Last Sunday morning, my father and I attended church virtually. The pastor delivered a powerful message that pointed to Christ. After that, another church service started. That pastor presented a powerful message, too, but powerful in a different way. I listened for a while, but I could hardly believe what I heard coming from the pulpit. It sounded more like a political rally than a church service.
I think we should carefully consider whether or not we, as the local church, will take a political stand. The United States is very divided right now along political lines.
The political preacher I referenced above really got under my skin because his beliefs were the opposite of mine. I know of another case where a Sunday School teacher took a political stance, but not everyone in this adult class was in agreement. This caused conflict between class members.
The temperature of political talk in the U.S. right now is hot! Seriously, you can easily get into an argument, even with people in your own party! Emotions are high and people are opinionated and outspoken.
So the question arises: Is the local church the place for political discussion and persuasion?
The U.S. is pretty much divided 50/50 politically. The way I figure it, a politically opinionated church will turn off all visitors of the opposite side. Do we really want to do that? Is our purpose political persuasion or sharing Christ? Does political persuasion turn people of differing opinions away? You bet it does!
I would further suggest that preaching politics only encourages people who agree, and does nothing to change anyone’s mind.
I believe the local church should be open for all people of all political persuasion. The church should lead people to Christ, disciple them, and teach the Word of God. What people believe about politics is their business.
The point is this: If a church takes a political position, then it has shut the door to about half of the people who might potentially attend and be led to accept Christ and follow Him. To do so would slam the door in the face of many lost souls.
We must ask ourselves: What is the purpose of the local church? We must answer that question and seek to fulfill it.
Nowhere in the New Testament does Jesus preach politics, nor does He command His disciples to do so. He is our example. His purpose was to save the lost, not to change the government. The Roman government of Jesus’ day was brutal and cruel, yet Jesus did not set out to change it. He was changing hearts.
We are commanded to love: Love our neighbor, love the Body of Christ, and even love our enemies. Our assignment is clear.
“Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” Matthew 28:19-20 NIV
Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ Matthew 22:37-39 NIV
The only hope for our nation is Jesus Christ. And not Jesus Christ dictated from Congress or the White House, but Jesus alive in us and our neighbors. And the only way for that to happen is for you and me to focus on making disciples by loving and reaching to people of all walks of life and background, regardless of their lifestyle, choices or political opinions. And, in order to do that, we have to tone down our politics and turn up our Jesus.”daryl fulp, Missionary
Let us strive to obey the commands that Jesus has given us, and put our trust in Him alone.
With Love, Cindy
Click this link to learn more about Jesus: Who Is Jesus?