civility-cartoon-f-youA friend of mine recently sent this to me in a Facebook post: “Trump views rights as a barrier to implementing what he wants and amassing power. I believe rights are to protect ALL citizens from the tyranny of the majority. We are at a moment of systemic risk. We, as citizens, must be active in ensuring America is not lost. We have to stand now, loudly, aggressively.”

Another Facebook post said this: “It wasn’t your politics I found repulsive. No, it was your willingness to support someone who spouts racism, sexism, and cruelty almost every time he opens his mouth. You sided with a bully when it should have mattered most, and that is something I will never be able to forget.”

I could go on and on. And there are equally strong statements from the other side, those who support Trump.

Where do Christians stand?

First of all, I don’t believe God is on either side, despite their claims to being right. Certainly God is against Abortion. Equally, God is against racism, sexism and all the other isms that human beings become entrapped by. But God does not support political parties, and is much more interested in how Christians live in his kingdom than how they vote.

I find myself wanting to say something to all these upset people that will bring God’s peace into their troubled minds.  But peace is not the natural state of the world, and God doesn’t blast the world with Twitters or Facebook posts to try to change that. God depends on us to be peace-bringers.

I look to the Bible for some hints of what to do.

  • I am not asking you to take them out of the world, but I ask you to protect them from the evil one. [John 17:15]
  • Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them. [Romans 12:14]
  • Love is patient; love is kind; love is not envious or boastful or arrogant or rude. [1 Corinthians 13:4]
  • For the whole law is summed up in a single commandment, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” If, however, you bite and devour one another, take care that you are not consumed by one another. [Galatians 5:14-15]

To me the Bible urges Christians to be civil to everyone. Listen with respect. Look for ways to bring love into every situation. And realise that the evil one wants to sow weeds among the wheat: discord, anger, and anything that might divide us as neighbors. We need God’s protection as peace-bringers. Pray for that.

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