Storming the US Capitol with a banner declaring that “Jesus saves” is not the type of political engagement that the Evangelical Alliance has in mind for its advocacy work. This might appear to be the understatement of the century, but in the wake of events in the US in recent months, and the conflation of religious devotion with political extremism, it is a line that needs to be drawn. We do not, to paraphrase social commentator and author Os Guiness, do the Lord’s work in the world’s ways.

The last five years have seen immense and tense political disagreement among evangelical Christians on both sides of the Atlantic over the presidency of Donald Trump; but even some of his closest allies found themselves, rightly, having to reject the violence that his words inspired. But somewhat mealy-mouthed repudiation of violence from all sides is surely too low a bar for what we should expect from a Christian voice into politics.

The advocacy work of the Evangelical Alliance is to give a voice for evangelical Christians into the corridors of power and the places of influence in the UK. It’s to encourage evangelical Christians to raise their own voice to speak out for God and for good. What then should this voice look and sound like?

A voice of hope


Evangelical Christians should offer a voice of hope to society. The past 12 months of pandemic, lockdown and crisis have demonstrated the need for a vision of the future and people who embody hope and speak it out. We believe that Jesus is the hope of the world. We believe that He who has transformed our lives can and will transform others, and through us transform society.

Our voice of hope is not naïve optimism, nor baseless predictions, but the sure and certain hope of a king who is seeking to redeem all things, of a king whose kingdom is coming here on earth. Our voice of advocacy is part of the mission of the church. It’s not a separate endeavour, nor a part that is limited to a few people who are particularly interested or passionate; it is a vital component of outworking in our daily lives what we believe.

For the Evangelical Alliance we continually speak up in the parliaments and the governments of the UK, representing our members and giving voice to our faith in these places. But the work is not ours alone. The work of advocacy is at its most effective when it is broad and deep, when the voices of people rooted and working in communities across the UK speak up for what they believe, what they stand for, and what they see on their doorsteps on a daily basis.

A voice of justice

We speak of justice because we follow a God of justice. We believe that God will make all things new, and He calls us to join Him in that work. Justice is a term that has been and is fought over in political and social debates, but at its root it is thoroughly biblical and it’s all about putting right what is wrong. It is about restoring broken relationships, between us and God, and between us and each other.

We speak of justice when we call for freedom of religion and belief at home and abroad, when we call attention to the Christian foundations of human rights and democracy that are ignored by those who want the fruit without the roots. When we speak alongside our partners in the Religious Liberty Commission and call for action for Christians persecuted for their faith, we are speaking for justice. When we support member organisations working in places of greatest deprivation in the UK, working with Christians who are serving with their heart, soul and strength, our advocacy is a voice for justice.

A voice of leadership

We provide leadership in a society that wants it and needs it. Our political engagement is not from the sidelines but borne out of a conviction that change requires our involvement. We get our hands dirty. This is not the protest of the mob, nor the complaints of the sidelined, but the action of people who are motivated by their faith in Christ to carry all of their lives into places where they can make a difference.

We carry a voice of leadership from the margins to the centre. We speak, together, of how Christ changes lives and how we are seeing them transformed in every community of the UK. The coronavirus crisis has prompted calls for more and stronger spiritual leadership in our country; there has rightly been concern that as a society we are too focused on the temporary and not the eternal.

The leadership that we can bring to our society is through all of our words and actions, as we speak for God and for good in every sector of society, as we are unafraid to give voice to our faith in the places where it matters most. Our advocacy, our voice, is an integral part of us joining in with God’s mission to our world.

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