“The present rule of the ascended Jesus Christ and the assurance of his final appearing in judgment should give us—which goodness knows we need today—some clarity and realism in our political discourse. Far too often Christians slide into a vaguely spiritualized version of one or other major political system or party
What would happen if we were to take seriously our stated belief that Jesus Christ is already the Lord of the world and that at his name, one day, every knee would bow?
You might suppose that this would merely inject a note of pietism and make us then avoid the real issues—or, indeed, to attempt a theocratic takeover bid. But to think in either of those ways would only show how deeply we have been conditioned by the Enlightenment split between religion and politics. What happens if we reintegrate them?
As with specifically Christian work, so with political work done in Jesus’s name: confessing Jesus as the ascended and coming Lord frees us up from needing to pretend that this or that program or leader has the key to utopia (if only we would elect him or her). Equally, it frees up our corporate life from the despair that comes when we realize that once again our political systems let us down. The ascension and appearing of Jesus constitute a radical challenge to the entire thought structure of the Enlightenment (and of course several other movements). And since our present Western politics is very much the creation of the Enlightenment, we should think seriously about the ways in which, as thinking Christians, we can and should bring that challenge to bear. . . . People who believe that Jesus is already Lord and that he will appear again as judge of the world are called and equipped (to put it mildly) to think and act quite differently in the world from those who don’t.”
—Bishop N.T. Wright from Surprised by Hope (144, emphasis added)