Another well-known and popular Christian personality just spoke out against one of the presidential candidates. She has a heart-wrenching story in her past that makes her criticisms and lack of support perhaps warranted. Other famous Christians have chosen to do the same on one side or another and they’re, as far as I know, not committing a crime by taking a stand.
But in my opinion they are unwise and don’t help the outcome of the election or the cause of Christ. Let me suggest several reasons why.
Too many people think that famous Christians are always right. These people in their minds might just as well have been one of the original twelve (well, not Judas Isacriot) and speak words equal to that of Holy Scripture. So when they go public, millions listen and I would guess are swayed toward feeling the same way. And whether it’s not voting for a certain candidate (or not listening to a particular rock band or whatever), their loyalists will often follow blindly.
Secondly, they often come across to some and better known as arrogant know-it-alls rather than the Christian leader they’ve been for decades. Of course, their adherents don’t feel that way but many others do and that’s unfortunate. Because instead of having the potential to have even more learn or be impacted by them, those same people often walk the other way.
Thirdly, while they may clearly express their opinion about a person or group, they rarely have solutions or better answers. For example, in an election if people are told one candidate is bad, then that seems to imply they are for the other. But are they really? What if the other candidate is worse? Or are they saying they won’t vote at all? What’s the better alternative? Few ever go there, they just vent.
So what should famous people do with politics, religious debates and responding to others in the public arena? Well, excuse my bluntness but to famous Christians I say . . . Keep your mouth shut, at least publicly. Express your personal views the way the rest of us do. We vote. We try to change the people and culture around us. Some will run for office themselves and try to be part of the solution, as they say, rather than the problem. There are lots of ways to still take a strong stand if you so desire.
Use your platform, famous ones, for positive change, modeling truth and inspiration in the middle of tough times. Am I suggesting Christians shouldn’t be bold or face tough opposition? Of course not. But Jesus had multiple opportunities to use his greatness, being equal with God and power to dominate, coerce and even supernaturally change everyone’s point of view and yet he was often silent, subdued and distant. But He still changed the world.
We can too. But we don’t have to influence millions at a time. We might just impact more the other, slower way.