Pray as America goes to the polls

Here is a “Prayer for Godly Leaders” by David Campell, pastor of Grace Baptist Church in Carlisle, PA. It comes from a new book from DayOne, In a Heart Cries to Heaven, a compilation of his prayers. [thanks to Tim Challies for mentioning this]

Our great and gracious God,

We pray that you will give us leaders who fear your name. We ask for those who are in authority over us that they may be men and women of Christian integrity, men and women imbued with the principles of the Word of God, who will themselves walk in your ways and set an example in public office.

We ask, Lord, that you will not give us up to the sway of those who care nothing for you and for your laws. Give us godly leaders, we pray.

We pray, too, for godly leaders within the church.

We pray for the reformation of the visible church and for great revival within its midst. May those who are in the positions of leadership manifest the same qualities that we see manifest supremely in our Lord Jesus Christ, and that, under the leadership of such men, your church would flourish.

Give us all grace, we pray.

Everyone who is a member of this congregation or of another congregation, to be a good and faithful servant of Jesus Christ, each one of us. We pray that you will bless our time together to that end.

We pray that you will stand with your servant as he opens up the Word, that you will put words in his mouth, that you will give to us illumined minds and hearts, and we pray that you will make that Word written upon our hearts and make our time together to be truly a means of grace, that we, in this week that is before us, may walk in your ways.

Hear us, O God, we pray, and these prayers and the many others that in the silence of our hearts we would lift to you, the omniscient God.

Hear us, for Jesus’ sake.
Amen.

9 thoughts on “Pray as America goes to the polls

  1. What scriptures have always had a bearing on the attitude of true Christians toward involvement in political issues and activities?

    John 17:16: “They are no part of the world, just as I [Jesus] am no part of the world.”

    John 6:15: “Jesus, knowing they [the Jews] were about to come and seize him to make him king, withdrew again into the mountain all alone.” Later, he told the Roman governor: “My kingdom is no part of this world. If my kingdom were part of this world, my attendants would have fought that I should not be delivered up to the Jews. But, as it is, my kingdom is not from this source.”—John 18:36.

    Jas. 4:4: “Adulteresses, do you not know that the friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever, therefore, wants to be a friend of the world is constituting himself an enemy of God.” (Why is the matter so serious? Because, as 1 John 5:19 says, “the whole world is lying in the power of the wicked one.” At John 14:30, Jesus referred to Satan as being “the ruler of the world.” So, no matter what worldly faction a person might support, under whose control would he really come?)

    Regarding political involvement, what do secular historians report as being the attitude of those known as early Christians?

    “Early Christianity was little understood and was regarded with little favor by those who ruled the pagan world. . . . Christians refused to share certain duties of Roman citizens. . . . They would not hold political office.”—On the Road to Civilization, A World History (Philadelphia, 1937), A. Heckel and J. Sigman, pp. 237, 238.

    “The Christians stood aloof and distinct from the state, as a priestly and spiritual race, and Christianity seemed able to influence civil life only in that manner which, it must be confessed, is the purest, by practically endeavouring to instil more and more of holy feeling into the citizens of the state.”—The History of the Christian Religion and Church, During the Three First Centuries (New York, 1848), Augustus Neander, translated from German by H. J. Rose, p. 168.

    What scriptures have always had a bearing on the attitude of true Christians toward ceremonies involving flags
    Is it possible for humans to establish a government that will really bring lasting happiness?
    What does the record of human history show?
    Eccl. 8:9: “Man has dominated man to his injury.” (This is true even though some governments and rulers have started off with high ideals.)
    “Every civilization that has ever existed has ultimately collapsed. History is a tale of efforts that failed, or aspirations that weren’t realized. . . . So, as a historian, one has to live with a sense of the inevitability of tragedy.”—Henry Kissinger, political scientist and professor of government, as quoted in The New York Times, October 13, 1974, p. 30B.
    What hinders human efforts in the field of government?
    Jer. 10:23: “I well know, O Jehovah, that to earthling man his way does not belong. It does not belong to man who is walking even to direct his step.” (God did not authorize his human creation to chart its own path independent from God.)
    Gen. 8:21: “The inclination of the heart of man is bad from his youth up.” (Not only the rulers but also those ruled are all born in sin, with selfish inclinations.)
    2 Tim. 3:1-4: “In the last days critical times hard to deal with will be here. For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, . . . not open to any agreement, . . . puffed up with pride.” (The problems facing mankind today cannot be lastingly solved by just one nation; they require complete international cooperation. But selfish interests prevent that and also seriously hinder any real cooperation among the various organizations within nations.)
    The Bible also reveals that superhuman forces are manipulating the affairs of men. “The whole world is lying in the power of the wicked one.” (1 John 5:19) “We have a wrestling, not against blood and flesh, but against . . . the world rulers of this darkness, against the wicked spirit forces in the heavenly places.” (Eph. 6:12) “Expressions inspired by demons . . . go forth to the kings of the entire inhabited earth, to gather them together to the war of the great day of God the Almighty.”—Rev. 16:14.
    How can people get lasting relief from governmental corruption and oppression?
    Will putting other men in office solve the problem?
    Is it not true that where there are free elections the men in power are usually voted out of office in a relatively few years? Why? A majority are not satisfied with their performance.
    Ps. 146:3, 4: “Do not put your trust in nobles, nor in the son of earthling man, to whom no salvation belongs. His spirit goes out, he goes back to his ground; in that day his thoughts do perish.” (So, any programs for betterment that rulers institute soon pass into the hands of others and are frequently abandoned.)
    No matter who the ruler is, he will still be part of this world that lies in Satan’s power.—1 John 5:19.
    Is violent revolution the answer?
    Even if corrupt rulers are ousted and unjust laws are discarded, the new government will be made up of imperfect humans and will still be part of the political system that the Bible clearly says is under the control of Satan.
    Matt. 26:52: “Return your sword to its place, for all those who take the sword will perish by the sword.” (Jesus said this to one of his apostles at a time when governmental authority was being used unjustly against the Son of God himself. For what more worthy cause could a person have fought, if that were the right thing to do?)
    Prov. 24:21, 22: “My son, fear Jehovah and the king. With those who are for a change, do not intermeddle. For their disaster will arise so suddenly, that who is aware of the extinction of those who are for a change?”
    What, then, is the answer to the problems of corruption and oppression?
    Dan. 2:44: “The God of heaven will set up a kingdom [a government] that will never be brought to ruin. And the kingdom itself will not be passed on to any other people. It will crush and put an end to all these kingdoms, and it itself will stand to times indefinite.”
    Ps. 72:12-14: “He [Jehovah’s appointed king, Jesus Christ] will deliver the poor one crying for help, also the afflicted one and whoever has no helper. He will feel sorry for the lowly one and the poor one, and the souls of the poor ones he will save. From oppression and from violence he will redeem their soul, and their blood will be precious in his eyes.” (His concern for such people when he was on earth—his healing them, feeding multitudes, even laying down his life for them—shows that he will truly be the kind of ruler foretold in the prophecy.)
    See also pages 227-232, under the heading “Kingdom.”
    Why should we seriously consider what the Bible says about the future of government?
    Human rulers are not providing what mankind urgently needs
    Consider these things that people everywhere need, that human governments are not providing but that God has promised: (1) Life in a world free from the threat of war.—Isa. 2:4; Ps. 46:9, 10. (2) Ample food for everyone.—Ps. 72:16. (3) Comfortable housing for everyone.—Isa. 65:21. (4) Satisfying employment for all who need it, so they can provide for themselves and their families.—Isa. 65:22. (5) Life that is not marred by sickness and disease.—Rev. 21:3, 4. (6) Justice; freedom from religious, racial, economic, and national prejudice.—Isa. 9:7; 11:3-5. (7) Enjoyment of security, without danger to one’s person or property from criminals.—Mic. 4:4; Prov. 2:22. (8) A world in which qualities most highly prized include love, kindness, concern for one’s fellowman, and truthfulness.—Ps. 85:10, 11; Gal. 5:22, 23.
    For thousands of years, political rulers have been promising their people better conditions. With what results? Although the people in many nations have more material possessions, they are not happier, and the problems confronting them are more complex than ever.
    Bible prophecies have proved completely reliable
    A century in advance God’s Word foretold Babylon’s position of world dominance, also how its power would finally be broken, and the fact that, once desolated, its capital would never again be inhabited. (Isa. 13:17-22) Nearly two centuries in advance, even before Cyrus was born, the Bible foretold him by name as well as his role in international affairs. (Isa. 44:28; 45:1, 2) Before Medo-Persia became a world power, its ascendancy, its dual nature, and how it would end were all foretold. Over two centuries in advance the course of the Grecian world empire under its first king was foretold, also the subsequent division of the empire into four parts.—Dan. 8:1-8, 20-22.
    The Bible foretold in detail the world conditions of our day, and it puts us on notice that all human governments will come to their end at the hands of God and that God’s Kingdom in the hands of his Son, Jesus Christ, will rule over all mankind.—Dan. 2:44; 7:13, 14.
    Is it not the course of wisdom to heed a source of information that has proved to be so consistently reliable?
    Government by God is the only real solution to the problems of mankind
    The problems that need to be resolved require power, abilities, and qualities that no humans possess. God can free mankind from the influence of the Devil and his demons, and He has promised to do so, but no human can. God has made provision to do what medical science could never accomplish—remove sin, thus ending sickness and death and making it possible for people to be the kind of persons that they really want to be. The Creator has the needed knowledge (of the earth and of all life processes) to solve the problems of food production and to prevent dangerous pollution, but human efforts often create more problems. God’s Word is already transforming lives so that those who respond to its leading become kind, loving persons with high morals, a society of persons who refuse to take up arms against their fellowman and who live in genuine peace and brotherhood although they are from all nations, races, and language groups.

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  2. Zen,

    The first set of verses you site are not addressing the Christian’s level of involvment in government or politics, or even whether he should be involved….read those verses in context. If proof-texting is your method of biblical interpretation, you can get the Bible to say almost anything.

    It matters not was secular historians say about what the early Christians believed about political involvement. Early Christian beliefs are not the standard of truth, and certainly not secular assessments of those beliefs. “Early” Christians were in error in some areas, just as some Christians are today and just as all Christians are in some areas in every age. What of it? Truth is determine by Scripture.

    As far as I recall, the Bible doesn’t address flags. Where’s your Scriptural argument on this one?

    No, it’s not possible for humans to establish a gov.’t that brings lasting happiness. This is a fallen, sinful world. Generally, no Christian makes such a claim. That is for the world to come, not this one. However, we still have a responsibility to be involved in governing this world, promoting the general good, and being responsible citizens so that we can live in peace and be a blessing to our neighbors. Apparently Joseph didn’t find his involvement in ruling Egypt and providing for the sustenance of its’ citizens during the famine to be “friendship with the world” and a violation of God’s Word. Nor did Daniel, nor did the apostle Paul, nor those in Caesar’s household who became Christians.

    I should say in closing, this is a Christian blog. I’m not sure why you want to pop in here and text-dump. The JW methods of biblical interpretation are notoriously convoluted and unconvincing, especially when Scripture is actually read in context. You’re not going to convince anyone here with this type of argumentation.

    Surely there are some JW blogs that will find your points compelling?

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  3. Chad, I’ll do my best to answer your reply to what I wrote above which you obviously do not want to or can’t understand.

    Zen,

    The first set of verses you site are not addressing the Christian’s level of involvment in government or politics, or even whether he should be involved….read those verses in context. If proof-texting is your method of biblical interpretation, you can get the Bible to say almost anything.

    That’s not true Chad because looking up scriptures to support an untruth can’t be found unless someone says they mean something other than what they say. and in that case they can’t show supporting scriptures. Also, using the scriptures to reprove and teach is something Jesus did frequently and we are told at
    (2 Timothy 3:16,17) 16 All Scripture is inspired of God and beneficial for teaching, for reproving, for setting things straight, for disciplining in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be fully competent, completely equipped for every good work.
    Again Chad, it is written in I John 2:15–17 “15 Do not be loving either the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him; 16 because everything in the world—the desire of the flesh and the desire of the eyes and the showy display of one’s means of life—does not originate with the Father, but originates with the world. 17 Furthermore, the world is passing away and so is its desire, but he that does the will of God remains forever

    How can you Chad, say that being involved in the politics of the world has nothing to do with these verses or when Jesus withdrew into the mountains so that they couldn’t get a hold of him to make him king. That’s a top political position position if I ever heard one.
    John 6:15: “Jesus, knowing they [the Jews] were about to come and seize him to make him king, withdrew again into the mountain all alone.” Later, he told the Roman governor: “My kingdom is no part of this world. If my kingdom were part of this world, my attendants would have fought that I should not be delivered up to the Jews. But, as it is, my kingdom is not from this source.”—John 18:36.

    Chad wrote: “It matters not was secular historians say about what the early Christians believed about political involvement”.

    You’re correct Chad, just like it doesn’t matter to true Christians that archeologists locate the palaces of ancient kings mentioned in the bible and find evidence of their destruction exactly as mentioned in the bible. Or ancient clay tablets with the name of kings and battles which were at one time thought to be nothing more than bible fables. Or even drawings depicting ancient Egyptian life, exactly how Moses described it. We don’t need these things to know that the bible is in fact God’s inspired word.
    Nevertheless…it does substanciate to some who might otherwise not believe what the scriptures say.

    When Jesus stated at John 17:16: “They are no part of the world, just as I [Jesus] am no part of the world.” I have to believe he meant just what he said.

    Chad, you asked me “As far as I recall, the Bible doesn’t address flags. Where’s your Scriptural argument on this one”?

    Chad, do you know what a principle is ? If God says at 1 John 5:19 “the whole world is lying in the power of the wicked one.” and in Daniel 2:44 Jehovah tells Daniel that he’s going to destroy every nation on earth because they are ALL bad, would you want to be proudly holding their banner or flag as it were, especially after you know how God feels about those kingdoms
    (Dan 2:44) “And in the days of those kings the God of heaven will set up a kingdom that will never be brought to ruin. And the kingdom itself will not be passed on to any other people. It will crush and put an end to all these kingdoms, and it itself will stand to times indefinite;

    Chad you stated “No, it’s not possible for humans to establish a gov.’t that brings lasting happiness. This is a fallen, sinful world. Generally, no Christian makes such a claim. That is for the world to come, not this one. However, we still have a responsibility to be involved in governing this world, promoting the general good, and being responsible citizens so that we can live in peace and be a blessing to our neighbors.

    As witnesses of Jehovah God, we know that we are commanded by Jesus himself at (Matthew 28:19-20) 19 Go therefore and make disciples of people of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the holy spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all the things I have commanded you. And, look! I am with you all the days until the conclusion of the system of things.”

    (2 Timothy 4:1-5) 4 I solemnly charge you before God and Christ Jesus, who is destined to judge the living and the dead, and by his manifestation and his kingdom, 2 preach the word, be at it urgently in favorable season, in troublesome season, reprove, reprimand, exhort, with all long-suffering and [art of] teaching. 3 For there will be a period of time when they will not put up with the healthful teaching, but, in accord with their own desires, they will accumulate teachers for themselves to have their ears tickled; 4 and they will turn their ears away from the truth, whereas they will be turned aside to false stories. 5 You, though, keep your senses in all things, suffer evil, do [the] work of an evangelizer, fully accomplish your ministry.

    Jehovah’s witnesses freely and lovingly put in over 2 billion hours last year going from house to house preaching the good news of God’s kingdom as did the first century Christians (Acts 5:41-42) 41 These, therefore, went their way from before the San′he·drin, rejoicing because they had been counted worthy to be dishonored in behalf of his name. 42 And every day in the temple and from house to house they continued without letup teaching and declaring the good news about the Christ, Jesus.

    (Acts 20:20) 20 while I did not hold back from telling YOU any of the things that were profitable nor from teaching YOU publicly and from house to house. . .

    That Chad is the true lifesaving work, not waisting valuable time and resources “striving after the wind” in a cause that God clearly tells us is futile and keeps people from utalizing that time in drawing close to him and serving him.
    (Matthew 24:14) 14 And this good news of the kingdom will be preached in all the inhabited earth for a witness to all the nations; and then the end will come.

    Then you said “Apparently Joseph didn’t find his involvement in ruling Egypt and providing for the sustenance of its’ citizens during the famine to be “friendship with the world” and a violation of God’s Word. Nor did Daniel, nor did the apostle Paul, nor those in Caesar’s household who became Christians”.
    Again Chad, where is your sense of what was going on ? Joseph found himself in jail in Egypt because of the badness of his brothers. He did not volunteer his services or seek to run for office. No but he was blessed by Jehovah and was the vessel used by Jehovah to insure the survival of the promissed seed. In interpreting pharaoh’s dream, Jehovah guided Joseph’s words and told pharoah that it should be left in the charge of a wise man and the pharoah reasoned, who wiser than you, the man who interpreted the dream. God was using Joseph to fulfill his purposes.
    As for Daniel and the others you mention, if you pray and study over what was going on, it’s impossible to not notice that none of them had a desire for power or authority in the governments of their surroundings, that’s rediculous and the sort of thing I expect from someone who has no scriptural evidence to support any of his statements but instead uses the wisdom of the world to artfully contrive his explanations
    (Luke 11:52) 52 “Woe to YOU who are versed in the Law, because YOU took away the key of knowledge; YOU yourselves did not go in, and those going in YOU hindered!”

    (1 John 4:1) 4 Beloved ones, do not believe every inspired expression, but test the inspired expressions to see whether they originate with God, because many false prophets have gone forth into the world.

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  4. Zen,

    You said:

    “That’s not true Chad because looking up scriptures to support an untruth can’t be found unless someone says they mean something other than what they say. and in that case they can’t show supporting scriptures.”

    Right. That’s the point. The verses you cite are not addressing whether a Christian should be involved in politics. You’re presuming that Jn 17:16, “they {the disciples} are not of the world just as I am not of the world” means that Christians should have no involvement in politics. However, you offer no arguments to support that interpretation. Someone could equally assert that using money printed by the government is “being of the world” and therefore you shouldn’t make or spend money. How would you exegetically refute such an assertion given your interpretation of the passage? You can’t.

    The fact is, Jesus is asserting that the disciples are not motivated by the things the world is motivated by, the base, carnal, sensuous things that appeal to the flesh. The disciples are born from above, are spiritually minded, walk by faith and are motivated by heavenly things. They are not *of the world* just as Jesus is not of it.

    Of course the Scriptures are to be used for teaching, reproof, for correction, and instruction in righteousness. However, they are to be used accurately, and the man of God is to rightly divide the word of truth. Not use it to defend his presupposed theological system, or pull any verse out of it’s context to make it say something that in context it doesn’t say. Jesus is not addressing political involvement in John 17, at all.

    You said:

    “Again Chad, it is written in I John 2:15–17 “15 Do not be loving either the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him; 16 because everything in the world—the desire of the flesh and the desire of the eyes and the showy display of one’s means of life—does not originate with the Father, but originates with the world. 17 Furthermore, the world is passing away and so is its desire, but he that does the will of God remains forever”

    Notice how “loving the world” in these verses is tied to “the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride in possessions.” Now, how is a Christian statesman “loving the world or the things in the world” in the context of these verses by representing his precinct in Congress? How is he or she “loving the world” by trying to provide social services, keep the roads paved, lower taxes, etc.? Again, you’re reading meaning into these verses that simply isn’t there. This passage is a command to not love the vain things of the flesh, for they are not from the Father. If you love those things, the love of the Father is not in you.

    You said:

    “How can you Chad, say that being involved in the politics of the world has nothing to do with these verses or when Jesus withdrew into the mountains so that they couldn’t get a hold of him to make him king. That’s a top political position position if I ever heard one.”

    Jesus’ kingdom is not political in nature. He did not come the first time to be made a king of a nation in order to establish political power. He came to deal with our sin. His withdrawing from the zealous and misguided desires of some of the people to make Him king was not a condemnation of all political power or involvement. How can you possibly make this connection? He withdrew because his kingdom is spiritual in nature, not political.

    You said:

    “You’re correct Chad, just like it doesn’t matter to true Christians that archeologists locate the palaces of ancient kings mentioned in the bible and find evidence of their destruction exactly as mentioned in the bible. Or ancient clay tablets with the name of kings and battles which were at one time thought to be nothing more than bible fables. Or even drawings depicting ancient Egyptian life, exactly how Moses described it. We don’t need these things to know that the bible is in fact God’s inspired word.
    Nevertheless…it does substanciate to some who might otherwise not believe what the scriptures say.”

    You were making an argument from authority, not just citing secular historians as corroborative evidence. For you to prove your point, you need to make a convincing argument from Scripture. The practices or beliefs of early Christians has little bearing on what the Bible actually teaches with regard to this subject. It merely describes what some early Christians may have believed.

    You said:

    “Chad, you asked me “As far as I recall, the Bible doesn’t address flags. Where’s your Scriptural argument on this one”?

    Chad, do you know what a principle is ?”

    I sure do, and I don’t see any principle established in any verse you cited. Flags are indifferent. To bind the consciences of God’s people with that rice paper thin implication is a sad misuse of Scripture.

    You said:

    “Jehovah’s witnesses freely and lovingly put in over 2 billion hours last year going from house to house preaching the good news of God’s kingdom as did the first century Christians ”

    Zen, what is the good news of God’s kingdom? Please explain.

    You said:

    “That Chad is the true lifesaving work, not waisting valuable time and resources “striving after the wind” in a cause that God clearly tells us is futile and keeps people from utalizing that time in drawing close to him and serving him.”

    Governing people is “waisting valuable time”? Protecting the rights of your fellow citizens is “striving after wind”? Are not Christian statesman serving God in their stewardship and calling?

    You said:

    “Again Chad, where is your sense of what was going on ? Joseph found himself in jail in Egypt because of the badness of his brothers. He did not volunteer his services or seek to run for office.”

    Oh, if he had run for that office it would have been bad, but because he didn’t *volunteer* for it, it’s OK. Even though it’s part of the “wicked world system”, I see–makes perfect sense.

    You said:

    “As for Daniel and the others you mention, if you pray and study over what was going on, it’s impossible to not notice that none of them had a desire for power or authority in the governments of their surroundings, that’s rediculous and the sort of thing I expect from someone who has no scriptural evidence to support any of his statements but instead uses the wisdom of the world to artfully contrive his explanations”

    You cannot rule without power and authority. If the world system is wicked, what does the desire of the participant have to do with making it suddenly right to be involved in it? Daniel could have easily refused the office he was given, the same with Joseph, if this was in fact their conviction about political involvement. That’s the sort of superficial explanation I expect from someone who has no scriptural evidence to support any of his statements but instead uses his preconceived theological system to artfully contrive his explanations.

    If you respond, address my points specifically. Otherwise, you’re not advancing the conversation…

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  5. I should also point out Zen, that given your premise (holding political office is OK as long as you didn’t pursue or volunteer for it) it wouldn’t have been wrong for Jesus to accept being made King by the people because He did not pursue it. Yet, you cite this very thing (His refusal to be made King) as a blanket condemnation of political involvement. You’re contradicting yourself…

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    • No Chad, what I am saying is that Jehovah God used Joseph for his purposes in ensuring that the promissed seed would survive.

      As far as Jesus is concerned it is written at (John 6:38) 38 because I have come down from heaven to do, not my will, but the will of him that sent me.

      As Jesus Christ carried out his earthly ministry, he did not always provide the help that the people thought they needed. Some longed for a Messiah who would free them from the hated yoke of Rome. But Jesus did not advocate revolution; he told them at Matthew 22:21 to “pay back . . . Caesar’s things to Caesar.” God’s purpose involved far more than liberating people from being dominated by some political regime. The people wanted to make Jesus king, but he said that he would “give his soul a ransom in exchange for many.” (Matthew 20:28; John 6:15) It was not yet the time for him to assume kingship, and the authority for him to rule was going to be conferred on him by Jehovah, not by restless crowds.

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  6. Chat you replied:
    Zen said:
    “That’s not true Chad because looking up scriptures to support an untruth can’t be found unless someone says they mean something other than what they say. and in that case they can’t show supporting scriptures.”
    Chad’s reply
    Right. That’s the point. The verses you cite are not addressing whether a Christian should be involved in politics. You’re presuming that Jn 17:16, “they {the disciples} are not of the world just as I am not of the world” means that Christians should have no involvement in politics. However, you offer no arguments to support that interpretation. Someone could equally assert that using money printed by the government is “being of the world” and therefore you shouldn’t make or spend money. How would you exegetically refute such an assertion given your interpretation of the passage? You can’t.

    Zen’s reply: Wow Chad, talk about not getting the sense of statements and scripture. That being said, you are Correct about one thing Chad, some could equally assert anything they like but then they can’t utalize the scriptures to substanciate what they say can they. The scriptures don’t lie and they say at (1 John 5:19) …. “the whole world is lying in the power of the wicked one.” And at John 14:30, Jesus referred to Satan as being “the ruler of the world.” So, no matter what worldly faction a person might support, under whose control would he really come?
    The answer should be a no brainer
    That’s why we as God’s people want to remain no part of the world, not for just those few things which you mention but as it says in James 3:17,18 Can you see that the world is NOT of the things mentioned at 3:17,18, if it were, John 5:19 wouldn’t be true.
    (James 3:17,18) 17 But the wisdom from above is first of all chaste, then peaceable, reasonable, ready to obey, full of mercy and good fruits, not making partial distinctions, not hypocritical. 18 Moreover, the fruit of righteousness has its seed sown under peaceful conditions for those who are making peace.
    Continuing to your point, God asks (through his servant James) at James 4:1-4

    4 From what source are there wars and from what source are there fights among YOU? Are they not from this source, namely, from YOUR cravings for sensual pleasure that carry on a conflict in YOUR members? 2 YOU desire, and yet YOU do not have. YOU go on murdering and coveting, and yet YOU are not able to obtain. YOU go on fighting and waging war. YOU do not have because of YOUR not asking. 3 YOU do ask, and yet YOU do not receive, because YOU are asking for a wrong purpose, that YOU may expend [it] upon YOUR cravings for sensual pleasure. 4 Adulteresses, do YOU not know that the friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever, therefore, wants to be a friend of the world is constituting himself an enemy of God.

    So yes Chad, Whoever, therefore, wants to be a friend of the world is constituting himself an enemy of God, and THAT’s why Jesus said at
    (John 15:19) 19 If you were part of the world, the world would be fond of what is its own. Now because YOU are no part of the world, but I have chosen YOU out of the world, on this account the world hates YOU.
    At Eccl. 8:9: God states that “Man has dominated man to his injury.” This is true even though some governments and rulers have started off with high ideals is it not ?
    Let me ask you Chad; since even you know that superhuman forces are manipulating the affairs of men, “The whole world is lying in the power of the wicked one.” (1 John 5:19) and at Rev 16:14 it says “Expressions inspired by demons . . . go forth to the kings of the entire inhabited earth, to gather them together to the war of the great day of God the Almighty”, why would any true Christian want to involve themselves in a political system which God (through his son Jesus) is soon going to destroy?

    Chad, you said:
    Of course the Scriptures are to be used for teaching, reproof, for correction, and instruction in righteousness. However, they are to be used accurately, and the man of God is to rightly divide the word of truth. Not use it to defend his presupposed theological system, or pull any verse out of it’s context to make it say something that in context it doesn’t say. Jesus is not addressing political involvement in John 17, at all.

    Well Chad, if you haven’t been able to get the connection between politics and the world, why is it that you can’t seperate the world from politics. Every country in the world is involved in it and God’s word says that he’s going to destroy every vestage of it so with all your wisdom and understanding, I can’t understand why you can’t see it unless your heart has grown unreceptive
    (Matthew 13:15) 15 For the heart of this people has grown unreceptive, and with their ears they have heard without response, and they have shut their eyes; that they might never see with their eyes and hear with their ears and get the sense of it with their hearts and turn back, and I heal them.’

    I’m not using scripture to defend a presupposed theological system, mearly to get you to think and pray outside the box you have sealed yourself into.

    Chad you stated: Governing people is “waisting valuable time”? Protecting the rights of your fellow citizens is “striving after wind”? Are not Christian statesman serving God in their stewardship and calling?
    Again Chad you just don’t get the sense of it. Yes, that is striving after the wind. We know that at
    Jeremiah 10:23 it states “I well know, O Jehovah, that to earthling man his way does not belong. It does not belong to man who is walking even to direct his step”. What has been the result of these “Christian” statesmen? We live under the most corrupt and deceitful government in the world.
    How have they faired eliminating hunger here? Yet spending billions supposedly feeding people in other lands, yet they’re still starving in those places. How have they faired in bringing peace to even one small town in this great country of ours? but they sure make it profitable to sell arms around the world. What is their record in helping the elderly and youths with health issues ? Yes my friend, it’s striving after the wind. Those “Christian” statesmen are just as imperfect as the worst of them and the scriptures assure us that all of the governments of the earth are about to reach their conclusion.

    Again Chad the scriptures tell us at Revelation 18:4 . . .And I heard another voice out of heaven say: “Get out of her, my people, if YOU do not want to share with her in her sins, and if YOU do not want to receive part of her plagues.
    Yes “all the nations have fallen victim” and if you think it’s allright to be a part of those nations instead of being “no” part of them on any level then sadly the truth is in fact veiled from before your eyes (2 Corinthians 4:3-4) 3 If, now, the good news we declare is in fact veiled, it is veiled among those who are perishing, 4 among whom the god of this system of things has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, that the illumination of the glorious good news about the Christ, who is the image of God, might not shine through.

    Zen, what is the good news of God’s kingdom? Please explain.

    Chad, This refers to the good news of the Kingdom of God and of salvation by faith in Jesus Christ. It is called in the Bible “the good news of the kingdom” (Mt 4:23), “the good news of God” (Ro 15:16), “the good news about Jesus Christ” (Mr 1:1), “the good news of the undeserved kindness of God” (Ac 20:24), “the good news of peace” (Eph 6:15), and the “everlasting good news” (Re 14:6).
    An idea of the content and scope of the good news can be gained from the above designations. It includes all the truths about which Jesus spoke and the disciples wrote. While men of old hoped in God and had faith through knowledge of Him, God’s purposes were first “made clearly evident through the manifestation of our Savior, Christ Jesus, who has abolished death but has shed light upon life and incorruption through the good news.”—2Ti 1:9, 10.
    Centuries earlier God had declared the good news to Abraham, thereby indicating the means by which he purposed to provide the good news. He said: “By means of you all the nations will be blessed.” (Ga 3:8) Later, through the prophet Isaiah, Jehovah spoke of the preaching of the good news. Jesus Christ read from this prophecy in the synagogue at Nazareth, afterward saying: “Today this scripture that you just heard is fulfilled.” (Lu 4:16-21) Isaiah’s prophecy described the purpose and effect of the good news to be preached, particularly from the time of Messiah’s coming.—Isa 61:1-3.
    The apostle Paul wrote with strong conviction about the provision for salvation that God had made through Jesus Christ. He declared that if anyone was to declare to the Galatians something beyond what they had learned, something that was actually a different teaching, “let him be accursed.” Then, pointing to the source of the good news that he declared, Paul stated: “Neither did I receive it from man, nor was I taught it, except through revelation by Jesus Christ.” (Ga 1:8, 11, 12) This strong declaration was necessary, for even then there were some who were trying to overthrow the true faith by preaching ‘another good news.’ (2Co 11:4; Ga 1:6, 7) Paul warned of an apostasy to come and stated that ‘the mystery of lawlessness’ was already at work; he admonished Christians to remember the purpose of the good news and to stand firm and maintain their hold on the spirit-guided traditions they had learned through the apostles.—2Th 2:3, 7, 14, 15
    Faithfulness in holding on to and continuing to proclaim the good news was counted by Jesus as more important than one’s present life, and Paul recognized that faithfully declaring it was vital. (Mr 8:35; 1Co 9:16; 2Ti 1:8) The individual might suffer the loss of his most cherished possessions, even undergoing persecutions but, in turn, would receive a hundredfold now, “houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and fields, . . . and in the coming system of things everlasting life.”—Mr 10:29, 30.
    The good news is the touchstone by which mankind is judged: Acceptance of and obedience to the good news result in salvation; rejection and disobedience bring destruction. (1Pe 4:5, 6, 17; 2Th 1:6-8) Particularly with this fact in view, the individual’s motive in preaching the good news must be pure and he must preach it from the heart, out of love for those hearing. The apostles were so appreciative of the life-giving importance of the good news and were so fired with God’s spirit and with love that they imparted not only the good news but also their “own souls” to those who listened to their preaching. (1Th 2:8) God provided that the proclaimers of the good news had the right to accept material help from those to whom they brought it. (1Co 9:11-14) But Paul and his close associates so cherished their privilege as bearers of the good news that they carefully avoided making financial gain therefrom, or even giving the appearance of doing so in connection with their preaching. The apostle Paul describes his course of action in this regard at 1 Corinthians 9:15-18 and 1 Thessalonians 2:6, 9.

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  7. Zen,

    I just happened to check back in here after 10 days. I can’t sort it all out for you, as you cut and slice the word of God into a million little pieces, mix it up in a bowl, and put it together in a very strange way. This method of biblical interpretation has caused you to even redefine the “good news” you so sincerely and honestly want to share. The gospel is summed up succinctly in 1 Cor. 15:3-4. A sinner must repent and believe this gospel, and follow Christ as Lord and Savior. That is the basis for a sinner’s entrance into the kingdom of God.

    I pray that God will help you to see it.

    Take care,

    CMG

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    • Exactly Chad, the scripture you site clearly states that Jesus (the Christ) “died”, he was dead the better part of 3 days and was buried.
      (1 Corinthians 15:3-4) 3 For I handed on to YOU, among the first things, that which I also received, that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures; 4 and that he was buried, yes, that he has been raised up the third day according to the Scriptures;
      Now notice what Jesus says to Mary after he was raised from the dead on that third day.

      (John 20:17) 17 Jesus said to her: “Stop clinging to me. For I have not yet ascended to the Father. But be on your way to my brothers and say to them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father and to my God and your God.'”

      Yes Chad, his God, again the scripture is perfectly clear that Jesus never considered himself to be Almighty God, no it was his Father who he himself clearly states is the only “true God” (Jn 17:3). Yes “no man has seen God” says Jn 1:18 but Jesus so perfectly obeyed and did his Fathers will that he was able to say at John 14:9 . . .”He that has seen me has seen the Father” . . .

      In the 6th Chapter of John, at verses 45-47 Jesus says
      “45 It is written in the Prophets, ‘And they will all be taught by Jehovah.’ Everyone that has heard from the Father and has learned comes to me. 46 Not that any man has seen the Father, except he who is from God; this one has seen the Father. 47 Most truly I say to YOU, He that believes has everlasting life”.
      Clearly anyone teaching and believing differently then this is artfully contriving a story in fulfillment of 2 Peter 1:16-18 where the Apostle Peter clearly states “16 No, it was not by following artfully contrived false stories that we acquainted YOU with the power and presence of our Lord Jesus Christ, but it was by having become eyewitnesses of his magnificence. 17 For he received from God the Father honor and glory, when words such as these were borne to him by the magnificent glory: “This is my son, my beloved, whom I myself have approved.” 18 Yes, these words we heard borne from heaven while we were with him in the holy mountain”.

      No minced words needing a man made explanation added to it or translation into it meaning anything other then what it means. Jesus is God’s son and he received his honor and glory from his Father who is God.

      No Chad, we don’t cut & slice the word of God but utalize it to try and get others to believe what it clearly states and not some artfully contrived story as you have been doing. In all your arguments, you haven’t been able to utalize a single scripture to support your “explanation”.

      I prefer to do as directed by Jehovah God at (1 John 4:1) 4 Beloved ones, do not believe every inspired expression, but test the inspired expressions to see whether they originate with God, because many false prophets have gone forth into the world.

      Yes Chad test them against what the scriptures say and nothing you have said holds water when you look for scripture to support it. I don’t think that’s the sort of faith we as followers of Jesus are instructed to build. We hear our shepherd’s voice and we follow him, not men.

      A blessing that we as Jehovah’s people have received as a result of letting him be our teacher is that world wide we as a people keep seperate from the world and are united in a bond of love and the words of jehovah through his prophet Isaiah are being fulfilled today which say: (Isaiah 2:1-4) 2 The thing that Isaiah the son of A′moz visioned concerning Judah and Jerusalem: 2 And it must occur in the final part of the days [that] the mountain of the house of Jehovah will become firmly established above the top of the mountains, and it will certainly be lifted up above the hills; and to it all the nations must stream. 3 And many peoples will certainly go and say: “Come, YOU people, and let us go up to the mountain of Jehovah, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will instruct us about his ways, and we will walk in his paths.” For out of Zion law will go forth, and the word of Jehovah out of Jerusalem. 4 And he will certainly render judgment among the nations and set matters straight respecting many peoples. And they will have to beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning shears. Nation will not lift up sword against nation, neither will they learn war anymore.

      Jesus said that you would be able to recognize his followers by that love. (John 13:35) 35 By this all will know that YOU are my disciples, if YOU have love among yourselves.”

      No government, religion or any other power in exsistance has been able to unite a single neighborhood together yet Jehovah’s people are completely united in all the nations of the world in this bond of love. Don’t kidd yourself, only Jehovah could have done this. Millions world wide have forsaken worldly desires and violence and love their fellow men enough to go house to house like those 1st century disciples voluntarily using their time and rescources to spread this good news of Jehovah’s kingdom through out the inhabited earth.

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