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Dear Brothers and Sisters, We Must Move On!

After bitter disputes as to whether the election was stolen, after a mob of thugs desecrated our nation’s Capitol, after listening to charges and countercharges…

We must move on.

No matter who you voted for, no matter what news outlets you watch, no matter how angry or glad you are that Joe Biden and Kamala Harris will be our next president and vice-president…

We must move on.

You have heard it said that, as believers, our unity in Christ as Savior and Lord must always transcend politics and race. Well, the time to test whether we actually believe this is now. Do we actually believe that our primary unity is in Christ, or do we just say we do? Division within the church is not new. Paul had to remind believers that in Christ, “Here there is not Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave, free; but Christ is all, and in all” (Colossians 3:11). We must hear those words anew today.

I heard one pastor put it this way: “When we gather at the Lord’s table, there are no white spaces and black spaces, and there are no brown spaces.” And I might add, “There are no Democratic spaces and Republican spaces, and there are no politically independent spaces. For we have been bought with the same blood and we worship the same Lord. And we will share in the same joy in a united heaven for all eternity.”

We cannot spend the next four years accusing or blaming one another for all that has transpired. Let us talk, not shout. Let us listen, not accuse. Let us seek to understand, not judge. We have work to do, and we must do it together.

Paul, writing at a time when Nero was on the throne of Rome—and you will recall that Nero was not a friend of Christians—said we should pray “for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way” (1 Timothy 2:2). And may I suggest we not only pray with words, but from hearts burdened for our country, for our churches, and for our families? This is not a time for shallow, perfunctory prayers. Repentance is the word that comes to mind.

Then, let us ask: How can we demonstrate our unity in Christ? Getting to know someone who voted differently than you did is a starting point. Celebrate King Jesus together. I have a friend who says that when Messianic Jews and Arab Christians get together in Israel, there is little use in trying to unravel their political differences—such as “who really owns the land” or “was Israel’s wall really necessary,” or a host of other inflammatory questions in which there is deep historical division. Yes, they can talk and seek to understand one another, but most importantly, they must worship Jesus together.

We have a message for a broken nation, and we must proclaim it in word and in deed. As Paul put it, “The saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am the foremost” (1 Timothy 1:15). Agreeing with Paul is a good place to start.

Brothers and sisters, we must move on together.

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