Politics and the lens of biblical ethics

by | 5 Mar 2024 | 0 comments

Politics and the lens of biblical ethics

by | 5 Mar 2024 | 0 comments

In any country, successive new governments are usually at pains to say how terrible the previous government was, and how they are now cleaning up the mess and bringing in a new golden age. Arguably, though, every government (regardless of where it may sit on the political spectrum) has some areas in which it will be reasonably wise, competent, and efficient, and some other areas in which it may be less surefooted and appropriate.

Christians, just like other people, have a range of political preferences. But can we, as Christians, also look at the policies of any Government not primarily from the perspective of our political leanings, but through the wider lens of general biblical ethics?

Of any government, can we ask question like these? How well does it…

• honour God? (e.g. Hos. 12:6, Ps. 2:10-11)
• discern the difference between good and evil? (e.g. Is. 5:20)
• govern with justice, righteousness, mercy and kindness? (e.g. Ps. 33:5, 89:14, Jer. 29:7, Zech. 7:9)
• help the nation to prosper?
• lead with impartiality, uncorrupted by undue influence of the rich and powerful? (e.g. Prov. 29:14)
• work for the wellbeing of all its citizens?
• respect citizens of all ethnicities and cultures?
• care for the poor, the sick, the weak, and the vulnerable? (e.g. Prov. 14:31, Is.1:17)
• provide for the homeless?
• help strengthen marriage and families?
• uphold the sanctity of human life? (Gen.9:6, Ps. 139:13-16)
• restrain lawlessness? (1 Pet.2:13, Rom.13:3.4)
• help protect God’s wonderful creation?
• defend the nation?
• enact good and helpful laws?

All governments should be respected for the responsibility that has been given to them (Rom. 13:1-2). All governments can get some things wrong. All of them need our support in prayer (1 Tim. 2:2).

Dr Stuart Lange
Author: Dr Stuart Lange

Dr Stuart Lange is the National Director of the NZCN and is a Senior Research Fellow at Laidlaw College, where he was formerly Vice Principal. Stuart wrote and presented the historical DVD documentary Te Rongopai: 200 years of the Gospel in New Zealand, 1814-2014.

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