Saturday, August 6, 2011

Jesus vs. America?

Should Christians be involved in politics?

I do not have an answer to this question. That being said, I do not believe it is sinful for a Christian to use a particular platform or political office to effect change, as long as it is in conformity with God's Word. My concern lies, however, in the apparent "Americolatry" exhibited by many of the so-called "Christian right". Many conservative Christians have been duped into thinking that America is and always has been a Christian nation, and that now the liberals are taking us down the wrong path. Many see America as "the great hope" for the world. Therefore, these "America-worshipers" get all up in arms when Democrats have their way, as if their very lives were at stake. They want to take back the country for Jesus, as if America is God's chosen people. I cringe whenever I see The Patriot's Bible on the shelves in bookstores. Do we worship America or Jesus Christ?? You can't worship both. To try to somehow mix God's Word with out-of-context quotes from our founding fathers, as if they are somehow equally inspired by God, is nothing short of blasphemous. Thomas Jefferson, the author of our Declaration of Independence, denied the Deity of Christ by brazenly cutting out all the verses in the Gospels describing supernatural events, including the resurrection of Christ.

A few points:

1) Patriotism is not a sin. In fact, it is a good thing to support our nation and be grateful to God for the blessings we enjoy. But when we let our mood and our demeanor be affected by the state of affairs either in Washington or on Wall Street, we have crossed the line. God is in control, and he can accomplish his purposes with or without America.

2) As believers, we are first and foremost citizens of heaven. Why don't we start focusing more on the kingdom of God rather than the kingdom of America? Think about this: Jesus Christ lived under one of the most oppressive, cruel, inhumane empires to ever exist on earth. How many prayer rallies did he lead in the streets of Rome? How many manifestos did he write about the moral decline throughout the empire? How many times did he denounce the sexual deviancy that was so prevalent, or the slave trade that was so common? Answer: NONE. In fact, we see the opposite. Jesus did not want his followers getting caught up in the affairs of the government, if it meant that they would be neglecting the things of God. Peter and Paul both exhorted all Christians to be subject to the Roman empire, which is striking considering the fact that Christians were being regularly murdered by Nero's regime.

3) America does not have a monopoly on Christianity. We should be more concerned with the state of the Church in America than we should about the state of the government or economy. Which will matter more on the day of judgment? As believers, getting caught up in "America" takes our eyes off our brothers and sisters in Christ around the world who are still being murdered for their faith. Their plight is something we will likely never experience, but this is not because America itself is so great. God is blessing us in spite of America's sins.

God is not an American, and he is not even a Republican. He does not care what political party you support. He cares about your allegiance to Him and Him alone. Politics and patriotism are secondary.


  1. My church recently produced a sermon on this very topic recently. Protesting and wagging our collective fingers only makes us look like fools. Instead of trying to change the culture, we should be trying to change hearts. Living by example is far better than any legislation. That said, if we can stand politically against a great evil--abortion being the most obvious--that is well. But protesting and waving the Bible around is not the best approach.

    Moral people without Christ is just as bad as immoral people without Christ.

  2. I think you are missing the boat here. For most people the issue is the agressive exclusion of Christian principles in public life based on the claim that we were not only NOT founded as a Christian nation but somehow the state was invented to protect people from Christianity -- a.k.a separation of church and state. Frankly, it takes a pretty egregious revisionist history to think that the nations founders had the current state of affairs between the Fed Gov and Christianity in mind, or would think this situation acceptable.

    "Living by example is far better than any legislation" is pretty naive; we are now faced with an active opponent using the leginslation and government as a weapon. Living by example is an individual responsiblity, making sure the government does not conflict with Christian principles is a corporate responsiblity.

  3. Good points, anonymous. Don't get me wrong, I agree with you 100% that legislation and government are becoming a weapon against Christianity...the so-called separation of church and state is one of the biggest political hoaxes of all time. All I'm saying is some of us in Christian circles have swung the pendulum the opposite direction and hold America on a higher pedestal than we should. Let's keep our noses less in the newspaper and more in our Bibles.