[Jesus’ enemies in Mark chapter 3] resisted Jesus because more important than following Jesus was their country.
My country comes first.
They were patriots. They believed in their country. This country, they believe, was actually God’s country…And they believed that it was their responsibility to keep God’s country alive — so that God’s mission would be accomplished in the world.
They put their country before their Christ.
Now, this is important, I think, for us to hear, especially because of the presidential election coming up, because we’ve got a very similar mistaken belief that our country is God’s country.
But this country is not the Promised Land. As good as America is, and as important as the President of the United States of America is, this country is not God’s plan for the salvation of the entire world.
It’s just not.
It’s not the plan for the salvation of the entire human race. Our existence as a nation is not necessary to God’s re-creation of the whole world. We are just not that big of a deal.
I know we’re Americans and that’s anti-American to say, but we’re just not that big of a deal in God’s story. Our country isn’t.
And if we were God’s nation or God’s people, then God is big enough to handle a Trump or Hillary in the Whitehouse.
Israel has been through far worse circumstances than Trump or Hillary. Throughout history, God’s people, Israel, have been conquered by evil, pagan nation after evil pagan nation. They’ve been conquered multiple times. They’ve been exiled and enslaved and imprisoned, but never once has God’s plan for the salvation off the entire world ever faltered.
So Trump, or Hillary, or some long-shot third party…they won’t be as bad as enslavement or exile. God’s plan to save this world will not falter, even if America falters. God’s plan for this world is bigger than the next 4 years of what will soon just be a little blip or a footnote of American history.
But sometimes we get so wrapped up in the politics of our day that we put our Country before our Christ.
Some of us care more about the next president that we’re supposed to follow than we care about the Savior that we’re supposed to follow.
Some of us have done so much research and know so much about the history of the lives of Trump and Hillary more than we know anything about the history or the life of Jesus.
We know all about them. We know so little about Jesus.
And no president will ever be the Savior of the world. Ever.
So don’t put your country before your Christ. Christ comes first…your country comes way down the list: second, third, fourth or somewhere else down the line.
And just think. If we just put half the energy we put into arguing over politics into following Jesus… think how much better our country would actually be no matter who’s president!
Don’t put country before Christ.