4 Reasons to Act

We are confronted by the fierce urgency of now.

- Rev. Martin Luther King Jnr.

How does the messy business of politics relate to the kind of life that Jesus commands his followers to live?

1. Love the Lord your God...

Christians are called to 'love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind'. This brings a responsibility to stand up for what's right. To be 'imitators of Christ' in politics means sacrificially serving and leading as He did; laying down our lives for others and speaking truth to power.

For example, William Wilberforce committed his life to challenging the injustice of slavery and to restoring morality to the nation, pouring his life out for the benefit of many others.

2. Love your neighbour...

Christians are called to 'love your neighbour as yourself'. Politics is a practical way to show the love of God. There are many things that can be done to tackle injustice and unrighteousness at an individual level, but sometimes the roots of sinfulness can lie in unjust systems and laws.

For example: buying 'fair trade' products can help a few producers in developing countries, but changing the rules to tackle the root causes of unfair trade can only be achieved through concerted political effort.

3. Go make disciples...

Christians are called to 'go make disciples of all nations'. As public figures, Christians in political life have a unique opportunity to share their faith to a wide audience, and to explain how it applies to the issues which affect people in their everyday lives. In this sense, Christian integrity in politics provides a practical way to communicate the gospel to many.

4. Give a voice to the voiceless...

Christian activism in politics can protect freedom of speech and action. The gospel requires, creates, and sustains freedom. But sadly there are many places in the world where people are denied basic human rights and civil liberties to share or receive the gospel message. It is important to speak out on their behalf, and never to take our own hard-won freedoms for granted.

This article was adapted from the Being Salt & Light resource available to download here.