Jesus Is Political

Jesus said to them, “The kings of the Gentiles lord it over them; and those who exercise authority over them call themselves Benefactors. But you are not to be like that. - Luke 22:25-26

At that time some Pharisees came to Jesus and said to him, “Leave this place and go somewhere else. Herod wants to kill you.” He replied, “Go tell that fox, ‘I will keep on driving out demons and healing people today and tomorrow, and on the third day I will reach my goal.’ - Luke 13:31-32

They asked, “Is it right for us to pay taxes to Caesar or not?” Jesus saw through their duplicity and said to them,  “Show me a denarius. Whose image and inscription are on it?” They replied, “Caesar’s.” He said to them, “Then give back to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and to God what is God’s.” - Luke 22:22-25

Jesus critiqued the current political leaders, he called the governor a “fox” (not a nice thing in the first century) and he taught about taxes. These are all political things, and there are dozens if not hundreds of other verses and stories that could be quoted here about how Jesus was political. And it’s not like they executed him because he was Mr. Rogers. They killed him because he was a political threat.

Many of us grew up being taught to keep religion and politics separate, but that’s not an idea that comes from Jesus. He lays claim to every part of our lives, and that includes our social and political lives. Not to mention the fact that he has strong ideas about how people should be treated, who should be included, and what justice looks like. Politics addresses these very questions.

So following Jesus is inherently political. It doesn’t mean you have to follow a particular party or political system - but it does mean facing the reality that Jesus is calling you to integrate your politics into your faith.

Spend some time today praying for the coming elections, asking God for wisdom about how to vote and about how to approach the political process in our country these days.