Pastor's Corner: Citizens under a non-Christian kingBy DANIEL AUSBUN
First Baptist Church, Moreland
On Tuesday Americans elected a “Christian” President.
The vote was between a fifth generation Mormon and a religious pluralist. Mitt Romney’s great-great grandfather was a member of the Latter-day Saints’ early church. Mormons believe Joseph Smith received revelations from God in western New York beginning in the 1820s.
Barack Obama is a Christian by choice. He was baptized as an adult in 1988.
Obama believes Christianity is one of many paths to God. As if we’re all traveling up a mountain and Christianity takes one path, Hinduism a different road on the other side and Islam another path up – only to get to the top and realize we were all going up the same mountain to God, only taking different paths.
This is the growing popular belief of religious pluralism – all sincere, devout religious seekers reach God. The problem with religious pluralism is what Jesus declared in John 14:6. Christ is the exclusive way to God.
Christianity could better be described as God coming down the mountain to save sinners.
Both Mitt Romney and Barack Obama profess to be Christians. Both make this claim, but neither are biblical Christians. If the Bible is our standard (II Timothy 3:16), Jesus clearly said He is the door to salvation (John 10:9). Once the Bible becomes one of many inspired divine books, as found in Mormonism and religious pluralism, Christianity becomes inclusive and anything goes.
Christianity began under Roman rule. Jesus paid Roman taxes. Jesus died on a Roman cross. Christianity is becoming a religious sect in America, just as Judaism was under Roman rule during the days of Jesus. The first century Christians were under authority of a non-Christian king, just like America is today.
Here are three perspectives to consider for a Christian to live as a citizen under a non-Christian king.
First, Washington D. C. is the new Rome. Pres. Obama is not going to provide any religious or spiritual leadership for our nation. Christians should come to expect a secular government.
The greatest protection our government can give believers is religious liberty. This protection is not promised anywhere in Scripture.
Second, Washington D. C. is the new mission field. Spiritual darkness pervades our capital. There are hundreds of religious lobbyists, but whenever you mix religion and politics, you get politics. Jesus told Paul to testify about Him in Rome (Acts 23:11). Less than 15 percent of the population in our capital attends church.
Third, change isn’t going to come from our president, rather Christ changes lives. Abortions will cease when women value life as a gift from God. Same-sex marriage will vanish when couples begin to view marriage as a covenant. Recreational use of marijuana will be replaced when people are delivered from their addictions.
When our King comes He won’t be riding an elephant or donkey.
Christians have three purposes. First, we’re to preach the gospel. We have the message that saves, heals, frees and connects the world with the God of eternity.
Second, we’re to love our neighbors. Our neighbors voted for Obama, are Mormons, have a different color skin and Jesus died for all of them.
Third, we’re to be on mission. Psalm 10:16 says, “The Lord is King forever and ever.” President Obama has four more years – God remains on His throne. A Christian’s mission is to the everlasting King – as long as spiritual darkness remains, missions exist.
America is becoming more and more like first-century Christianity – striving to live for Christ under non-Christian secular rule. Presidential elections should always remind believers their citizenship is ultimately in heaven (Philippians 3:20).