I wanted to take a few moments to throw out a quick reminder for each of us, at Sovereign Grace Church in Bellbrook, as we continue to engage people following the election.
Whether you're engaging via the posting of Facebook articles, Facebook memes, tweets, online discussion forums (or commenting on other's Facebook posts), or conversation with neighbors, co-workers, and family I'm praying that each of us will walk in Christ-like humility and with a significant amount of grace towards ALL people. I urge you to be slow to speak right now, and take time to listen to, learn from and pray and care for others. Remember, fellow citizens of another country,...
"...our political/cultural engagement must be primarily about proclaiming the hope found in the gospel of Jesus Christ to a nation whose primary problem isn’t a political one, but one of pervasive sin. May we not inadvertently direct people away from our only hope in Christ by finding our own hope to be misplaced in the politics of our land.
Here is an excerpt from my sermon on 11/6/2016
“Keep your conduct among the Gentiles honorable, so that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day of visitation.” (1 Peter 2:12 ESV)
This is simply a call for Christians to not only live a more moral life than those who have not entrusted their lives to Jesus but is a general exhortation for Christians to be good citizens as far as possible and to walk in humility with all. And I think that is true even in the face of significant opposition, either real or potential. In the midst of our political engagement, be it debates we encounter, our voting, or discussion face to face or on any form of media (including post-election chatter) that we would treat others honorably – always considering the other person more important than ourselves as Paul speaks of in Philippians 2.
Our political engagement should always be honorable and respectful and kind – the kind of lifestyle that reflects Christ, the king of the kingdom we are now citizens of because of the gospel of grace. In essence, that the character of our King Jesus would be reflected in us as we walk in humility and patience and contentment and hope in the midst of what seems to everyone else to be the most pivotal election in modern history. Our political engagement should be one marked by humility as we encounter those who have a different opinion than us.
The gospel teaches us that our biggest problem doesn’t lie in the person that disagrees with us, or political candidates or parties that don’t give God’s word and ways the time of day. No, the gospel tells us that our biggest problem is ourselves and that our Sovereign King, in his mercy and grace, poured himself out for me in my place. And as those who have received such mercy and grace, as the enemies of God, our call is, as Philippians 2 speaks of,
“Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.” (Philippians 2:5–8 ESV)
Our call as Christians who are informed by the gospel of grace, is to walk in humble sacrifice, entrusting ourselves (and others) to our good and sovereign King, and while fully engaging with the political process we have, we walk circumspectly and with kind, others-centered, gospel-compelled humility.
Praying that we will reflect, to a lost and confused world, the hope we have in Christ, in these days especially. May our actions and words be those of kindness and self-sacrifice, as well as an ever increasing inclination to listen to understand and empathize. Keep your conduct honorable...
With affection and prayer,