Jesus, politics, and hope

Whenever God’s people resisted Him in Bible-times He would often “turn them over” to their enemies, their idols, or their own obstinate ideas.  And then He would wait until reality sufficiently chastised them and sent them running back to Him. It’s a pattern we see throughout scripture from Israel’s wandering in the wilderness to Jesus’ story of the prodigal.  Reality has a way of turning us towards home

I believe we’re seeing this pattern at work today as God “turns us over” to the false god of power-politics.  If you’re anything like me, you may be wondering if we have any truly good and beautiful choices in the upcoming elections.

The Christian church, (myself included), has had an long unnatural infatuation with politics. We have placed our hopes in elections and trusted men to turn the world rightside-up again. But hope rooted in the political process is misplaced, empty, and idolatrous. And now that we’ve reached the endgame our idol is failing us because politicsthe exercise of power – has no place in the Kingdom of the crucified One.

Jesus went to great trouble to show us a kingdom that would operate on a radically different axis than the kingdom of Caesar.  His Kingdom would be:

  • A place where the poor would be blessed.
  • Mourners would find comfort.
  • The meek would be rewarded.
  • Those who yearn for the world to be made right would not be disappointed.
  • Mercy would rule the day.
  • The pure-hearted would see God.
  • And peacemakers would be known as God’s children.

Not exactly a description of our political conventions!  But the encouraging thing is that we have – hopefully – hit the wall.  Many are awakening to the fact that this political circus feels much like “feeding pigs in a distant land.”  And maybe, just maybe the stench is becoming noxious enough to turn our faces back to the Servant-King who is already seated on the Throne.


PS: Please don’t think I’m encouraging you to refrain from casting an informed vote in November.  We need to exercise every influence we have.  But we must not put our trust in politics.  It is a fading, fallen system that will soon be obsolete. 

12 thoughts on “Jesus, politics, and hope”

  1. Oh man, I really envy your gift of brevity. I’ve been pondering these same ideas for the last few months, but they seemed too big, too intimidating to write out. Now you come along and say it, just like that! You are spot on. Thank you for doing what you do so well. We are blessed!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow! Thanks Willow! That is a wonderful bundle of encouragement coming from a professional like yourself. You actually write BOOKS, which has been my dream for the past decade! Brevity is almost my first priority on this blog. Have you read about the attention span of the typical American teenager lately? It’s insane! About the same as a goldfish! 🙂

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  2. Don, once again you have nailed it. I see Christians on the one hand disgusted with the two main candidates (for a lot of reasons for both candidates) and on the other hand the most inane expressions of great hope based on rhetoric, lies, verbal twisting of what the other candidate really said, and at the same time a total coverup of the true history of the candidates. Idolatry anyone? They say love is blind, but idolatry is blinder. (Yeah, I know that’s not a word!)

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    1. Thanks for the thoughts, Barb! I miss our discussions and bouncing ideas off of you. It’s been WAY too long since I’ve been over your way. Hold the fort, and keep theKingdom shining in your eyes!

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  3. It’s so sad to see that what’s ahead for US’ politics looks nothing like the Kingdom. Closer to a mummer’s farce… Romanians also sined a while ago endorsing what they called a Joseph and an Esther… Well, none of that ever came or will vome true. Thing is, the state cannot represent the Kingdom, only an empire based corrupt sort of civil worship….

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    1. Thanks, Gabi! I always appreciate your insights. “The state cannot represent the Kingdom” is a strong, but true statement. Power and Love repel each other like two magnets with corresponding poles. We’re tempted to believe we need a “better” state, but in reality we need to embrace a complete alternative.

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      1. And a grate temptation Don, I think, is believing that a better state can be „settled” by violence and force…. But that is not the Kingdom. The Kingdom is heard in rumors of a lion, but seen in the meekness of a Lamb. Why are we Christians so enticed by power and when mummers say „If you chose me, Christians will have power” we go there? Maybe the power (I hate this word, even here…) of the Kingdom is so low in us that we seek the power of this… empire. I don’t know…

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      2. Hmm, I like the poetry regarding power and love repelling each other like magnets, but the thought hits me that LOVE is powerful. There is power in love…and perhaps the greatest power of all is that rooted in love. So I guess when “power and love” are repelling each other it is because that particular power is of a nature devoid of love. What do you think about these ponderings?

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  4. Hey Don this is your brother Norman from FlorenceI just wanted to tell you, I thought you’re in blog yesterday was really interesting. I don’t really get into politics too much, but you really have to hit the nail on the head. I would love to hear from you if get a chance. You have my number I think.. If not this is my email and let me know and ill send you my new cell #. God bless you brother and I’m praying for you .Take care. God’s Speed!

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