Christians and political change

Christians and political change

Written on 04/16/2020
Daniel Zekveld

Written by Daniel Zekveld

What kind of nation do you see when you look around at Canada? Do you see hope for a better future, find yourself wishing for a return of the past, or are you somewhere in between, like I am?

Perhaps you are proud of Canada’s Christian heritage, and the way so many of our laws and institutions are based on biblical foundations. Likewise, you may be upset about how Canada has not followed these principles in the past. Or maybe you feel discouraged by Christian concepts we are leaving behind right now, such as the sanctity of life being discarded in favour of abortion and euthanasia, and the mainstream acceptance of sinful sexual practices and ideologies.

Sometimes it seems like our country is simultaneously taking one step forward and two steps backwards. I am currently working for a Christian politician in Ontario. I have seen first-hand how influential Christian government workers can be in our legislatures. I have also seen how much they need individuals within the Church to be active in supporting good policies and refuting bad ones.      

Simply put, the Canadian political system needs Christian perspectives and worldviews. Christians can advocate for the common good of all people because we see every human as they are, created in the image of God. We see the value of individuals, but also the sin which can pervade our political system.

As Christians, we have something which many other Canadians do not: a moral basis built on Scripture to determine good and evil. Of course, the Bible does not provide specific instructions on every political issue. Likewise, there will be some variance within Christian views on political topics and ideas. Christians can legitimately disagree on certain policy matters while still remaining faithful to God. But if we are rooted in Scripture, we have the foundations and the principles needed to strive for a better Canada.

One aspect of living as Christians in our society should be fighting against evil. One of the greatest problems with our Canadian political system is the failure to protect the dignity of human life. There have been no restrictions on abortion for 50 years, and euthanasia is becoming increasingly popular.

I have seen numerous Christian politicians who actively stand up for life. Some have participated in the annual March for Life in Toronto or Ottawa, while others have introduced bills in federal or provincial parliaments, or spoken up in the legislatures. These politicians are often highly criticized, facing public protests or raging news articles. These Christian politicians cannot be the only voices standing up for truth. Christians need to support them by speaking up as well, even if we are criticized for it.  

At the same time, we should also be promoting unity among Canadians.

Recently, I heard a renowned Canadian journalist speak of what he thinks is the greatest downfall in recent political developments: the division of people into various factions or groups based on their sexual, ethnic, or racial distinctions. He also helped the audience to imagine a Canada where the citizens could push forward based on their commonalities rather than their differences. Our political leaders should be looking out for the good of all Canadians, rather than giving special treatment to certain identity groups.

I think this speaker hit on a key point. While we are engaging in conversation on matters we disagree on, we should also be supportive of positive changes, across party lines. An example of this would be the fight against human trafficking. This is an issue which, while Canadians may have different ideas on the solution, they can agree is a tragic reality, and can work together for the good of all people.

In practice, impacting politics can work itself out in various ways. As Christians, we should be vocal about what is good or bad for our nation. Speak about it with those around you. Even if you disagree, cultivate civil discussion. Contact your local political representatives with support or suggestions. As someone who works for a politician, I can say first-hand that this is appreciated.

We need the voices of individuals within the Church, seeking the good of all Canadians, pointing out evil, and supporting righteousness. This is crucial for our democratic society. Our voices may seem small, but they can have great influence.