Should Christians Get Involved In Politics?
I just returned last night from the Super Bowl where my focus was using the sport of football to teach leadership and character. Many have no idea the huge number of professional football players who are Christians and have an influence on this game. Yes, you hear about the disgruntled and the arrests, but rarely do you hear about the JJ Watts types of players who raise millions for charity and actually are the boots on the ground backing up the good work they are doing in their communities. Executive VP of NFL Football Operations Troy Vincent spotlights these men in a weekly Facebook and Twitter feed called Service Saturdays, if you are interested. But there is more to this. It’s about overcoming evil with good.
Romans 12:29 instructs: “Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.” Some translations say “conquer evil with good.” Many Christians question why we should be concerned about government or organizations like the NFL when it doesn’t appear to align with certain values. “Don’t you believe that God is in control,” is the question asked, or “Haven’t you ever read Romans 13?” Yes, and its probably one of the most wrongly translated chapters of the Bible from the context that if God is sovereign and in control of all things, Christians don’t have to concern themselves with the worldly aspect of governments or influential organizations. These kinds of Christian clichés wrongly leave the impression that our world is so ordered by God that we don’t have to worry about living out our lives or fighting against evil when we see it.
This is not an “either/or” situation, but rather “both/and.” God is in control AND Christians must act. Let me use a football analogy. The head coach has control of the team. The coach provides for the players. He gives them the playbook instructing them how to play the game. He has strong suggestions about off-the-field character and will discipline those who don’t comply. On game day, his players must execute the plan to be successful. Players make mistakes, but Coach loves them and exhorts them to do better. A player may not match up well and could be harmed or harm the team. Coach intervenes. Coach does his best to protect his players from unnecessary risk and to see that they win. But players have to make choices and play the game. There are consequences to their decisions that impact them personally and the team.
God gives us the playbook through both his WORD and the Holy Spirit. It is up to us to live it out. Sometimes he intervenes to protect us or to teach us. He is sovereign and is in control. He also works through his people. How many times are we reminded to be salt and light, to overcome evil, to stand against the wiles of the devil, to make disciples, and so on? Without the light of Christ as carried by each of us, the world is a dark place. Without the Way, the Truth, and the Life, the world is a dying place. It is you, the vessel, who carries out God’s plan here on earth. Just as the coach is in charge and depends on his players, God is sovereign and depends on you. This is not a cliché, it is truth. That’s why we concern ourselves with government, organizations, people and the world around us in general.
Have a Blessed and Powerful Day!