by Dan Russell
SOUTHGATE, MI – Please allow me to touch on the touchy subject of talking politics in church. I will avoid the divisive issues of party partisanship or promoting a particular candidate, but I will give five suggestions of how Biblical principles can guide us as we talk politics among our fellow believers in our church family.
1) Put Jesus before politics
by talking as much, or more, about Him as you do about your political views or candidates. Matthew 6:33 “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.”
2) Speak the truth in love
by agreeing to disagree without being disagreeable. This will keep your political conversations from interfering with your relationships with people. Ephesians 4:15 “…but, speaking the truth in love, may you grow up in all things into Him Who is the Head, Christ…”
3) Be passionate, but not emotional
by coolly, calmly, and quietly expressing yourself without getting angry. Listen as much as you talk, and don’t lose your temper. James 1:19 “So then, my beloved brethren, let everyone be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger…”
4) Don't criticize in order to legitimize
by tearing down another person in order to make yourself, or your candidate, look better. Critiquing issues is one thing, but criticizing a person is another. Ephesians 4:29 “Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for building another up, that it may impart grace to the hearers.”
5) Be reminded, and remind others, that God is in control
by realizing that God will have His way in the world of human government, no matter who wins a given election.
This will be even more true as we move closer to the end of time.
Revelation 17:17 “For God has put it into their hearts to accomplish His purpose by agreeing to hand over to the beast their royal authority, until God’s words are fulfilled.”
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Dr. Dan Russell is the Ministry Director for the Southeastern Baptist Association of Michigan. Dan has been in pastoral ministry for 40 years and currently serves as the Executive Pastor at Calvary Baptist Church in Southgate. He is also the Send Network Coaching Coordinator for church planters in Greater Michigan, as well as being on the NAMB Assessment Team for prospective church planters.