The Flag and the Faith - Part 2

Yesterday, I started a series of posts about the relationship between the Flag and the Faith, especially around the time of an election. 

Government is instituted and established by God (Romans 13:1), but God never gives the Church clear instructions on how active they're supposed to be in government - probably because citizens in the first century didn't have much of a choice. You submitted to the king, or you died. 

I do think it's important to note, however, that the primary emphasis in Romans 13:3 is on us doing right as individuals... not on attempting to persuade the government (whatever its form) to reform society. 

See, we as a Church are not called to make sinners behave, but to shine as lights in a fallen world. That's not a call for a reformation of government - it's a call for personal and corporate reform of our own lives in such a way that unbelievers see us and are persuaded to examine the claims of our God because of the way we live - not because of the way we force them to behave. 

The Bible always calls for bottom-up leadership (servant leadership) rather than top-down leadership (leadership by mandate). Our role in society is no different. 

Sometimes when we get so focused on legistlating temporal morality we forget about eternal reality. Wasn't that the problem with the Pharisees? In fact, I think it's a key point to remember that when Jesus showed up on the scene, He didn't affiliate Himself with the political "party" that the rank-and-file religious person would have anticipated. Because their proposed legislation was simply designed to put lipstick on a pig, not point people towards Jesus Christ an Him crucified. 

The entire book of 1 Corinthians was written to remind the church that their entire message should be about Jesus Christ and Him crucified, and that they should cut out anything that didn't point people toward the Truth of that Message (1 Corinthians 2:2). If people get the idea that they can't be a Christian unless they vote Democrat, we have completely skewed the message.

On the other side, abortion is a huge issue to me - more on that tomorrow, maybe - but nobody ever gained a right relationship with God by being pro-life. It seems to me that our view of the sanctity of life should move beyond just the baby in the womb to the eternal life offered to the world - and that's something that isn't going to be legislated. 

When the Church begins to think about what role we should take in the political spectrum, we need to be absolutely, one-hundred percent certain we don't do anything to confuse the real issue: we as humans have been separated from our creator as a result of our behavior, and need a Savior to restore that relationship. That's the message the Church should champion above any other platform on either aisle of congress. If the gospel is lost in a bunch of less significant issues (and they're all less significant), we have completely missed the point.