Ever heard that expression? I have…and I agree. Let’s. But often I’ve heard it said in defense of not wanting to get political, or of not wanting to speak or debate politics, or as a deflection not to take a political stand.
Here’s the problem though. The gospel itself is political — and so much more. The gospel is the message of hope and salvation in Jesus Christ alone. When we come to believe in Him, we put our trust in not only a Saviour, but also in a King. The gospel permeates all of life, and impacts every sphere of authority in our lives, including politics.
“But we don’t want to get political, we just want to spread the gospel.”
Guess what? To spread “the gospel” is to spread a kingdom message. Kingdoms are political. Jesus always went about “preaching the good news (the gospel) of the Kingdom of heaven”. Kingdoms have kings. And kings rule. Kingdoms, kings, and ruling are all political. And this Kingdom of heaven that Jesus preached is no ordinary kingdom. And its King is no ordinary King. It is an everlasting and advancing Kingdom of heavenly origins whose King is Jesus, the King of all kings and Lord of all lords.
So to focus on and spread the gospel is a political work. God Himself is Sovereign, the one who “reigns over” all things. Essentially when we spread the “good news” (gospel means good news) of the Kingdom of God advancing — we proclaim that Jesus is the rightful, ruling King on the throne. He rules over all things, He is gathering for Himself a people, and He will come again soon to manifest His rule completely and fully. All authority has been given to Him (Matthew 28:18-20). And rightly so, because He obtained that place of authority by fulfilling His Father’s will in coming down from heaven to earth ushering in the establishment of God’s Kingdom here. He dwelt among us, and died on a cross as Saviour for His people, thus defeating sin and Satan’s kingdom of darkness. He rose from the dead, thus showing His power over death. And He ascended on high, and renders Satan, the now powerless accuser, as limited. From heaven Jesus still rules over all as He prepares a place for us. He intercedes for us daily as our real flesh in heaven. And He will come again to usher in His Kingdom in all its fullness.
Jesus, with authority over all, currently rules over EVERY sphere of life — all homes and municipalities, all regions and provinces, all nations, peoples, languages…yes, over the entire world, AND over His universal church — His embassy on earth.
And He wants us as His church to faithfully proclaim His rule and His salvation in every sphere (from Moms and Dads all the way up to Presidents and Prime Ministers) until He comes. Because some may not recognize Christ as the ruling King and authority over all as they rule and govern. You and I then, as gospel truth proclaimers into their lives, function like a salt and light flavoring and lighting up their conscience reminding them that they are subject to our ultimate King Jesus and His just and good ways as they rule. They are to bow to Him and to believe in Him for salvation. They (and we) will be held accountable for all our actions.
So, if you want to “just focus on the gospel”, awesome. That is our calling as followers of Jesus Christ the King.
Just remember… it is a highly political endeavor. And “highly political” comes with high risk. Jesus knew that… He warned that following Him would cost us everything. Wait. Seriously? Maybe that’s why some are afraid to take a political stand.
So let’s pitch that fear and start to engage in all spheres of authority and life with the gospel on behalf of the rightful King.
“Your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.”Paul the Apostle