About Jesus - Steve (Stephen) Sweetman

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Politicizing The Jesus Movement


Crowds of people consistently followed Jesus from place to place, and why?  They benefited from His ministry, as is recorded in John 6:26.


"Jesus answered, 'Very truly I tell you, you are looking for me, not because you saw the signs I performed but because you ate the loaves and had your fill.'"


Seeing that Jesus could miraculously feed thousands of people at one time, the move was on to make Him king, thus the attempt to hijack the Jesus Movement and turn it into a political movement.  It's easy to figure out.  Why work for a living when King Jesus' socialistic state can, without any effort, magically put food on your table.     


Note Jesus' response to this new political movement. 


John 6:15 says: 


"Jesus, knowing that they intended to come and make him king by force, withdrew again to a mountain by himself."


John 2:24 reads:


"But Jesus would not entrust himself to them [the crowds], for he knew all people."   


Jesus had no thought of being king of a newly created Christian state.  He had already refused Satan's offer to politicize Himself and become ruler of the nations (Matthew 4:1 - 10).  No, Jesus knew the corrupt hearts of people and He would not involve Himself in their political plans.  Besides, He would rule all nations at an appropriate date, as determined by His Father.    


Turning the Jesus Movement into a political movement seems to be an ever-present tendency.  The Roman Emperor Constantine and his successors did that in the fourth century, and others have tried the same over the centuries.  Christianizing a nation through political means is a distracting side-show that has never worked.  More importantly, it has no Biblical support, but it's what many North American Evangelical Christians aspire to do today. 


It's evident that Evangelical Christianity is now seen more as a political movement instead of the Jesus Movement it was meant to be, and that's a problem.  In our attempt to Christianize our nations through political means, we are forsaking our Biblical mandate to make disciples of Jesus from within our nations (Matthew 28:18).  We are to Christianize people, not nations, and that's through the preaching of the gospel as we allow the Holy Spirit to speak into the hearts and lives of those to whom we preach.     


If you live in a democracy, as I do, you have the rights of citizenship to vote and participate in the political process, but you do so as a citizen of your nation.  As a citizen of the Kingdom of God, you have, not the right, but the Jesus-mandated responsibility to introduce people in your nation to Jesus.  If your national rights of citizenship trump your Kingdom of God responsibilities, you are in danger of nullifying the implementation of the Great Commission in your life.


I ask this question.  If Jesus did not politicize Himself, should you? 

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