Christians and Politics

With the first presidential debate in the books and the second coming up soon, the political season is coming to a head.  Never before do I think Christians have had as much personal wrestling and struggle as during this election cycle.  Now more than ever I am I getting the question, “How should we think about this as Christians?”  While I will never publicly endorse a political candidate because I think that would be overstepping the bounds of my pastoral office, as a pastor, I do want to make sure that we are thinking through this difficult time biblically.  What should we do as Christians during this election cycle?

  1. We should pray for our leaders

First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, (1Ti 2:1-2 ESV)

Keep in mind that Paul is writing this to Timothy while the Emperor Nero was catching Christians and lighting them on fire for sport.  If Nero can be prayed for, then I think that any of our leaders can be prayed for as well.  Do not let your heart get carried away and become so tied up in loyalty to your choice of politician and stance on policies, that you fail to pray for our leaders no matter who they are.
 

     2.  We should participate in the political process

Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. (Rom 13:1 ESV)

By the grace of God we live in a country where we have the opportunity to participate in choosing who will be our governing authorities.  Part of being subject to our governing authorities, as we are commanded, is participating in the process of choosing them.  Christians cannot abstain from the political arena.  We must participate.

A few things to keep in mind as you participate.

  1. There are a lot more offices up for election than just that of President.  Be informed!

http://www.votespa.com/en-us

Explains the process of how to register, where to vote, what types of elections there are and how to prepare.

https://ballotpedia.org/Pennsylvania_elections,_2016

Explains who is going to be on the ballot, as well as, what issues will be on the ballot.  

http://www.politics1.com/pa.htm

List all the offices up for election

B.  While the media only covers the two major presidential candidates, there are other people running for office.  As Christians we cannot be held hostage to the two party system, but must vote our conscience, even if we know who we are going to vote for isn’t going to win.  Study the issues and vote for who you think is best.

C.  Sometimes participating might mean making a conscious decision not to participate.  If there is no candidate that you can vote for, in good conscience, then I don’t think you should feel guilty about not voting.  I think not voting out of ignorance is and laziness is wrong, but to make an informed choice to protest the candidates selected is your right.  

    3.  We must trust God no matter what

At the end of the day, we must not put our confidence in any politician or form of government.  Our hope for the world is not that America becomes a Christian nation.  Our hope is that Jesus is the King and He is returning to establish His kingdom.  As Christians, we must remember that we are monarchists.  There is only one ruler that we serve, one ruler that we worship, one ruler that we place our hope in and one ruler who is over all.  Don’t worry about what this world is coming to.  Here is what it is coming to, it is coming to an end.  Let’s focus on making the most of the time that we have been given to win souls for Christ!  He is, and must always be, our hope!

Grace and peace

-  Pastor Jeff

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