God's truth for today's world

027_a_washdcThe Presidential election campaign of 2016 has been one of the most interesting and frustrating campaigns in memory. When the dust settled from the primaries, we ended up with two candidates. Each representing one of the two major parties. Many Christians are confused and distressed about how they should vote. They rightly reason that neither candidate would qualify as a pastor of a Bible-believing church.

Many still have no idea who they will vote for. Others have decided not to vote for anyone. Yet others are debating whether to vote for a third-party candidate or write-in a candidate. Even among Christian leaders, there is great confusion and even double-mindedness, with leaders switching their views back and forth. Emotion drives more of the rhetoric than a biblical analysis of a Christian citizen’s responsibility. So, this post will address a Christian citizen’s responsibility to vote for President from a biblical perspective.

The writers of the Bible were not under a democratic form of government in which the citizens could vote. However, the Bible teaches principles concerning government that apply to every form of government, including democracies.

Romans 13:1 (NIV)  Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God.

The first thing we must realize is that governments are established by God as an extension of His authority on earth. Now, this definitely does not mean that all governments govern according to godly principles. However, it does mean that virtually any government is preferable to complete anarchy. Some governments are clearly more righteous than others. Since God establishes governments, a Christian citizen is required to submit to the governing authorities. To submit as long as the government does not require something contrary to God’s Word.

Romans 13:7 (NIV)  Give everyone what you owe him: If you owe taxes, pay taxes; if revenue, then revenue; if respect, then respect; if honor, then honor.

This verse elaborates on what submitting to governing authorities means. A Christian citizen is required to pay taxes, revenues, respect and honor. With regard to elections, our duty is to vote for the candidate of our choice. The U.S. government states that every citizen has the “Right to vote in elections for public officials.” Every citizen is responsible to “Participate in the democratic process.” We also are responsible to “Support and defend the Constitution.”

Vote for the best candidate

Voting is a choice between alternate candidates and obviously we should vote for the best Presidential candidate. The candidates for office are always two sinful and flawed human beings. However, I believe that God has a candidate that is His choice for every election. In a future post, I will address the process of how a Christian should determine who the best candidate is. Much of the public discourse by Christians on how to decide who to vote for is not biblical.

In every election, there will always be one candidate who is better than the other and that is the one a Christian must vote for. I realize that in our country, in every succeeding election, the quality of the candidates seems to deteriorate. Why is that? As the country continues to drift farther from God, the people choose less godly candidates. This does not mean that our choice is meaningless. In this election, the choice between two flawed candidates will have a profound effect on the lives of every believer.

What your vote means

When one votes for a candidate, you are not approving everything they have done in the past. Nor do you approve of every policy they have advocated. Nor do you approve of everything they have said. You are simply comparing two candidates. Your vote says that you believe, according to biblical principles, that the candidate you vote for is the best one available. It is theoretically possible that two candidates in an election could have very little differences. Then the choice would be difficult. However, the choice in this election is easy, as the differences are stark.

To refrain from voting is not an option for the believer, for it means to disobey our Scriptural mandate to submit to the government. Not voting is not a trivial sin, it is a sin of great magnitude. For your vote determines the direction of an entire nation.  Your vote will may well determine whether there will be freedom of worship for Christians and the church in the years ahead. Not only must all Christians vote for the best candidate, they must …

Vote for the best candidate who can win

Some Christians don’t want to vote for either of the two major party candidates. So they will either vote for a third-party candidate or write-in someone. In most elections and in the present presidential election, the winner will be one of the two major party candidates. Neither a third-party candidate or a write-in candidate has any possibility of winning under any circumstances. Some see it as a protest vote. Others see voting for a candidate who can’t possibly win as keeping them from voting for evil.

Let’s look at the effect of voting for a third-party or write-in candidate. When you don’t vote for the best candidate, you are in effect voting for the worst candidate. Your vote for a third-party or write-in candidate means that the worst candidate needs one less vote to win and that the best candidate needs one more vote to win. Voting for a third-party or write-in candidate is exactly the same as not voting at all. Voting for a third-party or write-in candidate is not an option for the believer, it is a sin of great magnitude. Those who vote for a third-party candidate are voting for the worst candidate.

Vote according to God’s will

Finally, many people, even Christian leaders, are saying, just vote your conscience. Voting your conscience is entirely unbiblical. People’s consciences lead them astray all the time. In fact, some people think that if their conscience does not condemn them, then it’s not sin. The Bible teaches that your conscience is completely unreliable. Our behavior must be directed, not by our consciences, but by God’s Word. God has picked a best candidate. Your task as a believer is to discern God’s will and vote for that candidate. When you vote according to God’s will, God will bless you, whether God’s best candidate wins or not. If you miss God’s will and vote for the candidate that is not God’s choice, God will not bless you. You will reap the consequences of your sin, whoever wins the election.

God’s will is not relative, it is absolute. Person A cannot vote for Candidate X and be in God’s will, while Person B votes for Candidate Y and is also in God’s will. If God’s candidate is Candidate X, you must vote for Candidate X to be blessed. Voting for Candidate X avoids the sin of voting for Candidate Y. You can know God’s will by following biblical principles and the guidance of the Holy Spirit. How to vote according to biblical principles will be the topic of a future post. Stay tuned.

Waiting and Hoping (Luke 1)
The Person of the Spirit
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  1. it would seem that this has a lean toward a particular candidate by the issues you chose to lean on (unborn babies vs say capitalizing on vices of people who are alive in strip clubs, casinos, or abusing other people)

    1. This post is a preview of a coming post on how to choose the best candidate. A common misconception is that all issues are the same and you can just pick which ones are important to you. The Bible clearly shows us which issues are the most important. Those are the ones that should determine our vote. Most of what I’m writing is just common sense. However, common sense and the ability to discern and think logically is increasingly rare these days.

  2. I think I can tell the bias of the author of this post and I’m feeling that I’m being lectured and told how to vote and who to vote for. Sorry, but I will be voting for or writing in a Third Party candidate. If more of us Christians did this, we could deny these two bad candidates the 270 electoral votes needed for the White house, and the House could decide the election.

    1. Thinking that a third-party candidate could be elected is not realistic. In a few days, my next post will be entitled “Christians and Third-Party Candidates.” The Bible is very clear on how we should vote. When we disobey God’s Word, we sin and bring God’s judgement on ourselves and our nation. Voting third-party is the same as not voting at all. Rather than resisting the truth, you need to embrace it. Check back for my new posts and my Sunday messages, the next two Sundays.

  3. I’d like to remind all of you who claim to believe in Jesus and read the bible:

    The most prominent thing spoken by Christ, the prophet Daniel, and the apostles regarding the end days before the Lord’s 2nd Coming, is an evil man (the bible refers to him as the false prophet) ruling over all the nations through the power of a conglomerate entity (a beast with 7 heads, i.e. The United Nations with the 7 heads of the UN being the G-7. The 7 heads of the UN have veto power over any resolution that is brought forth to the General Assembly for a vote, even though there are some 200 countries in the UN, the G-7 are the heads of the thing.)

    Trump wants to depart from the globalist world order and concentrate on saving America while Obama and Hillary want nothing but the opposite. Their aim is to continue destroying America’s sovereignty and give all power over to the New World Order. If you have a lick of sense about you, you’ll know then that that’s the devil’s side.

    It’s not even a close call. It’s darkness vs light.

    If Hillary is declared the winner, the end will come sooner. If Trump wins, it gives this land more time for the church to repent, prepare and be about the Lord’s work in the remaining years.

    1. 200 million true Christians are in China, living faithful unto death. But in US with full of false teachers and prophets most of them are serving MAMMON/MONEY. First Holy Spirit chasten then if no repentance evil spirit or SATAN will do. From the history of church true Christians were in intense persecution.

  4. So much to say and so little a time to say it. Why wouldn’t God’s will be a third candidate? Seems to me in this current political environment we are more likely to get a Godly candidate as a third party as the Ds and Rs are so full of corruption (with few exceptions). There are other races other than the Presidency, so a third party option may be a very appealing option with a solid chance of winning. For the 2016 election, I would have to agree the third party candidate is nothing but a ploy to pull voters from trump, which in effect is a vote for Hillary. You didn’t go much into the policies of the two parties so I will put in a few. Hillary is anti-Constitutional, desires to forfiet our sovereignty, attacks Christians at every chance, supports post birth abortions, she is a felon that will never be tried and convicted, she is a pathological liar (so how can anyone trust a single word she says), she hates the military and is willing to sacrifice the health and safety of our citizens with an influx of illegals from around the world that will bring in disease and terrorism for an opportunity to strengthen the Ds power. The states have a mechanism to restrain the growth of the federal government, they just don’t exercise the Constitutionally given right to do so. Why? Because there all corrupt. Then we have to address the rampant voter fraud. Why is it all the stories of found ballots and electronic glitches always favor the Ds? Because of rampant voter fraud. The systems we vote on are built by Sorros, in Spain, and I am certain they are programmed to ensure a Hillary victory. You scoff? Why is it every report of votes not being registered correctly are Straight Repulican Votes register as Straight Democratic Votes? It happened a lot in the last election and there have been many reports of the same happening in early voting. It truly is a matter of Light vs Dark, and Hillary is as Dark as Dark can possibly get. We ensure the Death of America as we know it when she takes office, and sadly, she will take office as it has already been predetermined by the technology we enslave ourselves to everyday. All things are possible with God, but I think the country, and especially our political leaders, have spurned God for far to long and we are about to suffer the consequences of making un-Biblical choices for our leaders. It spills down into our churches with the election of our pastors. I visit churches with Pastors making all sorts of un-Biblical claims. As a Pastor, how can you not condemn sin? How can you say there is more than one way to Heaven? The Bible is very clear on this one topic, there is only one way to Heaven, and that is through Jesus Christ being your Lord and Savior? All the feel nice platitudes modern preachers use sound great, they excite emotion but are not grounded Biblically. It will help, as a notion, for the church to repent if we have Pastors that actually understand that their is a need to repent. Sadly, those Pastors are becoming more and more rare. So, be proactive, talk about politics from a Bilblical perspective with anyone and everyone, vote. Not only in you local, state and national elections, but also in the elections of your church.

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