It’s not that Christians can’t do politics, it’s that politics can’t do Christianity.
On the one hand, there is no way we could have a genuine Christian government. There is simply way too much distance between what the Bible requires and where the rest of the world is. A Christian government requires the covenant of Biblical Law, and we can’t even get any government to take Noah seriously. You cannot call it “Christian government” without a valid biblical covenant. Christians were seduced from that position around 300 AD and have never gone back to it, so we’ve had a bunch of horrible government with the label “Christian” slapped onto it.
On the other hand, we have several examples of soldiers and political figures who joined the First Century churches and aren’t required to quit their jobs. Nothing prevents anyone from being called by God to engage those kinds of positions. There’s a place for that, as long as you never pretend that government is going to actually do the right thing with any degree of consistency. You will be obliged to do the right thing within the constraints of secular government, just as Joseph did in the pagan Egyptian government.
Now, it’s pretty obvious from Paul’s letters that resisting government is generally wrong. There’s nothing wrong with fleeing an evil government. There’s nothing wrong with using loopholes to avoid injustice and persecution, as Paul himself did, but the idea of outright rebellion was always a big risk against the message of Christ. You don’t have to stay completely out of government activity, but you also can’t fight it. Don’t betray your government to the enemy. If you find the enemy morally superior, migrate and obey that one.
But what if your government is at war with itself? That’s what we face here in the US. We have factions fighting for control and it’s likely to get bloody before long. Our problem is that neither of the main factions is morally right. There is no clear good side. We can’t rely on moral principle to establish a clear path here.
In this case, all we have is the prophetic word. If you have your own discernment, then follow that. Otherwise, I’ve tried to offer my best explanation of why I plan on one particular side in this war winning. In a prophetic sense, then, that side is the valid government. And if I’m wrong, I’ll accept the consequences. But I assure you that the faction I see winning soon will later also lose in some other kind of conflict, and I’ll be obliged to show loyalty to yet another government.
It really doesn’t make a whole lot of difference in one sense because only a covenant government can hold my true loyalty in the first place. What’s left is a provisional loyalty. It’s a loyalty that generally tries to meet valid demands and prepares for persecution in the matter of invalid demands. If the Lord wants me to move, I’ll do that. If He wants me to stay and prophesy against sin, I’ll do that.
Meanwhile, win or lose, the government I consider prophetically valid today is the one I’ll defend. Yes, I might be ready to take up arms against the other faction. But there are limits. I suppose it really depends on how things progress, but my sense of calling doesn’t forbid it. And farther down the road, when my prophetic sense tells me the time is right, I’ll transfer that same loyalty to whatever God brings along to replace the one I’ll defend today.
And I’ll offer that same level of provisional loyalty. There’s nothing partisan about this. I expect both major parties to survive, but not everyone in them, and not the false government. My eyes are on the mission and calling to something none of these factions are ready to understand. Whoever wins, they will have to accept my limited loyalty because that’s what God demands of me. I am fully confident that my Father will carry me through all of this.
I’m not asking you, dear readers, to do anything, except to understand how I see these things.