Perspectives

Faith should inform politics

By Shane Legler
Posted 1/14/21

For reasons too lengthy for this page, many folks have come to think of politics and religion as having a wall of separation between them.

Like peas and potatoes (if you’re of my mind), we …

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Perspectives

Faith should inform politics

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For reasons too lengthy for this page, many folks have come to think of politics and religion as having a wall of separation between them.

Like peas and potatoes (if you’re of my mind), we like them to not touch on the plate. However, what anyone comes to believe about life, the universe and everything informs everything else that they do. It especially informs their politics whether they wish it to or not. In fact, it is impossible for our faith not to inform our politics because our faith is at the core of who we are. Truly, our politics, like our pocketbooks, can be used to determine whether we really believe what we say we believe about life, the universe and everything.

As I reflect on 2020 and even the past two decades, I would hope that every professing Christian will truly submit their politics to the Lord they claim to follow.

First and foremost, on the matter of our great national sin of abortion. It is a stain and a shame on our country. The media would not allow us to look away from the COVID death count of the world and the nation, but the fact is that the world lost 42.6-72 million unborn humans to abortion in 2020. According to the World Health Organization, we only lost 1,876,100 to COVID as of Jan. 7. Let that sink in for a moment. The world deliberately killed over 20 times the amount of its own children than all who were taken by COVID.

Many of the same governors so concerned with protecting us from COVID couldn’t lift a finger to protect the unborn. As a matter of fact, many went out of their way to tip the scale against the unborn. For the Christian, this matter is very simple: Every human being is fearfully and wonderfully made by God in the womb (Psalms 139:13-14), and every single human being, broken and fallen though they may be, bears the image of their creator (Genesis 1:26-27). When we speak of justice, we ought to tremble at the thought of all that innocent blood crying out to God from the ground. If we really believe ourselves to be a nation under God, let us act like it; let us turn from this heinous sin and pray that God will cleanse our land from the stain of it.

That brings me to a second issue. Never in my wildest dreams did I think a young white person in my nation would scream at a black police officer that they were a traitor to their race. There are wolves in our nation who are invested in keeping everyone stirred up against their neighbor over race.

For the Christian, this business is very simple: There is only one race, and that is the human race. This is the truth of scripture and anyone who denies it has denied both the scripture and the faith. If we really want to end racism, let us just live and vote the truth of scripture. Namely, there is only one race. Don’t elect anyone to a platform who denies that truth.

A further issue gifted to us last year was the politicalization of mask wearing. It shouldn’t have become political, but what isn’t political these days? Therefore, we have divided into two camps, and depending which camp you’re in, the opposite camp is, as my son so perceptively observed, either bioterrorists or sheeple. Even in the church, people have had their devotion to Christ questioned based on whether they wear or don’t wear a mask.

Isn’t life hard enough without us adding this additional stupidity to it? In speaking to his disciples, Jesus said that “all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another” (John 13:35). All who follow Christ partake of Christ. Can Christ be divided? Ought we to do violence to his body over a mask? The church exists by the grace and mercy of God.

Therefore, how can it be that his grace and mercy would be absent from our politics? Our nation is dying for want of grace and mercy. If our faith is bereft of grace and mercy it becomes a cold form of religion with no power, and zeal that is not tempered with love can only burn and destroy. If we follow Christ, how can we not extend the same grace and mercy that he extended to us? That brings me to the last issue I have room for.

Many in our body politic are now seeking vengeance on their enemies. May I just gently say that this never ends well. For the Christian, we are absolutely forbidden from seeking vengeance (Matthew 5:38-42). Christians do not get to get even. Shall we hate the one Christ died for, or shall we not rather pray for their repentance, salvation and good? Further, we pray that God will see fit to trust us with authority knowing that, when our enemies are in our hand, we will not do to them as they would do to us.

May God help us to resolve in our minds to let our faith inform our politics to the glory of his name.

(Shane Legler is the pastor of the Garland Community Church of God.)

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