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Why we are Called to Live Christ on our Sleeves in the Political Arena

There are some in the “Conservative Coalition” who are calling on Christians to put aside their God, and even to put aside ‘social issues’ so we as a ‘Conservative Coalition’ can focus on the real issues, which, of course, are the economy and smaller government.  For those of you who are making this call, perhaps you should take the time to understand what it means for Christians to live a total Christ-centered life.  I am one of those Christians, so I understand a little what it means to live a total Christ-centered life (albeit imperfectly, as we humans remain until we are with the Father in Heaven).

Let me show you with Scripture, our first and foremost guide in everything we do,  the way that Christians, the ones who seek to live Christ and reflect Christ in all they do, interact with the ‘natural’ world, or, as you call it, the secular world:

God is real and is the orchestrator of all nations, and He expects something very real from them:  God judges nations- in the Old AND the New Testament- When God is real to you, these are not rhetorical figures of speech, these are very real-

Acts 17:26-27  He made from one blood every nation of men to dwell on all the surface of the earth, having determined appointed seasons, and the boundaries of their dwellings, that they should seek the Lord, if perhaps they might reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from each one of us.

Note that it is God who sets the boundaries of nations ‘that they should seek the Lord’.  My Faith tells me to obey the full council of the Word, so I take it very seriously that God will judge nations that do not seek Him (though He might take a year or a thousand years- we don’t know how long God will choose to have grace).

God judges nations- Old Testament- Amos- speaking of God’s coming judgment against Israel-

Amos 5:14-16  Seek good, and not evil, That you may live; And so Yahweh, the God of Armies, will be with you, As you say.  Hate evil, love good, And establish justice in the courts. It may be that Yahweh, the God of Armies, will be gracious to the remnant of Joseph.”  Therefore thus says Yahweh, the God of Armies, the Lord: “Wailing will be in all the broad ways; And they will say in all the streets, ‘Alas! Alas!’ And they will call the farmer to mourning, And those who are skillful in lamentation to wailing.

Now, we Christians (that is, the type I outline above) have only one purpose on this earth, to Worship the Lord in all we do.  Worship is love, adoration, and submission to our only one, true King.  Everything we do is for Christ, no one, nothing else

Matthew 6:24-

"No one can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money.

Our life on earth is death.  Only our willingness to die in the earth gives us life in the King

Luke 17:33  Whoever seeks to save his life loses it, but whoever loses his life preserves it.

If we deny Christ, we are denied by Him

Matthew 10:32  Everyone therefore who confesses me before men, him I will also confess before my Father who is in heaven.

33  But whoever denies me before men, him I will also deny before my Father who is in heaven.

 

What is alarming about this call to set aside God, to set aside social issues is that some of the people calling on Christians to do this are professed Christians.  To that I would say, Christians who would go against us because we invoked the name of God to justify, for instance, our position on the issue of murdering the unborn are not, in point of fact, Christians. 

Matthew 12:30

"He who is not with me is against me, and he who does not gather with me scatters.

It is this type of thinking from certain parts of the “Conservative Coalition” that threatens the coalition.  Members of this coalition want to remove God from the dialogue and make it all about ‘secularusism’, which is simply godlessness, as in, without God. 

This is not to say that Christians should only serve beside Christians in the political world, or that we are called to form Christian governments that will force people to worship our God as we do.  These ‘standards’ are as godless as the standards some seem to want to call us to follow, to deny the force behind our political decisions, that our nation reflects Christ’s values where Christ calls nations to reflect His values.

Just how Christ calls us to exhort our nations to reflect His values leave some room for interpretation, and, it is not a theological discourse Christians seriously think about often enough.  I see a lot of Christians overstepping the boundaries God assigns us.  We are called (we Christians) first and foremost to live a nation that is nothing like the natural nation, and we are called specifically not to force non-believers to worship God, but we are called to exhort our nations, wherever we are citizens, to reflect God’s values specifically as they relate to man connecting to man (as opposed to man connecting to God).

I am trying to understand the specific conditions where I need to be a loyal citizen in the Kingdom of God and exhort my nation in His name to reflect God’s law in their laws and where I am called to not invoke the name of God to exhort my nation to reflect a law or value that expresses the diverse range of governance God gives us to choose from. 

An issue such as abortion, for instance, is not a grey area, and my motivation for calling my nation to abandon the murder of the unborn is twofold, both of which are rooted completely in my worship of God: 

From loving God, we love one another.  We love our neighbors as ourselves.  We love our enemies.  We love one another as Christ loves us.  Through this love, I lobby my government to stop murdering children that God loves, that I love, through God’s love. 

The second reason I seek to lobby my government to stop murdering the unborn is that I know God will judge a nation that allows the murder of the unborn.  This is an obvious violation of man connecting to man in a Godly way, murdering His precious children before they even exit the womb (in some cases, such as partial birth abortion, even AFTER they exit the womb).

I will not, I cannot accept a standard that calls me to deny Christ as this call to set aside God in my political positioning unwittingly does.  And if significant portions of this ‘coalition’ echo this sentiment and stand by it, they will lose Christians.  They may have reason to fear Obama, fear man, but I don’t.  I fear my God far more than Obama or any lost vote.

I do not see this coalition staying together based on what I have seen.  I do not believe there is common ground between all the members of this ‘coalition’, but I do believe there is common ground between plenty of the so-called secular conservatives and ‘Christian’ conservatives. 

I see a nation fracturing, already without any real common shared understanding of the core values that should form their rule of law, their governance.  My hope lays in living Christ, in my living room, with my neighbors, one street by one street.

As a citizen of the Kingdom of God I am called to be a good citizen in this natural kingdom, America.  So I will do my part to seek to walk with people who do not think Christ should be denied in my public service, even if they don’t share my belief in Christ, to compromise where God’s Word is not in play, and to vote for candidates, lobby my government, that stand for freedom, liberty, justice and do not represent a denial of some critical command by God in our relation between man and man. 

I seek to stand openly and boldy in the name of Christ where God calls me clearly to do so.  I seek to self-apply boundaries on myself is I relate to the natural kingdom in the ways God calls me to limit my efforts to exhort my natural nation to reflect Godliness in their governance over the believers and non-believers alike.

I will walk in the political arena with whoever will walk with me in exhorting my government to reflect governance that does not violate the clear Godly standards of man relating to man, for whatever reason they might have.  I cannot walk with those who would lobby my government to reflect standards of governance that clearly violate Godly standards of man relating to man.

As Martin Luther said before the Catholic Inquisitors who were challenging his notion that all authority begins and ends in the Word, Here I stand, I can do no other.

Paul Gordon Collier

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Paul..............Great theological statement, however if we do not produce miracles, signs and wonders, most opponents will not give heed to our treatises and biblical stances.  This Gospel of the Kingdom is not in Word only, but in demonstrations of  the Spirit and power!

 

Blessings..............Anthony D.

The problem as I see it is that too many Christians are not voting or voting for candidates that reflect Christian beliefs.  If Christianity is the largest religion in this country, then they need to step up and have their vote heard.  It is not always beneficial to be politically correct.  Pro choice is simply another word for murder.  The Old Testament has too many examples of the Hebrews being tolerant of races that are against our God, and looked what happened to them.  Our government is supporting the murder of unborn human beings, the destruction of biblical marriage, and the acceptance of all religions except Christianity.  It is no wonder that we are slipping morally, economically and spiritually.  The result is that our place in the world has been lowered, but more importantly, our place in God's Eyes has beened lowered..  We need to understand that we are called to be part of this world and in this world we must fight for the Christian Beliefs.  It is time to stop being complacient and demand a government that speaks for these morals.  We need to find candidates that are not afraid to speak up for these principles and vote them into office.

Amen, Anthony!   I just read it this morning...   :-)

F. Anthony DelGrosso, Jr. said:

Paul..............Great theological statement, however if we do not produce miracles, signs and wonders, most opponents will not give heed to our treatises and biblical stances.  This Gospel of the Kingdom is not in Word only, but in demonstrations of  the Spirit and power!

 

Blessings..............Anthony D.

anthony- I agree with you- but- This Gospel of the Kingdom is not the Word only- well- yes it is- but the Word is living and we are the letters of that Living Word- it is miracles, signs, and wonders that emerge from the body coming together in Christ- I completely agree with you on that

Mark,

If the people who profess to be Christians in America (some 70 percent) truly followed the FULL COUNCIL of the Word, then we would be a united, vital body, the salt and light, the city on top of a hill- in that environment, Obama, Romney, 80 percent or more of our politicians would never have even had a chance at public life- but, we are NOT living Christ daily in our lives with the people right around us- at least a very small percentage of us are

An issue such as abortion, for instance, is not a grey area, and my motivation for calling my nation to abandon the murder of the unborn is twofold, both of which are rooted completely in my worship of God:

     I don't think God ever intended women to have abortions, but I do see some grey in this area.  Think about the millions of abortions that occur naturally after conception.  If the religious right really believed its rhetoric about abortion, then there would be some type of crusade using science, to stop these natural abortions.

steve- the difference between abortion and miscarriage is one is done intentionally, the other happens unintentionally... 
Steve Belttari said:

An issue such as abortion, for instance, is not a grey area, and my motivation for calling my nation to abandon the murder of the unborn is twofold, both of which are rooted completely in my worship of God:

     I don't think God ever intended women to have abortions, but I do see some grey in this area.  Think about the millions of abortions that occur naturally after conception.  If the religious right really believed its rhetoric about abortion, then there would be some type of crusade using science, to stop these natural abortions.

Good essay but I think you should  change your last sentence. Martin Luther in his 99 thesis, AGREED with the Pope - his issues with Catholicism were mainly he didn't like the herarchy and he believed in "salvation by faith alone" and that works did not play a part at all.  This is directly against the Bible which states in James 2: "show me your faith without works and I'll show you the faith that UNDERLIES my works!"  Many more quotes (which I can provide) proving the Catholic version is correct.  I have read the Luther's 99 thesis..

Luther also wanted to break his vows (which were made to GOD and not the church) to get married (he was a Catholic priest) and he ended up marrying a nun, getting HER to break her vows as well.  The Encyclopedia Britannica stated that Luther also encouraged the most bloody revolution in recent history called the Peasant rebellion.

As a Lutheran, we were taught that Luther was a monk (not true according to the encyclopedia Britannica - he was a Catholic priest) and that the "evil Catholic" church was his big problem. Also not true according to history, even secular history.  From my studies, Luther went back and forth about the Catholic teachings about Communion but in the end of his life, believed the Catholic teachings were correct.

I ended up switching to Catholic when I was 18, a decision which has been most wonderful!

Sue

Protestant by birth - Roman Catholic by the Grace of God

sue,

my point is not to debate martin luther's overall theological body of work, but to say we as Christians simply must stand for Christ, we can do no other- our first and foremost identity is Christ, not Catholic or Protestant, not Methodist, or Lutheran- but Christ
 
SueW said:

Good essay but I think you should  change your last sentence. Martin Luther in his 99 thesis, AGREED with the Pope - his issues with Catholicism were mainly he didn't like the herarchy and he believed in "salvation by faith alone" and that works did not play a part at all.  This is directly against the Bible which states in James 2: "show me your faith without works and I'll show you the faith that UNDERLIES my works!"  Many more quotes (which I can provide) proving the Catholic version is correct.  I have read the Luther's 99 thesis..

Luther also wanted to break his vows (which were made to GOD and not the church) to get married (he was a Catholic priest) and he ended up marrying a nun, getting HER to break her vows as well.  The Encyclopedia Britannica stated that Luther also encouraged the most bloody revolution in recent history called the Peasant rebellion.

As a Lutheran, we were taught that Luther was a monk (not true according to the encyclopedia Britannica - he was a Catholic priest) and that the "evil Catholic" church was his big problem. Also not true according to history, even secular history.  From my studies, Luther went back and forth about the Catholic teachings about Communion but in the end of his life, believed the Catholic teachings were correct.

I ended up switching to Catholic when I was 18, a decision which has been most wonderful!

Sue

Protestant by birth - Roman Catholic by the Grace of God

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