The ‘How’ in Talking Politics

What we talk about

Some Christians have a lot to say when it comes to politics. And there is nothing wrong with that. It could be argued that we need more of that. The topics that we choose to discuss are important. We shouldn’t be afraid to talk about current events or historical events that relate to politics. We should be encouraged to do so.

If you spend any time on Facebook, Twitter, or other social media networks, you may notice that some Christians aren’t afraid to give a piece of their mind to anyone discussing politics. You may even notice some of these debates getting heated. As Christians, we have a message and we want the world to know it. And while there may be good intentions behind our message, we may not always express ourselves in the most loving way.

When we give someone a piece of our mind, we may be doing more damage than good. Again that doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t debate or have in depth discussions, but we should be careful in how we communicate during those discussions. In discussing politics, our testimony is not ruined by the topic as much as it is by how we discuss the topic. In the midst of these discussions, we must remember that God’s message is more important than our message. We should be asking ourselves how we should discuss politics, instead of avoiding those types of discussions.

How we talk about the what

How do we talk about politics or other emotional topics? The truth is, we should discuss politics in the same way that we are called to discuss our faith. Here are five things to remember when discussing politics…

  1. Be sure to communicate God’s message “Consult God’s instruction and the testimony of warning. If anyone does not speak according to this word, they have no light of dawn.” Isaiah 8:20
  2. Be loving in all of your discussions with others “For this is the message you heard from the beginning: We should love one another.” 1 John 3:11
  3. Be a good listener and do not become easily angered “My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires.” James 1:19-20
  4. Be careful with the words you choose “Those who consider themselves religious and yet do not keep a tight rein on their tongues deceive themselves, and their religion is worthless.” James 1:26
  5. Be consistent in the way you speak “With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be.” James 3:9-10

A good example

When we discuss politics, we often allow our emotions to control our thinking and our behavior. However, this should not be so. We must control our emotions and allow the Holy Spirit to speak through us. When we get to the boiling point, we need to remember that God is listening to us. We must resist the temptation to put winning the debate above loving the person involved, by simply sharing God’s truths and allowing the truth to do the rest of the work. And we need to remember to speak softly when confronted in anger… “A gentle answer turns away wrath” Proverbs 15:1

We should be a good example to the people we talk to. We should speak and act respectfully, so that our representation of the Lord is not spoiled. We should be obedient to God and his commands when we discuss politics. And we should speak the truth in love in any situation, regardless of how we feel… “Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ.” Ephesians 4:15

 

 

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