How Should A Christian Vote? Wrong Foundation?
Is it wrong to ask the question, “How should (I) a Christian vote?” Well, no. But let me ask, is this the proper foundation on which to understand such a question? I mean, ought this to be the starting point in understanding such a topic? No. Why? Simple. We must go back to the centrality of Christ and our motivation for asking.
You see, if we really, and I mean authentically, want to know the answer to the question above, we must understand not only the biblical definition, but also the realities, to the meaning of the word, Christian. For those of us who are professing Christians, if we do not have a working reality to the saving grace of God, a reality where by we have been justified and are being sanctified, then it will be impossible to conform our will to the biblical precepts that leads towards piety and God honoring decision making. For if reality of salvation, not merely verbalized, but rather internally characterized, is not of chief importance, then all answers to the question above will lead to nothing more than a legal moralism, powerless in itself to lead to any eternal help. Are we more concerned about our will lining up with God’s will, or is our motivation to somehow take bits and truths of God’s word to justify the opinion we already decided upon? Would we be found vulnerable that God may convict us to repentance regarding our thought process, or would we have just enough truth to allow personal sin to be further swallowed down? We need to remember, God is serious when He says, “without holiness, no one will see the Lord.” (Hebrews 12:14)
Now you may be thinking, “That is so elementary and basic, I already know the definition and understanding of being a Christian.” Really? I mean do we really understand the gravity of Jesus’s prophecy in Matthew 7:21-23 to those who profess His name and are not what they think? Do we really understand the reality of believing upon His Word as being inspired, sufficient, inerrant and authoritative? (2 Timothy 3:16-17) Do we really understand the great need to be in the entire council (balanced in the whole) of God’s Word?
Now, some of you may be thinking, “Well, you are expecting some sort of sinless perfection.”
No, not at all. I have never said such a thing. To use this argument, a very legalistic and self-justifying argument in itself, merely proves our ignorance of the Gospel and ignorance of the saving and sanctifying work of true grace (Titus 2:11-14). We ought to weigh this argument out against our deepest motivations. Are we seeking to understand and know our God, making Him our boast (Jeremiah 9:23-24), and making Him our authentic focus, hope and trust? Or are we really just trying to appease the appetites of our carnality and let ourselves off the hook in some self-justifiable excuse?
Again, Jeremy, you never let up.
“There you go again, expecting more out of the church than that of the world.” Well, that is what we ought to expect, again, not in perfectionism, but definitely in a growing work of sanctification, a real wrestling against sin and killing of our flesh (Romans 8:12-14). As a matter of fact, the Apostle Paul expected just the same; and when sin was in the church, discipline, rooted in love for the soul, was practiced (1 Corinthians 5:9-13). Unfortunately, we seem to have skin made of paper thinner than our Bibles. I mean, ought we not preach the entire Word of God, especially in the church meeting and really help, in the love of God, to see others come to the full knowledge and growth in Christ?
“And so, from the day we heard, we have not ceased to pray for you, asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him: bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; being strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy; giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in light. He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.” Colossians 1:9-14
I would dare say, because of our great lack in not understanding the realities of taking on the Christian name, we find ourselves not knowing God’s will. The incredible unbelief in the full council of God’s Word, and the great amount of ignorance in both reading and applying God’s Word (again in totality) to our lives, leaves us having to ask the question of, how are we to vote, when we should already have known the answer to this long ago (unless of course you have come to Christ in recent days).
If we really want to know the answer the question, how am I to vote, then we ought dig into these questions first, answering them from the Bible (you know, the Word we claim to believe):
- Do I really believe and trust upon the Word of God as found in the Bible?
- What does God think when we are trusting in man? (Jeremiah 17:5-8)
- Has Christ indeed really been formed in me? (2 Corinthians 13:5; Galatians 4:19)
- What is my heart like without Christ? (Jeremiah 17:9; Genesis 6:5, 8:21)
- What does God like? What does He hate? In what does He delight in?
- What are the attributes of God as seen throughout the Scriptures?
If we will simply learn to first turn to our Bibles and seeking out God’s will before grabbing for google, so as to read all the opinions of man (not at all saying we cannot read other books and hear the opinions of others), we would be much more Christ-centered, eternally minded, and give more vivid evidence that we truly do believe that God’s Word is indeed what it says it is. If we will seek to know the God that we claim, then the question posed at the begin will already have been answered.
I dare say, our Scriptural ignorance and our passionless desire to be made more like the God that we claim, seems to be ever so prevalent in our Western World. We, as individuals, need to be much more like Enoch, for he “walked with God.” (Genesis 5:22, 24) And when we walk with God, in simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ, we will be given much more of God Himself, with ears that can both understand and discern truth. Oh that we would learn to repent, weep and pray like Nehemiah (vs. 1:4-11) (good message to watch: clip/full)
Christian, after saying all of this, I want you to be encouraged to test yourselves, seek Christ in greater depths, and trust upon Him alone. Do not leave the boat during all the turmoil and untrustworthy opinions of men. If we will humble ourselves, God will give us help in ways we could never have generated in the flesh and answers to what we do not understand. Let us simply believe, with no doubting (James 1:5-8). If we truly want to be like Christ, a true Christian, then let us be disciples who never despise the correction, training and discipline of our Master; but rather let us embrace that which is meant for our eternal good and honoring of our Great God.
Recently I was on the Tom Roten Morning Radio Show. Feel free to listen to the 25 minute interview regarding certain questions pertaining to the election and in relation to being a Christian. Maybe it will be a help to some of you.
Jeremy B. Strang is a Christian, husband, father, and author.