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FIRST-PERSON: Christians in politics

DALLAS (BP)–Some Christians say you shouldn’t mix politics and religion. They are wrong.

One pastor/activist, Bryan Fischer, makes the case beautifully. Fischer is a graduate of Stanford University and has a theology degree from Dallas Theological Seminary. He spent years as a teacher of biblical studies and as a pastor. But he also stayed active in his home state of Idaho, serving on the Boise Parks and Recreation Commission and even spending a year as chaplain of the Idaho State Senate.

Fischer worked on causes ranging from fighting abortion to preserving Ten Commandments monuments to lowering taxes. He’s currently employed by the American Family Association dealing with government and public policy.

At the recent Values Voters Summit in Washington, D.C., Fischer gave a speech tackling the most frequent arguments against Christian participation in the political process.

First argument: Politics is messy; but so are churches. In fact the messiness of the political arena is one of the best arguments for Christians to make sure we stay involved.

Second argument: Politics concerns the kingdom of earth. Christians should concentrate on the Kingdom of Heaven. But throughout history God has placed His men in political positions. Joseph, for example, enacted economic policies that saved his nation from ruin. How about Moses who led his people out of Egyptian captivity and through whom God gave His Law to Israel? And Joshua was a commander-in-chief and political leader. God used him to get his nation a homeland. Throughout Judges and Kings in the Bible we find leaders whom God used to implement His plans.

Fischer counters another common argument which goes like this: “God has placed our leaders in power and Christians, especially pastors, shouldn’t criticize them.” But God charged His prophets to repudiate kings publicly. John the Baptist spoke out against Herod’s public and private conduct. Jesus took on the Sadducees and the Pharisees.

We don’t live in a theocracy like Israel. The church is not to rule the nation, but it is to be the conscience of a nation. Christians should vote and get involved in elections because Romans 13 says public officials are ministers of God. In our system, who but believers should have a greater interest in their selection?

Fourthly, Fischer points out: “Every slice of power a politician has, he got from God.” Romans 13 says there is no political authority except from God. In America, people get to choose their leaders. Of course God uses His people to affect that process.

And, finally, Christians need to stay involved in the political arena to stop, or at least to do all we can to curtail, evil practices like abortion which believers and non-believers alike are now being asked to fund with their tax dollars.

We must be there to try to prevent the redefinition of marriage, God’s institution to protect the family.

Believers should vote, speak out, run and lobby. From the pulpit to the pew, Christians should be involved in politics.
Penna Dexter is a conservative activist and frequent panelist on the “Point of View” syndicated radio program. Her weekly commentaries air on the Bott and Moody Radio Networks.

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  • Penna Dexter