When I set out to address the involvement of Christians in politics last time, I had prepared myself for brickbats. I was ready to be accused of defecting to the Buhari camp, where sinners are canonised saints with the speed of light, even though I am neither a politician nor need anybody’s validation for my conscience.
Surprisingly, the hammer never fell despite the huge reactions that trailed that piece. Not even one person bayed for my blood and it set me thinking.
If Christians shared my views on their involvement with and in politics, why are they not getting it right then? Perhaps, the article stung Christians to reality, which seems to be a great sign for better days, as we head into 2019.
However, I still hold tenaciously to my view that Christians should show interest in politics only to the extent of prayerfully casting their votes.
As for standing for elections, I don’t think any heaven-minded believer should dabble into that muddy turf unless he doesn’t mind staining his garments and losing his heavenly credentials. This is more so for pastors. Show me one pastor who is a politician, jostling for political office and I will show you ten who are compromised already. Much evidence that you cannot mix kerosene and water abounds in the current administration.
The article generated an avalanche of reactions from readers. Unfortunately, on this Readers’ Day, due to space constraints, only a few of these reactions are published hereunder. Enjoy them:
Brother Tony, your very insightful piece, ‘Christian, politics as albatross,’ made an interesting read. But before I proceed, I must let you know that your first paragraph of the essay is replete with jaw-breaking words that I’m yet to find out through Google the appropriate encyclopaedia to consult. Meanwhile, I have bitten my tongue badly and you have forgotten that JOHESU is on strike.
Now, on a more serious note, your today’s piece got me thinking on this very life of ours generally and God. This morning, in my private meditation, I read 2 Kings, chapter 8. This isn’t the first time that I have read through that chapter but I stopped and thought for a while when Hazael was sent by the king of Samaria to go and find out from prophet Elisha if he (the king) would survive from the sickness that he had fallen into. The bible recorded that the prophet answered Hazael that the king wouldn’t survive it. The bible said that the prophet fixed his gaze upon Hazael for a long time and started weeping. Then Hazael asked the prophet why he was weeping and the prophet replied that he (Hazael) would succeed the king but that people would suffer under him for so many people he would kill with the edge of the sword, including pregnant women that he would rip open their stomach. Even Hazael was so shocked that he’d turn out to be that brutal.
I asked myself, why would a benevolent God allow such a fellow to ascend the throne in the first instance!? It’s a complex thing, if you ask me.
Now, here in Nigeria, you know that we Christians aren’t like Muslims because we don’t discriminate whom to vote for with prejudice to the faith of the candidate. The Muslims, to a large extent, do, but we don’t. In fact, you know it as the truth that this President Buhari, prior to becoming the president, had on several occasions asked Muslims to vote for only Muslims. Christians are only concerned about good governance from their leaders, especially the president, the reason why Buhari got their huge support against their own, sort of; but, unfortunately, Buhari has consciously betrayed that trust reposed on him by majority of Christians through his deliberate and obnoxiously crafted policies. These nefarious policies are really in all intents and purposes against the growth of Christianity in Nigeria! Selling out has been there from time immemorial! Recall Saint Paul’s account where he said that Demas had left him, having loved the things of the world more than the things of God; even so it is with all those that surround the president and yet don’t defend Christianity. In conclusion, I agree with you intoto that real men of God that were called by God to work in His vineyard should stay clear of partisan politics. Finally, I think this piece is your best so far but I pray it shouldn’t. Remain blessed!
– Ben Nwayotalu, +2348025757508
Just to thank you for your beautiful and objective write-up on “Christian, politics as albatross”, in The Sun newspaper. I agree with your reasoning and admonition. It is not good to pray for the death of a sinner but rather for his repentance even if it takes him donkey years to repent! I have heard people pray for the emergence of a “Jerry Rawlings” type of president, who will truly and decisively sanitise the political and economic life of our nation. Would you say “Amen” to that prayer? God bless you, Tony.
-Rev. Mons. B. A. Okodua, +2348023276012
Sir, another factual and truthful writeup (as usual). I hope those “Christians” eating the King’s porridge read you and struggle with their seared conscience destroyed by ‘hot iron’. Many of these very big men are disgraceful. I am indeed confused and helpless about their never seeing any error in Buhari’s presidency. This was how Christianity took things lightly in North Africa, even Asia Minor and is almost nonexistent there today. May God not allow it! If not, I fear that in the next 50 years, Christians will find it very difficult to even openly worship in Nigeria. Let’s have deserved peace, having read you today. Stay graced!
Tony, I always enjoy your write-ups and pray you remain steadfast. God will not allow you to derail.
-Iwu C.C., +2348037649520
Your article, ‘Christian, politics as albatross,’ is good and inspired.
Heaven beckons to those who profess God’s goodness and live by his precepts. Bro Tony, thanks a lot.
– Roluchukwu, Nkwelle-Ezunaka, Ananbra State, – +2348139684476
Buhari not alone
Tony, thank you very much for ‘Christian, politics as albatross.’ Is Buhari alone? How about the Christians around him?