaos, and to try to stem the tide of evil is similar to trying to stop Niagara Falls with a teaspoon. Into a scene of moral ruin and chaos the King of Righteousness and Prince of Peace will step, “to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness” (Dan 9:24).

The world is like a sinking ship, rotten in every seam; the storm is coming; the ship will sink. Christian testimony is not to try to patch up the doomed ship, but to warn everyone on it to escape to Christ, the only refuge from the coming storm.

There are two Scriptures that give us a powerful second reason not to engage in politics: “For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ” (Phil 3;20-21); “Only let your conversation be as it becometh the gospel of Christ: that …I may hear of your affairs. that ye stand fast in one spirit… (Phil 1:27). Philippians 3 teaches that we have a heavenly citizenship. We are aliens and strangers in the world, left here to represent the One that the world crucified, not to be a political representative of this world’s citizens.

Philippians 1 teaches that our affairs are “the affairs of the city”. Do we need to ask “What city?” We look “for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God” (Heb 11:8-10). Our affairs are the affairs of the heavenly city. Let us not get entangled with “the affairs of this life”. The affairs of any town, city or state of the political world are not “the affairs of the city.”