Society & Politics

This (Ambiguous) Political Life


John G. Stackhouse Jr.

How should Christians posture themselves towards the world of politics? We should posture ourselves with an acknowledgment of both sin and the possibility of redemption, argues Regent College Professor John Stackhouse, in this article for Christianity Today. Drawing on his excellent work in Making the Best of It, Stackhouse presents an ethic of Christian realism in which we recognise that the perfect solution and the end to all pain and suffering will have to wait until Christ comes again. In the meantime, we should do all we can to work within the system, which means recognising compromises will have to be made. One of the consequences of this is that we need to prepare and plan for ways to deal with the sinfulness that is present in the world and actively work against the effect it will have if left unchecked. Being involved in the political sphere is one of the ways in which we take part in this work, shifting solutions towards those that will bring more shalom into our societies while constantly recognising that the shalom we can take part in will only be partial. Taking heed of sin and the power of politics in this way means that we can neither disregard the political sphere nor entirely put our hope in it.

What measures are in place to limit the effect of sin through the political sphere?

Where might we as Christians be more willing to offer solutions of compromise without compromising our integrity?

Source: Christianity Today

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