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Consistently Kingdom

sign to direct voters to polling location
13 October 2023
Election season is interesting for me. In my conversations with people I find it odd sometimes that they speak (or nod enthusiastically when its preached) during the year about loving people, caring for the poor, standing up for the vulnerable, the exploited, the marginalized, or including the excluded, or being like Jesus, but at election time they make a right hand turn and become harsh and judgmental, and talk about what they must do to get the right people in power to promote Christian values.  And when I probe further what they mean by Christian values, it’s remarkable how that often doesn’t reflect all that stuff I just mentioned. I think I would prefer people to promote Kingdom values, like those we learned about during our Grow Nights.  

What does that mean for us as a church? 

We should exercise our right to vote, yes, and vote for those who most reflect God’s heart for those I mentioned above. But regardless of who is in power, I think we should be wrestling with getting on with the job of being who WE are meant to be as followers of Jesus who lived and taught Kingdom values.  There will never be a perfect government until Christ returns. Instead, we must be the example and get on with the job of caring for the poor, and standing up for the vulnerable, the exploited, the oppressed, the disenfranchised, the marginalized (even those who have different values or faith or sexual orientation or race or language). We should continuously evaluate whether we are complicit in anti-kingdom attitudes and behaviour. We should be speaking truth to power – even if (perhaps especially if) we voted for them – and probably doing so at personal risk. We should be immersing ourselves in unravelling the complex and destructive webs that entangle people, even though it is hard work, and long work. That’s what the biblical authors focused on. Who WE should be as a church. How WE should live. How WE should love.  Does that describe you? 

I’d encourage you to use this time to reflect on what the values of the kingdom might look like in Aotearoa, New Zealand, and how we can promote them, and what it means for us individually to be in alignment with them. Consistently.

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144 Sawyers Arms Road
Christchurch, New Zealand

+64 3 352 4227

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