Bible Society of South Africa

Our involvement in the world - 27 May 2024

By Ben Fourie

Bible text(s)

5Philip went to the principal city in Samaria and preached the Messiah to the people there.

The day after tomorrow, we will be going to the polls. Should the church get involved in politics? Many people say yes and others say no. I am on the side of those who say no. This does not mean that the church should not be involved in what is going on in our country and the world.

The church has a very important role to play. Our role is to work towards a world where we love our neighbour and by our example, show other people how to love each other and strive towards unity. Most people will say it is a pipe dream. From the oldest so-called civilisations, there were no eras when there were no wars, violence or disputes. Even the people of God, in the Old Testament, were constantly in conflict with their surrounding nations. So, what now?

When the persecution of the church started in Jerusalem, the faithful were scattered like seed and the gospel was proclaimed at every place where the seed fell. Some of this seed fell in Samaria. Jesus wanted to be the Saviour of Samaria as well. If you would have asked any orthodox Jew, he would have seen it as a waste of seed. Jews and Samaritans did not see eye to eye in those days.

The reasons for this were diverse. Part of it was political, but most of it was religious. According to the Jews, the Samaritans mixed the true religion of the God of Israel with pagan practices. A Jew would not have been seen together with a Samaritan. Jesus never made any distinction between people, after all, he died on the cross for everybody. That is why he wants us as Christians to make no distinction between people with many different views. When we, as the church, embrace all other people, the Holy Spirit will give us the full benefit of his power. In Samaria, demons were cast out, the sick were healed and the old walls of separation were broken down.

What am I going to do after the elections to help the gospel and the full fruit of the Holy Spirit to reach everybody?

Prayer: Heavenly Father, please use me to help bring peace to our country. Amen

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