This is clearly the most contentious election in the history of our nation. Families are divided. Christians are divided. Facebook friends are divided. Much hostility is in the air. And a spirit of confusion seems to be swirling everywhere.
With that in mind, let me suggest a few principles that should be on your mind as you enter the voting booth.
1) Secular Government is oppressive.
In 1 Samuel 8, we find Israel establishing their first king. But before they moved forward with that historic change in the way they governed their nation, God warned the Israelites about the evils of human government. The problem with government by man is that it is run by, well, men [and women]. And those men and women are all stricken with a terrible flaw: every person is desperately evil.
Jeremiah puts it like this:
The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked; who can know it?
(Jeremiah 17:9- NKJV)
Rule by man will always be flawed because of our sinful natures. The more power we give to rulers to reign over us, the more opportunity there is for their sinful natures to harm us. Bigger government means bigger problems. Limited government means limited problems.
2) Life is precious.
God puts a high premium on life. Genesis 9:6 says, “Whoever sheds man’s blood, by man his blood shall be shed; for in the image of God He made man.” (NKJV) When you enter the polling booth, you certainly must ask yourself which candidates or policies are most reflective of God’s perspective on the value of human life.
3) The law is a schoolteacher.
The Apostle Paul tells us in Galatians 3:24 that the Law (referring to the Old Testament Law) is a “school teacher.” By that he means that the Law teaches us what is right and what is wrong. Human laws have the same effect on a culture. For instance, laws against prostitution, incest, stealing, murder, etc. have a way of writing rules of right and wrong on people’s hearts and consciences. It teaches us what is right and what is wrong.
Therefore, we must be careful not to choose candidates or policies or platforms that go against God’s Laws. When we do so, we begin teaching a generation of citizens that those Laws that God has established really don’t matter after all.
4) Poverty is bad.
God clearly wants us to do what we can to help the poor and oppressed on this earth. Some people ask the question, “How could God allow the poor to go hungry like that?” But, as Francis Chan has well stated, God could turn around and ask the same question of us. How could WE allow the hungry to go unfed? What are WE doing about that?
While politics are not the ultimate answer to poverty, there are certainly policies and strategies that can make a difference in helping those who are poor. For instance, figuring out ways to help more people get jobs is good for all citizens and echoes the biblical principle of the value of hard work for one’s provisions (see 2 Thessalonians 3:10, for example). I believe it is important for us to keep the poor in mind when it comes to voting.
5) Supreme Court terms are for life.
I am 50 years old, and I have never in my life seen a more important election than what we are facing this year. The thing that makes this election unlike any other election is the fact that this next president will likely appoint as many as four Supreme Court justices during the next four years. This election is not about the next four years, but the next forty years – and longer!
Many Americans are having a difficult time this year supporting a candidate. My suggestion is that you look beyond the candidate and instead use your vote to make a difference in the selection of Supreme Court justices. Our nation desperately needs justices who are aligned with biblical principles. If activist judges are put into the Supreme Court, our Christian freedoms will be taken away for us and our children and grandchildren. America as we know it will be changed forever.
So, then, for whom should we vote? I would suggest that we vote for … GOD! Vote for His ways, His principles, His honor in our nation. Vote for truth and righteousness as best as we can find it in the midst of a sinful generation.
And in all things, pray.
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Chris Russell (send me a Facebook friend request!)