Wednesday, October 29, 2008

A kingdom divided (Part 2 of 2)

I suggest you read this before you continue with part 2 so that you get a proper context for the discussion.

If the truth be told, all of this political posturing by the various Christian ‘camps’ reveals more about the Church than it does about the government, the judiciary, or who becomes President. While I concede that Congress determines what is passed into law, I know that even congressmen are subject to God’s authority, and God’s authority is established through obedience and prayer. “If my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land” (2 Chronicles 7:14). This brings me to a few questions of my own. Does voting for McCain make me a better Christian because he’s pro-life? Does voting for Obama mean that the wrath of God will surely descend on me because he’s pro-choice and God and I are not? Is what happens in our judiciary really going to change the hearts of men towards abortion? I absolutely abhor the idea of killing innocent babies, but I’d much rather see people’s hearts transformed through the love of God, than a polarized American Church simply because we take such diametrically opposed stances in our approach to Presidential politics. A wise man (Jesus) once said, “A kingdom divided against itself cannot stand.” Some Christians see the social aspects of Christianity as more germane to their cause. Others believe that it is the preservation of Christian values in our secularized nation that will return the favor of God upon us. I believe completely differently from both those views. I believe that it is the Church demonstrating the love of Christ to our embattled and embittered society that will effect the greatest change. If you don’t believe me then go visit Almolonga, Guatemala!

It doesn't seem that long ago that President Bush was ushered in as ‘God’s choice for America.’ Many ‘praying’ Christians attributed his victory over John Kerry to the prayers of the Church. Whether that is true or not, his popularity has since fizzled like the embers of a 4th of July sparkler dipped in water. Today, many Christians are distancing themselves from Bush and ‘his’ war in Iraq, stating that he has done numerous things wrong during his tenure as President. Funnily enough, he told the world that he begins every day with prayer as our President. Evidently prayer does not always overcome many of our human frailties, and so we make choices that are left up to history to judge. I guess it ultimately doesn’t really matter who sits in the Oval Office. Are there any guarantees that Roe V. Wade would be overturned if we had 5 conservative Supreme Court Justices? If it were overturned would that guarantee the end of abortion? Is it more important that the law be changed than it is that the hearts of men be changed?

I admit I’ve given you more questions than answers. In case you were wondering, that was my purpose. Many of these questions will be answered with vigorous and passionate conviction. Amazingly though, those passions will emanate from varying perspectives. Many of those different answers will come from well-meaning, praying, Bible-believing Christians. Some of them will be right and some of them will be wrong, but ultimately the only thing that really matters is that the Church be seen as the extension of Jesus in the earth. It is in the pursuit of such a noble calling that I am willing to display my passion. Judging from where we are right now, I’d say we have a pretty long way to go!

Here’s how the Bible so eloquently puts it:

When the righteous triumph, there is great glory, but when the wicked rise, people hide themselves
(Proverbs 28:12)
When the righteous increase, the people rejoice, but when the wicked rule, the people groan.
(Proverbs 29:2)
When the wicked increase, transgression increases, but the righteous will look upon their downfall.
(Proverbs 29:16)