Equip Course – The Divided States of America
As we navigate this contentious election season, how are Christians supposed to respond? In light of the state of disunity within the United States of America, disciples of Jesus must prove themselves to be different from society.
Where Are We?
- The founding of this country was based on obtaining certain freedoms, but the degree of those allowances have been consistently debated.
- The United States of America are aligned by certain commonalities, but the citizens are increasingly divided by critical discrepancies.
- What are some of the major disagreements?
- American Christians often fall into one of two antithetical traps: political obsession or political avoidance.
- Those suffering from political obsession expect the country to do what the church was commissioned to do.
- Those reverting to political avoidance rob the country of the good that biblical beliefs and behaviors could provide.
- Proverbs 29:2 – When the righteous increase, the people rejoice, but when the wicked rule, the people groan.
1 Peter 2:9-17
How Did We Get Here?
- “Because God commanded humanity to be fruitful and multiply, we know he intended the human race to grow, and anytime humans exist together in community, there is the need for government of some type.” – Bruce Ashford
- Civilization requires authority, and yet the authorities often lack civility.
- “Seemingly from the dawn of man all nations have had governments, and all nations have been ashamed of them.” – G.K. Chesterton
- With each election cycle, the candidates serve as a progressively polarized response to the previous administration and the present opposition.
- “Power tends to corrupt; absolute power corrupts absolutely. Great men are almost always bad men, even when they exercise influence and not authority: still more when you superadd the tendency or the certainty of corruption by authority. There is no worse heresy than that the office sanctifies the holder of it. That is the point at which…the end learns to justify the means.” John Dalberg-Acton
How Do We Change It?
- Be in the world but not of the world.
- John 17:14 – I have given them your word, and the world has hated them because they are not of the world, just as I am not of the world.
- Be engaged in politics but not overly expectant of them.
- Daniel 2:21 – He changes times and seasons; he removes kings and sets up kings; he gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to those who have understanding.
- Be ready to express your beliefs and willing to engage with others’ opinions.
- James 1:19 – Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger.
- Be committed to the true gospel and not an Americanized version of it.
- Philippians 3:20 – But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ.
True Gospel vs. Americanized Version
- Who Made It?
- Who Messed It Up?
- Who Saves It?
- What Is the Goal?
Travis Agnew serves as the Lead Pastor of Rocky Creek Church in Greenville, SC. His most recent book is Just (About) Married.