Jesus verily made it known, “My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from here” (Jn. 18:36).
The separation of church and state is no mere accident or expediency, but was clearly taught by Jesus Christ so that even the wicked ruler Pontius Pilate understood him. God ordained his church and civil government as two separate institutions with different purposes. Rulers should honor God as the sustainer of the universe, of nations, and of governments (Jn. 19:11). Government officials should seek the providential help and blessing of God in doing the work he gave them to do, but cannot conduct the business of the church. God gave the church its own work and organization without the least semblance of civil, military, or political power. It has no right or authority from God to enter into such fields of action.
What does the Bible teach about the relationship between the church and politics? Godly men should lead the assemblies of the church in fervent prayer for our rulers, from the highest to the lowest (1 Tim. 2:1-8). The church teaches respect for governments, laws, and officials (Rom. 13:1-7). God ordained civil government to restrain criminals and the evil deeds which destroy peace, safety, and order in a society, and to protect obedient citizens. Governments use their power as agents of God’s wrath against evildoers. God commands us to pay our taxes and to cooperate with our rulers.
The church preaches the positive duties of all men and the positive provisions of the gospel to all men, high and low (Matt. 22:37-40 f; Mk. 16:15-16). Men sin and fall into various violations of God’s law because they fail to love God first and to love their fellowman. God does not tolerate or excuse sin on the part of the highest ruler or of the lowest servant. Every sinner must believe and confess that Jesus is the Christ the Son of God (Rom 10:10), and repent and be baptized in order to receive the remission of sins (Acts 2:38). No man will be saved on his own merits by attaining great honors in civil affairs or because of suffering great abuses and injustices in life.
Sin must be rebuked and condemned no matter who practices it (Matt. 3:1-12 ff; Lk. 3:1-14; Mk. 6:17-18). John applied God’s Word to all men alike, including the common people, tax collectors, and soldiers. Some of his plainest rebukes were directed against arrogant, hypocritical, religious leaders. The unscriptural marriage of a king was condemned openly and pointedly. The same kind of preaching was done by Jesus and his apostles, and must be done today. I don’t know of one preacher who preaches politics who also condemns the adultery of the political party in which they affirm. Who would be the first to confront Donal Trump and tell him to repent of his adulterous marriages? John the Baptist would have!
No faithful Christian has the God given right to preach politics in or out of the assembly. I challenge anyone to find an impeccable political party. They are all pure evil and anyone who engages in such matters are promoting and encouraging evil. All political parties lie and all liars are from Satan himself (Jn 8:44). All liars shall have their part in the lake of fire (Rev 21:8). Most Republicans condemn abortion and gay marriage, but they themselves condone adultery and greed. Most Democrats condemn the greed of the rich while upholding the freedom to engage in most all immoral practices. It’s like choosing between Satan or his angels.
The church’s mission is spiritual, not political. God established the church with a specified, limited work: to preach the gospel, worship God, and care for needy saints (1 Tim. 3:15; 5:16 f; Acts 2:42). The church is not a social welfare agency, an arm of civil government, a political institution, a secular school, or a recreational club. The church has not a minute or a penny to spend on such endeavors. While opposing immorality, dishonesty, and sin of every kind, it has no political program and endorses no candidate. It holds no political rallies, offers no candidate the pulpit as a platform for political speeches, makes no political donations, and has no political action committees at any level. The true church of Christ registers no voters, organizes no voters, transports no voters to the polls, and finances no part of the voting process. Christ gave no authority in his word for the church to act in such matters. When the church so acts, it sins and rebels against Christ (Eph. 1:22-23 f; 2 Jn. 9). Let the church be the church and let the government be the government! Time is much too short to labor in the affairs of this world (2 Tim 2:4). The harvest is truly plentiful, but the labors are few (Mt 9:37,38). Therefore, preach God’s Word of truth, not political lies (2 Tim 4:2-5)!