A Christians Guide to Politics

Chad HarmsBlog, Church0 Comments

With the presidential election moving towards us at the speed of politics, I want to take this time to give you advice.

This post was written years ago for another website…

With the presidential election moving towards us at the speed of politics, I want to take this time to give you advice. You should vote for…just kidding. It is not my place nor my legal right as the pastor of a church (see 170(c)(2)(D) of the Internal Revenue Code) to publicly tell you which candidate you should vote for. Furthermore, I think Richard Land, president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, speaks truth when he says, “It (endorsing candidates) puts congregations in an awkward position…” “It’s not a wise thing for churches to endorse candidates. We think candidates should endorse us. We think the mixing of the sacred nature of the church with the exceedingly worldly nature of politics is … unseemly.”

While many would say that the endorsement and subsequent vote for one candidate or another is spiritual in nature, the advice I want to give you is beyond debate.

While many would say that the endorsement and subsequent vote for one candidate or another is spiritual in nature, the advice I want to give you is beyond debate. The merits of this advice go beyond a good campaign or public opinion polls. How do I know this? Because, the advice I want to give you comes from Jesus. What is the advice? In my words, “Be nice.” In Jesus words, “But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you” (Matthew 5:44).

Over the next several months, we will all have the opportunity to criticize, argue, yell, scream, and slander people who have different political opinions then our own. In fact, these behaviors will, for the next several months, seem normal. Television stations will be filled with political analysts who persist in making clear how “stupid” the people on the other side are. The candidates themselves will endorse commercials in which they defame each other. People all around us will say mean things about a person they have never met, the candidate they aren’t voting for.

We must put our responsibility to love God and love others ahead of our responsibility to get our candidate elected.

Despite all of this, I think it is our duty, as Christians, to be nice – no matter how normal “mean” becomes. If Jesus makes the above statement about our enemies, then it is safe to assume that it should be applied to our treatment of other American citizens. It is even safer to say that it should be applied to our treatment of other Christians who follow and love the same God we do. As Christian people, no matter our political affiliation, we must do our best to be kind to others, even when they’re wrong. We must put our responsibility to love God and love others ahead of our responsibility to get our candidate elected. We must be nice.

The Author
Chad Harms

Chad Harms

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“I cast vision, preach the Bible, and equip people to use their gifts in service to God and the church.”

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