3 Keys to Jesus' Politics - Feature Image
Posted On 05/06/2015

3 Keys to Jesus' Politics

As more and more prominent leaders throw their hats into the Presidential election ring you can feel the tension coil. Things might just pop. Facebook statements will be made. Friends will be torn apart. Our country will probably continue to polarize.
However, I would suggest that something even worse will happen: People will quote God.
Scripture will be ripped from its context and pasted onto the canvas of political agendas. Each candidate will try to convince everyone that they are the only choice for what is right, loving and upright.
Before we get all entrenched behind our chosen candidates, here are three things we should understand about Jesus’ politics.

1. Jesus is not an American

Jesus does not look at the globe and ask questions like:

How can I make America strong? How do I improve America’s economy? How do I keep American borders secure? How do I get a Christian in the White House?

When Jesus walked on the earth the Israelites were God’s chosen people. This is the only nation that has ever been God’s people. No other nation has ever received a formal blessing from God. The Israelites, simply known as the Jews, were under great oppression. Their land was occupied by the pagan Romans. After 33 years on earth, Jesus did absolutely nothing to help the Jews become a strong nation. In fact, as a nation, the Jews were actually weaker after Jesus left the earth.
The pouring out of God’s Spirit and the spread of the Jesus’ message, which consumed the ancient world, did nothing to help the Jews.  In fact quite to the contrary, it was at this juncture that a pagan government, Rome, grew to the height of its power and influence. As Christians were under severe Roman persecution their empire grew.

God uses nations, but he does not adopt them.

Israelites, Rome, England, Spain, France or America; God only concerns himself with the political agendas of men and earthly nations as it serves the agenda of His kingdom.

2. Jesus is the ruler of another nation

The kingdom of God is an actual thing. This kingdom has a leader: Jesus. This kingdom has a constitution: the Bible. This kingdom has citizens: followers of Christ. This kingdom is all Jesus cares
This is the only kingdom Jesus cares about because it’s the only kingdom that is eternal.
Listen to that again, IT IS ALL HE CARES ABOUT.
He doesn’t seek to make any earthly nation great. He wants citizens of every nation on earth to become citizens of heaven. Rome fell, England regressed, and it is reasonable to assume that America will do the same. Yet, the Kingdom of God will be as strong as ever.
Only the kingdom of God has God’s favor and blessing. It is a kingdom, “not of this world,” just as Jesus promised Pilate in John 18:36. There are citizens of heaven in Afghanistan, Russia, North Korea, and even Canada :-). Every earthly nation has a large number of “citizens of heaven” as Paul calls us in Philippians 3:20. This is where God’s heart is.
Every earthly nation has a large number of “citizens of heaven” as Paul tells us in Philippians 3:20. This is where God’s heart is.

3. Jesus is apathetic

A quick read of the gospels gives you a simple understanding of Jesus attitude toward the politics of his day. Whether concerning Jews or Romans, Pharisees or Sadducees, Jesus always seemed to come with an entirely different perspective.

Tell us then, what is your opinion? Is it right to pay the imperial tax to Caesar or not?” But Jesus, knowing their evil intent, said, “You hypocrites, why are you trying to trap me? Show me the coin used for paying the tax.” They brought him a denarius,  and he asked them, “Whose image is this? And whose inscription?”  “Caesar’s,” they replied. Then he said to them, “So give back to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and to God what is God’s.Matthew 22:17-21

This coin was going to be given to Caesar, who would use it to build, among other things, pagan temples of worship, gaudy palaces and fund war simply for the purpose of expansion. “Give it to Caesar,” Jesus says. Can you hear his apathy? As if there is something much bigger and more profound going on than the Roman empire.
In the feverish argument between the left and the right, I think Jesus would come with a whole different perspective. He would lead those who are following him to place their hope in a kingdom not of this earth. He would seek to save liberals and conservatives, not lobby against one or the other.

My point, if I have one

Vote as you please, but don’t devote your soul to it.
Elections, executive orders, legislation and judicial rulings do not affect the unseen kingdom of God. Morality doesn’t make someone a citizen of heaven. “But,” you might say, “this country is going to hell in a hand basket.” Yep, and it was before it even existed. I would encourage you to get passionate about a kingdom founded before the creation of the world. Get intensely focused on the gospel message of Jesus. Get excited about sharing the kingdom of God! Those are Jesus’ politics.

About The Author

Grant Agler

Teaching Pastor/Communications Champion Central

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Grant is our resident farmboy. He grew up in the cornfields of northwest Nebraska. He spent his early days living far from God. As Grant says, "I gave God the middle finger and didn't really care about faith at all." As a young man, he became convinced that God was real. He gave his life to Jesus and experienced God's amazing grace that previously made no sense to him. After experiencing that grace, Grant felt God calling him to teach the message of the gospel. Over the past 20 years, he has been preaching and teaching. Grant, his wife, Bethany, and their four children moved to Michigan in 2011, and he joined the 2|42 team in 2019. Grant is always good for a laugh, but more importantly, he explains biblical concepts in ways anyone can understand.
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