Suzanne's Second Estate

A web log of my thoughts, activities, life....

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Christ and Politics

I have recently been considering what a Christian's responsibility should be in politics. Besides exercising my right to vote and trying to stay moderately informed on the issues, I find myself feeling apathetic regarding most aspects of politics. Not only is the subject overwhelming, but the Bible doesn't provide a lot of direct guidance on the topic. Pray for your leaders. God sets up authorities. Seek first the kingdom of God. If anything, there seems to be a passivity in the commands regarding government (not righteousness).

Last week, Between Two Worlds featured a post regarding Greg Boyd and his profile in the New York Times. The article praised Boyd for opposing the conservative politics of most evangelical Christians. Boyd's series, "The Cross & the Sword," created such controversy that 1,000 people left his church.

Adam Omelianchuk, who heard Boyd's messages in person, provides an articulate overview of the series. Making a distinction between the Kingdom of God and earthly kingdoms, he says:

The Christian must understand that the kingdom of God operates differently in that it does NOT seek power over people, but that it seeks “power-under” those that we might even consider enemies. The kingdom of God operates by way of the cross, and since Jesus teaches us that we find greatness through servitude we should not grasp for power and lord it over others. The kingdom of God aims at transformation of the heart before the conformity of behavior and ascribes unsurpassable worth to those who are not worthy. Those that live in the kingdom of God give it their first allegiance before any kingdom of this world, and fight their battles not against flesh and blood (the liberals, evolutionists, ACLU) but against the powers and principalities that influence things for evil.

This is just a small part of a complex discussion regarding how Christians should conduct themselves in government. I'm open to thoughts.


At 12:51 PM, Anonymous Kelsey said...

This is good Suz. I know I have a hard time trying to sort through politics myself. So many grey lines there.

At 11:18 AM, Anonymous Mark Wilson said...

I think we hav two responses - one is to participate and support any movement we see aligns with our beliefs - two is to pray for people, because as they change, they will vote differently and politics will change as a result. In democracy the politics of the country directly reflects the people. It may reflect the passivity and inaction, or the action... either way it is a flection.

My 2c.

Bless you,

At 10:25 PM, Anonymous Harp said...

Hey Suz, It's been a while since I last looked at your blog. But you had to know that your post on politics would solicit a reply. Here goes...

I don't think that voting and praying for our leaders is passive at all. I might be misinterpretting a bit of what your saying here. But these are the two most important things a Christian can do concerning politics. Just because you don't have a radio show or go around thumping liberals in the head with the bible and constitution (the two things most liberals oppose), doesn't mean that you aren't in politics. You're an American citizen, therefore you are in politics.

The bible is clear that God sets authorities in place. But God sets EVERYTHING in place. Just because this one passage talks about authorities, Christians think we need to be completely submissive to the government. The only problem with that way of thinking is that, in our country, we are the government, as well as every non-christian. So if we have a hand off policy because God "in control" then our country would change drastically.

God certianly has the power to do whatever He pleases; to perform miracles, to change peoples hearts, to spread His name through various means. But God whats to use us to do these things. Correct? Just because God has the power, He hasn't forbad us to be involved.

Well these are just a few of my thoughts. I'm going to look at your post a bit more. I think there are a few fallacies within it. But I wouldn't be surprised if I've just committed a few too.

Great topic.

At 9:22 PM, Anonymous Harp said...

Suz, I just made a posting about Christians abstaining from Politics on my blog. I doubt many of your viewer will see this, but here's the site -


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