I’m sure that this blog post will ruffle a few people’s feathers, but that’s ok. I’ve never shied away from making people think about what they believe, so why stop now?
Let me begin by identifying who I am. I am a Christ-follower. I am a husband, father, and son. I am a conservative (although some may claim I’m not by the end of this blog, and that’s ok). It may be more accurate to describe myself as a constitutionalist more than a conservative, but since the knowledge of our constitution seems to be declining pretty rapidly, I’ll stick with conservative.
Now that you know what viewpoint I am coming from, let me pose a question. Since when did the pulpit of the church become a platform for promoting political agendas? It seems to me that many of our country’s well-known Christian leaders have become infatuated with pushing politics instead of sharing Jesus. On one end of the spectrum, we have a mega church pastor that refuses to say that Jesus is the only way to heaven when asked that question point blank in front of a camera. The Bible is pretty clear on that one. John 14:6 records Jesus saying, ‘I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through me.’ On the other end of the spectrum we have church leaders screaming for change in government instead of preaching Jesus.
Am I saying that being a pastor and being political are mutually exclusive? I’m not willing to go that far, but I do believe it’s VERY difficult to do so.
Why is it easier to find these church leaders talking about the evils of the democratic party (as if there weren’t problems in the GOP as well) than it is to find them talking about the love of Jesus? It’s gotten out of control as Christians are now recognized more by their political posture than by their doctrinal beliefs. Sure, some would say that it is their doctrine that shapes their political posture and I get that, but share Jesus with us before you share who we should be or shouldn’t be voting for.
There are many social issues that dominate political talk these days. Abortion, gay marriage, entitlement programs, race relations, and the list could go on. It is in many of these areas that I feel the church has missed the opportunity to truly show the world who Jesus is. Rather than loving people the way Christ did when He was on earth (he didnt’ hang out with the religious folks), we are attempting to legislate our interpretation of morality onto a nation where a significant percentage of the population doesn’t have the same standard of morality. We are fighting a losing battle when we do this.
Before you crucify me and label me a closet liberal, think about it this way. The church is expecting that an entire nation adopt its code of morality, when as a church we can’t agree across the board of the tenets of our faith. Ever wonder why there are so many denominations? How silly is it for us to expect this country to adopt our beliefs as part of legislation, when many of us will leave a church because we don’t like the style of worship music played?
Here’s the thing. I haven’t given up on this country returning to the basic principles that made us great. I just don’t think that elections are the way to achieve this goal. I believe the way this is achieved is by the church becoming the hands and feet of Jesus, loving the unlovable people in the world and letting change begin in our own lives. Revival won’t happen in this country by electing a Christian president, or by electing Christian government officials. Revival happens when I look inward at my own life and begin to clean the junk out of my own life while asking God’s forgiveness for MY shortcomings. Then my family sees me changing and I have the opportunity to share with them what God is doing in my life. I prayerfully hope that they are then encouraged to do the same. Suddenly this mentality spreads through families, neighborhoods, friendships, and into the church building, and beyond.
I want revival. God let it start with me.