Friday, September 7, 2012

The Great Christian Divide

You would be hard pressed to find anything more divisive in the work place, extended family gatherings and the American Church than the presidential election. Most Americans have strong emotional ties one way or the other. Some opinions have been formed over study, some through tradition, most probably a mix of both study and tradition.

Either way, it saddens me when Christians, who are united in Christ, allow themselves to be divided over a political party. I could hear the Apostle Paul, "For it has been reported to me that there is quarreling among you, my brothers. Each one of you says, 'I follow the party of the donkey,' or 'I follow the party of the elephant.' Is Christ divided? Was Obama crucified for you? Or were you baptized in the name of Romney?" (1 Corinthians 1:11-13)

We live with a freedom to vote that most people throughout history have never experienced. This is a grace we have been given. Let's make our best determination and take advantage of the vote we have been given, but a believer should never put their hope in any king above the King of Kings.

When Israel called out for a king to rule them, God warned them of the dangers that would come as a result. "In that day you will cry out because of your king, whom you have chosen for yourselves, but the LORD will not answer you in that day." (1 Kings 8:18) Human presidents and kings will always fail us. They are not perfect and actually should point us, in their imperfection, to the only One who will never fail us- Christ Jesus!

What I will endeavor to do in following blog posts is to share my thoughts on this upcoming presidential election. I do not claim to know every political talking point, or even to know perfectly how to manage my own household. Yet, these are thoughts I have chewed on for several years. I am friends with both Democrats and Republicans. I have close relatives that are both Democrats and Republicans. I minister the Gospel in partnership with both Democrats and Republicans. I see flaws in both parties (and their alternatives). Elections to me have always been settled with choosing the best of fallen options and resting in a God that controls the hearts of kings and presidents.

Know at the end of the day that God raises up leaders for His purposes, not always for your plans. Moses probably would not have voted for Pharaoh if he had the opportunity. Yet, he never disrespected him. Jesus probably would not have voted for Herod, yet He submitted to Him.

With that being said, I will write a series of blogs on various topics that I have wrestled with regarding this election. This is meant to spark a healthy discussion amongst the Church of the Living God. If you can't refrain from healthy dialogue, I ask that you refrain from making any posts on this blog. I definitely intend on writing posts on abortion, the poor and the role of the government. What other topics should I address?


Sarah Avery said...

Michael said he would be interested to hear your thoughts and other's on illegal immigration. I would be interested to hear your thoughts on gay marriage, Im not talking about if if it's right or wrong, but Im interested in the conversation around the illegality of it. Ive been thinking though the government (which is not the church) not being held to the church's standards. and should other people in America, who might not be Christian, be forced to follow our beliefs about gay marriage? Been mulling that over and would love to hear you.

wrj said...

Abortion. That's my "one-issue" as a voter and as a Bible-believing Christian. To me, if any politician is pro-abortion (I disagree with euphemistically using "choice," because there's not a choice for the developing life inside), they have thought through their convictions enough to allow the death of a unique and extremely innocent human being, and thus, their worldview is inconsistent with mine and very much inconsistent in my humble opinion with a literal interpretation of the Bible.

Jordan Williams said...

Brian, I came across this today and thought it was very good, simple, and clear.

Hope you are well.

Michael Lee Carter (m.bryonik) said...

I'm very interested in the dynamics at play between the faith of Romney, Christian orthodoxy, and the November election. The same would be true of President Obama, though the LDS presents an interesting elevation of and ascent to Mormonism in America. I did not vote for or against President Obama on the basis of race and ethnicity in the last election. Rather policy had been the driving issue. However, both policy and religion has become a great role for me this time around for the simple fact that the LDS juxstaposes the true Gospel. And whether right or wrong, wanted or unwanted, Romney becomes its face. How does evangelicalism as an organized tradition vibe with the dynamic here? Has it allowed its marriage to a few moral policy points (and mind you, biblical) deter the greater mission of the Gospel to impact lives across both party platforms?