Should Christians Be Involved In Politics?
I recently read an illustrated patriotic book to my granddaughter. As I read about the hardships, sacrifices, and God’s interventions that gave us America, my little Kenzie asked, “Why are you crying, Grama?”
Kenzie and I pictured the Mayflower tossing about on the rough Atlantic Ocean, taking the Pilgrims on a voyage to escape tyranny and find a new land where they could be free to live and worship God as they chose. We felt their chill as they endured the cold, cruel winter where only half would survive.
I didn’t know some of the stories from those early years of our nation’s freedom, like the determination for the colonies to be unified in their decision to seek independence from Britain. We read about the sacrifice of Caesar Rodney, a delegate from Delaware who rode his horse 80 miles through a nighttime storm to cast the final vote needed to precede.
We cringed as the battle raged at Fort McHenry, with the British unleashing bombs and rockets from their ships. I felt some of the pride and joy that Frances Scott Key must have felt after finding the flag still waving when the battle was over, and I found myself singing aloud our National Anthem, The Star-Spangled Banner.
We are not a perfect nation and we never have been. But we have a form of government, granted to us by faithful men who pursued freedom and leadership by and for the people, not controlled and manipulated by those in power.
We are in danger of losing the freedoms we have learned to cherish: freedom of religion, speech, the press, freedom to choose our children’s education, the right to bear arms, the right to be safe and protected. Our freedoms are often dictated by our leadership, and of course, we determine our leadership by educating ourselves on the issues and voting.
An estimated twenty-five million Christians did not vote in the 2016 election. Why?
People give various reasons for not getting involved in politics: It’s too corrupt, politicians are all liars, it’s too confusing, my vote wouldn’t matter anyway. But one reason believers seem to use most is that this world is not our home, and our responsibility is to bring people to Jesus, not get distracted by the affairs of government or take sides. After all, our citizenship is in heaven. (Philippians 3:20.) Plus, doesn’t the Constitution say religion and politics don’t mix?
In his book One Vote, Dr. Ben Carson said, “Separation of church and state does not mean that you must remove your faith from your public life and your voting decisions. Freedom of religion means you are free to speak about and live according to your faith without threats from the government.” (One Vote, by Ben Carson, MD, Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. Carol Stream, Illinois, 2014, pages 57-58.)
Why wouldn’t believers in Christ get involved when the decisions made in government affect every one of us—our lifestyles, our freedoms, our ability to worship as we please?
Some say, “I don’t like either candidate. Who would I vote for?”
There’s no need for character assassination—just see what the candidates stand for. To know what the political leadership will do in the future, look at the policies and legislation they have passed, tried to pass, or plan to pass. How people vote should depend on what they believe about the important issues that make the most difference.
Among the most valued freedoms for Americans is the freedom of religion.
Our Constitution states, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof, or abridging the freedom of speech or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.”
Thomas Jefferson declared that ‘No provision in our Constitution ought to be dearer to man than that which protects the rights of conscience against the enterprises of the civil authority.’ Ongoing attempts to compel individuals, businesses, and institutions of faith to transgress their beliefs are part of a misguided effort to undermine religion and drive it from the public square.”
State and local races are also extremely important and will make big a difference in our government’s leadership. Ongoing disputes about churches being forced to close due to the coronavirus have included California Democrat Governor Gavin Newsom banning church services and even in-home Bible studies while allowing the gathering of thousands of protesters night after night. Currently, the battles for religious freedom are still in court, while fines for one church have reached nearly $60,000. Both of these rights are equal but treated differently.
The Sanctity of Life should also be at the forefront of Christian minds. God creates life in the mother’s womb and each life deserves protection. As believers, we should ask ourselves which candidates believe every life has value? Who will protect the unborn and the elderly? Who is for post-birth abortion, killing a child after she is born? Where a candidate stands on the issue of life reveals a candidate’s entire worldview. Do they believe we are created by God almighty, made in His image, or are we nothing more than a clump of cells? The sanctity of life matters.
This election should be about policy, not personalities. It’s about which candidates will protect religious liberty and life in the womb. Throughout scripture, God uses sinful people for His kingdom. People like David (adulterer and murderer), Rahab (harlot), Samson (worldly and sensual), Jonah (disobedient to God), Paul (ordered Christians killed until Jesus appeared to him on the road to Damascus).
The fact that God uses imperfect people should give us all hope that He can use any one of us, in spite of our past and our failures, “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). It requires repentance, faith, and trust in the Living God.
Yes, we would all love to have a totally kind, loving, wise, respectable, flawless leader for our nation and world, but Jesus has not returned to earth—yet!
Could it be that things have digressed over the years since the founding of our nation because godly men and women abdicated their responsibilities and feared standing up for truth? That too many of us have pursued our own desires and failed to repent of our sins, honor the Great Commission to bring people to Jesus, disciple them, and teach them our godly heritage? (2 Chronicles 7:13-14, 19-20; Matthew 28:19-20; Acts 26:18; Psalm 33:12a).
Our one vote could make all the difference like Caesar Rodney’s one vote made for the founders of our nation. Pray, share the love of Jesus, and vote!
Download the party platform guide here to see both the Democrat and Republican stance on major issues.
My Faith Votes—is a nonpartisan movement that motivates, equips and activates Christians in America to vote in every election, transforming our communities and influencing our nation with biblical truth. By partnering with national faith leaders, My Faith Votes provides resources to help Christians Pray, Think, and Act to create an America where God is honored in the public square.