PASTORS AND POLITICS, PART 3: How Pastors Can Prepare Their People for Elections
October 3, 2018 | By Wanda Alger, IFA Field Correspondent
In Part 2 of this series, I wrote about the importance of pastors equipping the saints by preaching from a Kingdom mindset and a biblical worldview. If we are to be influencers and change agents in our culture, we must rise above partisan politics and champion Kingdom values within our government. Pastors can have a key role in our electoral process by empowering believers in prayer and encouraging engagement in the public square.
Here are some practical ways for pastors and church leaders to equip and empower their congregations to use both their voices and their votes in an election:
Preach the Kingdom of God and the power of His presence.
It is this foundational truth that can avert political divisiveness and keep the focus on the greater goal. Our biblical worldview must start from the place of God’s presence, both personally and corporately. More than simply a theology, His presence must be central to our corporate worship experience and our commission as the people of God. Moses declared he would not take the people into the Promised Land without God’s presence (Ex 33:15).
Call the church to pray by personal example and public encouragement.
All believers are called to pray for those in authority (Rom 13:1). Pastors can issue the call to prayer through their own example and involvement. Times of corporate prayer for both community and national leaders will stir greater faith and strengthen the priority of intercession for those in authority. Pastors can also reinforce intercession by visiting and attending prayer meetings, giving public testimony to answered prayer, and sharing strategic prayer points from the pulpit.
Cast the vision and provide relevant resources.
Pastors have a weekly opportunity to teach on Kingdom values and the power of our voice in the public square. In our nation, our voting is our voice. If Christians are concerned about our nation, voting for candidates who support biblical values voices our concern. Don’t relinquish your vote or silence your voice. Encourage voting for biblical values and you will be encouraging biblical values in our nation. Churches can provide Voter and Prayer Guides that will clarify the pressing issues for both prayer and for action. They can also provide Voter Registration forms and include pertinent polling details in bulletins and newsletters.
Share testimonies to build faith and stir to action.
Answered prayer and tangible results are the greatest motivating factors in getting people engaged in the electoral process. Stories of Christians effectively casting their votes and seeing spiritual and cultural transformation, from school boards to state houses, can ignite faith and stir people to action. These examples can illustrate our ongoing invitation to impact and change our culture through our voice and our vote.
Additional information on what churches can and cannot do in elections:
Join our First Friday Prayer Conference Call to understand and pray through these issues. Dial 712-432-0075, access code 1412452# at 12:15 pm, Friday, October 5, 2018. Or watch and pray on Facebook any time after as well.
Churches and Government—Know Your Legal Rights (From First Liberty)