Gina Miller’s article, Should Christians Be Politically Active?, inspired me to comment. But because of the substantial length of my comment, I decided to post it separately. You can read Gina Millers article at http://barbwire.com/2014/09/17/christians-politically-active/ and also at RenewAmerica.com and AmericanClarion.com. In her article, Gina responds to the verbal chastisement of a Christian who feels that speaking out against the evils done by civil government is morally repugnant and the wrong focus for Christians.
Being a Christian in America should not be perverted to mean we must drop out of politics and let the ungodly rule over us! Being politically active is an effective way Christians can love their neighbors. The goal of Christian involvement in politics is to secure everyone’s God-given rights, for which God ordains government. In a republic, the civic duty of its citizens (the “rendering unto Caesar” if you will) means participating in their representational government. At the very least, that means staying informed and voting. It means using our freedom of speech and freedom of the press to keep the public discussion of issues available to all who are willing to hear it. It also includes seeking and holding elected offices. We have the duty and responsibility of ruling ourselves. In a republic, there is no king or ruling class. By dropping out of politics, Christians are handing over the governing authority to scoundrels and fools — neither a wise nor spiritual thing to do.
As in so many other cases these days, the reason some Christians believe being politically active is wrong is because of their ignorance. And frankly, many of them are not only content to remain ignorant, but insist on doing so, resisting all opportunities to examine their position. Christians opposed to political involvement love to quote Romans 13:1, while shutting their minds to what it actually means. I challenge them to refute the book, Romans 13, The True Meaning Of Submission, by Timothy and Chuck Baldwin. It is written like a legal argument, so be prepared to use your grey cells.
Another book I highly recommend is One Nation Under God, Ten Things Every Christian Should Know About the Founding of America, by Dr. David C. Gibbs, Jr. Although we are no longer a Christian nation, the United States was essentially established by Christians for Christians. The important role played by the clergy before the Revolutionary War of Independence is described in chapter 7, The Black Regiment. “Because of the color of their robes, these patriotic clergy were known as the black regiment.” (p. 94) One member of the Black Regiment, Rev. Jonathan Hayhew, of Boston preached a sermon in 1765 in response to King George’s Stamp Act. In part, he reasoned,
The king is as much bound by his oath not to infringe the legal rights of the people, as the people are bound to yield subjection to him. From whence it follows that as soon as the prince sets himself above the law, he loses the king in the tyrant. He does, to all intents and purposes, un-king himself. (p. 96)
When work on the Constitution had been completed, Benjamin Franklin was asked what kind of a government had been designed. His answer was, “A Republic, if you can keep it”. The sad fact is that we did not keep it. In the past century, we have gone from republic to democracy to socialism as secular influence has increased and Christian influence has decreased. Yet some Christians still argue that the abrogation of our civic duty is good and proper, while being politically active is an “idol”. How much sense does that make to you?
Elections will be held in a couple of months. If past performance is any indication, half of the people won’t even bother to vote. We will continue to be ruled by fools and scoundrels, whether they have a D or an R after their name. Galatians 5:1 says, “For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit to a yoke of slavery”. Freedom means responsibility. If you let others decide for you and tell you what you must do and how things are going to be for you, you are not free. But that’s exactly what Christians are doing when they don’t vote or exercise their freedom of speech. By giving up their responsibility, they are giving up their own freedom, and forcing everyone else to lose theirs.
Christians owe it to their neighbors, to their communities — for the freedom of all their fellow citizens — to participate in politics.