Navigating Politics as a Christian: Maintaining Unity and Sharing the Gospel
Welcome to Victorious Christians! We are so glad you are here. Today we want to talk about the relationship between politics and faith, and how it can sometimes be a challenging balance to strike as a Christian.
As believers, it is important for us to remember that our ultimate loyalty is to Jesus Christ, not to any political party or ideology. Romans 12:2 reminds us to “not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.” At the same time, the Bible does not shy away from addressing social and political issues, and as followers of Jesus, we have a responsibility to engage with the world around us and be salt and light in all areas of our lives, including politics. In Matthew 5:13-14, Jesus says, “You are the salt of the earth, but if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trampled under people’s feet.”
But what about when our political beliefs differ from those of our fellow believers, or even non-believers? It can be easy to let political division creep into our relationships and cause tension or even division. This is especially true in today’s highly polarized political climate. However, as Christians, it is important for us to remember that our primary purpose is to love one another. In John 13:34-35, Jesus says, “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”
So how can we handle politics in a way that preserves unity and respect in our relationships, while still staying true to our beliefs? Here are a few strategies:
- Focus on shared values and common ground. Even if we disagree on specific political issues, we can still find ways to connect and support one another based on our shared values as believers. Philippians 2:2 says, “Complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind.”
- Practice respectful dialogue and listening. When discussing politics, it’s important to listen to others and understand their perspectives, rather than just trying to persuade or argue. Seek to understand and respect one another, even if you don’t agree. James 1:19 says, “Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger.”
- Remember that our ultimate goal is to share the good news of the Gospel with others. While it’s important to engage with the world around us and strive for justice, our primary purpose as Christians is to share the love of Jesus with those who do not yet know him. This should be our primary focus, even when discussing politics. In Matthew 28:19-20, Jesus says, “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.”
So how can we effectively share our faith with others, despite political differences? Here are a few tips:
- Be authentic and genuine. People are more likely to be receptive to the Gospel when it is shared in a genuine and authentic way, rather than as a means of persuasion or argument. Colossians 4:6 says, “Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person.”
- Build relationships. The best way to share our faith is through building relationships with those who do not yet know Jesus.
- This means spending time with them, getting to know them, and showing them the love of Christ through our actions and words. In 1 Thessalonians 2:8, Paul writes, “So, being affectionately desirous of you, we were ready to share with you not only the gospel of God but also our own selves, because you had become very dear to us.”
- Pray for opportunities to share. As we seek to share the Gospel with others, it’s important to pray for opportunities to do so. Ask God to open doors and give you words to speak as you seek to share his love with those around you. In Colossians 4:3, Paul writes, “At the same time, pray also for us, that God may open to us a door for the word, to declare the mystery of Christ, on account of which I am in prison.”
- We hope these tips and strategies are helpful as you navigate the relationship between politics and faith. Remember, as believers, our ultimate loyalty is to Jesus and our primary goal is to share his love with others. May we always seek to do so with respect, kindness, and authenticity, no matter what our political beliefs may be.