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Observe our shortsightedness

As our country is preparing for elections this year, we are also preparing for what appears to be a time of great tumult. Our country is becoming a whirlwind of opinions, anger, hatred, and sides.

Unfortunately, it appears that most Christians are caught up in the whirlwind of what is the greatest divisiveness in our country.

I have the privilege of having friends from a variety of political and cultural persuasions. It is interesting to me that no matter what side people are on, it seems to me that people are absolutely convinced their Christian position is right.

This year, I have remained less vocal and opinionated on certain matters as I have come to believe that it is difficult to maintain any sort of position without making mortal enemies of which I have no intention of being. While I understand that remaining apolitical is, in some sense, a privilege, it has allowed me to sit back and see the fallacy in Christian engagement of politics.

It has led me to believe that most Christian engagement into politics I see today bears one glaring problem.

The problem is that there exists no position in politics that fully represents the Kingdom of God.

The problem is that we have identified pieces of the kingdom of God and acted with the confidence as though we had the full piece. In that partiality, we have made enemies out of others on the other side who also have had identified pieces themselves.

We, unfortunately, have been caught up in partial narratives, partial values, partial ideas, and proclaim our position as if said party, candidate, or position represents the kingdom of God.

Abortion?
Racism?
Equal rights?
Righteousness?
Law and order?

Are we so foolish to handpick several positions, narratives, or policies and declare that “this is it?” We are groping a leg of an elephant in a dark room shouting vitriol at the other who gropes the other leg saying that we have the full picture. We are all wearing shades pretending we see by a full light.

The shortsightedness of what most Christian engagement in politics looks like.

We need to, as believers of God, come to at least admit the glaring problem that our engagement is partial. Perhaps we would be saved from an enemy who laughs at the divisiveness that stems from our false confidence. And we would be spared from a watching and waiting world laughing at the planks protruding from our eyes.

The truth we need to be reminded of is that the Kingdom of God bears no patience for reductionistic representations of itself.

When we proclaim our partial stance in its name, we cast a shadow on what is meant to be infinitely more glorious than any nation or kingdom on earth. In our confidence, a stain is smeared on its hallowed walls.

It is the full reign of Jesus that we seek. For a God who brooks no idols, he has set it such that his kingdom is incompatible with any human kingdom. There is no position so fully articulated and fleshed out on in this side of eternity that will ever come close to the beauty and gloriousness of his coming reign.

And there is no peace, no shalom, until that day comes. Until He comes.

Let that truth cause humility in us, knowing that the positions we hold, however convinced and shiny they are, are ultimately incomplete.

Let that truth lower the boisterousness and incriminations of our declarations.

Let that truth cause us to extend the hand of friendship towards the many groups who disagree with us, vilify us, and yes, even hate us, whether it is a directful hate or through their political proclivities.

Let that truth reposition away from the farce of utopia promised on this side of heaven and instead on the beauty and completeness of his kingdom.

Yes, because he is coming soon. And in the face of no alternatives on this side of heaven, I have never been more excited.


Going Deeper

My joy and the aim of this site is to help readers go deeper in their Christian faith.

In the spirit of going deeper, here’s a resource I think will help you go deeper in this topic.

I am a fan of the ideas behind Justin Giboney’s book Compassion (&) Conviction

What are your thoughts on such absolute Christian positions in politics? Leave your thoughts below!

3 comments
  1. Thank you, Phil! So well articulated, my friend! This is a rebuke (gentle and respectful as it is:) the church needs to heed. Otherwise I fear we run the risk of becoming a caricature on the one hand and a political shill on the other, each of which nullifies our kingdom calling and influence.

  2. Thank you, Phil! Well said my friend! This is a rebuke (as gentle and respectful as it is:) the church needs to heed. Otherwise, we run the risk of becoming caricatures on the one hand and shills on the other, each of which nullifies our kingdom calling and influence. Keep up the good work!

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