Bible Answers For Churches Endorsing Politics

Sometimes, the endorsements that matter most aren’t from celebrities…they’re in the pages of the Bible. The Bible offers examples of profound spiritual endorsements, where one leader publicly recognizes the divine calling upon another. These endorsements go far beyond titles or positions – they’re about passing on a sacred trust and carrying out God’s purposes.

John the Baptist’s endorsement of Jesus is one such pivotal moment. Standing before a crowd, John recognizes Jesus not merely as a teacher or prophet but as the long-awaited Messiah who will bring salvation to humanity. By boldly calling Jesus the “Lamb of God”, John validates Jesus’ identity for those seeking a savior. This endorsement was a turning point, leading many to become followers of Jesus.

When the Bible Gives its Approval

Sometimes, the endorsements that matter most aren’t from celebrities…they’re in the pages of the Bible.

John the Baptist Endorses Jesus

The Gospel of John shows us a moment when everything changed: John the Baptist calls Jesus the “Lamb of God.” This wasn’t just some nice title – it meant Jesus would fulfill ancient prophecies and officially begin his ministry (John 1:29). Standing before a crowd, John recognizes Jesus not merely as a teacher or prophet but as the long-awaited Messiah who will bring salvation to humanity. 

Without reservation, John proclaims Jesus as the sacrificial lamb whose death would change everything. Imagine hearing that. If you were a Jewish person then, bells would be going off in your head. This wasn’t just some wise guy, Jesus was linked to the holiest sacrifices, the kind that go deep.

People knew John wasn’t the type to blow smoke. He was a straight shooter, the guy who told it like it is. Because of that, his endorsement of Jesus was HUGE.  It validated Jesus’ identity for a lot of people, leading them to become his followers. Through this act of endorsement, John humbly acknowledges his role as the one who prepares the way for the Messiah.

John wasn’t afraid to tell it like it is. His endorsement of Jesus as the “Lamb of God” wasn’t just hype – it was a wake-up call.  Hearing him say that makes us ask ourselves: Are we paying attention to God’s leading in our own lives? Are we willing to follow, even when it’s not easy or popular?

Joshua Endorsed by Moses

In the Old Testament book of Deuteronomy, Moses publicly endorses Joshua as his successor to lead the Israelites into the Promised Land. As the revered leader who shepherded the Israelites through the wilderness, Moses ensures the continuity of leadership before his impending death. In a solemn gathering of the people, Moses summons Joshua and bestows upon him a divine commission (Joshua 1:1-18). 

Without hesitation, Moses exhorts Joshua to “Be strong and courageous,” affirming his readiness for the daunting task ahead. This endorsement is not merely a passing of the torch but a sacred charge entrusted to Joshua by God’s servant.

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Moses didn’t just hand Joshua the job, he showed real trust in him. That trust didn’t come from nowhere –  it was rooted in Moses’ faith that God had this planned all along. When Moses reminds Joshua that God’s going to be with him every step, that’s not just pep talk. It’s passing down that same faith to the next leader. This whole endorsement thing?  And it’s what kept the Israelites going together, even when things got tough on their way to the Promised Land.

2. Further Instances of Spiritual Endorsements

The Bible provides several powerful examples of how spiritual leaders pass on their authority and mission.

Elijah and Elisha

Elijah and Elisha’s story in the Old Testament shows us something powerful about how spiritual leadership gets passed down (1 Kings 19). Elijah, a fiery prophet known for his boldness and confrontations with idolatry, is instructed by God to anoint Elisha as his successor. In a symbolic act, Elijah casts his mantle upon Elisha, signifying the transfer of prophetic authority and responsibility. 

This public endorsement by Elijah wasn’t just about passing a title to Elisha. This was basically Elijah passing the torch. Now, Elisha was the guy people would turn to for spiritual guidance. Despite initial hesitation, Elisha accepts the call and embarks on a journey of discipleship under Elijah’s mentorship.

We see something special between Elijah and Elisha, it’s more than just boss and employee. Elijah doesn’t just order Elisha around; he shares his hard-won wisdom and faith.  And Elisha, he’s eager to learn, even when it’s tough. This is how spiritual leadership gets passed on, one generation to the next, making sure God’s work continues.

Jesus and the Twelve Apostles

In the New Testament, Jesus’ selection of the twelve apostles represents a profound endorsement of leadership within the early Christian community. Despite their diverse backgrounds and shortcomings, Jesus handpicks these individuals to be his closest companions and emissaries. The process of selection is intentional and deliberate, as Jesus calls them to follow him, teaches them, and empowers them for ministry (Matthew 10:1-4). This act of endorsement is not based on worldly criteria but on spiritual discernment and calling.

Here’s why Jesus choosing the twelve apostles wasn’t just about those specific guys:

  • It shows that leadership isn’t about always being the most qualified. It’s about God’s bigger plan shaping a whole community.
  • Through their stories and their work, the apostles laid the foundation for the entire Christian church – regular guys making a huge impact.
  • When Jesus put his trust in the disciples, it wasn’t just a task he was giving them, it was a vote of confidence. 
  • Do we get too caught up in labels and resumes, instead of looking at the heart like God does?

Is Spiritual Leadership a Licence to Political Endorsements?

Definitely not, because the role of spiritual leaders lies primarily in guiding people towards a relationship with God and the nurturing of their spiritual well-being. When spiritual leaders mix their religious role with political endorsements, it gets messy. Their followers may start to see political beliefs as part of their faith, which can cause division and hurt people who disagree.

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It’s crucial to distinguish between spiritual and political endorsements, as the motivations and implications differ significantly. Spiritual endorsements, as seen in biblical narratives, are rooted in discernment of God’s will and the fulfillment of divine purposes. Religious endorsements are about whether someone’s life and beliefs reflect the values of a faith community. They’re not about agreeing with every political position, but about whether the person embodies what the religion stands for. 

Political endorsements are more about tactics: will this person help my party, cause, or personal gain?  It’s important to understand this so churches can keep their focus on faith, not just who’s in power.

The Power of Mentorship

Think of the great figures in your preferred political party. Chances are, someone took that person under their wing early on. Mentors offer more than campaign tips. They model how to balance ambition with principle, that turns ideals into action. By investing time in those with potential, experienced leaders create a strong bench of future candidates. This personal attention is a different type of endorsement: saying, “I believe this person has what it takes to not only win but truly lead.”

Community Strengthening: What Endorsements Do (and Don’t Do)

When church leaders endorse someone for a position within the church, it’s definitely a way to build up the community. It publicly shows trust in that person’s skills, promotes a smooth hand-off when someone leaves a role, and lets everyone know we’re working towards the same goals. A good endorsement makes both the chosen person and the congregation feel more confident. This is all about leadership within the faith, helping the church itself run well.

Important Note: Church endorsements are NOT about politics. It’s never appropriate for spiritual leaders to use their platform to tell people how to vote or who to support in an election. That blurs the line between our spiritual mission and the messy world of politics.

The Bible’s Emphasis on the Spiritual Kingdom

Despite what some may think, the Bible’s focus isn’t on earthly power struggles, but something far more profound….

Jesus’ Declaration on His Kingdom

Jesus’ declaration that his kingdom is not of this world (John 18:36) emphasizes the transcendent nature of his mission and the distinctiveness of his kingdom compared to earthly political systems. When Jesus stood before Pilate and said, “My kingdom is not of this world,” it was more than just a statement, it was a revolutionary idea.  He was basically saying “I’m a king, yes, but not the kind you’re used to.”  Earthly kings rule by force and land grabs.  But Jesus’ power came from love, justice, and everything good about God.  


Separation of Church and State

The Bible doesn’t have a list of rules for how to run a country or choose leaders. While we won’t find a step-by-step guide in the Bible, it does give us a strong foundation for how Christians should view government. One important idea is that church and government shouldn’t be the same thing.  Jesus himself hinted at this, and the early church definitely operated that way. 

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While Christians are called to be responsible citizens and to respect governing authorities (Romans 13:1-7), they are also called to prioritize their allegiance to God’s kingdom above all earthly allegiances. The idea that church and government should be separate keeps churches independent.

Caution Against Worldly Distractions

While the Bible acknowledges the existence and role of earthly governments, it also warns against being entangled in worldly affairs that distract from one’s spiritual mission (2 Timothy 2:4).

Christians often struggle with how involved they should be in politics. Of course, we want to work towards a just world, but it’s easy to get caught up in the messy fight and lose sight of what Jesus actually taught.  So, should Christians endorse specific candidates?

It’s important to remember that our first job as Christians isn’t fixing the government, it’s spreading the message about God’s love. It’s easy to endorse ideas or people without thinking. But our choices are like putting our stamp of approval on something. Make sure the values we’re “stamped” with are the same values Jesus lived out.

Emphasis on Witnessing, not Governing

The primary mission of Christians is to bear witness to the transformative power of the gospel and to embody the values of God’s kingdom in all aspects of life, including political engagement. While Christians may participate in political processes and advocate for justice and righteousness, their ultimate goal is not political power or control but the proclamation of the good news and the demonstration of God’s love to the world. 

Instead of getting sucked into power games or pushing a political party’s plan, Christians should be known for something different when they engage in politics. That means calling out things that are wrong, protecting those who are hurting, and never losing sight of the big picture – that God’s way is the best, even when the world seems crazy. When we live out our faith instead of just talking about it, that sets us apart as Christians. 

Conclusion

Spiritual endorsements, as seen in the Bible, are deeply rooted in faith and the fulfillment of God’s will. It’s easy to confuse these with political endorsements, which are often about gaining power or influence. However, genuine spiritual endorsements are fundamentally about recognizing God’s work within an individual and supporting their spiritual mission.

The Bible reminds us that our primary focus as Christians isn’t on earthly politics but on spreading God’s message of love and hope. While we’re called to be engaged citizens, our choices should always reflect the values Jesus lived out. When Christians live out their faith with compassion, justice, and a focus on the bigger picture, they offer a powerful witness that sets them apart, regardless of their political affiliations.

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