The Bible and Politics

 

The Bible is not a book of myths without practical application. Instead it is a book about ultimate reality and how to deal with reality. One of the important realities, particularly right now, is politics.  Although politics has earned a deservedly bad reputation it is not intrinsically a bad thing. Politics is merely about governing a people and the administration of laws. Politicians are the ones that actually do the governing and administration. In a free society those being governed choose those that do the governing and administering. Therefore it is important to choose well. The verse about, as you sow so shall you reap comes to mind. (Gal 6:7 NIV)  Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows.

 

The Bible is about a real God, real people, and real life. It tells about real problems and has real answers. It is not a collection of fables nor a book of “Religious stuff” void of practical application. Every week in the bulletin you can read about what politicians from our past had to say about God and Jesus and the Bible. These great men, many were founding fathers, thought the Bible was the best source for guidance in any circumstance. I agree with those great men. Here are a few quotes from them.

*   "Every thinking man, when he thinks, realizes that the teachings of the Bible are so interwoven and entwined with our whole civic and social life that it would be literally-I do not mean figuratively, but literally- impossible for us to figure what that loss would be if these teachings were removed. We would lose all the standards by which we now judge both public and private morals; all the standards towards which we, with more or less resolution, strive to raise ourselves." President Theodore Roosevelt

*   "The secret of my success? It is simple. It is found in the Bible, 'In all thy ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct thy paths." George Washington Carver.

*   Why may not the Bible, and especially the New Testament be read and taught as a divine revelation in the school? Where can the purest principles of morality be learned so clearly or so perfectly as from the New Testament? United States Supreme Court, 1844

*   "The Bible is the Rock on which this Republic rests." President Andrew Jackson

*   "I believe the Bible is the best gift God has ever given to man. All the good from the Savior (Jesus) of the world is communicated to us through this book. Abraham Lincoln

*   I have always said that a studious perusal of the sacred volume will make better citizens, better fathers, and better husbands. President Thomas Jefferson

 

It is very clear that America is in a time of moral and economic decline. It is equally clear to me that the solution is for America to repent of the secular ways that brought us here and return to the ways of God as expressed in the Bible. This means men and women of faith need to step up to the plate and make themselves heard. There are many ways to be heard. You can write your leaders, your local paper. You can call or write to local radio and TV stations. You can speak up in your daily conversations with family, friends, and neighbors. Or, you can vote. There are many good reasons why you should vote. Here is one.

  1. Do not withhold good, Gal. 6:10, and a vote is a way to do good.
  2. Value your vote and vote your values.
  3. Does your vote count. Yes, as much as any other. Why should I or anyone else fail to vote on the grounds that I don’t get to make the final decision?

 

If enough Christians voted their values we could put men and women into office around the land that would champion the Bible based values we cherish. It is often said, “All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.” Edmund Burke? Perhaps that is why we are in the position we are in today.

So what are some of those values and principles we find in the Word of God? And who are these words directed to, you and me, or some bureaucrat/politician?

  1.  (James 1:27 NIV)  Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world. Who and how?
  2. (2 Th 3:10 NIV)  For even when we were with you, we gave you this rule: "If a man will not work, he shall not eat.” There are those that I call the legitimate poor that cannot work.
  3. (Exo 20:17 NIV)  "You shall not covet your neighbor's house. You shall not covet your neighbor's wife, or his manservant or maidservant, his ox or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor." Ask yourself how often politicians play on the sin of coveting.
  4. (Mat 22:39 NIV)  And the second is like it: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' Or, do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
  5.  (Exo 20:15 NIV)  "You shall not steal. Is stealing by proxy OK?
  6. The poor will always be with you. Working to relieve poverty is admirable when done according to Bible principles. It is not admirable when done otherwise.
  7.  (Rom 12:16 RSV)  Live in harmony with one another; do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly; never be conceited. (Exo 23:4-6 NIV)  "If you come across your enemy's ox or donkey wandering off, be sure to take it back to him. {5} If you see the donkey of someone who hates you fallen down under its load, do not leave it there; be sure you help him with it. {6} "Do not deny justice to your poor people in their lawsuits. In other words the law should be applied equally without consideration of status in the community.
  8. (Rom 12:18 NIV)  If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Do frivolous lawsuits come to mind?
  9. (Deu 24:16 NIV)  Fathers shall not be put to death for their children, nor children put to death for their fathers; each is to die for his own sin. Yet, in today’s world it is not uncommon for uninvolved parties to be penalized.
  10. (Exo 21:14 NIV)  But if a man schemes and kills another man deliberately, take him away from my altar and put him to death. Does this say something about capital punishment?
  11. (Eccl 3:1 & 8 NIV)  There is a time for everything, … a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace. Can war be the way to a righteous peace? Yes, it has in the past and it will be in the future.
  12. (Mark 12:17 NIV)  Then Jesus said to them, "Give to Caesar what is Caesar's and to God what is God's." And they were amazed at him. Government has a legitimate place but government needs to be kept in its place.
  13. (Deu 8:11-14 NIV)  Be careful that you do not forget the LORD your God, failing to observe his commands, his laws and his decrees that I am giving you this day. {12} Otherwise, when you eat and are satisfied, when you build fine houses and settle down, {13} and when your herds and flocks grow large and your silver and gold increase and all you have is multiplied, {14} then your heart will become proud and you will forget the LORD your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery. Does this relate to our current Bible study about a wilderness mentality?

 

Bottom line is this. We have an obligation to do what we can do to make this world a better place. We do this by living and applying the principles of the Bible to everyday life!