Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Another Letter to Evangelical Voters

During the final two weeks of the 2012 election, I was surprised by the number of people whom I called who told me that they were praying for Craig Huey and Mitt Romney to win the election.

Do they not know and believe that they are seated in heavenly places with Christ Jesus? Do they not know or believe that all of our enemies are being brought under our feet?

"And [God] hath put all things under his [Jesus'] feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church, 23Which is his body, the fulness of him that filleth all in all." (Ephesians 1: 22-23)

We are seated in Christ at the right hand of the Father:

"But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, 5Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) 6And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:" (Ephesians 2: 4-6)

To many believers in the Body of Christ want to change our leadership. They are convinced that they must influence who sits in power in Washington, in Sacramento, or in our local communities.

Yet all authority comes from God:

"Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God." (Romans 13: 1)

So, what are we supposed to do, then?

"Wherefore ye must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake. 6For for this cause pay ye tribute also: for they are God's ministers, attending continually upon this very thing. 7Render therefore to all their dues: tribute to whom tribute is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; honour to whom honour." (Romans 13: 5-7)

"For conscience sake" does not refer to the conscience of the believer, for our conscience has been perfected in Christ:

"1For the law having a shadow of good things to come, and not the very image of the things, can never with those sacrifices which they offered year by year continually make the comers thereunto perfect. 2For then would they not have ceased to be offered? because that the worshippers once purged should have had no more conscience of sins." (Hebrews 10: 1-2)

and then

"For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified." (Hebrews 10: 14)

"For conscience sake" refers to other people, who may interpret our freedom in Christ as licnense to rebel against all authority, just as some Jews for conscience sake would not eat food offered to idols, since they were still tranfering from the Old  Covenant to the New.

Should believers retire from the public square? Of course not! Get out there and tell people what you believe, and let people know that you support certain candidates, or none, because of the values you chose to stand by. Perhaps it would be best, though, not to endorse candidates in connection with one's religious affiliations. Like grace through faith, one's choice for who to vote for is a private matter, one which should never be conflated with one's standing in righteousness.

If Evangelical voters want to influence this world, their country, and their communities, then preach the Gospel, tell people that through Christ they can receive remission of sins and justification from all that they could not be justified through the Law of Moses. For our government will only reflect what we our country, our culture, and our citizenry reflect, nothing more, nothing less.

However, in no wise should we fear whoever is in office. Christ is our peace, not the President, not the Governor, not the Legislature. It is disconcerting to read and hear from so many believers that they connect their peace and prosperity to the person in office.

Let us all meditate on the first verses of the first Psalm:

"Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful.

"But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.

"And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper." (Psalm 1: 1-3)

We are blessed not as a result of not walking in ungodly counsel, or standing with sinners, or sitting with scorners, but blessed people just do not associated with such cursed people.

What does the blessed man do? He meditates on the Word. We have the Word living in us, Jesus (Colossians 1: 27), and His Spirit flows in us, leading us in righteousness, peace, and joy (Romans 14: 17)

For every Evangelical voter, your "job" is to believe on Him whom the Father has sent, Jesus! Do you not see Him as greater than your past, your present, your future? Do you not see Him as the Savior who saves you every day? Then there is no reason to pray to God to change the course of an election from a posture of fear, but from a stance of hope and peace, knowing that whoever wins, God's blessings will flow in your life.

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