Whether we’re enthusiastic about an election or not, Christians are not excused from political participation. We deserve the government we get, by our own inaction as much as by the actions of others. Is there a biblical pattern for citizenship?
Titus 3:1-2 says, “Remind them to be subject to rulers, to authorities, to be obedient, to be ready for every good deed, to malign no one, to be peaceable, gentle, showing every consideration for all men” (NASV). This passage is an overview of how believers should generally live in the world, and includes phrases pertaining to our participation in an election.
“Be ready for every good deed.” A constant theme in the New Testament, it fits a discussion on voting because that is one good deed we can perform on behalf of “all men” (Galatians 6:10, 1 Thessalonians 5:15). Good works are God’s purpose in redeeming us (Ephesians 2:10, Titus 2:14). Careful voting will coincide with and reinforce any type of compassion ministry that we may do.
“Malign no one.” This admonition can apply not only to the tone of a campaign, but also to the way Christians speak and write about a candidate. Could that email we pass along be considered slanderous? What about a comment we make on Facebook?
“Be peaceable.” As we submit to government, we can be grateful for the extent to which this God-given institution maintains peace in society. 1 Thessalonians 4:11 says our ambition in life should be quiet industriousness. We contribute to the peace by performing good deeds and by participating in government – whether it involves service on a local board or in some higher office.
“Showing every consideration for all men.” Take that thought with you into the voting booth this November, not only your concern over the economy’s effect on your wallet. On Election Day, will your choices reflect consideration for people beyond your circle? How will the decisions made by the candidates you support affect those who are too often forgotten – the unborn, the disabled, and the terminally ill?
CHRISTIANS VOTE BECAUSE . . .
- Government is God’s good gift to Fallen people. It is therefore appropriate for Christians to participate in government.
- Voting is our duty as citizens of a country in which the leaders rule by the consent of the governed (Romans 13:1-7).
- Although we are “aliens and strangers,” we should seek the good of our neighbors (Matthew 22:36-40, Jeremiah 29:7).
- Participating in government does not mean we replace our trust in God with trust in “princes” (Psalm 146:3).
- We please God when we pray for those in authority over us (1 Timothy 2:1-3), and also when we act (James 2:17).
- As salt and light in the world, we are called to promote truth and justice in word and deed (Matthew 5:13-16, 1 John 3:18) and yet leave the results to God (Proverbs 21:1).
- God grants His children the ability to discern and expects us to exercise it (1 Corinthians 2:15).
- We lose credibility if we complain about our leaders but don’t participate in the political process.
- Leaders at both the state and federal levels influence the direction our nation will take on matters of clear, biblical import, such as the sanctity of human life (as well as the sanctity of marriage).
VOTING Q & A
Aren’t there other important issues beside abortion? Yes, but a candidate’s position on abortion reveals much about his or her character and worldview.
What if the office a candidate is running for doesn’t involve any decisions about abortion? Once a candidate is elected to one office it often leads to other, higher offices.
Should we impose our views on others? Abortion is not a view; it is a violent act perpetrated on the weak by the strong.
Shouldn’t elected officials represent all their constituents, including those who support abortion on demand? They should not ignore the group that Roe v. Wade excludes from society, the helpless unborn.
Should the government be involved in a private, medical decision? Many laws already exist to prevent abuses of medical practice. Government is ordained by God to protect human life, not defend those who either openly or secretly destroy it.
What if a candidate says he or she is personally opposed to abortion but supports a woman’s “right” to choose? This candidate is not pro-life, but has placed personal freedom above the sanctity of human life. Abortion is one issue that defies neutrality.
What about a candidate who claims that compassion for the sick requires support for embryonic stem cell research? This candidate is neither pro-life nor compassionate because sacrificial love would never require the death of one non-consenting individual for another.
Remember, votes for the presidency of the United States aren’t the only important ones. Every election -- state, local, and federal -- is vital. Our chosen leaders leave significant marks on the landscape of life. And, no matter who wins, God expects us to pray for them at every level (1 Timothy 2:1-4).
LEARN WHERE THE CANDIDATES STAND:
Please watch Start with Life and I Vote Pro-Life First, then share this post with friends and family. If you need help on races outside Michigan, contact us.
RELATED: "Whatsoever" . . . Voting