Therefore, you kings, be wise;
be warned, you rulers of the earth.
Serve the Lord with fear
and celebrate his rule with trembling. Psalm 2:10 & 11
While reading Psalm 2 this morning I was overcome with an overwhelming conviction of the foolishness of leadership in many of our democratic countries.
Currently we have a Humanist/Christian and a Mormon battling it out for the Presidency of the USA. I would suggest that neither position can uphold or honour a Biblical framework. We see the values that are held seep through when one party debates whether God should be mentioned and the other treats the poor as dirt. In the UK God hardly gets a mention. Whereas in Australia the Prime Minister is an atheist and her opponent, a Catholic whose faith does not inform his policies or manner to any large degree.
Biblical wisdom is in short supply or politicians fear to reveal it because it is politically unpopular. Either way, Godly wisdom isn’t used to inform the momentous issues, social, economic and ethical, of our age.
Psalm 2 reminds us who is really sovereign and in control. It also reminds us of the consequences if we fail to recognise God’s sovereignty. Read it and be reminded – it is, frankly, chilling. In the meantime most Christian politicians tiptoe around the controversial issues or limit their ethics to those acceptable to the party – the standard model being, for right wing parties, personal ethics such as abortion and homosexuality, and for left wing parties, social issues such as injustice and the poor. Both ends of the spectrum require an informed input from Christian leaders – not just those that the party deems as acceptable.
The decline of faith and Biblical literacy in the West has a lot to do with the current diabolical state. For many believers the “personalisation” of faith stifles their voice and prevents them speaking out on the big issues.
What is the answer? A beginning, I believe is for pastors to teach Biblical truths – personal and social. They need to speak out for God – not parties. Christians need to be equipped to declare the truth and consequences of Psalm 2. A failure to recognise God’s sovereignty over all things leads to human arrogance, pride and ultimately, judgement. The Christian voice should be a prophetic one. This will seldom be popular (which is a clue as to why we don’t hear it from our politicians). I am not saying the Christian should impose his or her will on an unbelieving society but he or she must declare the consequences and suggest Godly alternatives.
Psalm 2 also speaks of blessing. This was true in King David’s day and was fulfilled in Jesus. For those who have the courage and faith to celebrate God’s claims there is blessing, both now and forever. “Blessed are all those who take refuge in him.”
If ever there was a time for Christians to call out to their societies to take refuge in God and His Word, it is now.
Thanks for this post, Pieter. I fully agree with you, and it’s good that you’re giving this part of our Christian convictions some of the air time it deserves and needs – though that’s not to deny that I always enjoy reading your reflections. Keep up the good work.