Some friends have wondered why I’m not more direct about politics here. Honestly, it’s a big temptation for me. But my reason is simple: I eschew politics in order to guard against muddying the waters of the Kingdom or alienating those who come here with a hungry heart. Others may be called to write about political issues, but my call is to write about the Kingdom.
This morning I read Matthew 9:35-38:
Jesus was going through all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every kind of disease and every kind of sickness.
Seeing the people, He felt compassion for them, because they were distressed and dispirited like sheep without a shepherd. Then He said to His disciples, “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Therefore beseech the Lord of the harvest to send out workers into His harvest.”
Evangelicals have traditionally seen this passage as a plea for more evangelists whose preaching will rescue multitudes from an eternity in hell. But a closer examination shows that Jesus’ primary concern here is not so much about the afterlife, but about the condition of the people in the here-and-now. They were “distressed and dispirited”, (an internal problem), and “like sheep without a shepherd”, (a societal problem). It kinda sounds like the present condition of humanity.
Jesus, of course, was busy preaching “the gospel of the kingdom“, which is God’s total answer to man’s total need. And he was calling for others to preach that same message. The good news of the Kingdom is just as much about rescuing people from their “present” hell as it is about rescuing them for eternity. That’s something that politics will never be able to do. And that’s why I reserve this blog for the Kingdom.
9 thoughts on “Politics”
Dear Don, I really enjoy your writings and teaching. Obviously I am immersed in hearing about politics 24/7 and the struggles of civic duty and public service. I try to keep my strong opinions to myself for the sake of my husband’s present position. We share alot of the same convictions and differ on a few. My thoughts most recently were wanting to help my unbelieving friends understand WHY Christians struggle and fight for the Christian based constitutional standards to live by. Please correct me if my thinking is off based, but I believe while we are here in a world of good and evil that a Christian desires the Kingdom of God and that type of society. It is a part of our spirit blended with God’s that we are able to wrap the anticipation of eternity in our hearts and minds… and we are wanting to have the chance to lay the foundation for it here in this life. I sure do hope this make sense, going on very little sleep…the twins are 4 now and it make Mommy one tired momma sometimes. 🙂 God bless you and your ministry sweet friend. Rachel
Modern arrows are extremely uniform, so the idea of arrows in a Father’s quiver, His children, can lose significance. When arrows are hand made, each is purpose-special. Father does not shoot his Kingdom-purpose arrows for political battles. Soar, Friend.
Wow! Good word, David. That arrow went right into my heart!
Thanks for your post. I’ve been following your blog ever since you taught in my DTS in Kona in 2008. In really love it. Love your heart and thoughts of the Kingdom coming to earth now. I was wondering if you have read ‘love wins’ by Rob Bell (I’m reading it now) and what your thoughts are on it. I think I have mixed thoughts, liking his perspective on the kingdom coming to earth and needing to be a bigger focus to some Christians, but then some other things I don’t agree with or I guess I just wonder about the balance of the kingdom that is now and not yet and the judgment that is now and not yet.
Anyways, just felt like asking you for your wisdom and thoughts. Get back to me when and if you can.
Don: I don’t know if your phrase “in the hear-and-now” was purposeful instead of a typo, but it is perfect! Being in the Kingdom involves listening in the hear-and-now. I’m preaching again on the Kingdom tomorrow. You inspire me!
Oops! Thanks Tom. I check these posts by looking for red underlines, and then having the computer read to me. That one slipped by without a notice. I appreciate your creative and kind suggestion. Although the Kingdom is certainly tied to “present-hearing” I’ve corrected the grammar. You gonna post your new sermon? Hope so!
I like your letter about Jesus, Kingdom and politics. We need to know what is going on in our world, but to many go wild with it all.
Someone got on a roll about Obama the other day and I could not help but ask (politely) have you prayed for him lately! No was the answer, but that was not the right one. Blessings Jim
Hi Don and All
What does God say about Authority?
1) Matt. 28:18 Jesus was given ALL authority.
2) Peter 2:13 For the Lord sake accept ALL authority, the king as head of state. (that king at that time was not the best,,, was he).
3) Act.23:1-5 Paul even being right had to say he was sorry. For scripture says “Do not speak evil of anyone who rules over you”.
4) Hebrews 13:17 Obey your spiritual leaders,,,,
6) Ehp 6:1-4
7) 1 Peter 2:18-19
8) Ehp. 6:5
9) Recognizing athority is important,,,remembering Jesus has ALL Authority. What did He (Jesus)say about what one man in Isreal said of authority? Matt 8:6-10
10) Consciences- 1 Timothy 1:19 Cling tightly to your faith in Christ, and always keep your conscience clear. For some people have deliberately violated thir conscience; as a result faith as been shipwrecked.
Always enjoy reading your letters. Blessings Jim
A big AMEN!