Some Quotes about Christianity and Politics

I think this is the first blog post that isn’t mostly my own words. But with the Presidential election cycle in full swing, I kind of wanted to collect a lot of Christian quotes about politics that express my general frustration with the religious right and partisan politics. I don’t plan on doing stuff like this often, but alas here you have it. A bunch of quotes about Christianity and politics.

“When the Church tries to embody the rule of God in the forms of earthly power it may achieve that power, but it is no longer a sign of the kingdom.”

― Lesslie Newbigin

“The leaders of this movement [The Religious Right in the United States], while accepting the biblical doctrine regarding the radical corruption of human nature by sin, in effect exempt themselves as “born-again Christians” from its operation. They identify their own cause unconditionally with the cause of God, regard their critics as agents of Satan, and are apparently prepared to see the human race obliterated in an apocalyptic catastrophe in which the nuclear arsenal of the United States is the instrument of Jesus for the fulfillment of his purpose against the Soviet Union as the citadel of evil. This confusion of a particular and fallible set of political and moral judgements with the cause of Jesus Christ is more dangerous than the open rejection of the claim of Christ in Islam [….] The “Religious Right” uses the name of Jesus to cover the absolute claims of one national tradition.”

– Lesslie Newbigin

“The problem was that . . . Christian values were always more popular in American culture than the Christian gospel. That’s why one could speak of “God and country” with great reception in almost any era of the nation’s history but would create cultural distance as soon as one mentioned ‘Christ and him crucified.’ God was always welcome in American culture. He was, after all, the Deity whose job it was to bless America. The God who must be approached through the mediation of the blood of Christ, however, was much more difficult to set to patriotic music or to ‘Amen’ in a prayer at the Rotary Club.”

– Russell Moore

“We receive celebrities simply because they are ‘conservative,’ without asking what they are conserving. If you are angry with the same people we are, you must be one of us. But it would be a tragedy to get the right president, the right Congress, and the wrong Christ.”

– Russell Moore

“Baptizing lost people and teaching them to vote Republican is not revival.”

– Russell Moore

““too often, and for too long, American ‘Christianity’ has been a political agenda in search of a gospel useful enough to accommodate it.”

– Russell Moore

“The gospel is not identical with either a conservative or progressive ideology. It will at times correct both.”

– Gavin Ortlund

“Christianity has always thrived most as a life giving minority, not a political majority.”

– Scott Sauls

“If you want to be an advocate for American policies, you likely will not gain much of an audience for the gospel. There is a place for discussion of both, but we each have only enough bandwidth to represent a certain number of issues, and to me (as a representative of the church) it is simply not worth it to sacrifice a gospel platform for the sake of defending American political decisions.”

– J. D. Greear

“Christians should never have a political party. It is a huge mistake to become married to an ideology, because the greatest enemy of the gospel is ideology. Ideology is a man-made format of how the world ought to work, and Christians instead believed in the revealing truth Scripture.”

― Charles W. Colson

“Our Lord’s Kingdom is not of this world; and most of His people may do their country much more essential service by pleading for it in prayer, than by finding fault with things which they have no power to alter.”

– John Newton

“I am or would be of no sect or party, civil or religious, but a lover of mankind. It is my part to mourn over sin, and the misery which sin causes, to be humbled for my own sins especially, to pray for peace, and to preach the gospel. Other things I leave to those who have more leisure and ability, and I leave the whole to Him who does all things well.”

– John Newton

“The coziness between church and state is good for the state and bad for the church.”

– G.K. Chesterton

“There is no culture war in America that Christians are called to enlist in as soldiers. Neither the Bible nor the Westminster Confession of Faith speak of “culture” as something to be “won” or “lost” in the way that many Baby Boomers have framed Christian life in American society. The story of redemption is not about God coming to save America nor to build a society that is safe and comfortable for his people. Christian nationalism is idolatry.”

– Anthony Bradley

“Politics draws lines between people; in contrast, Jesus’ love cuts across those lines and dispenses grace. That does not mean, of course, that Christians should not involve themselves in politics. It simply means that as we do so we must not let the rules of power displace the command to love.”

– Philip Yancey

“I see the confusion of politics and religion as one of the greatest barriers to grace. C. S. Lewis observed that almost all crimes of Christian history have come about when religion is confused with politics. Politics, which always runs by the rules of ungrace, allures us to trade away grace for power, a temptation the church has often been unable to resist.”

– Philip Yancey

“I met with those of our society who had votes in the ensuing election and advised them, 1. To vote without few or reward, for the person the judged most worthy, 2. To speak no evil of the person they voted against, and 3. To take their spirits were not sharpened against those that voted on the other side.”

– John Wesley

“If the Democratic Party is the anti-God party then the Republican Party is the anti-human party.”

– Barnabas Piper

“The tendency to claim God as an ally for our partisan value and ends is the source of all religious fanaticism. ”

― Reinhold Niebuhr

I love this video from Dr. Anthony Bradley about Christianity, politics, social ethics, and human flourishing.

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