There was a time in history when politics was about maintaining a world view. The way human beings saw the world and their place in it was reinforced and illuminated by a king or emperor or parliament or whatever kind of system was in place.
Things changed when for a specific reason, politics moved from undergirding an existing worldview to attempting to transform the world. Transformational politics by definition must first transform people and their view of the world. The only real world wide transformation that has ever taken place in my view, is when the early Christian’s stood up and declared “Jesus is Lord”. Rome would let you believe whatever you wanted to and worship whatever you wanted to as long as you stated that “Caesar is Lord”, and offered up a pinch of incense as a sacrifice once and a while. Rome was unable to maintain a world view when confronted with a transformational religion that basically said “you can run things the way you want to but we confess that Jesus is Lord. We will follow your laws and decrees until you ask us to confess anything or anyone is Lord other than Christ.”
A world view was confronted with an other worldly view that totally usurped it’s authority with the claim that there is a higher power and standard than an earthly authority even though we admit the earthly powers authority and legitimacy. It was a world view that followed one who said “render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar’s and to God the things that are God’s”. They worshipped One who told a Roman official that he had the power of life and death over Him and that power came from God. They worshipped the one who said that “all authority in heaven and on earth” had been given to Him.
It is this that the early Christians hung onto. It is called orthodoxy. We call it “right confession”. When churches lose the “right confession” they become political organizations not religious ones.
“The primary concern of Christians in the Roman Empire was not religious liberty but religious truth. There is nothing so clear from the New Testament and the plethora of Christian writings in the first three centuries as that Christians believed that the truth had been revealed to them, and it was their responsibility to take that truth and make it boldly known to all the nations. They didn’t suffer the most
horrible martyrdoms so that Isis, Bacchus, or Jupiter could be safely adored by their respective cults. They died for Christ—the way, the truth, and the life.” ( Worshipping the State: How Liberalism Became Our State Religion”, by Benjamin Wiker, Regnery Publishing).
The responsibility to make that truth known throughout the world is the impetus for mission. We want all people everywhere to know the truth, which is Jesus; the way, which is Jesus; the life which is Jesus.