Kingdom Politics series

By Tim Isbell

For some, the end of politics is the power of the few over the many. For others, it is justice for all. For others, it is tolerance that protects everyone's’ individual rights. Tolerance envisions a collection of individuals who don’t need to have much to do with one another, so long as they respect one another’s space and rights.

The world of God’s Kingdom is different, the end goal reconciliation. This cannot happen fully until sometime after Jesus returns. The Revelation teaches that eventually all people and nations will live in reconciliation.

So how shall we live in the meantime? 

Saint Paul says Christians are to live as reconciling agents of a reconciling Lord. This begins with being personally reconciled to God and allowing his Spirit to help us reconcile with other Christ-followers. It continues as we encourage others to reconcile with God and each other. God’s intention is for Christians to live each day as citizens of God’s Kingdom while residing as God's reconciling agents in this fallen world. All the while, we are to trust God for the eventual restoration of all creation. 

So, we gather with other believers, empty ourselves, lovingly deliberate, humbly discern, and live reconciled lives. Then we engage the world according to the ways of Christ Jesus and in the power of the Holy Spirit, taking our vision from the ancient stories of our faith.

Kingdom Politics sessions

1 - The Pattern of Two Kingdoms (2 Kings 1 & 2)

2 - God's Upside-Down Kingdom (2 Kings 3 - 4.7)

3 - Claiming Invisible Political Options (2 Kings 3.8-37)

4 - Political Engagement and Faithful Living (2 Kings 4.38-41)

5 - Purchasing Power & the Power to Purchase (2 Kings 5.1-19)

6 - The Economics of Plenty (2 Kings 6.8-7.2)

7 - The Sanctified Vision of the Kingdom (2 Kings 7.3-20)

Here's a chart that contrasts the secular world politics with God's Kingdom politics. I trust it will help Christian readers know how to interpret the political issues in their context. The numbers in the left column which MeetUp sessions cover those rows.



The World of the kings

The world of God's Kingdom

1

Makes plans first, consults god later (maybe)

Makes plans under and with the Lord God

1

Fears death and change

Trusts God's faithfulness from generation to generation

2

Not always at odds with purposes of God, but often forgets they are not the ultimate authority

Primarily concerned with justice enacted according to God's redemptive purposes

3

Finds hope in associations with politically connected and powerful people

Finds hope in God's long history of faithfulness to his people

3

Operates according to a limited set of opposing political options

Operates according to political options that the world of kings often cannot see

3

Perpetuates an oppositional political life marked by winners and losers

Makes possible a collaborative politic

4

Tries to eradicate evil as a first priority

Inserts good as a first priority; trusts God to deal with evil in his time

4

Fights power & control with power & control

Responds to power & control humbly, with wisdom & persistence

5

Ignores the advice of the powerless & meek

Listens to the powerless and meek

5

Practices trickle-down economics

Anticipates bubble-up economics

6

Provisions are meant for my consumption

Provisions are meant for God's redemption

6

I must compete for provisions

I receive provisions as a responsibility

6

I'll never have enough

God will provide all I need for salvation

6

Sees lack

Sees plentitude

7

Trusts in narrow news sources; has trouble hearing good news from untrusted sources

Willing to receive good news from those who may be considered outsiders

7

Best we know is a politic of tolerance

Kingdom life is a politic of reconciliation

Supplemental resources:

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