by Matt Paulson
Question: Is it acceptable for Christians to be involved in politics, run for Government office, be part of the military, or salute the flag?
Answer: John the Baptist gave this advice: “Then he said to the multitudes that came out to be baptized by him, "Brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come? 8 Therefore bear fruits worthy of repentance, and do not begin to say to yourselves, 'We have Abraham as our father.' For I say to you that God is able to raise up children to Abraham from these stones. 9 And even now the ax is laid to the root of the trees. Therefore every tree which does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire." 10 So the people asked him, saying, "What shall we do then?" 11 He answered and said to them, "He who has two tunics, let him give to him who has none; and he who has food, let him do likewise." 12 Then tax collectors also came to be baptized, and said to him, "Teacher, what shall we do?" 13 And he said to them, "Collect no more than what is appointed for you." 14 Likewise the soldiers asked him, saying, "And what shall we do?" So he said to them, "Do not intimidate anyone or accuse falsely, and be content with your wages," Luke 3.
Christians can be tax collectors, hold public office, perform law enforcement or military duties according to John the Baptist. The caveat to do so is that all Christians must be free to exercise his or her Christian faith in their non-working time.
Can a Christian salute the flag and give honor to his or her country? Sure. Saluting the flag or pledging allegiance to my country is important and does not violate your first allegiance to Christ. You are pledging your allegiance to your home country as opposed to other countries. It is akin to pledging your allegiance to your town baseball or football team. I will root for them as opposed to other teams. Most of all, these allegiances must pale compared to your allegiance to Jesus Christ.
Romans 13:1-3: Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God. 2 Therefore whoever resists the authority resists the ordinance of God, and those who resist will bring judgment on themselves. 3 For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to evil. Do you want to be unafraid of the authority? Do what is good, and you will have praise from the same.
1 Corinthians 6:12 NKJV: “All things are lawful for me, but all things are not helpful. All things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any.”
1 Corinthians 10:23 NKJV: “All things are lawful for me, but not all things are helpful; all things are lawful for me, but not all things edify.”
Mark 12:30 NKJV: Jesus said, “And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.' This is the first commandment.”
Weigh out the consequences of your profession as well as who and what honor and loyalties exist in your life. Your country, its flag, any sports team or employment are secondary to Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior.