“Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you? If anyone defiles the temple of God, God will destroy him. For the temple of God is holy, which temple you are.” 1 Cor. 3:16-17 (NKJV)
In the context of the passage quoted above Paul is warning Christians against all divisive actions which might result in the disruption of the church’s effectiveness as the Body of Christ. To do so invites serious condemnation. What he states makes clear that no Christian should become a negative, divisive, abusive or hurtful force in championing issues which have no bearing on the mission, work, and purpose of the church. It is an especially timely warning at this time for Christians.
As an aside, I quit Facebook not long after the last presidential election (2012). What I read on it brought out the worst in me and others whom hitherto I admired. I observed attitudes I wish I hadn’t. I was shocked to see the enormous gulf between their mindset and mine; that those who claimed to be a Christian did not act like one. (Judging is within our prerogative: “Do not judge according to appearance, but judge with righteous judgment” John 7:24, that is, as long as we take an objective look at the facts before reaching any conclusion). By their own words they condemned themselves, and I knew I had done it to myself too. The hatred, animosity, lies, slander, and all manner of vile, venom spewing became revolting. I repented and determined to avoid any part of it in the future. Exiting Facebook seemed the best way to handle it. (That was not the only reason I dropped out of it, but it was a big one).
This election cycle makes the last one look tame by comparison. It is one of the bitterest, most confrontational, rabidly antagonistic, uniformly biased and nationally divisive ever known and it is not the fault of any one party or candidate. Both have always behaved in a manner inferior to the least of all God’s saints. The last thing we need is to bring the rancor associated with either of them into our midst. The devil would be thrilled once more to parade our imbecility before the Father. We need to ask ourselves, “Whom do we love more, a brother or sister in Christ or a political party—the Body for which Christ died or some human organization that has fooled us into believing it exists to serve us and our needs?” Is the choice really that hard? Are we so blindly absorbed in politics that we treat our brethren like anything less than what they are – children of the Most High God? If so, we are doomed.
No doubt many of us have strong feelings about politics. It is a righteous thing to deplore and condemn policies that are immoral and unrighteous, and rebuke those who promote them (Mark 6:18). It is our right to do so in this nation. What is not righteous is for Christians to sacrifice principles in the process. We have every right to display our support for someone without painting a caricature of the opposition, demonizing them. (The news media excels in this – beware of them; they only show you what they want you to see).
The last thing the church needs is to “bite and devour one another” over someone as worldly-minded as politicians and something as grossly self-serving as political parties. Let us always remain the united family of God, focused on what really matters: the saving of souls and the building up of the Body of Christ. We can do that well enough without politics.