SHOULD THE CHURCH BE POLITICAL OR PROPHETIC ??
By Arthur Owiti
The issue is not whether the Church should hold views about the things of the world such as politics and economics. The issue is whether they should hold their views in a prophetic light or political stance. Today most of the church has rejectedher prophetic role and chosen to take up a political voice thinking that through that they will please God .She is pleasing man when she takes up the political voice, but will please God when they take the prophetic voice.
They take up the political voice when political opinions are raised above God’s word.
The Prophetic voice simply means one speaking forth God’s word. From the Old Testament to the New Testament times we are in, that office is still as it is , speaking the word of God. Whereas the prophets and apostles wrote scripture by the Holy Spirit ,saints today employ the same holy scriptures to aid in preaching , doctrine, correction, instruction for righteousness and rebuke;all these involve speaking and when spoken one is speaking forth God’s word.
OLD TESTAMENT CHURCH : PROPHETIC CHURCH
God called out the children of Israel and set up a kingdom with them .When they strayed from the ways of God, prophets
arose to warn the people of their transgressions and preach repentance . They spoke to kings and rulers; they spoke about nations, some of which they had no atlas to learn about but had to mention them because they were being ,moved by the Spirit of God who proceeds from God and speaks only his word.
The message was always spiritually correct but politically incorrect because many did not want to hear God’s word. They loved their foolish ways and lusts more than God’s word. Yet the words of the prophets came to pass despite being persecuted.
The true prophets spoke God ‘s word, the truth, but false prophets spoke lying words in God’s name.The true prophet is concerned about God’s will and not his own will.
False prophets because they wanted to please men always sought the will of man, what does the King want to hear or what do the people want to hear not what is God saying about this situation.
John the Baptist the prophet before Jesus Christ was killed not because he was in charge of Jewish Rebellion but because he spoke THE TRUTH about the wickedness of the King and his wife. Jesus had to flee on hearing the demise that befell John because he spoke the truth and knew the hearts of men that hate the word of God.
JESUS CHRIST : THE PROPHET
Jesus our Lord and Saviour , The Prophet ,when he was on earth, touched on many spheres of physical life at that time.
From taxes to authority to families to money , he gave God’s word on all these issues. He was not political yet talked about the political in light of God’s word. For example he told Pilate the source of Pilate’s political power coming from above.
Jesus knew about the political oppression of the Jews by the Romans, he was also subjected to it : Roman trial, Roman forms of punishment.Yet his goal was that he did the will of God and not his own will.
Jesus did not attack the Pharisees out of the blue. He used the same prophetic Scriptures to rebuke the Pharisees hypocrisy and even advised them on what to do about their sorry state. Yet they went about to kill a man who told them the truth. He spoke the word of God, what God has said.
NEW TESTAMENT CHURCH : PROPHETIC CHURCH
From Pentecost the church through the Holy Spirit preached the gospel of Jesus Christ , the word of God.They were just like Isaiah who preached the word and the gospel of peace.
They did not form a Political Jewish Zealot party but they were still a recognised body which was Spiritual and Prophetic in that they spoke the word of God.
They were in the world and still claimed citizenship rights and knew court processes since they were frequent visitors to the law courts of men for a good cause.
However despite being in the world they remained in the faith being a prophetic voice , a voice that speaks God’s word to all men , that all men repent and believe the gospel. They were preaching God’s command to all men, therefore the prophetic nature of the church.
The church is the body of Christ and is to do as Christ did. He had no political voice when he was on earth because it was not in God’s will for him to be political at the time.
God wants all that believe to come in and join his body, his house and once that is done he will set up the kingdom of Jesus Christ which will then usher in his political voice.In fact in God’s kingdom politics and worship are one since he is King and Almighty God to be worshipped.
The problem today is that some Church leaders think it right to leave the rightly deserved prophetic role and be involved in politics of this world.
Politics of this world is about the will of man and not of God. The Politics of this world is the kingdom of man.The will of God is the kingdom of God.
When the church preaches the will of God it is dispensing its duties as per the scriptures because she is the house of God, the temple of the Holy Spirit.
The church should be prophetic in all its interactions with the world.And it must be in truth, God’s word.
A prophetic church is politically incorrect when the politics is against God’s word. This does not require Church leaders to run for political office or create political parties.
It requires a vocal church that speaks the truth and touches all areas of society leaving nothing out. Half baked justice is not true justice.
A prophetic church is concerned about what the Spirit is saying to the churches but a political church is concerned about what its supporters are going to say.
A prophetic church loves truth and seeks righteousness .It can go the extra mile to do justice not to be seen by men but for God’s glory.
A political church loves its political ideas even when they dilute truth. She believes in compromise, not integrity.
A prophetic church is concerned about ALL the weak vessels of society and the oppressed because she preaches justice and knows who should be the beneficiary of justice.
A political church is only concerned about the weak ones who can be transformed into votes fro their side to win.
A prophetic church practices what it preaches because it loves the truth it preaches.
A political church can preach truth only to enhance its politics and get recognition .Once politics is over they stop preaching truth since it was not about the love of truth but the love of power.
Since a prophetic church speaks the word of God , it seeks only his kingdom and things above yet does justice in the world.
A political church is involved with things below no wonder they are in courtrooms fighting with the world yet they use the name of God whose kingdom is not of the carnal things of this world.
A prophetic church stands even when the economies of the world collapse and structures of man fall.
A political church will definitely fall with the world because she trusts in those structures and not in God.
To resolve the issue the church should always be prophetic which is a dear price to pay because it means standing for God’s word in a world which is against it. No praise of man.
The church is the pillar of truth and should stand even when all other structures of man have fallen. However when a church is political she is selling her birthright of being a body led by the Holy Spirit to being a body led by the spirit of the world.