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Losing our Voice

DSC01121A summary of the day’s international news seems especially difficult to absorb. As families and loved ones of the missing 239 of MH370 begin to receive compensation for losses that have no financial equal, conflicts in Iraq, Ukraine and so many other regions represent the real fear and insecurity that stretches beyond all national and personal boundaries.

In the middle of such news I found a BBC item describing the growing political divide in the US. Admittedly, in so many ways such partisan polarization doesn’t begin to compare with the imminent threat of war—or worse. But what does deserve our attention is the way that followers of Christ have been caught up in a political battle that has a way of eclipsing our first love and calling.

This problem of losing our voice in a lesser conflict isn’t new. This past week a friend and co-worker who has a special interest in the legacy of CS Lewis sent me a couple of quotes, that reflect a similar problem of another time and place.

“I think almost all the crimes which Christians have perpetrated against each other arise from this, that religion is confused with politics. For, above all other spheres of human life, the Devil claims politics for his own, as almost the citadel of his power. Let us, however, with mutual prayers pray with all our power for that charity which “covers a multitude of sins.” Source: Letters: C. S. Lewis/Don Giovanni Calabria (10 August 1953), para.1-3, p. 83

The friend went on to write, The definitive C. S. Lewis article on Christians misusing politics is in “Meditations on the Third Commandment” (1941). The most salient section is found on pp. 196-198 in the book “God in the Dock”  edited by Walter Hooper. By the mere act of calling itself the Christian Party it implicitly accuses all Christians who do not join it of apostasy and betrayal.

Given the choice to divide over real problems, or to unite around the only real solution, am once again wondering whether followers of Christ in the US— or in any part of the world— have the luxury of choosing to lose our distinct voice and message by the way we argue over partisan economic interests and ideologies? (Philippians 3:7-8)

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83 Responses to “Losing our Voice”

  1. SFDBWV says:

    I have been here at this site long enough to find I am repeating many of the things I have to say, for that I apologize and please bear with me when I do.

    The old adage that friends should never discuss religion and politics together because they will lose a friend, has never lost its flavor.

    It is an odd saying because for me my friends or even just acquaintances, usually always end up talking of both. Because both have an everyday impact on our lives.

    As for blending religion and politics from my being a Christian, let me say that if we are going to be a democratically controlled government, and it up to we the voters to decide who and how our government should be run then I will always look for a person of similar moral and ethical values to be positioned to lead my country.

    I would not in good conscience vote for a person who has no moral ineptitude to be in a position of power over me or my fellow countrymen.

    All of us know how easy it is to call ourselves a Christian, and all of us find it a bigger battle in making a judgment call as to whether or not someone who claims to be Christian lives up to *our* standard.

    However I could never vote for a person whether a confessing Christian or not who doesn’t pass a few very volatile moral litmus test questions.

    It comes down to this, as Christians it is an obligation to our faith to be good citizens of whatever country we live in. It seems contrary to our faith to ally ourselves with any political organization or peoples that openly are in opposition to the moral character of our faith as Christian.

    More on how Christianity grew to a world political power because we as Christians exercised our *voice*, as the discussion develops, as well as how being silent cedes that same power over to the enemy of Christian’s everywhere.


  2. tracey5tgbtg says:

    Good quote from C.S. Lewis, “Let us, however, with mutual prayers pray with all our power for that charity which ‘covers a multitude of sins.'”

    Also liked what Mart said, “But what does deserve our attention is the way that followers of Christ have been caught up in a political battle that has a way of eclipsing our first love and calling.”

    Luke 19:10 For the Son of Man came to seek and to save what was lost.

  3. tracey5tgbtg says:

    Steve – I am confused by your calling Christianity a world political power. I didn’t think that was the goal of Christians. Any power we have is not our own, it is from God.

    Psalm 44:3 It was not by their sword that they won the land, nor did their arm bring them victory; it was Your right hand, Your arm, and the light of Your face, for You loved them.

  4. poohpity says:

    I have always voted a split ticket for the person not the party. All I really understand is that those who run our country have a very difficult task and I pray that more common people will step up to the plate with experience that is not rooted in politics. I do not think that Christians need to pull back from those positions but run for the job. We certainly could use more wisdom, discernment and unity.

    I used to believe that Christians had no part in running our country and leave it to politicians but God has gifted some with the abilities of leadership, service and administration. Is that only to be used in the church or can it be used for the good in public office? I think those gifts can be useful in any area.

    I do not know whether some of you know that there is a group in the House that refer to themselves as “No Label” they work together to solve problems. Last I heard there were only 90 but it is a start.

    We can not fall into all the posturing, blame and name calling but we must pray for the very large job that is before all those folks and our country. (1 Tim 2:1-4 NLT)

  5. SFDBWV says:

    Tracey the topic is a political one and as always how our being Christian influences our political views and actions.

    The goal of Christianity is to make all people everywhere Christian (Matthew 28:19, 20).

    What are the obstacles to that?

    We have had to live in and move in a world of political power since our faith began in Jerusalem.

    Paul used his citizenship as a Roman in order to gain access and influence those who would have prevented his going to Rome and in essence bring the Gospel to the world.

    Whether Protestants like it or not the conversion of Constantine began the unification of Christianity and political power.

    Because Christianity became the *official* religion of the Roman Empire Christian evangelism was spread all throughout the Roman world which included North Africa, Europe, Eastern Asia, Briton and from these bases far into the then unknown world.

    Even after the Roman Empire ceased to be a political power its offshoots continued to spread Christianity all around the globe and continue to.

    This is all accomplished by Political power being under the control of Christians.

    Christians are of course under the ultimate control of God, so Christians are in essence carrying out the will of God through the means of their political power.

    I hope this clears it up for you when I say Christianity as a world power.


  6. poohpity says:

    Steve, it seems you may be giving to much power to people and not God. People are the very one’s who feel the need to control rather than following God or His will. Just because someone calls themselves a Christian does not mean that they are actually following after Christ. Sometimes it is just empty words used to dominate and oppress as we have seen in history.

  7. poohpity says:

    For instance during the civil rights movement the predominate white Christians used the name of the Lord to promote how they treated blacks. The list is so big and still exists when there is hatred of any kind toward anyone.

  8. jam200 says:

    Having run for a political office, mayor, of a major Indiana city, I can tell you the influence is strong because of power and money. Even with many people praying the lure of evil is strong.

    I professed my Christian beliefs during the campaign but empty promises including the promises of entitlement were so strong that I lost. I was threatened, saw two supporters lose their jobs.

    It was difficult to maintain my Christian testimony 100% of the time. I lost the election and eventually God called my wife and I to Alberta to serve addicted men and women.

    Even in a Christian ministry politics raises its ugly head and leaders seek to do what they want to do instead of the direction and vision that God has provided.

    Canada and the USA are changing quickly before our eyes. I believe that soon Christians will be persecuted in a way not seen in America. Our prayers are needed.

  9. quietgrace says:

    Good morning all,

    As Mart said, “The problem of losing our voice in a lesser conflict is nothing new.” I too used to vote/support for candidates based solely on their moral standards, but have learned that just as with Christians not in leadership corruption of the Christian message is a common result of the failures that beset us all. What to do? Pray. Pray. And keep praying. Not for our will, for what we think is the right candidate, but for the cross to become pre-eminent. Things happen and always will; wars, rumors of wars, infidelities, deceit and law-breaking. But to assume it is God’s will that we promote and encourage someone based on what we think we know about them is as Mart says, losing our voice in a lesser conflict.

    A great lesson occurred several years ago when a well-known tele-evangelist said that God told him he should run for president. Well, we know how that turned out. It was also a wake-up call for me as a newer Christian. God is so much bigger than our little elections and we do well not to forget that. The gospel has always gone out more so during oppression than ease. Lets hope we put the gospel first, and be ready to suffer the consequences as we let it be known that who we are is not a political affiliation, but a real part of a larger family, the family of the One True God.

    Blessings, Grace

  10. Loomis says:

    Martin your articulation is excellent here. There is definitely a gathering storm here which we need to address and we have to be free to speak the truth. Right and left ideologies split allegiance will not survive.

  11. hera says:

    Where i live, many religions exist, so respect, high tolerance is a must, therefore discussing religions and/or politics is not advised. What is politics actually, don’t we also have politics in office, churches (what about Vatican?) even in the neigborhoods where ppl have different interests, their own agenda ..whatever they may be….

  12. lovely says:

    From the land of the cousin it is dangerous to mix religion with politics. Cause they can kill you legally. I can’t discuss further about this religion as I am in the land of our cousins. But these things has already been prophesied in John 16:2 .
    In fact God has already warn us about this Matthew 24:7
    As said before whatever we see happen in the physical has already been decided in the spiritual. (read about Job) , Satan have to ask God first before he can lay a hand. Something happen in the spiritual . This is evident in Ephesians 6:12 . Christian or not we’re in a spiritual battle. Hence, political or religion is just a physical side , behind that is a spiritual battle. Other words our enemy uses political influence to persecute us, Christians too. This is evidence in the book of Daniel. That’s why God ask us to pray for those in authority
    1 Tim 2:1-4 So we can have peaceful life. Their decision influence our life. If we read about Daniel, David and the Israel kings, their decision is influence by the “wise man”. Therefore there are wise man place by our enemy and as well place by God. Daniel is God’s people, Esther is God’s people. In every place or country God has definitely place Daniels and Esthers. Although we can see disaster happening, that’s only physical, Jesus says He has overcome the world and he has called us to do the same 1 John 5:4 We need to see beyond what our physical eyes can see , that’s call faith. Hebrews 11:1.King Nebuchadnezzar was one of the ruthless king at that time that will kill anybody that doesn’t bow down to the idol. Even so he cannot withstand God’s judgement. Daniel 4:37 . Esther asked her people to fast and pray for her while she was sent to the king to reverse that verdict to kill the entire Israel race.
    Start a prayer group wherever you are and pray for your nation. Now we understand why the enemy bring strife to family and churches because when Christians get together and pray, we move the spiritual realm , angels fight and we can change a nation! Daniel prayed and angels came.
    Psalm 22:28 for dominion belongs to the Lord and he rules over the nations. So lets pray for our Esthers and Daniels

  13. SFDBWV says:

    Mart often quotes BBC news, I too have it in my favorites as well as CNN and Fox. I like to compare stories and see how they are presented. I must say that BBC has a more worldwide coverage with a less *political* slant.

    Politicians have to convince voters that they best represent their views as well as goals for a stable government.

    It isn’t so much that Christians are “confused” with politics as it is that unscrupulous politicians *play* to the voter and tell them what they want to hear.

    You also have Christians who genuinely want to be in a position of power so as to “Form a more perfect union.”

    Here in the United States our forefathers formed a government that could be removed from power by the very people they are empowered by to *serve*.

    The only way it is possible not to be *used* by political power mongers is by being attentive and informed.

    As Christians we do our fellow citizens a great disservice if we are not part of the electoral process and especially if we abandon our moral code in favor allowing people of a different goal or skewed view of morality to rule over our fellow man as well as ourselves.

    There are plenty of *cults* who believe they should separate themselves from the worlds governments and live apart, none of them succeed and it isn’t a *new* idea, the Zealots thought the same way.

    Lovely is very right when she says for us to pray for the “Daniel’s and Esther’s” among us to step forward.

    One need only look to the Bible for direction and see that the various kings that led Israel either failed or succeeded according to their adherence to God’s will or the lack of it.

    Am I supposed to set idly by and let evil have its way and expect God to do everything while I do nothing?

    On Mount Carmel God sent fire down out of heaven and consumed the altar, but it was Elijah who killed off the priests of Baal.

    God uses people for His purposes and one of His purposes is for us to live in safety and prosperity, but just like when Israel entered into the Promised Land the *people* had to take it, use it, and live in harmony with God. It was when they didn’t obey God that disaster on a national level came.

    Are we wanting disaster to come to our countries, because we think is isn’t our place to have a political opinion and exercise it?

    Look at what is going on in Iraq right now and you see the future for us all unless we come together to stop it. God used such evil to punish Israel, but only so that she would return to her roots, do we have to go down the same path just because we allow others to elect leaders who do not see *right from wrong*?


  14. poohpity says:

    I think we lose our distinct voice when we argue over anything. Rather than Christians influencing the countries where we live it is the countries that seem to influence us. We seem to stick our heads in the sand and do not act or most times do not even pay attention to anything outside our little worlds. If enough just people do nothing then the unjust will prevail.

    Solomon prayed for wisdom to govern God’s people. The Lord’s response was, “Then if my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and restore their land.” I ask myself how often do I pray for God’s wisdom to run my household, how I vote, what to say, what do you want me to do or even how to respond to others? How can I speak God’s voice when I do not listen enough to Him to even know His voice? How can I act on His voice because I am speaking to loud? How can I know His Will because I do not ask what it is or search the scriptures enough to know it? The third commandment if really considered happens all the time but God.

    Getting involved with God keeps us from arguing over the things that divide which I can see how politics comes from the devil. Anything to take our eyes away from the answer to solving all our problems.

  15. quietgrace says:

    Lovely you see with spiritual eyes, as many of us here in the U.S. don’t. We have things here too good for our own good, sometimes. The Bible warns against letting riches become our god, and we are seeing the consequences of that in all realms of society here. We do have many more freedoms here certainly, but our eyes become so focused on those “rights” as we call them that we become self-absorbed and concerned with our own comforts.

    God bless you and others for being the voice to warn and bring us back to our spiritual roots, which began when we individually accepted Christ as our personal savior.

    There was a prophecy given at the end of WWII by whom I’m not sure of, but the prophecy said that God would pour out great prosperity upon the U.S., but that it would become a curse eventually. We have seen that in so many ways.

    I am reminding myself this morning to turn my eyes upon Jesus, the author and finisher of my faith.

    Blesssings, Grace

  16. street says:

    Admittedly, in so many ways such partisan polarization doesn’t begin to compare with the imminent threat of war—or worse. But what does deserve our attention is the way that followers of Christ have been caught up in a political battle that has a way of eclipsing our first love and calling.

    “Listen to me, O men of Shechem, that God may listen to you. 8 Once the trees went forth to anoint a king over them, and they said to the olive tree, ‘Reign over us!’ 9 But the olive tree said to them, ‘Shall I leave my fatness with [g]which God and men are honored, and go to wave over the trees?’ 10 Then the trees said to the fig tree, ‘You come, reign over us!’ 11 But the fig tree said to them, ‘Shall I leave my sweetness and my good [h]fruit, and go to wave over the trees?’ 12 Then the trees said to the vine, ‘You come, reign over us!’ 13 But the vine said to them, ‘Shall I leave my new wine, which cheers God and men, and go to wave over the trees?’ 14 Finally all the trees said to the bramble, ‘You come, reign over us!’ 15 The bramble said to the trees, ‘If in [i]truth you are anointing me as king over you, come and take refuge in my shade; but if not, may fire come out from the bramble and consume the cedars of Lebanon.’

    If I remember correctly “religion” is man’s failing attempt to reach God.

    “Politics” is when people give power to individuals to rule over the group for the good of the group. “politics” is a disagreement over what power is given and who’s interest.

    I think many times people want someone to look out for them so they can go off and pursue self-interest. Was not Israel’s request for a King a rejection of God’s rule?

    If I read God’s law right we are our bothers keeper.

    3 Do nothing [c]from [d]selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; 4 do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others. 5 Have this attitude [e]in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, 6 who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be [f]grasped, 7 but [g]emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. 8 Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death [h]on a cross. 9 For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, 10 so that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

    Remember the world is in darkness. It is so important to know and understand the truth. With God’s help, and humble boldness, speak the truth in love that those who hear. Ephesians 4:29

  17. belleu says:

    I vote for politicians who want to help the poor and middle class. I don’t care about anything else about them. I don’t care if they are Christian or not. I want deeds that will do the greatest good. You can say you are a Christian and act like the devil.

    I do think Christians have become too vocal in politics. Preachers should preach the gospel. There shouldn’t be a Christian Bloc of voters. Everyone should vote their conscience. What does the world think of this nation since Christians have become vocal in politics? What does the world think of Christians? I’ll tell you what they think. They think we are hateful towards the poor (they should get a job at McDonald’s) and the gay population and we want to force women to be humiliated and grossly examined when they want an abortion; they think we are exclusive and narrow minded and unloving. We have put a pretty face on Christianity.

    As for Constantine and the Roman Church, they murdered over 11 million people through the years of their reign. They fought evil wars and were deeply corrupt. Martin Luther tried to change things within the church and couldn’t. They burned people, they tortured people, they made them drink boiling oil to kill them.

    If Church and State unite in this country there will be persecution like the Dark Ages. The State Church will arrest and kill gay people and people of other religions. I believe this will happen one day and that the Sunday Laws will return and whoever breaks that law will be arrested. And everyone, like me, who believes the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord our God will be persecuted and jailed.

    Look at every nation that has State Religion like the Muslims. They kill anyone who disagrees and now they are killing each other.

    Well, I didn’t think I would ever comment on politics on this blog ever again. But Mart brought the subject up. Everyone is speaking their mind so I did too. I appreciate reading everyone’s remarks.

    Jesus lived under the Romans, an evil and corrupt government, yet he never said a word about them except to walk an extra mile if a solder forced you to walk one. Yes, Paul used the law to help himself and we can do that too.

  18. poohpity says:

    belleu, do you think this topic is really about politics?

    Is it the government’s job to help the poor and needy or the churches? I thought the purpose of our federal government was, “”establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our posterity.”” as per the Preamble of the Constitution. As our government has fallen short of their duties by either overreaching or neglecting but so have the churches.

  19. belleu says:

    I think “General Welfare” means making sure people don’t starve, are sheltered from the elements and have health care. Look at the third world countries. Do we want to be like them? The happiest countries on earth are those who have health care for everyone.

    The way for a country to prosper is to help people get an education so they can work and pay taxes. But what about stupid people with mental problems. No one wants to hire them, not even McDonald’s. I have a cousin like that. She is slow, disorganized and can barely read. She has had lots of jobs but gets fired. What about people who are sick? What if they have no one to care for them? In third world countries they lay on the streets and beg.

    Promoting the general welfare is not cutting food stamps while wanting trillion dollar wars. Yes, I did think this was about politics and the loud church voice in it. Preachers should stay out of it so they aren’t in the news saying stupid, mean things.

    I am not angry at anyone here, but I do feel anger towards Christians who misrepresent Jesus in the news.

  20. remarutho says:

    Good Evening Mart & Friends –

    The number of news headlines on your list, Mart, includes massive front-page stories:
    The Malaysian Airline loss-of-life settlements
    The violence in Iraq
    The conflict in Ukraine

    The little BBC article is a socio-political commentary that bears upon the United States’ political grid-lock and resulting paralysis. I wonder, first of all, whether the sad state of American politics really merits mention in such world-shaking contexts as international law cases – Muslim unrest – and Soviet sphere power-struggle. Perhaps it does. I would say it is much more a domestic issue than an international one. To the extent that the USA is unable to agree upon a course of action and then marshal its resources and follow through, the USA will be powerless in the decisions of the global community. Who wants to hear from a government that has descended to the level of a mid-high cafeteria food-fight? Just asking.

    It seems to me there are people who call themselves Christian at both poles of the remarkable division in Congress and in the body politic. Does either group make a “bad name” for the other? Can such misguided haggling corrupt the reputation and pure purpose of the Lord Jesus? These questions are up for discussion, in my opinion. We seem to live the questions rather than the answers.

    Your illustration, the deposition of the crucified Jesus from the cross, brings home the message we have been given voice to share:

    “Where is the wise? Where is the scribe? Where is the disputer of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of this world? For since, in the wisdom of God, the world through wisdom did not know God, it pleased God through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe. For Jews request a sign, and Greeks seek after wisdom; but we preach Christ crucified, to the Jews a stumbling block and to the Greeks foolishness, but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.”

    The voice of God still calls human hearts and minds and spirits. Why would those who live by faith throw away their voice on debate in the public forum? Are we not called to be:

    “The voice of one crying in the wilderness:
    ‘Prepare the way of the LORD;
    Make His paths straight.
    Every valley shall be filled
    And every mountain and hill brought low;
    The crooked places shall be made straight
    And the rough ways smooth;
    And all flesh shall see the salvation of God.’”


  21. poohpity says:

    belleu, I have lived where there is socialized medical treatment and it is not better than a competitive market place. There are long wait times to see doctors just exactly what is happening with the VA. When a government gets involved which is people running things bureaucracy follows. Welfare does not mean food stamps, healthcare or TANF it means the well being of the citizens. What you were saying, how you are feeling and how you said it seems to represent exactly what this topic is eluding to about the divisions and anger caused by ideologies and partisanship.

    When Israel demanded a king the Lord told Samuel what would happen and that the people were much better off having the Lord God be their only King. (1 Sam 8:10-20 NLT)

  22. SFDBWV says:

    Birds of a feather flock together…

    God divided people at Babel (Genesis 11:1-9) because they were not dispersing out into the world and moving on as well as the threat of being united in their efforts; strange that God didn’t want them to be united in effort. (Genesis 11:6)

    At the very end of all things there are nations in place, governments on earth (Revelation 20:7, 8, 9) this follows the 1000 year reign of Christ on earth with us as reigning with Him (Revelation 20:4).

    How to rule is outlined all over the Bible in both the OT and the New.

    In the end God divides people into two categories the ones who live on with Him and the ones whom he intends to punish forever.

    I read today on a BBC poll that Bill Clinton is the most admired President in the past 25 years.

    Admired by who? Why?

    If you disagree right away you have divided yourself from those that do.

    In the wilderness while Moses was gone the popular activists among the Israelis forced Aaron into building a golden calf. (Exodus32:1-35) Once Moses returned the people divided themselves into two groups, one for God the other against. Those against God were killed off by those who were for.

    Some of us see the popular politicians among us as evil as any example found in Scripture, and also see the consequences suffered upon the people who follow them as exampled in Scripture.

    All throughout Scripture there is never any room for neutrality in going along with or being against evil.

    By ones very inaction against wrong doing, one abets in the crime.

    I am very opinionated whereas my view of politicians are concerned. It is such men and women who would lead our nations teach our children and place us on a pathway to either blessings or curses, we as a people will either share in or suffer together because of them.

    Joshua said in Joshua 24:15 to choose between blesses and curses, was he just a politician or a wise ruler?

    I hope that all of you who turn your back on participating as a citizen of whatever country you live in and allow others to decide the fate of your selves and your neighbors never have to suffer as a result, but others will suffer when good people do nothing to prevent it.


  23. remarutho says:

    Good Morning All —

    The body of Christ in the USA seems to have fallen in half according to the political polarity in the marketplace and the capitol building:

    fundamentalist v radical left
    literal Bible reading v reinterpreted Bible
    yearning for past strictness v seeking a lawless future
    sharply disapproving of liberal voices v sharply disapproving of conservative voices

    It seems to me that each camp indulges in too much of a good thing. Christians are embarrassed by both — and the voice of reason is drowned out in the fray.

    Jesus interrupted a hide-bound establishment with a voice proclaiming God’s original law of love that was from the very beginning. What if the Christians became Jesus-followers and listened twice (or three times) as much as we spoke?

    Why do voices for acceptance of pagan people have to be drowned out? Why do voices for the authority of Scripture have to be drowned out? Jesus accepted, ate with, and welcomed pagans. Jesus embraced and personally obeyed the commandments of God.

    Would it be more like Pentecost than Babel if we sought the unity of the blessed Holy Spirit?


  24. remarutho says:

    May we vote our conscience in every election!

  25. SFDBWV says:

    Let us not forget Luke 12:51….

    Good morning Maru.


  26. remarutho says:

    Good Morning All —

    And, Steve, a bit farther on in Luke chapter 12:

    Then He also said to the multitudes, “Whenever you see a cloud rising out of the west, immediately you say, ‘A shower is coming’; and so it is. And when you see the south wind blow, you say, ‘There will be hot weather’; and there is. Hypocrites! You can discern the face of the sky and of the earth, but how is it you do not discern this time?

    “Yes, and why, even of yourselves, do you not judge what is right? When you go with your adversary to the magistrate, make every effort along the way to settle with him, lest he drag you to the judge, the judge deliver you to the officer, and the officer throw you into prison. I tell you, you shall not depart from there till you have paid the very last mite.”

    Might we not do well to settle with one another before we approach the bar — either in the courthouse — or at the Bema Seat? We will never think or believe the same, nor will we speak with one voice; but we can agree that Jesus is Lord,
    the Word of God has authority and
    the Creator God is sovereign. At least I hope we can!


  27. remarutho says:

    It seems to me the velvet glove is much more powerful than the bare fist. Strictly my opinion. Paul had to make some kind of peace between the newly baptized pagans. It seems to me the lordship of Jesus is the rock, and the Holy Spirit is the guide for the body of Christ. Paul told them:

    “God loves you and has chosen you as his own special people. So be gentle, kind, humble, meek, and patient. Put up with each other, and forgive anyone who does you wrong, just as Christ has forgiven you. Love is more important than anything else. It is what ties everything completely together.

    Each one of you is part of the body of Christ, and you were chosen to live together in peace. So let the peace that comes from Christ control your thoughts. And be grateful.”

    Could Jesus followers affect the tone of the conversation in the House and the Senate of the USA? I am believing the pendulum will swing before we tear each other to bits, like the gingham dog and the calico cat. The nation learns love when it sees love practiced by leaders.


  28. poohpity says:

    I have yet to hear little children argue over politics, they do however put there trust in the Father. Our voice is not heard because more often than not it sounds more like the world around us no distinctive difference. A gentle answer turns away wrath but the voice they hear is one that stirs up wrath, contention and anger.

    Just even with this conversation people seem to feel more comfortable discussing politics than God, His Word or His principles. We are asked to be good citizens in whatever country we live unless it goes against the principles we hold dear to. If one does not know those principles or following the leading of the One we serve then we tend to get caught up in kicking sand, name calling, and partisan divide.

    We know the solution yet we continue to act out in our strength to bring about change and the only thing that really brings change is God’s love. Psalm 46:10 NLT

    Happy fathers day!

  29. poohpity says:

    Matt 5:9-10 NIV

  30. belleu says:

    Hi Everyone. I do have passionate feelings when it comes to politics and the poor. The right-wing doesn’t want to help the poor, yet they are the ones always talking about God. Read what Jesus taught about the poor and see if what they do lines up with the word of God.

    If Republicans don’t want to spend money on the poor, then fine. That is their philosophy. But they drag God along with them saying, “Lord, Lord,” while not doing what he said to do. They brag about their righteousness while cutting food stamps and not giving students a break on interest rates. They try to block health care to the poor. People die because of that and they don’t care.

    I am an American living in Canada. We all love our health care plan. The plan costs $150 per month for one couple. Everything is free: operations, childbirth, checkups, doctor visits, emergency visits. It gives us all such peace of mind. I only wait a day or two for an appointment with my GP. Tests have to wait for weeks unless you are in bad condition. I needed the emergency room treatment recently and had to pay nothing. The care was wonderful.

    The right-wing say they are patriots. Are they patriots about a piece of land called America, or do they care about the people? Why do they put their money off-shore so they don’t have to pay taxes like everyone else? Their taxes help this country they say they love so much.

    The right-wing loves war. Why? Money. If they would just leave God out of their stupid and selfish schemes I wouldn’t care. But the church of Jesus’ day was the same. They hated the poor and hated Jesus.

  31. poohpity says:

    Sounds very “partisan” and uninformed to me, very good example of what Mart is saying! This is one of the greatest problems that is happening in our country at this point by demonizing the opposing party with lies and blame. That is what really gets my goat is a lack of fact gathering and putting “ideologies” into action. Where is the peacemaker filled with kindness, gentleness and the love that covers a multitude of sins?

  32. poohpity says:

    belleu, then on top of it all you do not even live here and my hunch is you may not vote either but are very forthcoming with an opinion that does nothing but stir up hostility.

  33. quietgrace says:

    Pooh! Take a nap. Love you! Grace

  34. poohpity says:

    No thanks grace my son is taking me out to lunch for father’s day maybe after. Is that a patronizing way of saying shut up?

  35. quietgrace says:

    LOL! No, that was a graceful way of saying “take a break” LOL!
    Glad you are going out with your son!

    Happy Father’s Day all you dads out there! Grace

  36. SFDBWV says:

    You see I think the way we look at everything else in life reflects the condition of our heart and certainly what comes out of our mouths as well as what we write.

    Politics are part of the life we have around us, it affects every aspect of our lives and so cannot be ignored. So how we view it or participate in it is simply a reflection of our hearts.

    Jesus shapes our hearts, but even how we see Jesus is as different as how we see politics or any other aspect of life.

    We are not going to all see everything the same.

    One of the things we are taught from Scripture is that what we take into our heart has the potential of forming what our hearts become. So it is very important to be careful in things you partake of.

    Belleu you are of course entitled to your opinion, but is what you said, your opinion from experience or from what outside influences have trained you to believe?

    I am a lifelong Republican, can you honestly say to me that the things you said about Republicans fits your opinion of me or that because I say I am a Republican that what you believe about Republicans now influences what you think of me.

    People from all over the world come to America for a better life, I believe we have quite the issue on our southern border with people so desperate that now they send their children knowing that America will take them feed them house them and educate them in spite of being illegal aliens, they are first and foremost children in the eyes of authority.

    I know a few Canadians and they are wonderful people, I hope Belleu you are happy and content there in Canada and have a long, healthy and prosperous life.

    I will continue to work here in my community to ensure a good quality of life for myself and all others around me to the fullest extent of my ability*.

    I fixed a Father’s Day dinner of fried cubed steak baked in gravy, with mashed potatoes and choice of peas or green beans and shared it with my immediate family and a couple of elderly women here in our community, though what I do every Sunday (cooking a big Sunday dinner and sharing it), today it is my gift as father to continue to be a father to those I love.


  37. poohpity says:

    grace, anyway one frames it you are still saying shut up. I do not see the humor in that at all.

    When I hear someone condemning another wrongly I will speak up.

  38. quietgrace says:

    Sorry Pooh, it’s my dry Irish humor that sometimes gets the best of me. The heart is deceitful above all things.

  39. belleu says:

    Thanks for your replies to my post. I was speaking from my heart. I do believe I also speak from facts but that is up to you to believe or not. I am very glad I no longer live in the U.S. My husband, who has carcinoid tumors for over twenty years, would probably be dead if we lived there.

    I’m sorry if I hurt anyone by my opinions. I didn’t mean to at all. But I think I have the right to say what I believe on this blog, just as all of you do.

  40. belleu says:

    Pooh, Since I have dual-citizenship, I vote in Canada. If some of my statements are not true, then please let me know and i will apologize to all.

    I know the church of God over all the world has done immeasurable good through the years. I am just writing about vocal Christian politicians.

  41. cbrown says:

    God’s Word is Truth.

  42. foreverblessed says:

    Great topic Mart!
    How can we pray together for the blessing for the world, as Lovely wrote June 14, 3.57 am, “Start a prayer group wherever you are and pray for your nation.” Lets be One in the Spirit, and the Spirit is love, covering a multitude of sins.
    Covering a multitudes of sins is only possible when we see the sins, not denying them or getting offended.
    Let’s pray together for your country, politically : for your parties, that they look for the best of the nations, not their own pockets, or the companies that fund them. For the good of the environment, not only making money and leaving the land polluted and bare behind after the profit has been earned. For caring of the poor. For caring for the foreigner, as Israel was a foreigner in Egypt, and yet God cared for her.
    Psalm 12:5, Psalm 14:6, Psalm 15:5, Psalm 35:10

    But most of all, being humble partisans of the Kingdom of God, bringing the news of Grace through Jesus, covering a multitude of sins, of all those who repent, and turn to God, in meekness and humbleness, God is in charge, He is the Master of the Universe, He knows the way, He even knows all the good works I am going to do, and all for yours who read this. Gal Eph. 2:10. He planned them already long ago, lets surrender to Him and pray in unity together, a oneness in Spirit is a great force in the Universe, God’s force.

  43. foreverblessed says:

    Street, thank you for June 14, 12.26 am
    What a great passage to read again in Judges 9, and what a story about Gideon and his sons! O boy! That was some politics.
    The only thing I can do, is to follow the verses you gave: Phil 2:1-8 NIV.
    If I take the beam out of my own eye, with the help of God, I can be of better use to Him.

  44. poohpity says:

    belleu, rather than trusting the media you can go to the government web site and see what bills have passed, who wrote them, who voted on them, how they have or not been executed, look at the statistics. One can also watch C-SPAN and watch Congress in action. Much of what you stated is opinions from opposing parties which is ideologies and partisan politics. Here is not the proper place to go through all of what you said and although I do not identify with either party, I used to be a registered Democrat but am a “none” now because of the actions of that party I find shocking but I find most of what they all do or should I say not do shocking. You have known me a long time and I sway toward the geek side because I check facts out first but I do not allow someone to tell me anything without research especially because I am so aware of biases.

    What taught me that was the Bible and how people twist and turn what it says. I do not trust until I have found that a source is reliable.

  45. poohpity says:

    Speaking of the scriptures James points out that we are not to show favoritism to anyone. (James 2:1 NLT) Even though we are called to be good citizens (Romans 13:1 NLT; Romans 13:6-7 NLT) or first priority is to God. We talked about in the last couple of topics about trying to understand others and listening (really hearing) but when this topic came up all that we learned seems to have just disappeared and politics became the focus even though that is not what this is addressing, God is pushed to the back burner.

    There are children of God up on capital hill in all parties and hopefully they are being problems solvers rather than causing our country to become divided by parties, race and class. There is enough blame to go around but does that make anything better.

  46. bec4jc says:

    Whether we vote or not depends on where in the world\on earth we live for one and if we get to vote we are considering ourselves and other people not God and His will. Jesus told us to pray- Our Father in Heaven, Hollowed be Thy name, THY KINGDOM COME,Thy WILL be done, on EARTH as it is in Heaven. God is in control and He will bring about His Kingdom when He is ready not when we are ready. There isn’t any amount of helping Him do this from us. And who do we think we are interpreting His actions on Earth(the temporary darkness we are living in\on). We can study the Whole Bible(OT and NT) to see how God handled things when but, who’s to say He will do some of the same things the same ways? It’s not for us to know( only God Himself knows the day and hour of His total victory). We know quite a bit if we follow God’s word because He has showed us many things and things to come. We do not know the thoughts of God for His thoughts are much higher than ours. What we need to do is pray for His kingdom to come and spread the Gospel of His only begotten and beloved Son Jesus the Christ. *capitalization in the Lords Prayer is mine, used to stress what Jesus Christ taught us to pray in the NT.

  47. bubbles says:

    And we should pray for those who work in the government, that God would raise up a Joseph, Daniel, or Nehemiah. We should pray for those in governmental authority that God would protect them and speak to their hearts. We need to respect those in leadership even when we disagree with them.

    At church or other places, Christians speak badly of and make fun of certain people in political power. God’s people should not take part in this behavior. Does this honor our Heavenly Father? We should pray for them and respect their position even though we don’t agree with their ways or thoughts.

    [This does not occur here.]

  48. quietgrace says:

    Good morning all!

    Mart you wondered if “Given the choice to divide over real problems, or to unite around the only real solution, am once again wondering whether followers of Christ in the US— or in any part of the world— have the luxury of choosing to lose our distinct voice and message by the way we argue over partisan economic interests and ideologies? (Philippians 3:7-8)”
    I just finished listening to N.T. Wright “Surprised by Joy” Bible study and he brought up Eph. 3:10 which adds another perspective to the conversation, the perspective of just why it is important that we not lose our distinctive Christian voice in the world. There are battles going on in the heavenlies that we know nothing about, but somehow God uses us and our prayers to change things. I am deeply touched by the wondrous grace and mercy of God who would bring us mere mortals into His kingdom and use us to help push back the darkness, whether in the physical or spiritual realm. We are blessed-Grace

  49. phpatato says:

    As a CANADIAN, living in Canada all of my 60 years of life, I have a question that surfaces every time there is discussion on end of times and/or the political arena in North America. Now might be a good time to voice my question.

    Is there any mention of North America in prophesy in the end of times? I can’t seem to figure out if the USA and Canada (as allies on most things) will be major players on what happens down the road. It will be the Middle East centered from what I can read in the Bible. So, if the USA (and Canada to a much lesser degree) is not going to be the powerhouse it is accustomed to being on the world stage, what does happen to us?

    What policies and what your President and my Prime Minister says, thinks or does, is actually really a moot point isn’t it. I see North America being pushed off it’s mighty pedestal, relegated to becoming a minor player in the great scheme of things, and in this light, are there not signs now indicating that this has already been put into motion? God’s face is turning away from this great land mass, largely in part to our turning our backs on Him and the USA AND Canada are guilty as charged on that. China (kings of the east) is building leaps and bounds, Russia (the great bear to the north) is beginning to roar again. North America who?

    I vote what my conscience tells me. I strive to vote based on the party platform/belief and believe me in this day and age, it’s become a “which is the lesser of all evils”. I am finding that I am not painted with a particular party’s paint brush in a particular party colour (I am the same way with church affiliation I guess too). Ontario, the province I live in, just had an election last Thursday to vote who will be Premier. I did not vote for who won because I consider her and her party’s arrow not pointing to “True North”. I believe she will be steering the ship in the wrong direction, terribly off-course. But then again, I am not surprised for I believe this is all part of what has to happen to usher Christ’s return. Part of me hates seeing what is happening in the political world and another part of me yearns…”Even so, come, Lord Jesus”. Rev 22:20

    Maru, I really enjoyed reading what you had to say.

    Mart, I am surprised you would see the wisdom in posting a blog touching on politics and religion while a full moon shone in the sky. lol You are a brave man!!!

    Steve, today is the twins’ 3rd birthday. How can 3 years seems to drag on so slow but go so fast at the same time.

  50. belleu says:

    I was also shocked when Mart chose this subject. I want only to be friends with everyone here.

    I have said my peace and I’m done. I get my info from many newspapers online and this is what I wrote about. I assume when they tell me a bill has been passed cutting food stamps that it is the truth.

    I also pray for our governments. I pray God will lead and bless their work.

  51. poohpity says:

    Mart said, “But what does deserve our attention is the way that followers of Christ have been caught up in a political battle that has a way of eclipsing our first love and calling.” I think what was meant by bringing this up is just what he had said.

  52. poohpity says:

    It is very obvious that that statement is true.

  53. poohpity says:

    There is a song out that seems to me really fits this topic. It is called “Words” by Hawk Nelson you can listen to it on You Tube by googleing it. Enjoy!

  54. SFDBWV says:

    A lot to read here as I just popped in to send along an interestingly connected story.

    CT (Christianity Today) has a book revue on today’s email posting called “Redeemer” “Why Jimmy Carter Was (and is) a rare breed.” “Richard Balmer’s new biography says the former President’s political and religious activism made everyone uncomfortable.”

    Just thought I’d pass this along as some companion reading on the subject.

    I am way too busy to reply to such excellent commentary from all today, but will try in the morning if the subject is still up.

    I love you Pat, will email later.


  55. quietgrace says:

    Pooh, I was just thinking the same thing. As we hear more and more about wars and rumors of wars I am glad that Mart brought this issue up. Bombs and guns don’t care about political affiliation. In this country anyway. We all needed a wake-up call to remember our first love, as John warned about in Revelation.

  56. saled says:

    belleu, you are right on the money about the Republican party. I am Republican also, Steve. Once upon a time maybe they were the lesser of two evils. Now they appear to be the greater of two evils.

    My grandmother was town clerk for 50 or so years, and when I went to register to vote, she just handed me Republican forms and I just filled them out because that’s what my family was.
    And as a child I assumed that FDR was a Republican because my Grandmother loved him so much.

    I get Mart’s point that even as I write this I am losing my voice in a greater topic. However, when C.S. Lewis called Politics the domain of satan, I wonder if he is right. It seems to me that religion is also used mightily by satan.

  57. poohpity says:

    Even though I know this is not really about politics I would just like to ask a question regarding logic. If our country is like it is, how does it fit that the first 2 years of this administration which was run totally controlled by Democrats until 2010 when Republicans took over only the House(1/2 legislative) but the Executive branch and 1/2 of the legislative branch(Senate) are controlled by Democrats yet it is the Republicans who receive the majority of the blame? It seems because most media outlets, which seem to be where most here get their information, are biased to the left but rather than check out what is being said one believes it is true. (Proverbs 18:17)

    The sad part seems to be not many are listening to the other side and are going only on hearsay (is the legal term for testimony in a court proceeding where the witness does not have direct knowledge of the fact asserted, but knows it only from being told by someone). If we are to act “just” would it not then behoove us to search for facts? The people at Waco, TX believed what they were told as were those at Jonestown to drink the Kool Aid and look at what it got them. Could it be possible the minute we hear blame or demonetization of another that someone is going to such great lengths to hide truth?

    This is another time when I am so very grateful for God’s great charity towards.

  58. poohpity says:

    lol, towards mankind because if anyone can mess stuff up we sure can.

  59. SFDBWV says:

    In a group of people who believe that God controls everything how then can we distance God from disasters either on a private level or national?

    Are the non-participants of the electoral process then saying they are not guilty of the sins of a nation by not choosing to do anything to prevent them?

    So when disaster comes, it isn’t their fault, it is God’s will.

    I have and have heard preachers *label* Bill and Hillary Clinton as Ahab and Jezebel.

    The first thing bill Clinton did as President is order the “don’t ask don’t tell” order from the Commander and chief of the Armed Forces. A commander and Chief who never wore a uniform.

    He and his associates not only champion abortion on demand for the convenience of the parents, but place unelected judges in a position to override the will of the people who agree with their lack of moral interpretation.

    When caught up in having sex with a 21 year old aide he not only lied about it, but didn’t and still don’t consider that he did anything *wrong*

    This current administration of Barak Obama is probably the worst gathering of incompetence I have witnessed in my adult life of paying attention to who and how my country is run and headed.

    As a result has caused the great division Mart has mentioned.

    The press already is celebrating Hillary Clinton’s assent to the throne of being America’s first woman president. A woman who when called on the carpet about an American Ambassador and other Americans being killed said “What does it matter?” in an arrogant dismissal of any wrong doing and in complete contempt for the elected officials representing the people of America daring to question her.

    Though nothing will deter the time and hour of Christ’s return, when you look at the events surrounding His return what you see is a world that has turned its back on God and “just like in the days of Noah” God will strike back.

    How convenient for some Christians to distance themselves from all the evil they see in the *politics* around us, by staying out of working within it and so feeling unsoiled by it. Able they feel to stand on a higher moral pedestal and say they are not part of it on any level.

    Such *Christians* are more guilty of the evil perpetrated upon the people from politics, because they should know better and recognize right from wrong and stand together in a front against evildoers at every opportunity.

    Most will quote the Bible to validate their views, when it seems to agree with theirs, but how far should we go in quoting men’s opinions in an almost reverent aura using their *religious* views as validating an anti-political view?


  60. SFDBWV says:

    Mart, if there is any voice that is lost it is the voice of reason and common sense, lost only to the din of popular opinion being voiced, preached, shouted and touted as the only voice that should be heard.

    The message of the Gospel lost only on those not willing to hear it.


  61. poohpity says:

    Can you imagine if Martin Luther King Jr had not followed God’s lead and his voice had been lost? It was people who called themselves Christians that persecuted people of color. “Darkness can not drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate can not drive out hate; only love can do that.”

    What if those famous words of JFK had been lost, “And so, my fellow Americans: ask not what your country can do for you — ask what you can do for your country. My fellow citizens of the world: ask not what America will do for you, but what together we can do for the freedom of man.

    Edmund Burke, “All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing.” “There is nothing that God has judged good for us that He has not given us the means to accomplish, both in the natural and the moral world.

    Good leaders promote problem solving but it takes communicating and bringing people together rather than alienating and causing deep divides. When someone is drunk on power they will not listen to anyone nor take any guidance or advice except from those that think alike. If we can not hear many sides to any issue then we become shortsighted.

  62. quietgrace says:

    Reading My Utmost this morning he speaks on Jesus’ admonition to Judge Not. Does Jesus mean we are not to judge our friends, enemies, or even those with different political and ideological stances? Wondering where I have been guilty of judging others. It’s a lot to pray about.

  63. poohpity says:

    grace, I think if we are to judge we are to judge in the same manor we want to be judged. Also we are to judge whether something is from God or not comparing it to what we are taught in the Bible. I do not know about others but I know I have been guilty of judging when I realize it by the conviction in my heart I ask for forgiveness and God forgives.

  64. phpatato says:


    I am sure everyone here will agree with this….You are most welcome to state your opinions, thoughts, dreams and wishes. You are among friends. Most will treat you with the respect you deserve as a fellow sojourner of Christ. I love you my dear sister. Please, do not feel intimidated or become hesitant to post what’s on your heart.

    I pray your day is filled with Blessings from above.



    Lately, I am realizing that the line between judging and having an opinion has become very murky. The line is obscured with the words tolerance and bullying as well. It used to be that one could decide which side of the fence to stand on by what was taught as right or wrong, but now, if you are brave enough to plant your foot, you better be ready to wear a man-devised label on his definition of those words. Wrong is now the new right and right is a disgusting intolerant position to be standing on. What one has to do, I guess, is examine their heart and let the Holy Spirit be their guide.

    Much love


  65. belleu says:

    Thank you, phpatato, that’s very kind. I feel good about what I wrote on this subject and find other’s opinions interesting.

    What is kind of ironic is that I am probably going to vote for the Conservative Party in Canada at the next election. Our current Prime Minister has given tax relief to all – not just the rich. It has helped my family enormously – we are the lower middle class. Even though he did this, our country has prospered. We are doing very well. He made sure our economy sailed through the world economic crisis of 2008. He has a degree in economics and when he saw what our banks were doing years ago, he stopped it. He is soft on the environment, but I think we have reached the point of no return, so I don’t care.

    So, I do read about all sides of government and try to make an informed decision. I just want to vote for those who help people the most.

  66. phpatato says:


    I will very likely vote PC in the next election as well. No doubt in my mind on that unless things turn real sour between now and then…such has corruption, billion dollar gas plant fiascos, ehealth and ornge scandals costing multi-millions that the people of Ontario seem to think is ok for how a government should perform. PM Harper has brought us through a very difficult economic crisis. He had a well-respected Financial Minister at his side. I was saddened when I heard of Mr Flaherty’s sudden passing. The electoral vote is quite fickle and it amazes me how quickly people forget. I agree in that we have reached a point of no return not only on the environment but in all areas. Indeed, both countries are on that slippery slope and onward they trudge, oblivious to how well Satan has coloured and distorted truth and right.

    God helps us all.


  67. remarutho says:

    Good Morning All —

    Mart, you wrote:

    “Given the choice to divide over real problems, or to unite around the only real solution, am once again wondering whether followers of Christ in the US— or in any part of the world— have the luxury of choosing to lose our distinct voice and message by the way we argue over partisan economic interests and ideologies?”

    Our distinct voice, it seems to me, is always to speak out for the love of God. The established church, it appears, has long since been drowned out in the market-place. Pope Francis may turn that tide in his time in Rome.

    I wonder at times, why the net effect of Christian voices in the marketplace, or in the political arena is so puny. Aren’t Jesus-followers called to urge our society onto higher moral ground? Is there unity anywhere among those who trust and believe in Jesus? We do not seem to be in agreement any more than the worldly-minded.

    The Apostle Paul calls the church at Rome to faith. Faith alone brings salvation and deliverance. All are called to live by faith. It seems to me we are not “selling” this message — but rather living out the Gospel everywhere we are. A Jesus-follower duped by economic interests or ideologies has lost his/her voice, it seems to me. (Romans 1:16, 17)


  68. SFDBWV says:

    A few years ago here in this arena, in conversation the question came up whether we would prefer a Christian doctor over a non-Christian one.

    It seemed the consensus was to choose the best doctor.

    Why is it that we “argue over partisan economic interests and ideologies”?

    From my view the argument is that as a Bible believer and follower of Jesus, I look for both in those who would control the world around me.

    Yes I also believe that God has placed me in a sphere of love and protection that He is my provider and caregiver, but I also know He uses people to do both.

    God stopped providing manna when the Israeli’s entered into the Promised Land and He gave instruction as how they were to live. If they followed His directives they would live in peace and harmony in a land flowing with milk and honey.

    He wasn’t talking about a future time or heaven He was talking about right there right then.

    I believe that if any nation or people were to follow the structure and guidelines as given by God to the Israeli as they crossed over the Jordan River to inhabit the land, they would succeed as a people.

    Because I believe that, I also believe that when nations or people fall away from those guidelines, they fall, they fail, and they disappear from the earth. As evidenced in the stories given as evidence in the Bible.

    The division, the argument arises when the choices people make are made in contrast to Biblical teaching and example.

    What kind of Christian says *I* am safe in the arms of the Lord and need not trouble myself with trying to convince those who are not, why they are not? I will remain silent and not upset them so that *I* am seen as a peaceable person?

    I for one don’t give Satan any credit for people’s bad choices, it’s not any power of his it’s a person’s and a person alone who decides which direction to take.

    I liked your comment this morning Maru.


  69. poohpity says:

    I believe God gives abilities even to those who may not recognize they are from God.

    If we do not understand the wiles of satan and that he is actively trying to turn our heads away from trusting and depending on God, then we may have already been taken in by his lies, accusations and divisions.

  70. poohpity says:

    Then there would be no need for our Spiritual armor that everyday we are to wear. When our heads are turned from even reading God’s Word the enemy has won. Stopping church attendance, allowing our minds to be overcome with anger and lack of forgiveness the enemy has won. The victory has happened when we trust in Jesus but the prince of darkness still can turn our heads from Him, dressed as an angel of light because satan is after all a deceiver.

  71. quietgrace says:

    Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil by doing good.

  72. street says:

    A few years ago here in this arena, in conversation the question came up whether we would prefer a Christian doctor over a non-Christian one.

    Romans 12:10 comes to mind on this statement along.

    1 Corinthians 6:20

    1 Corinthians 7:23

    This is politics in it’s truest form. Trusting in man over God. The Doctor collects the payment God dose the healing.

  73. poohpity says:

    Mark 3:25 NIV; Matt 12:25 NIV The thing about everything that is happening right now with all the division is that it seems really intentional.

  74. street says:

    The Apostle Paul calls the church at Rome to faith. Faith alone brings salvation and deliverance. All are called to live by faith.

    The kind of faith Paul calls us too is the radical Faith Abraham, Daniel, and David had. Can we say we trust God like that?

    poo says,
    The thing about everything that is happening right now with all the division is that it seems really intentional.

    yes it is intentional. it’s like winner take all or a zero sum game. people are out to do God’s job of punishing people who are at odds with them. I believe this comes from their sense of self-righteousness. Jesus ran into the same problem with the religious leaders. He said we will have the same difficulty.

  75. street says:

    I forgot to add the encouragement. Jesus over came His opposition be freeing captives and rising from the dead.

  76. cbrown says:

    Great posts today.

  77. belleu says:

    I agree with Steve that when a nation becomes too evil, God will overthrow it. He usually uses the wicked to do it for him. He used the wicked to overthrow Jerusalem when they were living evil lives. He did that with Babylon, Greece and Rome. He did it himself with Sodom because of violence, rape, and selfishness not homosexuality.

    I understand that some Christians think our culture has become so filled with abortion and homosexuality that they think these things will bring down the wrath of God upon us. But I also think there are enough prayers and believers in this nation to avert that. We can work against abortion by telling women of other things they can do without passing laws and generating hatred. We can love homosexuals and pray for them and ask God to lead them and then leave them to make their own choices in life. Prayer with love is the answer to everything – not forcing people to obey or believe how we believe.

  78. bratimus says:

    The way I see it, is politics is a religion in it self. That is where the divide comes from, deep down everyone knows it is wrong. Once you enter politics most princibles and morals change to be politically correct, or as politicians say evolve in the politically correct position. Politics will be the great presecutor. You can already see it a little in the US how the IRS went after a few groups that weren’t in line with the current powers that be.

  79. poohpity says:

    Wasn’t the wrath of God satisfied on the Cross? Why not mention lying, jealousy, hate, unforgiveness and the one that seems to claim more people than any of the others, pride?

  80. quietgrace says:

    I believe that how we interpret Rev.19 comes to play here as far as the wrath of God goes. Daniel also pointed toward a day where the wrath of God would bring terrible destruction. But again, as I said, it depends on how you interpret those prophecies.

    My current thinking is that these judgements have not been fulfilled but are yet to come. Of course this is a whole other topic! Not sure if Mart has ever or will ever address this.

    But as followers of Christ we of course have nothing to fear, as the wrath of God toward sin has been satisfied.
    Lord have mercy on those of us who have not accepted the free gift of salvation.

    Blessings, Grace

  81. street says:

    sometimes people don’t really connect the dots very well.
    In Daniel 2 : 44 In the days of those kings the God of heaven will set up a kingdom which will never be destroyed, and that kingdom will not be [av]left for another people; it will crush and put an end to all these kingdoms, but it will itself endure forever. 45 Inasmuch as you saw that a stone was cut out of the mountain without hands and that it crushed the iron, the bronze, the clay, the silver and the gold, the great God has made known to the king what will take place [aw]in the future; so the dream is true and its interpretation is trustworthy.”

    Only Israel is saved as a Nation because of God’s Great Love and Mercy. “All” the other nations will be destroyed. ouch america!

  82. remarutho says:

    Good Morning Mart & Friends —

    Mart, your CS Lewis scholar’s quote is so apt as we gaze with dismay at the paralysis in our USA Congress. You quoted:

    “I think almost all the crimes which Christians have perpetrated against each other arise from this, that religion is confused with politics. For, above all other spheres of human life, the Devil claims politics for his own, as almost the citadel of his power. Let us, however, with mutual prayers pray with all our power for that charity which “covers a multitude of sins.” Source: Letters: C. S. Lewis/Don Giovanni Calabria (10 August 1953), para.1-3, p. 83

    The writing is from sixty-odd years ago! The more things change, the more they stay the same, apparently. It jumps off the page that Lewis wrote “the Devil claims politics as his own’…” during the cold war. The comment still applies today in the 21st c. It also applied in the 1st c. in ancient Palestine under Roman rule.

    The Lord may use politics to serve the kingdom — in any time of history! In Jerusalem, it was the blind hatred of the temple establishment and the machine-like efficiency of the Roman military that worked together for the greatest good ever done in all creation. That is, the sacrifice of the Worthy Lamb for the life of the whole world. (John 3:16, 17, 18, 19)


  83. poohpity says:

    There seems to be only One Kingdom that will not be destroyed isn’t it the Kingdom of God? Not a people of a land mass of from a particular area but a group of people who have chosen to believe in God.

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