By Steve Ewards
A pastor friend of mine posted this comment on his Facebook page and it started me thinking, so I wanted to jumpstart my article with this:
“A reminder – in light of the Supreme Court decision concerning DOMA and Prop 8 – Jesus did not send us into the world armed with political activism or a Judeo-Christian value system. He called us to share the foolish message of the cross and through that message, He will make all things new.”
I would have to agree. We have had several decades of political activism by the church trying to change the culture through aggressively trying to change legislation. It hasn’t worked from my perspective. What we have accomplished is to change the message of the Church to be that of social change and moral engineering.
We have had the Christian Reconstructionists try to recreate the climate and laws of the early years of America, only to disagree and disintegrate within their own ranks. This has resulted in a judgmental and legalistic interpretation of Christianity.
We have had the Moral Majority try to get more Christians elected to office. Instead of giving us some Christian statesmen, we have been handed more spineless politicians not wanting to rock the boat. Of course this is not true in every case. Some leaders have merely been shut down by the media with lies and accusations.
We have basically morphed the church’s reputation as a bastion of soul winners and spiritual healers into a hotbed of “right-wingers.”
We have leaned on the horse and the chariot. Is. 31:1, “Woe to them that go down to Egypt for help; and stay on horses, and trust in chariots, because they are many; and in horsemen, because they are very strong; but they look not unto the Holy One of Israel, neither seek the LORD!” We must stop leaning on the power and strength of our fleshly horses and looking to our churches as Christian armies to get things done in the government. That short cut to power, by passing seeking the Lord and following His methods, will not work today any more than it did for the Israelites of Old Testament days. We must learn again how to fight God’s battles God’s way. We must regain the moral superiority by being a people who listen to and follow God.
We, as leaders or members of today’s church, must reclaim the confidence our forefathers had in the power of the Gospel to change society one person at a time – or, in the case of a city-shaking revival, the entire town at once. But His change will come from Heaven, not Congress or a political platform.
I remind you that the Gospel is the power of God unto salvation – not social upheaval, to the Jew first and also the American. When we can change hearts to be obedient to the Gospel of Grace, we will not need to change laws or the political systems.
This is not to say that in America we should not vote and express our opinion and endorse candidates; it is to remind us that we should not have a misplaced hope.
As Leonard Ravenhill was famous for saying, “The answer is not in the White House, it is in God’s house.”
Judgment, and right thinking, must begin in the church. We must become the prophetic church which speaks God’s word into the world. We must renounce sin while extending forgiveness through the grace of the Gospel for change or recovery.
The church must rise up to call black black and white white. We must be done with the politically-correct speak and use biblical language in love, calling people everywhere to repent.
We must have answers for the hope within us, answers that are relevant not to the culture but to the Scriptures. We need to shun any other Gospel which we feel would reach people better or easier than the cross will. We must preach as dying men to dying men. We must not strive to be political movers and shakers, We are called to be pastors of the flock God has placed us in preparing them to be ambassadors of a heavenly kingdom that suffers for Christ at the hand of the world.
As Paul reminded his young apprentice, Timothy, “Preach the Word.” We are not preaching the Word when we are merely trying to change a law for the betterment of society. Change the laws if you can, but don’t put your hope in that arm of flesh to save society. The lawbreakers will continue to exist, and the unbelieving will still perish.
Share the foolish-to-the-world message. For those you save, it will be not foolishness but wisdom, the wisdom of God unto salvation. Let’s boast in nothing else but the cross of Christ!