THE Church of Christ was not designed to be a powerless thing in the midst of the powers of earth. Of Christians it is said by the divine Word that one shall “chase a thousand, and two put ten thousand to flight.” All Christians, at least, recognize that this statement is truth.
This is the power which God has designed for his followers here. Through them he would make his power known to the world, and to do this—to reveal himself as the Supreme One to whom all the world should look for salvation—he would endue his children with a power vastly greater than any that is known to the world. For in all the world was there never known such a thing as that one person, with any power supplied by the world, turned back a thousand of his adversaries, or that two put ten thousand to flight. But the great conflict between truth and righteousness on the one hand, and error and iniquity on the other, reveals many a scene where one man, standing in the strength of God, has discomfited a host of his enemies. Often in that conflict has the truth appeared that one individual, on the side of God, is in the majority.
And yet, notwithstanding this which God has plainly revealed to the church, and which Christians profess to believe, the church wants to express her power through politics! In politics, where at best she can only measure vote for vote with the world, and where she is hopelessly outnumbered by the world, the church would convince the world of the power of the kingdom of God! Think of it, and think how hopeless and complete must be her failure!
“Not by might, nor by power, but by My Spirit, saith the Lord.” This is the way God himself has chosen to make his power known in the world by his church. And politics is the way the church has chosen! Where at the polls did one vote ever offset a thousand, or two Christian voters put ten thousand of the worldly to flight?
What the church needs to-day is not politics, but purification. Not the purification of politics, but the purification of the church, is the thing that will supply the church with power. And that purification will come, as surely as there is a God in heaven who has undertaken to save men by his power. That power must be made known among men, and it will be. And then will the church of the living God arise and the world will behold her—though but a Gideon’s band, it may be—“fair as the moon, clear as the sun, and terrible as an army with banners.”