Religious Extremism?

Some Christians are persuaded that God is not a politician and does not get involved in politics or such human trivialities.  They insist that it is entirely up to humans who rules them, and that it is ‘religious extremism’ to bring God or prayers and ‘spirits’ into political discourse.  They envision God as a disinterested long grey-bearded grandfather, noise-proofed from juvenile distractions, who sits aloof at his quiet end of a restricted park engrossed with his creased and spectacled face half hidden behind the broad evening newspaper, while the children frolic loudly, pursued by their long sunset shadows at the other end of the family park.  Okay, is politics an entirely natural affair, with the supernatural playing no part in it?  The other side does not think so, and we shall soon hear what the Bible says on the matter.

  1. What is Politics?

To start with, what is politics?  There are more definitions of the concept, from Classical to Modern times, than there are fingers and toes on any person debating the topic.  If we should consider Aristotle’s definition of politics as “the science of governance,” was it not politics when God put Moses over the Israelites, and Moses also by God ordained Aaron to manage the Religious Affairs Department of that population?  Was it not governance (or politics) when the Apostles chose seven deacons to oversee Social Welfare in the early Church?

If we should agree with Herbert Kaufman, the American political scientist, that politics is the “management of people,” was the revolutionary Jesus not involved in politics of sorts when He led and managed twelve men for over three years, doctrinating them to change their world, and when He instructed them (even though briefly) to manage the masses who sat down on grass lawns to be fed with free bread and fish?  Was it not politics, in John 19:12-13, when the Jewish religious leaders stirred the multitudes against justice and also threatened Pontius Pilate their governor with blackmail unless he conceded to their demand to condemn Jesus?

From the perspective of Harold Lasswell’s very common definition of politics as being about “who gets what, when, and how,” would we be dealing with politics even in witchcraft when diabolical forces (at individual and community levels) are involved in determining who does or does not get what, when, and how?  According to Carl von Clausewitz the Prussian military strategist, politics is “war by other means.”  Will that explain the vast territories that the Church has lost, especially in Europe, Africa, and North America to other religions and other interests – without a bullet being fired, in many of the cases?  Is politics limited to political parties and elections?

  1. Politics of the Supernatural

Perhaps the most apt of modern definitions is that by one man who lived much of his life in the very terrain, experiencing the bad and good sides of blunt politics – Nelson Mandela of South Africa. For him, politics was “the struggle for power and leadership.”  If we should accept that definition, was it not politics when Lucifer fought for control in Heaven but was resisted by the Heavenly Forces and promptly expelled from that territory when his audacious coup d’etat failed?  Does it not read like a political manifesto when Lucifer, in Isaiah 14:12-16, announces that he would “ascend into heaven,” exalt his throne “above the stars of God,” and “be like the most High”?  Is Satan political or not?  Is he an interested party in human politics or a harmless gentlemanly pacifist?

Was Satan being brought into governance on earth when Elymas the sorcerer positioned himself advantageously by Sergius Paulus the deputy governor, to resist the gospel in his space (Acts 13:6-12)?  Why did that sorcerer not rely entirely on his psychic powers but also sought a strategic political handle for challenging the counter force of the gospel? Does the supernatural sometimes leverage on the natural?

Was it not politics interfacing with the spiritual realm when Pharoah king of Egypt sought the aid of diviners to decode his consecutive dreams of a looming agronomic boom shortly followed by a related doom (Genesis 41:8)?  In the reverse, was not the supernatural interfering in natural affairs when the dark Prince of Persia resisted the angel of God from entering ‘his’ territory of Babylon with a bilateral political message for Daniel (Daniel 10:12-14)?

When membership of certain occult associations becomes a factor for who gets selected or elected into what office, when, and how, and the system is deliberately manipulated, sometimes even through sorcery, to achieve that aim, is it still entirely an ‘ordinary’ human affair, with no spirits (or spiritual interests) being engaged in that management of human interests?  Does it matter to Satan who rules on earth?  Does it matter to God in Heaven who rules His people on earth?  What does the Bible say?

  1. Does God Choose Leaders?

Repeatedly in 1 Chronicles 28, God said of Solomon, “I have chosen him,” and He spoke also of David as “chosen” to be king of Israel (vv. 4-7).  Really? Is God interested in who becomes king?  Is God a politician? Does He have preferred candidates in human elections?  Does He pick candidates (or sometimes none) from among a range of presented options?  In other words, does He get involved (whether or not realized by mortals) in the human processes for producing leaders (1 Samuel 16:6-13)?  What is God’s interest in human politics?

God told Elijah to proceed to anoint Jehu as king over Israel.  That was Israel.  But God further sent him to anoint Hazael as king of Syria.  That was not Israel (1 Kings 19:15-16). God told Prophet Samuel that He had sacked Saul as king of Israel (1 Samuel 16:1).  That was Israel.  But God also sacked Belshazzar from being king of Babylon (Daniel 5:25-31).  That was not Israel.  Is God also interested in ‘elections’ amongst people that are not ‘His’ people?  Is He interested in global politics?  Shouldn’t God restrict Himself to ‘politics’ in the church and among ‘His’ people?

Is God interested only in major politics, at national and global levels?  Is He also interested in politics at such minimal levels as who becomes the monitor of a class of children or who is chairman of the board in an office?  By appointing captains over as high as thousands as well as captains over as low as tens (Deuteronomy 1:15), it will appear that God is interested in the governance of human affairs at all levels, great and small (Deuteronomy 28:13).

It is not just kindergarten naivety but dangerous devilish deceit to accept that God is not interested or does not get involved in human governance, and Christians should therefore not bother themselves about who rules.  The other side is not so gullible. Nobody escapes politics.  Even if you don’t ‘join’ it, it still rules you.

  1. Thrones Allowed but not Endorsed

God is a partisan politician but He does not force His choices upon mortals (1 Samuel 8:7; 10:19).  Sometimes He merely laments their terrible choices emboldened by the idol of their wealth, their “silver and gold” and other carnal interests, as in Hosea 8:4 where He says, “they have set up kings, but not by me: they have made princes, and I knew it not.”

Whereas we are enjoined in Romans 13:1 and 4 to be “subject unto the higher powers” because “the powers that be are ordained of God,” and a ruler “is the minister of God” (vv.1, 4), Hosea 8:4 will seem to be stating that God is not the power behind every throne; and the fact that He allows a throne does not also mean that He endorses it; that someone has won or successfully stolen an election and has been put into office through the relevant human structures in that society does not mean that God was the doer of it; that He tells us to obey them (for our peace) does not mean that He honours them; the instruction to pray for them is not also a command to bless them.

Rulers may come in any of three ways: there are kings made by men, kings that come from God, and also those that are Satan’s candidates.  The Bible and history are full of examples.  In other words, the spiritual is not essentially separable from politics.  The same God who anointed David as king of Israel also anointed Cyrus the gentile king of Persia, saying of him, “he is MY servant,” the “anointed” one (Isaiah 45:1; 44:28).  Both kings were anointed by Him, even though the modes of their ordinations were not the same.  On the other hand, that same God also identified Pharaoh king of Egypt as “the great dragon that lieth in the midst of his rivers,” a leviathan, a messenger of the devil (Ezekiel 29:3; Revelation 12:3).  The implication is that natural thrones might proceed from God or from Satan; that human thrones have their supernatural backings (Isaiah 41:13).  It matters little whether humans realize this or not. And please note: every gentile king is not automatically a Cyrus, though a corrupted Church might tag him so.  That is a story for another day.

  1. Prophets in the Palace

We have considered definitions of politics across the spectrum of time, from the ancient Greeks to modern times; we have seen important definitions across an extensive space, from America, Europe, and Africa; and we have highlighted the Bible from those broad perspectives.  By what definition of politics conflicting with what section of the Bible is someone excluding the Christian from politics?  God is not apolitical, and the Christian should not be fooled to be ‘neutral’ and aloof, thus dropping their guard and letting the enemy run wild in their land while believing themselves thereby to be ‘politically correct.’  The mandate of Jesus still is, “Occupy till I come” (Luke 19:13), and He was not talking about a place on the pew or a seat on the bus to church.

David prophesied from a throne in Jerusalem, and Daniel had his great visions of God from within heathen parliamentary quarters in Babylon – not in the temple of God.  Joseph was Prime Minister in Egypt a foreign land, and Esther was First Lady, too.  None of those prophets on the podium of politics was inferior to Ezekiel who prophesied from the temple, or to Elijah with his altar of fire on Mount Carmel.  So, please, tell me, is the Heavenly Father interested in earthly politics?

From The Preacher’s diary
July 4, 2024.

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Bolanle Musa
Bolanle Musa
14 days ago

Yes Sir, God reigns in the affairs of men. He is the Great King over all the earth and the only One who can subdue people under us. We desperately need God in our politics, especially in Nigeria.

Kengemaye O. Cotterell
Kengemaye O. Cotterell
14 days ago

Doubtlessly, God has great interest in politics—He is indeed a Politician.

Tunde Chukwujekwe
Tunde Chukwujekwe
13 days ago

This is mind blowing and it’s an awakening call to many dormant Christians chorusing “this world is not my home……”

Duru Clifford Chuka
Duru Clifford Chuka
13 days ago

Satan is no fool; not by any means. How subtly he has deceived many believers into accepting, overtly or covertly, that The Sovereign Lord, The Great Monarch of the Kingdom of Zion is apolitical.

It is eye-opening from this detailed piece that God is not only interested in how humans administer the Earth, but intervenes sometimes by ensuring HIS choice makes it to the position of leadership at every level, local or global.

We owe the Church this enlightened perspective by ensuring that this message goes far as we share. It is a sellout for believers not to be actively involved in politics. Politics remains a tool of control over individuals and nations of the world. The Church has unwittingly encouraged the global persecution and deprivation of believers by allowing Darkness to be in charge of decision-making.

It is not late to truly occupy until HE comes. It doesn’t make sense to opine that God, the Author of the Dominion mandate ( Gen 1 v 28), didn’t include politicking in our ‘curriculum’.

I pray for more grace for ceaseless flow in unveiling Biblical truths. Thank you, sir!

Mary Kokoyo Edem
Mary Kokoyo Edem
13 days ago

This is an eye-opener.
My eyes of understanding has been greatly enlightened.
Before now, I erroneously believed that all leaders were elected by GOD and therefore need our prayers.
I know better now.
Thank you Preacher’s Diary.
More revelational insights in JESUS mighty name.

Bomo Jamabo
Bomo Jamabo
6 days ago

Yes, the heavenlies has keen interest in earthly politics.

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