Not long ago, I was privileged to join Adam Faughn and Dale Jenkins on their famous iPreach podcast during their summer series. What an honor to be on their great show! They assigned me the the following topic: “How iPreach on a Political Topic.” The realm of politics can get really sticky really quickly, can’t it, preachers? Here are my humble thoughts. Let me know what you think in the comments below.
1. Preach biblically. It’s not about your opinion or political persuasion. Let those to whom you preach hear it from inspiration. This really applies to any sermon we preach, doesn’t it? We speak from God’s authority, because the power is in the message, not in the messenger (Rom. 1:16). Remember that it’s not about the right or the left; it’s about being Christ-centered. Address contemporary issues from a Christian worldview.
2. Preach boldly. We aren’t the only Christians to have lived in a world of political land mines. The OT preachers preached boldly against many of the political tactics of either the Israelite nation or a nation under whom the Israelites were captive. Spend some time contemplating the messages and the missions of the great Old Testament men and women. People like Daniel, Jeremiah, Esther, Isaiah, Ezekiel, Amos, Obadiah, Nahum, and others. Then, bring it into the New Testament age by considering Peter and John (Acts 4:13, 19-20, 23-31).
3. Preach persistently. The temptation is to avoid those “hot button” issues. Perhaps you have preached previous sermons on those topics that have resulted in criticism. Maybe you’re afraid that the people won’t listen to what you have to say. Your message is important! It’s God’s Word! Preach on, brother. Remember that Jeremiah wept over the hard-heartedness of the people to whom he preached, yet he continued to preach the Word (Jer. 20:9).
4. Preach respectfully. As you stand before the congregation, you are likely addressing people on both sides of the political fence. When discussing political figures (either candidates running for office or those who are currently serving), remember that no candidate is perfect. You cannot unreservedly endorse one side over the other side. Further, remember that you have a spiritual obligation to pray for them (1 Tim. 2:1-2). When Paul stood before Felix and, later, before Agrippa, he spoke to them respectfully, acknowledging their authority in the civil government (Acts 24:10; 26:2-3).
5. Preach faithfully. My preaching on a political topic should reflect my allegiance to Christ, and not to any political party. After all, I belong to Him (1 Cor. 6:20; 7:23). If you’re going to follow Jesus’ example, you will love righteousness and hate iniquity (Heb. 1:9, KJV).
6. By all means, PREACH. We simply cannot remain silent on these issues. Preaching on political topics, when done appropriately, will make the pulpit relate to ever day lives. These types of sermons move past the pew into hearts and help Christians to grow on a personal level. They speak to HEARTS and, hopefully, mold hearts to conform to the image of Christ.
What do you think? How should preachers go about preaching on political issues? Leave your thoughts below.