Jesus’ neutrality regarding the politics of this world was well-grounded in Scriptural principles. Consider just two.
“Man has dominated man to his injury.” (Ecclesiastes 8:9) That is how the Bible sums up the history of human rule. Remember, Jesus existed as a spirit in heaven long before he came to earth as a man. (John 17:5) He thus knew that man, however well-meaning, lacks the ability to care properly for the needs of billions of people; nor was he created by God to do so. (Jeremiah 10:23) Jesus knew that the solution to mankind’s problems lay elsewhere—not in human governments.
“The whole world is lying in the power of the wicked one.” (1 John 5:19) Do you find that statement startling? Many do. They think of sincere people who get involved in government because they want to make the world a better, safer place. Try as they might, though, even the most sincere rulers cannot overcome the influence of the one whom Jesus called “the ruler of this world.” (John 12:31; 14:30) That is why Jesus said to one worldly politician: “My kingdom is no part of this world.” (John 18:36) Jesus was the prospective King of God’s heavenly government. Had Jesus mixed in politics, he would have sacrificed his loyalty to his Father’s government.
Did Jesus teach, then, that his followers have no obligation to earthly governments? On the contrary, he taught them how to find the right balance between their responsibilities toward God and their obligations toward secular governments.