Why Electing Christian Leaders Doesn’t Work

How do we make America more Christian? When I talk to some Christians or read their social media posts or see them on the news, the answer seems to be obvious: vote or appoint Christians into all aspects of government, from the local mayor to Capitol Hill.

But I ask you, if putting righteous people in political power make a nation Christian, why didn’t Jesus put himself on an earthly throne?

Jesus did the exact opposite of American Christianity’s standard practice. He raised up twelve disciples, yet put none of them in prominent positions. He came as a nobody in a manger, and he came to serve, as epitomized in Matthew 20:25-28. “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and those who are great exercise authority over them. Yet it shall not be so among you; but whoever desires to become great among you, let him be your servant. And whoever desires to be first among you, let him be your slave—just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life as a ransom for many.” (NKJV)

“It shall not be so among you.” Yet it is. Many Christians still try to gain political power, either themselves or by hoisting up someone else, believing that America will become Christian when we put Godly men in power.

My friends…even God couldn’t make that work.

Remember the Old Testament? The nation of Israel was FOUNDED by GOD HIMSELF, with GOD as the ultimate authority, and spearheaded by people GOD put in charge, held up by laws that GOD wrote IN HIS OWN HANDS. And it didn’t work! If a God-oriented political power can’t work in this broken world, how on earth can we hope to succeed?

I think God gave us the Old Testament to show that this kind of power structure doesn’t work, not here and now. Yes, one day, Jesus will return to conquer his enemies and reign as king, but he will also rejuvenate the earth and cast the devil into Hell, and all will be made new. (Revelation 21-22)

That is not our world, not yet.

In this world, God showed us that Godly kings will not work, not for long, because the law does not change hearts. Jesus came to change hearts, and he did so by serving, by washing the feet of the one who would betray him, and dying for his enemies. He set up no government, overthrew no government, and applied to no government position. That’s what the “Gentiles” do—which in our modern context might read, that’s what the Godless Americans do.

It must not be so among us.

That’s not to say Christians can’t run for political office—they can, and much good can be done there. But we won’t make a Christian nation by enacting good laws from good people. If that was enough, God would not have sent Jesus. Yet he did, to teach us a new way, a method of serving which touches hearts.

So let’s stop flipping out about putting Christians into office. We must not turn a blind eye or ignore politics, nor the evil people who fill those slots, and we must always vote as God and conscience dictate, but we must not think Godly politicians will solve the problems, because they won’t. We don’t make America Christian by putting Christians in Congress. We make America Christian but putting Christians in the streets, serving the Left, the Right, and everybody else Jesus died for.

That is how it must be among us.

Now ask yourself, or perhaps God, who can you serve today? In big ways or small? Go out there, serve them, and you will have done more for the Kingdom of God than an entire Christian Congress could ever do.

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