Sunday, November 4, 2018

The Christ Follower Votes

Let’s start this by acknowledging that the Bible does not say anything about voting, electoral colleges or which party is truly evil. You will not find the concept of democracy anywhere in the Bible. Some Christians would therefore steer away from how the Christ follower should participate in the election process. They may point to a separation of church and state or to the fact that we belong to another kingdom. They may state that the election process is corrupt or that their vote doesn’t matter for a variety of different reasons. They may be sincere in their belief on the topic, but they are sincerely wrong.

Just because the Bible doesn’t talk specifically about an issue doesn’t mean that it hasn’t provided the framework for understanding how to act. Biblical literacy establishes principals by which we can boldly and prayerfully know 1) the Christ Follower is called to vote and 2) how the Christian should vote.

From as early as Genesis and as reinforced in the New Testament, we understand that we were made to rule, to take dominion of this world. We understand that we represent the Kingdom and that our reign is part of and aligned with Christ’s reign so that the laws we establish visibly represent the order and values of the Kingdom. “The heart of the king is in the hand of the LORD” and likewise the outcome of this election as well as the decisions of those who will consequently govern. A wicked people will be given over to wicked rulers and a godly people to godly authorities. In a democracy (or a democratic republic), WE the People are part of the governing authority.

One of the lies that satan uses to limit our godly influence in the world is to whisper that somehow our efforts don’t matter or will be ineffective; he wants to discourage us from bringing God’s order into the world by driving us to inaction, and as Edmond Burke so rightly pointed out: the only thing for evil to succeed is for good men to do nothing. However, we aren’t called to be effective and we aren’t responsible for the outcome… we are simply called to be faithful, trusting in God for results. Participation in the election process is a responsibility that we can be faithful to fulfill.

Being a Christ Follower means letting the Kingdom reign in us and through us, bringing the Kingdom into this world. What is the Kingdom? It is the reign of God in our lives. It is the values and principals of Yahweh, the very Law of God which is good despite our sometimes refusal to follow it, and as ambassadors of His Kingdom we both reflect and promote the order of God’s ways in how we live our lives as well as the order we establish for the world around us. We take dominion of every area within our sphere of influence to reflect the very thinking of God and the goodness that comes from Him alone. 

The rebellion in our hearts and in the world around us as reinforced by the lies of the enemy says: don’t do it! Who are you to impose your will upon others? But we wouldn’t condemn a parent when creating order for their children or a manager for fostering an environment that facilitates productivity. It’s their responsibility. Likewise, it’s our responsibility to represent the Kingdom in all our earthly activities, including participation in the governing process. 

So we look to those principals that will guide us so that it’s not our will but God’s will be done. We recognize that we don’t seek our own gain but rather we seek to secure the rights of others, especially the innocent who have no voice. The main purpose of government is to protect its people and to establish an environment that is safe for individuals to pursue their dreams, to establish the rights to “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness”. This is why the Pro-Life vote is so important. Who is more innocent than an unborn child and what right is greater than life itself? The right to liberty (pro-choice) does not extend into the freedom to take another’s life. It is the very reason we have government: to protect people. 

The purpose of government is not to provide for the needs of the people but rather to facilitate an environment where people can provide for themselves and each other. As pointed out by multiple respected thinkers: democracy fails when the people believe they can vote themselves more money. We have the responsibility to vote, but not for our own gain. We vote to establish goodness and protect the innocent, to facilitate an environment where people are free to pursue and extend goodness. The Christ Follower votes in ways that reflect Kingdom principals.

copyright ©2018 Mitchell Malloy (http://mitchellmalloyblogspot.com/)