The Fine (and Often Blurry) Line Between Religion and Politics

The Fine (and Often Blurry) Line Between Religion and Politics by Michael L. Brown for Ask Dr Brown

President Trump’s historic speech to the March for Life crowd on Friday reminds us that there is often a very fine (and, quite often, very blurry) line between religion and politics. And as much as some of us would like to separate those two entities, putting each of them in their own category, it’s not always so easily done.

On the one hand, the realm of religion – in the best sense of the word – is not political at all. It calls for human beings to come into right relationship with God, whether those human beings live in a dictatorship or a democracy. It offers new life, forgiveness, redemption, and transformation (speaking here in specific Christian terms). And it does all this without politics, without court decisions, without elections.

“Jesus saves” regardless of who is in office, regardless of political trends, regardless of partisan politics.

In short, the gospel completely transcends politics.

Politics does not produce divinely inspired Scriptures.

Politics cannot reward with eternal salvation or punish with eternal damnation.

Politics cannot reach into the world to come.

Politics cannot change a person from the inside out.

In short, in a very real way, the gospel and politics do not intersect.

But then, in another very real way, they do.

Let’s take something that virtually all of us agree is terribly evil: human trafficking.

Let’s say you find out that young teens are being trafficked in your own city. Deeply burdened, you share this with your pastor, who then shares it with your church, calling for urgent prayer.

But does it stop there? Don’t you see what action you can take to help rescue and rehabilitate these children?

And what if you learn that there are serious loopholes in the law, because of which trafficking is allowed to flourish in your city? Do you not then call on your elected officials to take action as well?

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