On this Juneteenth holiday, I would humbly invite you to join me in prayer to our God for three things: 1) lament to our Lord the atrocities of slavery and acknowledge to him this country’s sins of racism and segregation; 2) thank God for the progress we’ve made and that we are not where we once were, as individuals and in this country; and 3) personally resolve before God to continue fighting racism and segregation in all its forms in our communities, our families, and our churches.


Today we look at the first of Josh Ross’s six principles for navigating an election season without losing our witness. These come from Josh’s new book, Coreology, written to Christians as a call to be intentionally thoughtful, careful, and prayerful with our words and actions, particularly as they relate to this country’s national politics. These are core practices that will remind us daily of who we are and to whom we belong. These core Christian disciplines will help keep us from confusing the kingdoms of this world and their ways and means with the eternal Kingdom of our God and his very different politics.

#1 – I will daily confess that Jesus is the Lord of my life and nothing else is.

In the New Testament, confession almost always refers to pledging allegiance to Jesus as Lord and to his ways. In 22 of the 26 times the word “confess” is used in the New Testament, it’s about renouncing the ways of the world and proclaiming loyalty to Jesus as Lord. Our concern, as expressed by Josh, is that many Christians are allowing the social, political, and cultural issues of our day inform how we think about Jesus, instead of letting Jesus inform how we think about and respond to the issues. If Jesus is Lord and nothing and nobody else is, then we must interpret the issues through his clear teachings and actions, instead of letting my political party or my favorite candidate or my preferred news outlet tell me how to think and respond to the issues and then read and interpret Jesus through that. Jesus is Lord. Everything runs through him first.

Josh points to the apostle Paul’s metaphor at the end of Ephesians of dressing oneself in the armor of God. Paul does not encourage the Christians there to leave the city of Ephesus because of the evil culture. He doesn’t argue for a Christian colony, for cancel culture, or to run for your lives. He argues for cultural engagement through a faithful Christian witness grounded in the lordship of Christ.

Our struggle is not against flesh and blood. People and people-groups are not our enemies. Jesus is our Lord and he directs us to love and forgive, to sacrifice and serve, for the sake of all the divine image-bearers among us. We are not called to fight anything. Or anyone. As Josh writes:

“It is not for the preservation of the Roman Empire, a nation, or even for the eternal Kingdom of God. In a city full of theaters, halls for every form of philosophy, and pagan temples, Paul paints a picture of how we engage culture without getting lost in culture wars. His message wasn’t to protest keg fests and to cancel marketplaces and to boycott parts of town, but to dress yourselves as people of the Kingdom and to live in a way that makes a difference in the world.”

Cancel culture is not good for the Church. Culture wars do not advance the Kingdom of God. Josh reminds us that we get lost during election seasons when we choose sides and give in to the fear tactics and create enemies who are not enemies of God. That greatly hinders our motivation and determination to passionately engage people. It is difficult to win to Christ those your media outlets call your enemies.

It is possible to confess Jesus with your lips, yet give your allegiance to the kingdoms of this world. It is possible to confess Jesus as your Savior, yet never confess him as your Lord.

As vital as conversion is to the Christian faith, Josh says, confession is vital to conversion.

“Our confession is meant to center us, transform us, and redirect us. Confession sets us on a trajectory to live with one ultimate allegiance, not dozens of them. Jesus is Lord. Nothing else is.”

If your regional or national politics clash with the clear politics of our Lord, you have to make a choice. If the goals of your candidate are different from Jesus’ stated goals, you have to decide. If your party’s ways and means of getting things accomplished are the opposite of Jesus’ love and sacrifice and mercy and service, you have to pick. You can’t do both. You can’t be devoted to two kingdoms. No one can serve two masters.

A daily confession of the lordship of Jesus will help us keep our story straight. And our Christian lives. Let us hold fast to our confession.