Out of inconsideration of what goes on in the environment, those identifying themselves as Christians advocate for introversion. They assume that goodness is associated with minding one’s own business, without caring about what happens in the environment. However, that describes the opposite of Christianity. That was not the behaviour of the author of Christianity.
The common advice to ordinary Christians is: “Leave politics to politicians and concentrate on attending Church services.” This describes today’s Christians who are regarded as “good,” and acceptable to society. Christianity is interpreted as referring to one’s own life, without considering the plight of others. Such Christians are commonly admired by non-Christians.
It remains mysterious that people can declare being Christians and yet portray the opposite of what Jesus taught. They are commonly unwilling to unpack the significance of Christianity. The esteemed Pastors carry their own assumptions of what Jesus expects of them. The understanding of ordinary Christians is that Christ expects them to love, only those belonging to their respective denominations.
Today’s Christians are not concerned about widows, living under unacceptable conditions. They feel justified when erroneously behaving ignobly, supporting bad governance. To them, Christianity means obedience. However, that viewpoint could not have invited problems for Jesus, leading to His crucifixion. Jesus had to be crucified in place of a notorious malcontent, Barabbas (John 18:39-40).
Needed in times of distress, are willing Christians, on Jesus’ side, without protecting their personal interests. Christianity is not about considering one’s dignity when turning a blind eye to the existent evil. True Christianity invites more enemies than friends. The natural tendency for sinful humanity is to avoid confronting the government when violating God’s laws.
“So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows. Whoever acknowledges me before others, I will also acknowledge before my Father in heaven. But whoever disowns me before others, I will disown before my Father in heaven. Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword.
“For I have come to turn ‘a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law—a man’s enemies will be the members of his own household.’ Anyone who loves their father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves their son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. Whoever does not take up their cross and follow me is not worthy of me. Whoever finds their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life for my sake will find it”(Matthew 10:31-39 NIV).
Willingness to be identified as controversial, when standing up for the truth, does not appeal to common Christians. Most Christians are willing to die for the pastor, rather than die for the ill-treated humanity. This refers to Christians who feel comfortable when pampered with praises, by Pastors. The support of pastors from ordinary Christians is derived from preaching what those Christians want to hear.
Most Pastors are so careful, as not to offend those faithfully giving their tithes. The term “politics,” itself, is accurately defined as involved with getting and using power in public life and being able to influence decisions that affect a country and society. This can be classified as noble, but cannot be attractive to spineless characters. It requires strong-willed individuals.
Politics is dominated by criminals, as “good” Christians, prefer taking back seats. Those so-called Christians comfortably state that the prevailing evil will be addressed by Jesus at His second coming. They fail to appreciate being more to blame than those purported to be under the devil’s control.
“You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot. “You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead, they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house” (Matthew 5:13-15).
Jesus could not have pointed out possible challenges to face, for Christians. It is necessary for Christians to seek peace, but not to allow evil to prevail against humanity. The hope of this world lies with Christians. There is no secret in that the considered favourable Christians are those applying the following Scripture as their stable datum:
“Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. Consequently, whoever rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves. For rulers hold no terror for those who do what is right, but for those who do what is wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and you will be commended. For the one in authority is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for rulers do not bear the sword for no reason. They are God’s servants, agents of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer. Therefore, it is necessary to submit to the authorities, not only because of possible punishment but also as a matter of conscience” (Romans 13:1-5 NIV).
There is no other sweeter Scripture to politicians than this one. Politicians can rape women and commit any known evil, and expect no criticism from pliant Christians. If the first apostles had behaved in that manner, they could not have been killed. Prudent Christians can engage in concerted research to find out why the early Christians were killed if they submitted to governing authorities. Only shallow-minded Christians are stuck on the misapplication of the above Scripture.
That Scripture refers to authorities established by God. That is far from recognizing those blatantly violating the constitution to install themselves in leadership positions. This also does not mean that Christians should ululate when the same leaders rape women and bludgeon other men. In God, there is no confusion, but in Satan, the god of this world.
“And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing. The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers so that they cannot see the light of the gospel that displays the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. For what we preach is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake” (2 Corinthians 4:3-5 NIV).
The blindness in the above Scripture includes awareness of Jesus representing order, not confusion. Those waking up in the morning mumbling that the spirit instructed them to rape another person’s wife are demon-possessed. The majority, calling themselves “Christians” cannot tell the difference between a demonic spirit and God’s Spirit.
The aberration associated with politics is so demonic that the supposedly good Christians are instructed to avoid politics at all costs. But, in light of Jesus’ teachings, only Christians should be involved in politics. Corrupt people are not supposed to be allowed anywhere near political offices.
Those justifying their idea of not participating in politics assume waiting for Jesus to come and establish His Kingdom. Such Christians are not different from that wicked servant who buried his talent, pretending to give glory to his master (Matthew 25:24-30). Jesus said with faith as little as a mustard seed, one could do greater things than performed by Jesus (John 14:12).
Christianity was never instituted for the purpose of impeding political operations, but to grant relief to ordinary humanity. However, those committed to Christian operations, cannot be the beneficiaries. Such people, when in positions of authority, are expected to be hard-working.
Large crowds were travelling with Jesus, and turning to them he said:“If anyone comes to me and does not hate father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters—yes, even their own life—such a person cannot be my disciple. And whoever does not carry their cross and follow me cannot be my disciple.
“Suppose one of you wants to build a tower. Won’t you first sit down and estimate the cost to see if you have enough money to complete it? For if you lay the foundation and are not able to finish it, everyone who sees it will ridicule you, saying, ‘This person began to build and wasn’t able to finish.’
“Or suppose a king is about to go to war against another king. Won’t he first sit down and consider whether he is able with ten thousand men to oppose the one coming against him with twenty thousand? If he is not able, he will send a delegation while the other is still a long way off and will ask for terms of peace. In the same way, those of you who do not give up everything you have cannot be my disciples”(Luke 14:25-33 NIV).
Those committed to Christianity should not imagine themselves being on holiday, enjoying the sunshine, while the world burns. There is a call for responsibility, and that demands putting things in order. None else can do that, except those empowered by Jesus, expected to roll up their sleeves and get onto business. This is not a casual matter.
In modern times, politics, currently wrongly assumed to be for purposes of enrichment, cannot be separated from Christianity. Wealth accumulation implies misapplications of Christianity. Political crooks dangle money, being proof of blessings, resulting from submission to authority.
“Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it. Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves. By their fruit, you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thorn bushes or figs from thistles? Likewise, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit”(Matthew 7:13-17 NIV).
Our beloved country is capable of transformation overnight; becoming world-class. That is if the majority, calling themselves “Christians,” were to practice Christianity, according to Jesus’ teachings. The entrenchment of falsehoods comes with packages of monetary gains. Jesus classified money as a chief opponent of Christianity.
“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are healthy, your whole body will be full of light. But if your eyes are unhealthy, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light within you is darkness, how great is that darkness! No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money”(Matthew 6:19-24 NIV).
This is a problem, engulfing the entire Christian community. Money is placed ahead of everything, encouraged by ignoble pastors who value it more than Jesus. Paul wrote about this malady, in his epistle to Timothy:
“But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it. But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that. Those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. For, the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs”(1 Timothy 6:6-10 NIV).
Some people suggest that politics is a dirty game. That should be regarded as true, as indeed politics can be as dirty as the cross is dirty. If unwilling to carry one’s cross, one isn’t a Christian. There is a clear distinction between running for political offices and restoring order in the environment. This is different from advocating for behaving like depraved politicians, craving for being called “Honorable” in their dishonourable conditions.
Under normal conditions, Christians should be identified as politicians. Such Christians have a responsibility to restore order in the environment. Jesus said they are the light of the world (Matthew 5:15). This is now time that the abuse of Jesus’ name should be stopped, forthwith.
Andrew Masuku is the author of Dimensions of a New Civilization, laying down standards for uplifting Zimbabwe from the current state of economic depression into a model for other nations worldwide. A decaying tree provides an opportunity for a blossoming sprout. Written from a Christian perspective, the book is a product of inspiration, bringing relief to those having witnessed the strings of unworkable solutions––leading to the current economic and social decay. Most Zimbabweans should find the book as a long-awaited providential oasis of hope, in a simple conversational tone.
The Print copy is now available at Amazon.com for $13.99