Religion, Family and Politics

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Religion, Family and Politics

Religion-Family-PoliticsThere have been different phases of influence on the family structure since God created Adam. If you have read the book of Genesis, you will find that in the beginning God created man and soon to follow were every other kind of creeping, flying, and swimming life-form upon the earth. Genesis 2:4-7 ~ This is the history of the heavens and the earth when they were created, in the day that the Lord God made the earth and the heavens,  before any plant of the field was in the earth and before any herb of the field had grown. For the Lord God had not caused it to rain on the earth, and there was no man to till the ground;  but a mist went up from the earth and watered the whole face of the ground.  And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being.

The directive God gave to Adam was to subdue the earth and everything living creature. Genesis 1:28 ~ Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” What God iterates is that mankind (men and women) were to reproduce and have dominion over everything that moved on and above the earth as well as in the water that was not like them. This is implied as he names the different types of creation in the form of fish, birds, and animals. Who was he speaking to? The man (Adam) who shared this information with the woman after she was created.

Today we find many rules, codes, edicts, regulations, and laws that restrict the freedom that God put in place for mankind (the family of humans) to follow. God’s freedom offers us the opportunity to turn from hindering the growth of others as long as we do not cause harm to one another or turn from serving him. From a biblical perspective we can read a witness of this in the book of 1 Samuel. Having been raised in the temple of God, Samuel received the calling on his life and was a good judge in the areas of religion, family life, and politics. He led all of Israel back to God and they prospered because they followed his leading. 1 Samuel 7:5-6 ~ And Samuel said, “Gather all Israel to Mizpah, and I will pray to the Lord for you.”  So they gathered together at Mizpah, drew water, and poured it out before the Lord. And they fasted that day, and said there, “We have sinned against the Lord.” And Samuel judged the children of Israel at Mizpah. The Israelites trusted and followed Samuel as he judged them according to the principles shared with him by God.

I often hear that as Christians we are not to judge others. There is some truth to that but the limits placed on Christians judging others are relegated to followers of Christ. This is the same principle applied as Samuel judged the Israelites. If we take a look at 2 Corinthians 5:1-13, specifically 2 Corinthians 5:9-13 we read, “I wrote to you in my epistle not to keep company with sexually immoral people.  Yet I certainly did not mean with the sexually immoral people of this world, or with the covetous, or extortioners, or idolaters, since then you would need to go out of the world.  But now I have written to you not to keep company with anyone named a brother, who is sexually immoral, or covetous, or an idolater, or a reviler, or a drunkard, or an extortioner—not even to eat with such a person.  For what have I to do with judging those also who are outside? Do you not judge those who are inside?  But those who are outside God judges. Therefore “put away from yourselves the evil person.” What we read hear is that God desires us to hold one another responsible for their actions and in doing so show mercy, grace, and love. We read a witness of this directly from Jesus, were we are compelled to help our brother overcome sin by addressing it. Matthew 18:15-17 ~ “Moreover if your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault between you and him alone. If he hears you, you have gained your brother.  But if he will not hear, take with you one or two more, that ‘by the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established.  And if he refuses to hear them, tell it to the church. But if he refuses even to hear the church, let him be to you like a heathen and a tax collector.”

So we read that there is a God ordained process and we live in a time that a process developed by man referred to as politics, or the governing of mankind from a secular perspective, is the order of the day. The recorded biblical instance of a transition from godly judging to secular governing is well relayed in the book of 1 Samuel Chapter 7, when the chosen people of God turned their hearts from God and selected the ways of the nations around them by electing to have a king rule over them. As you will read shortly, problems arose when Samuel placed his biological children in positions of leadership, as was the custom of that day. Men often pursued the careers that their fathers had. Thus a, carpenter, blacksmith, shepherd, or tentmaker would pass on his legacy to his children. Samuel’s children were so misguided by pride and self-serving decisions that the people cried out for a different type of leadership, one that modern day politics is founded on.

The Israelites asked for a king to rule over them and God, being a God of free will, accepted their decision and shared with them, through Samuel, the outcome of such a request. 1 Samuel 8:4-7, 10-18 ~ Then all the elders of Israel gathered together and came to Samuel at Ramah, and said to him, “Look, you are old, and your sons do not walk in your ways. Now make us a king to judge us like all the nations.”  But the thing displeased Samuel when they said, “Give us a king to judge us.” So Samuel prayed to the Lord.  And the Lord said to Samuel, “Heed the voice of the people in all that they say to you; for they have not rejected you, but they have rejected me, that I should not reign over them. Now therefore, heed their voice. However, you shall solemnly forewarn them, and show them the behavior of the king who will reign over them.” So Samuel told all the words of the Lord to the people who asked him for a king. And he said, “This will be the behavior of the king who will reign over you: He will take your sons and appoint them for his own chariots and to be his horsemen, and some will run before his chariots.  He will appoint captains over his thousands and captains over his fifties, will set some to plow his ground and reap his harvest, and some to make his weapons of war and equipment for his chariots.  He will take your daughters to be perfumers, cooks, and bakers.  And he will take the best of your fields, your vineyards, and your olive groves, and give them to his servants.  He will take a tenth of your grain and your vintage, and give it to his officers and servants.  And he will take your male servants, your female servants, your finest young men, and your donkeys, and put them to his work.  He will take a tenth of your sheep. And you will be his servants.  And you will cry out in that day because of your king whom you have chosen for yourselves, and the Lord will not hear you in that day.” Today, we live in a world where this type of secular leadership still exists, except in some instances the king is a president or prime minister and the tax rate is far above one tenth of what you possess in most cases.

It has been stated that it is not wise to mix politics and religion, however, to not do so would be a type of self-denial that religion and politics determine how you govern your life – this in turn affects the family unit. In some cases, politics has become a religion, one whose beliefs are passed down from generation to generation, similar to the choice of religious denominations selected by believers in Christ and other religions. How many people are you aware of that will vote for one particular party regardless of the views of that party? God’s commandments are rejected when a person votes for a party member who condones abortion, or homosexuality.   His commandments are also rejected when unjust wars are pursued under false pretenses and lies. These types of decisions and actions are seen and overheard in conversations in our homes by our children, and relatives. Although they can be a point of contention when not discussed in love, how we address them is a determining factor for how people respond to us.

I personally express my views regarding politics from a foundation of Christianity. If a political candidate does not adhere to the principles of the bible, that candidate does not get my vote. This is done in an effort to protect my spiritual and biological family from the wiles of the devil, who is very prominent in religion, family, and politics of all sorts. If we, as confessing Christians do not stand on the foundational principles of God’s word, rather than what we think to be right or wrong, we lose our township, state, and country to Satan’s whims. The caveat or condition to this message is that one must know the word of God in order to properly judge a situation, voting opportunity, political, or religious person in a position of authority (remember that we are required to judge if the person professes Christ as Lord and Savior – and that in accordance with 1 Corinthians 5).

Imagine a nation where the Church (body of Christ) consisted of families who were bold enough to be establishers of precedents that judge/govern the rules, codes, edicts, regulations, and laws. This is God’s desire as established during the time of Moses and made complete by the sacrifice of Christ Jesus.

There is still a way to accomplish this desire of our Father by following a principle given to the third King of Israel, Solomon. 2 Chronicles 7:12-15 ~ Then the Lord appeared to Solomon by night, and said to him: “I have heard your prayer, and have chosen this place for myself as a house of sacrifice.  When I shut up heaven and there is no rain, or command the locusts to devour the land, or send pestilence among my people, if my people who are called by my name will humble themselves, and pray and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.  Now my eyes will be open and my ears attentive to prayer made in this place.

We are currently a nation of different beliefs in regard to religion, family, and politics. One answer to correcting this disunity is to turn our hearts toward God as families, communities, states and as a nation. But not just turning our hearts to him but also applying biblical principles to our lives through our words and actions. Would you be a witness to the world by sharing with your spiritual and biological family, friends, associates and work constituents a call to action as prescribed in the principle of 2 Chronicles 7:12-15? Would you set aside time to call out to God in prayer every day for the next seven days on behalf of your family, community, state, and this nation. After all, we are one family created by God are we not?

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