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What are Christians doing in politics?

Should the traditional theology prevail?

Christianity in general does not have the comfortable presumed privileged place of respect that it used to. The traditional theological position of staying clear of both money (the love of which is the root of ‘all’ evil) and politics (the evil of which is the root of all money) both seemed to serve us well. But is it time for Christians to engage more in democratic political process?

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The money question is always a most misinterpreted verse (1 Timothy 6:10); it was the LOVE of money which is the root of MUCH (not all) evil. The Pentecostals have turned this verse on its head and shown that, correctly managed, money is the root of much flourishing.

Churches are increasingly inviting CDP to attend and speak on what we do.

So, if we are now (sort of) OK with money – try doing anything without it – what now then for politics?

I could be smug and say try doing anything without it, but that is too simplistic. If I told you there were deliberate moves by both major parties to remove “place of worship zoning” (the traditional Local Council zoning which has allowed churches to be built) and that only the influence of the Christian Democratic Party (CDP) inside Parliament preserved our (your) ability to plant churches, what would you say then?

With the drift of society away from church (backed up by ABS statistics), the need for direct representation is now a matter of urgency. During the 2016 Election, I spoke at a number of church denominations including Catholic, Uniting, Coptic, Orthodox, and Pentecostal. Churches are increasingly inviting CDP to attend and speak on what we do.

But some may ask: “Why is government of such poor character and government policy so bad?” The simple answer is because there are so few Christians in government. With Christians giving politics a wide berth, it means we are ipso facto leaving it to the non-believers and hoping those non-believers will somehow gain a Godly special revelation and know what kingdom values to implement!

My mission and purpose for the Christian Democratic Party is for getting Christians elected to government and bringing a Christian influence into government policy, and the name of Jesus into Parliament House. Only direct representation will protect the church and revitalise the Christian roots of this nation.

Just being Christian is a political statement …

There is biblical support for Christians in (politics) government. For example, “Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God … for they are God’s ministers attending continually to this very thing” (Romans 13:1-7). The Old Testament too supports it: “For a child is born to us, a son is given to us. The government will rest on his shoulders” (Isaiah 9:6).

These verses challenge the two most common myths and objections that (1) there are no Christians in politics, and (2) that government (politics) is not in the Bible.

Many priests and ministers and pastors expressed to me that “the church has been caught sleeping” and off guard by a tide of anti-church societal waves. It was always oxymoronic to claim Christians should stay clear of politics, as it needs to be remembered that historically and until very recently the church was the government. Just being Christian is a political statement and Saint Paul certainly knew how political it was – and Christ’s crucifixion was as political as it gets.

Craig Hall with Parramatta Lord Mayor Andrew Wilson, NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian and Geoff Lee (Member for Parramatta) at Australia Day 2018 celebrations.

Our vote is a power we casually give away when we vote haphazardly, or not at all. My friend, an elected politician of 15 years was dumped by his major party four weeks out from an election. He despaired that his situation was politically hopeless, but I offered to bring a team from my connect Bible group. So, this atheist/agnostic from a Communist-leaning family went into campaign mode with a team of 15 Christians. He won by three votes (every vote counts). It was such an extraordinary political win from hopelessness that he conceded it could only have been God that made it happen – he is now a Christian.

By voting for the status quo Christians are inadvertently voting themselves out of existence.

Saint Paul was willing to be all things to all people, to win some; are we willing to allow God to use even politics to win some (one) to Christ?

A Christian Prime Minister is a blessing yet, generally, individual Christians struggle in a secular party system. We need to reflect upon the fact that the erosion of Christian values has occurred under the policy decisions of the two major parties, and by voting for the status quo Christians are inadvertently voting themselves out of existence.

Voters may have both benefits if they desire to vote for CDP and a major party by voting 1. CDP and 2. (major party). The CDP votes surplus will flow to both CDP and your major party choice.

Both major political parties began via minor party coalitions and have drifted from the Christian base from whence they came. A recent by-election saw 40% vote for minor parties and the majors are elected on just 30% of the vote. I see a third party on the horizon.

The CDP’s next push is for a Religious Freedom legislation Bill in NSW.

God’s gold was always in the ground (Haggai 2:8) but mostly pagans were the only ones willing to pick it up.

Now that Christians are more willing to pick up God’s gold and use it for Kingdom purposes, how about God’s government system which we call political democracy?

Craig L Hall is the State Director and National Director Federal Secretariat of the Christian Democratic Party. He has a Bachelor of Economics, M. Arts & Master of Research, and is completing a PhD in early Christianity.

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