Each day we awake we are given a choice. What we will do with that choice often determines the quality of our life, our relationships and our endeavors.
Lately, there is a lot of talk about politics and religion. But not so much about the Kingdom.
Frankly, only one has any real appeal to me. I am sure you will discover it.
When I first entered into the Kingdom of God as a believer, I had a few rough edges. But, I loved God. A lot! But because of my roughness, I had to learn what the kingdom was like and how it operated. To the natural man, this was an enigma, but to those who are spiritual, spiritual understanding comes.
To maintain me, a lot of rules and regulations were insisted upon. I wanted to fit, to learn and to “progress” so I went along. At some point I realized that a lot of rules do not a better believer make. In fact, they will cause a good believer to stumble and to fall.
That is the trap of religion that is founded in legalistic thinking.
My thumbprint was the kingdom, but at some point the power of religion overtook.
When I describe religion I am defining it from the position or place of man trying to please God, or to to reach God. To be told how to dress or how to talk, even in the best of circumstances soon becomes bondage and opens the door to darkness.
Religion of this type in our country is a problem. It is visible in the 10,000 plus denominations, all proclaiming their oneness and connection to God. Each one has value and a place in the kingdom. But religiosity soon moves us into the place of the Pharisees. Often what is Kingdom in the beginning, without being continually subjected to the truth of Jesus and the working and way of the kingdom, soon becomes old, dry and unresponsive, lacking love, presence and grace.Instead of becoming believers many have become deceivers, practicing a brand of religion that does not satisfy nor fulfill.
I believe there is a practice of religion that is observed and smiled upon by the Kingdom.
James 1:27 Amplified Bible-Pure and unblemished religion [as it is expressed in outward acts] in the sight of our God and Father is this: to visit and look after the fatherless and the widows in their distress, and to keep oneself uncontaminated by the [secular] world.
The word secular, simply means “non-religious”. It means something, that perhaps has not been touched by God…yet! That word from a New Covenant perspective begins to change. It means something unholy. (”Once you were darkness.”)But, it is not beyond the reach of the Kingdom!
I chose this version to point out that word, secular. Too often, when that word is used, it is said with a sneer. Many embrace James because he “tells it like it is”. Oh, he does. He deals with a lot.
Does our outward action exemplify the Kingdom? Do we give liberally? (Not just to our church or our favorite preacher, but to all?) Please understand the Kingdom is fluid and always in advance. It requires people to be conduits of His presence, power AND provision. It means to give. “It is better to give than it is to receive.” (Interesting that Paul, revealed that about Jesus, post-cross.)
Too often money makes us “religious”, a concealer, not a releaser.
If it reveals anything, it often reveals our level of trust.
In the middle of the night I was up praying. I found myself ready to pray this prayer. “Father, I will trust you with this”. Not, “I trust you”. The next hour was a conversation over the differences with God. God simply asks that we trust Him.
Religion from a biblical standard, believes the BEST, not the worst, nor the gray areas in between. (Try to follow that thinking without allowing God room to teach you, to aid you, and even that sentence will soon become a move headed towards darkness and failure.)
It is time to practice pure religion, implemented by the Holy One, with the breath of God in our sails.
I believe that there is a pure religion.
So, religion is dealt with. What about politics?
This single line from Wikipedia…
Politics (from Greek: πολιτικός politikos, definition “of, for, or relating to citizens”) is the practice and theory of influencing other people. Politics involves the making of a common decision for a group of people, that is, a uniform decision applying in the same way to all members of the group.
Relating to citizens. (Okay, you want to fight about that word, citizens, than remember you are a citizen of the Kingdom. Your fighting ought to stop. Quickly. For you will not find “fight” in the Kingdom. The battle has been won. “What about Ephesians 6?” Hmmm…having done, all. Stand. “Stand” was pretty important to Paul.)
Influencing people…Doesn’t it make more sense to influence them with the Kingdom. A mustard seed of Kingdom has more long term value than that of politics. What banner is over you? Love? A flag of country? Which is more important?
All the things we get entangled with, welfare, borders, addictions, poverty, money, can be dealt with through the expansion of the Kingdom.
Be engaged in politics, but DO NOT become tainted by the secular. That is what might have been thought of the Greeks. Do you want to engage in something that is simply waiting to be touched by God? Folks the commonality of politics for the Kingdom, is love, peace and joy. If you don’t have those you will resort to religion (the impure kind) or politics.
You will work hard to get your point across. But you will soon become a slave to darkness. You will enslave others. There are higher truths.They include love, mercy and grace.
The Founding Fathers were not politicians by our standards. In fact, most of them had other things they would rather have tried to do. They were statesmen, leaders. Some had religion of the Biblical nature and some, perhaps, not so much.
In fact, religion of the impure kind or politics will NOT serve this country. Only a life founded, in God will bring about long term, satisfying change. If not for you, for generations to come.
Lee, do we need a President? Did you see what I said about higher truths? A president is but one person. Congress and the Senate, but another handful. What we need is a “grassroots movement” of His goodness. Do we need a President? For now, until the Kingdom manifests and fulfills. Well, don’t we need a godly one?
Just those type of questions will lead you and others down a pathway that implements darkness. You may have great intentions, but we all through the glass darkly.
Politics, religion. I hate to burst your bubble, but there is a higher truth, a greater realm. It is called Kingdom. “But my money, my retirement, my this, my that.” Stewardship… What we desire to hold on to often keeps us from the Kingdom. Are you saying money is wrong? Nope, simply a tool to be used by the conduits of the Kingdom to overcome the work of darkness.
I do not believe we can reduce the Kingdom to earthly terms and earthly thinking. Define the Kingdom. Okay, how about all that Jesus died for. Righteousness, peace and joy, embraced through the workings of the Holy Ghost? Don’t revert to to the lawful ones, that He as a Jew, had to walk in. Look to the higher truths. Love, peace,giving.Loving your enemy. Helping the poor. Bringing in the homeless. What can you do today in your world with the Kingdom you hold?
Politics and impure religion will lead you astray. But the Kingdom of God is always on the increase. Be a releaser of the Increaser.