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Should Believer’s vote? Part 2

October 16, 2012

Last week I shared some observations about what I believe is very little if any biblical instruction for us to be politically active.  So why stir this pot?  I know from experience and talking to people this subject really rubs people the wrong way.  Asking a question like this will cause upset even in authentic Believer’s.  If that’s you, thanks for sticking with me.  I hope we can all be challenged and learn, let’s search the Scriptures to find out if these things are so.  Acts 17:11

Today, I hope to illustrate what I believe is at the heart of the matter because it’s the heart that matters.

Exodus 20:3 You shall have no other gods before Me.

Is politics your “god”?  How much time do you listen to radio (Limbaugh), watch TV (O’Reilly, Hannity) and think about politics? Do you think about God as much, by studying His word, listening to great Bible teachers or reading great blogs (present company excluded)?  Older women do you teach younger women to love their husbands (Titus 2)?  Men do you mentor and train the next generation to be godly and call the unrighteous to repentance.

Would you share the gospel of the political party of your choice with people before you would share the gospel that can save their souls? (Matthew 10:27-28)  Would politics separate you from someone before the true gospel would separate you from someone?

I see so many people putting their “hope” in a political system that will disappoint.  It has no chance of succeeding because it’s built on sand.  I’m not suggesting ignorance or complete isolation.  I like knowing what’s going on but I don’t dwell on it.  It never comes close to causing a reaction from me anymore.  I can’t even begin to grasp why I need to concern myself about these things.  I’m focused on more important things, such as will my daughter’s Madeline & Lydia come to know the Lord and am I loving my wife as Christ loved the church;  I’m not but I’m improving daily by His grace.

Matthew 6:31-33 “Therefore do not worry, saying, “What shall we eat?” or “What shall we drink?” (or what will happen to America if Obama is elected again) or what shall we wear?”  For all these things the Gentiles seek.  For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things.  But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.  Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things.  Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.

Look again at Ezekiel

Ezekiel 14:4-8  “therefore speak to them, and say to them, “Thus says the LORD GOD: “Everyone of the house of Israel who sets up his idols in his heart, and puts before him what causes him to stumble into iniquity, (does this cause you to sin in your thoughts toward Obama or Democrats or Romney or Republicans) and then comes to the prophet, I the LORD will answer him who comes, according to the multitude of his idols, that I may seize the house of Israel by their heart, because they are all estranged from Me by their idols.”  “Therefore say to the house of Israel, “Thus says the LORD GOD: “Repent, turn away from your idols, and turn your faces away from all your abominations.

If this has upset you in any way and you call yourself a Believer I’d like you to ask yourself why?  Jesus Christ challenged the status quo.  He not only turned tables upside down but he turned the whole world upside down because He asked people to think differently than they ever had before.  And they are still talking about it today.  Think about that for a minute.

Voting is not a sin.  Abstinence from voting is not a sin.  If you vote don’t try to spiritualize your vote or think too highly of yourself as though you have something to offer to the world.  Be a humble servant of the Lord and do His will.

Romans 12:2-3 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God  For I say, through the grace given to me, to everyone who is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think soberly, as God has dealt to each one a measure of faith. 

God is sovereign and we know the end of the story.

Brothers and sisters I ask you to consider today what is important in the life of a Believer?  We should battle for the sanctity of life, and we should stand firm against those that promote evil.  We cannot “legislate” them into morality so we need to show them their hearts are wicked.  We need to convince them they are separated from God, and we need love them with the truth of His word.

2 Timothy 2:24-25 And a servant of the Lord must not quarrel but be gentle to all, able to teach, patient, in humility correcting those who are in opposition, If God perhaps will grant them repentance, so that they may know the truth.

Kevin

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11 Comments
  1. Thanks again for a thoughtful post. I appreciate your challenge to examine motives. I am aware of many who have wrong priorities and have made an idol out of politics. That being said, exposing bad motvies for voting doesn’t prove voting to be unnecessary. I could expose 100 bad motives for sharing the gospel or serving in the local church, but that wouldn’t prove that those things are not needed. Your point that voting doesn’t matter needs to argue more then merely exposing wrong motives in voting. I asked in your previous post:

    Voting is a right/privilege given to us being our unique government structure to influence our society in a way we believe to be best. It is an act of stewardship for us to manage to the best of our ability and our conscience. I see it as a blessing that I can have a voice (one that is informed by God’s Word) that can influence (be salt and light) the morality and justice of our country. America is certainly NOT the Kingdom of God and that is a very good observation you have made. But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t care how much America mirrors Christ’s Kingdom. God does not delight in the murder of babies, unjust scales in the economy or court rooms, and delights in righteousness. Christ righteousness is the only saving righteousness and perfect righteouesness but the Prophet Micah speaks of a social righteousness that does matter to God. And Israel was condemned for it. I believe voting allows for us to have the ability to seek to bring that kind of righteousness into America. Though it won’t save anyone it does provide a means to display that God’s laws and wisdom is the greatest way for any people and culture.

    In other words, can you show from Scripture why neglecting the privilege and responsibility of voting is more rightly fulfilling Biblical principles?

    • Hi Stephen, Thank you and I appreciate your thoughts as well. I don’t believe my goal was prove voting is unnecessary but to get Believer’s to examine their motives for voting and engaging in the political process.

      As I said I don’t think it’s a sin to vote or a sin not to vote.

      My desire is for all of us to consider the reasons we do things. I believe many of us are simply on auto pilot because our world view has never been challenged in this area.

      I had hoped to point out in Part 1 that I didn’t believe there to be clear instruction for us to engage politically. Again, it doesn’t mean we can’t, just there is no indication that the Lord or the Apostles were.

      In Part 2 show some of the poor reasons many do engage in the political process. Perhaps I’ve missed the mark or not been convincing in my argument.

      I hope I’ve caused people to think and that I’ve honored God in this discourse. Kevin

      • I am sorry for not being very clear. And I hope I am not misunderstanding your points or steering the point of the post in the wrong direction. But when you speak of voting, it seems as if you are implying it is trivial or unimportant. Like, you can have pizza tonight or you can have burgers. Or we can go to disneyland this year or Bush Gardens for family vacation. But voting is a responsibility. So I guess I am confused what you mean. My burden is men in our culture or continually neglecting more and more responsibility. This could just be another way men nleglect to care for our society and people. Voting has influence and it is a way we exercise responsibility, fulfill our duties, and lead our nation in the right direction. Can you elaborate why it would be ok to neglect this.

      • Thank you again for your comments. I enjoy the opportunity to think through this issue more and more.

        Let me first say I think voting is unimportant and trivial; in comparison to the gospel. That is the point of both Part 1 and Part 2. You say voting is a responsibility, I will ask you who has given me the responsibility to vote? Why is it my duty? Prove to me from the Scriptures this is something I must do.

        This is only my opinion. I don’t see a strong Biblical reason to vote but I don’t think it’s wrong to vote, I’ve clearly stated it’s not sin. I would have to be more convinced that the Bible gives us a clear reason rather than the other way around, I don’t have to shape my world view to match societies.

        Scripture does not mandate me to vote and I’m not mandated by law to vote. If I was mandated by God’s law or man’s law I should be submissive to that. I only see my responsibilities as found in Scripture.

        It’s my responsibility to bring my children up in the fear and admonition of the Lord. That is very clear Biblical instruction. It’s my responsibility to love my wife as Christ loved the church. My primary responsibility is to preach the word, to call the dead to repentance, to make disciples and teach them to obey the commands.

        I could not agree with you more that men are neglecting their responsibilities. We could not be more like minded there but the answer is not politics. It’s the gospel.

        I think the post hit it’s mark because we are having this conversation. I wanted people to think about what they are doing. Not just do something they’ve always done. I’m affirmed when I receive testimony that this caused someone to search their heart and become more holy. Praise God!

        The question was and still is rhetorical. Not in a Rob Bell sort of way, but to draw people into searching their hearts and God’s Word for the reason they do what they do.

        Most respectfully your Brother in Christ. Kevin

  2. Brenda permalink

    Kevin,
    After reading Part 2 God exposed my heart of hatred for the democrats for the past 30 years, not a pretty sight. I pray that He may grant me forgiveness for all the times I have been hateful towards and angered much (I have murdered in my heart) by the God-appointed democratic leaders of our country. Romans 13:1 – “Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God.”
    I thank God for using your blog to challenge my thinking in this area and shining God’s light on this dark corner of my heart. God’s grace and peace continue to be with you brother!

    • Praise God!

      Matthew 5:43-44 “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you.”

      thank you for the encouragement Brenda. I was going to add the lyrics to “Clear the Stage” but thought the post would be too long, it is so relevant.

      “Shine the light on every corner of your life
      Until the pride and lust and lies are in the open
      Then read the Word and put to test the things you’ve heard
      Until your heart and soul are stirred and rocked and broken”

      Here is a link to a video of this song. It’s so beautiful and so relevant.

      Kevin

    • Praise the LORD!

  3. Roy Sandercock permalink

    Grace to you brother. I am so encouraged & edified by your desire to preach the gospel & to convince people through the truth of scripture, what is truly important. By God’s grace I have had my mind transformed not to think like the world thinks. If the only reason to vote is to bring God glory then vote-away, if not then as a true believer, one should spend God’s time and/or efforts on doing what He specifically in scripture calls us to….see Mathew 28:18-20, and that starts in our homes.

  4. Kevin,
    Thanks for taking the time to engage in conversation. I appreciate it. It speaks of your desire and love to know the truth. I feel as though I already gave ref. to number of principles from Scripture why one should vote. I said above,

    I see it as a blessing that I can have a voice (one that is informed by God’s Word) that can influence (be salt and light) the morality and justice of our country. America is certainly NOT the Kingdom of God and that is a very good observation you have made. But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t care how much America mirrors Christ’s Kingdom. God does not delight in the murder of babies, unjust scales in the economy or court rooms, and delights in righteousness. Christ righteousness is the only saving righteousness and perfect righteouesness but the Prophet Micah speaks of a social righteousness that does matter to God. And Israel was condemned for it. I believe voting allows for us to have the ability to seek to bring that kind of righteousness into America. Though it won’t save anyone it does provide a means to display that God’s laws and wisdom is the greatest way for any people and culture.

    I assume you are familiar with who William Wilberforce was (John Piper has done an excellent biography on him both available in book and sermon). But for sake of argument, he was a Christian and godly man who loved the LORD and sought to honor him with His life. John Newton was his mentor. He desired to pursue ministry but was encouraged to use his influence in politics in England because of his social standings. He is the sole reason today that slavery no longer takes place in England. Perhaps you think he devoted his life to a trivial cause, but I think you would be finding yourself in a small stream when comparing yourself with the bulk of Godly Christians throughout church history. Christians have always sought to influence EVERY AREA of life in the family and culture at large. The Gospel is the foundation and source to this change and when we understand the Gospel and the Great Commission we will seek to use every means possible to make this world reflect God’s values and thoughts. Not voting neglects that. All the people in church history that we look up to as Christian, Protestant, Reformed guys would seek to inlfuence the culture. Whether it be: Augustin, Calvin, and even Jonathan Edwards ( http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2001/julyweb-only/7-2-25.0.html ). So I feel the burden of proof is on you to explain why Christians would be right (Biblically speaking) in purposefully neglecting the responsibility to vote. Blessings brother!

    • Stephen, I’ve enjoyed this conversation. You’ve made some excellent points. I would agree with you on the burden of proof if I had stated Believer’s should “not” vote.

      I asked the question to have people to consider why they vote and mentioning the idolatry of politics as an example of a poor reason to vote.

      I’m glad you mentioned John Piper. I’m getting ready to post an article and I think it goes well with my posts.

      This has been a great opportunity to exhort us to love and good works. Hebrews 10:24

      Blessings to you as well.

      Kevin

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