At the outset I think it is only fair that I make the following statements:
I am a political junkie! The next several days for me is akin to the Superbowl. Since I was a teen I have been entertained by a good debate, the subject matter not being the most important thing, but the contest of words. So, I look forward to the Presidential and Vice Presidential debates with great interest.
I am a very conservative Republican! My family roots go way back in the hills and hollers of Western North Carolina where for centuries everyone was a Democrat. (Except for one old great-uncle who was very likely a Republican just to be even more irritating than he naturally was.) Ronald Reagan singularly changed not only my family but the whole region. I need to thank Jimmy Carter too. Had he not been such a dud of a President, Reagan would not have looked nearly so good in contrast.
Above all else I am a Christ exalting Christian. I understand the difference between the Kingdom of God and the United States of America. And, I understand the difference in the loyalties expected. I don’t buy the increasingly popular idea that to be a good citizen of my country I necessarily must compromise my allegiance to Jesus Christ.
Now, regarding the elections in November. God’s choice or our choice?
My answer is both! In my view the most responsible citizens in every society should be those who claim to be followers of Jesus. The Roman Empire was not exactly a theocracy but instead was rather oppressive and cruel, but Jesus said, “Pay your taxes”. And, Paul said the deputy sheriff does not carry his service weapon just for adornment (Romans 13:4). The lesson is pretty clear. Respect the authority over you. Again, I can’t over stress the historical context in which Jesus and Paul commented on government.
In some way government officials, Democrat, Republican, and even Communist, serve the purposes of our God. (Romans 13:6) I’ll be first to admit that I forget this truth often and tend to be more submissive in heart to those in power with whom I agree.
We get to vote but the choice will be God’s for His purposes!
In the United States we have the privilege every four years of voting for the person of our choice to be the Chief Executive of our country for the next four years. I believe it is a duty for every U.S. Citizen to be an informed voter and to vote. Of course anyone has the absolute right to not vote, and the right as well to gripe loudly if the results are not agreeable.
Who do I vote for? In light of what I know about Christ and the Bible, the Constitution of the Untied States, world history and current events, I enter the voting booth and vote for the person who I believe will likely govern closest to biblical principles, best protect the security interests of the country, and who best understands the scope of government the founders of the country envisioned. It’s about that simple.
Four years ago I was disappointed with the outcome. (Sen McCain would have been only slightly better in my view..). However, behind all that happens in debates, polling, campaigning, lying, cheating, voting, and finally getting a candidate elected, God casts the final ballot!
The wicked King of Egypt was reminded by Daniel the prophet when he gave the meaning of the king’s dream,
“You, O king, the king of kings, to whom the God of heaven has given the kingdom, the power, and the might, and the glory” (Daniel 2:37 ESV).
And Daniel said earlier after praying for the wisdom to know the meaning of the king’s dream,
“Daniel answered and said:“Blessed be the name of God forever and ever, to whom belong wisdom and might. He changes times and seasons; he removes kings and sets up kings” (Daniel 2:20-21a)
I can’t speak for you but it gives me great comfort to know that after other citizens and, and other Christians and I have done all we can do with God’s blessing, in the end, God’s plan will not be thwarted.
“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts “ (Isaiah 55:8,9)
So, go do your civic duty. Choose who you think will best govern our God blessed country. Or, if you choose not to vote, that’s your right. In the end the sovereign God of the Bible will have the final say. It is he who grants power and authority to those who rule over the rest of us and He knows best.
I have always been fascinated by this statement in the Bible.
“When we were utterly helpless, Christ came at just the right time and died for us sinners”. (Romans 5:6)
It was not by chance that Jesus died exactly in history on the very day of God’s choosing. It was at “just at the right time…”. The Roman government did not invent crucifixion but they perfected it. It was that cruel death on a cross that God chose for his one and only Son. It was by the cruelest method God chose to crush him. It was God’s timing when the events of Acts 2 and following would happen. How convenient for people from all over the known world, from every language and people group it seems, to have converged on one city to hear the good news. And, how convenient for the Roman Empire to have built good roads and to have regular shipping routes for the gospel of Jesus to spread in the most efficient ways possible!
Oh yes! I’m passionate about this upcoming election. I’ve picked my man. But in early January whomever is given the oath of office and is inaugurated will be God’s choice for this time. It is not my job to figure God out, I can’t and you can’t. My task is to trust him, and I will, even in the choice of President of the United States.
Royce , Thanks for reminding us “Who is in Charge” and who we are supposed to follow. Sometimes I get to involved,inflamed, and infurriated listening to the world, when I should be listening to the Holy Spirit.
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“God casts the final ballot!” I agree Royce, the final ballot will be cast by God, but not in an American election, God has no more intrest in America than he does in Russia or Iran.
You confessed to be a conservative Republican, then later said you vote on the person. Which is it do you vote on the person or the policy.? Personally I vote on the policy, the policy I believe more closly follows the teachings of Jesus. I don’t know these people that well, we only know what they want us to know – the good part, if they have one.
Laymond, It isn’t nearly so confusing as you suppose. The “person” so far has never been a Democrat. When a Democrat values the life of the unborn, is for a strong military, low taxes, etc. I will consider voting for that person.
As for God’s choice, I agree whole heartedly with you that America is not special among nations with God. But, God does set up leaders and he takes them down. There is no debate about that if you believe the Bible record.
Finally, do you seriously think Obama and the Democrat platform is even remotely close to the teachings of Jesus? I am not assuming the Republican platform is, but it is closer than the Democrats.
On a more personal note. Are you catching any crappie? They have just started the fall bite here and I’m catching a limit every time I go. Take care.
It is interesting to read some of the comments here. I am a very liberal Democrat (I lean more to the Green Party), and am Pro-life as well as Anti-War. That being said, I think God is our ruler and the king of all nations. There are times when people, even people who are evil, are allowed to take power for some unknown reason (known only to God). Am I enthused about this upcoming election? Mildly, but am committed to a more Liberal Vision. In my view our current president, whom I voted for is very flawed, but, in my opinion and experience, I view the opposition as unthinkable. I am not chained to the Democratic Party, as I did vote for Ross Perot in 1996. (Remember Ross?) Oh Well. I am very tempted to vote for the Green Party, as I personally think we need a choice between Dem’s and the GOP. It will be curious to see the outcome of this election. I do believe there are sincere Christians on opposite sides, and that no church should mandate we vote for a certain party or a candidate. My wife and I left our last church, as we were told “liberals would not feel comfortable here.” Nuff said.
Gary, Thanks for reading and for your comment.
I certainly agree that God allows evil rulers at times to accomplish his purposes.
And I agree that no political party is the party of God.
I disagree that a vote for a Ross Perot or Gary Johnson is a wise vote. If it makes you fell better, OK I guess, but the reality is there are only two viable candidates this time around.
Above the noise of the campaigns and world affairs is Jesus who is Lord above everything in heaven and on earth. Both Liberals and Conservatives and in between should give him their ultimate loyalty and devotion.
Royce, overall I basically agree with what you said here. It is true there are only 2 viable parties. I will vote (Ross is not running this time and I do not know Gary Johnson. I am a big fan of Jill Stein).
I am a student of American history and feel the Liberal Progressive movement has helped the country the most, and the Conservative movement the least.
At the present, I feel that both the Liberals and the Conservatives have let the country down in many ways. My ultimate loyalty is to Jesus Christ.
I am well aware Ross Perot is not running. Gary Johnson is the Libertarian candidate, what is left of the Ron Paul Revolution.
Well, we are polar opposites politically but agree on Jesus. That is encouraging.
Royce, I still see you as a brother. Jill Stein is the candidate on the Green Party Side. I took a political test and I agree with her 95% over 75% with Pres. Obama and 2% with Romney. I wish there were a Republican I could consider voting for like Ike or Jerry Ford, both decent men. Other than that I am committed to the Progressive Liberal vision of America, but I see the Dem’s falling short of this.
Ron Paul sounded good when he came out against US intervention and war. His other policies confound me. Also I remember voting for Nixon in 68 as he came across as a peace candidate. It is very hard for me to consider a Republican when they speak about peace, and becoming harder daily to trust the current president about this. More than likely I will vote Democratic, even though I have some major disagreements with their choice for president. For me now, it is the party over the man.