The pastor father of Republican presidential candidate Ted Cruz is urging all Christians to engage in the political realm -- or risk allowing the "wicked to elect the wicked."
During a recent interview with Glenn Beck, Rafael Cruz, 76, lamented that "Too many pastors have been divorced from the political process. And they have just tried to be politically correct instead of biblically correct."
The elder Cruz, who recently released his latest book, "A Time for Action: Empowering the Faithful to Reclaim America," added, "If Christians just do what they're supposed to do biblically, the whole game changes."
In defending his arguments, Cruz cited Acts 20:27, where the Apostle Paul discussed teaching the "whole counsel of God" and Proverbs 29:2, which reads, "When the righteous thrive, the people rejoice; when the wicked rule, the people groan."
When people follow the Judeo-Christian principles of America's founding, "we have harmony, we have peace, we have prosperity," Cruz said, but trampling them produces "discord."
"Then we have the wicked electing the wicked, and it becomes our fault, the pastor added.
Oftentimes, people of high moral principle say they're fed up with politicians lying to them, and come to believe all politicians are liars and thus they stop voting. In addition, a recent George Barna survey that found 90 percent of pastors believe the Bible addresses "every issue" facing America, but only 10 percent said they preach on those biblical solutions.
"That's throwing out the baby with the bathwater," Cruz said. "I know the comment that you hear very often: 'Politics is a dirty business. I don't want any part of it.' Well, if people of principle say that, politics will continue to be a dirty business. What we need, if you say politics is a dirty business, is we need people of principle to run for public office, and we need people of principle to vote for people of principle."
In advising Christian voters, Cruz said to ignore political rhetoric and instead focus on a candidate's record. He also urged individuals to think for themselves instead of relying on their families' voting history.
"It's not enough to be informed," he said. "The problem is people have been voting tradition instead of voting conviction. They vote for a particular party because their parents or grandparents voted for that party, regardless of whether that party stands for the principles that have made America great. We need to find where these candidates stand and vote for those that reflect those values that you believe and that have made America that shining city on a hill."
When asked which presidential candidate he believes will bring America back to the Christian principles the country was founded on, Cruz was quick to point to his son, Texas Senator Ted Cruz. He added that when he thinks about his story of coming to America from Cuba and working his way from dishwasher to successful businessman, he is astounded that his son could become president.
"I remember when I was at the Senate chamber watching him being sworn in," he recalled. "I couldn't contain the tears from my eyes. To think about this kid, the first generation after I came to this country, not only being sworn in as U.S. senator, but I believe he will be the next president of the United States of America. Where else in the world can that happen? Only in America."
According to the latest Des Moines Register poll, 37 percent of self-identified evangelicals or born-again Christians support Cruz, compared to 17 percent for frontrunner Donald Trump.
A number of influential leaders in the Evangelical community have endorsed the Texas Senator, including Family Research Council President Tony Perkins, "Duck Dynasty" star Phil Robertson, Bishop E.W. Jackson, Dr. James Dobson, and Brian S. Brown, President of the National Organization for Marriage.