Opinion: Why Christians Should Be Involved In Politics
Over the years, there has been meager participation of Christians in Nigerian politics.
In an opinion poll conducted on 10th July 2023, we unravel the mystery behind the issue of Christians in Politics as several people made their opinion known to Golden Heritage News correspondents. For some, it is apt for believers to be fully involved because of some obvious reasons, and for some, it is just a form of distraction from the belief.
“Not only based on my opinion, but biblical there were people involved in politics in the Bible. For example, the three Hebrew boys in Babylon: Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, and also Daniel were involved in politics. Although because of their faith in God, they will have to face trials and tribulations, it is very good when godly people are in power.
You will find out that the economy will be smooth and there will be justice and peace, that is why godly people should be in power.
We keep pushing it to the ungodly people, we have a corrupt economy, and the Christians are suffering, because people that are not godly are standing as representatives for satan and his kingdom.” Said a woman who prefers to remain anonymous.
Mr Uhwubetine said “Well, I believe Christians who are going into politics now are even late, Christians have left it saying it is a dirty game, and those who are not children of God are the ones ruling us. Whatever they say is what will happen, for instance, if they say that church should close for one month, we would be the ones to suffer it”, said a man in his fifties.
He continued, “It is even late for Christians who are going into politics because those people have taken all the ground. It is tough for Christians who are just trying to find their feet. We have left it for them for too long, we are just fighting on how to get back. I would advise Christian youths who are interested in politics to do so, but they should be careful because there is a lot of Godfatherism in politics.”
Another man reacted with a rhetorical question “Countries like America, Britain, and France have Christians as their president and in other positions of power. So why should Nigeria not have Christians actively involved in politics?”
“There is nothing wrong when you are actively involved in politics, but it becomes a problem when you are using your religious stance to impose a political opinion on people. For instance, you are the head of a department in the church and then you are trying to convince your followers to support a political party.
A Christian must be cautious of all he/she does, any activity you engage in will be closely watched by people. For instance, if someone does something bad and you decide to cover up for the person because you are in support of their political party, it will tarnish your religious image”, a university student said.
Mrs. Ojo Oluwatosin encourages Christians to be more involved in politics, as seeing it as a dirty game will only let it fall into the hands of the wrong people.
A passerby commented, “Christians should be involved in politics a hundred and one percent.”
“There is no particular answer on whether Christians are to go into politics or not, it depends on many factors. First of all, you should know how strong your faith is. If you know that you can withstand any form of pressure or corruption, then you can be the light and transformation that the political system needs. On the other hand, if you are not strong enough and you know that getting involved in such things will have a negative impact on you as a Christian, I will advise you not to go into politics.
Politics does not just refer to people who are in positions of power, as Christians, we can also be involved in politics by being a member of a political party, without having to run for any position, a Christian youth responded.
“It is good for Christians to be in politics because if we should allow the unbelievers to be the only ones in politics, they will be the ones handling the affairs of Nigeria. Whatever decision they have made every one of us has to abide by, whether good or bad. If Christians with the fear of God are in power, they would at least have human feelings in performing their duties. We should not think that it is a dirty game rather we should all be involved as Christians”, said an anonymous person.
Another Christian youth said “My opinion on Christians being involved in politics is based on Proverbs 29:2, which says ‘when the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice and when the wicked rule, the people mourn’. God expects us to be in authority, the Bible tells us that ‘Let your light so shine before men that they may see your good deeds and glorify your father in heaven’.
As a Christian politician, and not just concerning politics because anything can be regarded as a dirty game. For instance, we know that people steal in politics, but that does not cancel the fact that they also steal from schools and businesses.
So as a Christian in politics, if your deeds are not glorifying God, sit it out.”
Mr. Oluwakoya Michael on the issue of Christians in politics said “Christianity from the beginning has been closely linked to politics, even from the Old Testament, which entails rulership of the kingdom of Israel and the Priesthood.
David was a king and also a spiritual leader, he was hearing from God and executing God’s order.
Moses was a spiritual leader as well as a political leader when the Israelites left Egypt. When Christ came, they believed him to be a political leader but it was then it started to be differentiated.”
He went on to state “There is nothing bad if a Christian is in politics, look at the example of the Former King of Ibadan, Oba Akinyele who was the political leader and also a pastor. He stood his ground as a pastor and did not allow any tradition to overrule his rulership as a Christian. In fact, he had his ministry in the palace and the chiefs had to come under the umbrella of his spiritual leadership. He gave priority to spiritual life and all was well during his reign. Nothing should stop a Christian from being involved in politics, when true Christians are in politics, things will be okay. I will encourage more Christians to be in politics and the Lord will deliver us in Jesus name.”
However, it also appears that some Nigerians are disinterested in the issue of politics, as a petty trader commented, that she is not interested in whether Christians participate in politics or not. In her words “I am just trying to make a living.”