National elections here in the United States happen less than six weeks from now. This election season has been unusually brutal, and these last few weeks promise to be even more so. Money, politics, personalities, scandals – it’s not pretty.
There are many issues on which people base their votes – the economy and jobs, national security, law and order, social justice and equality, illegal immigration, environmental issues, personal freedom, energy policy, the candidate’s character, and more. And God cares about all these things.
But as a believer, there is only ONE criterion on which you can legitimately base your vote:
Which leader is most likely to be beneficial to the Kingdom of God?
Especially this year when disagreements are so sharp and rhetoric so heated, we need to take the larger view – that of the kingdom of God.
No human being is, can, or will be perfect. No one’s policies or character will exactly match what any of us are looking for. We should not look to the future with fear, regardless of who are leaders are. Human beings cannot fix what is wrong in our country anyway. Beyond that, God is well able to accomplish His purposes regardless of the political, economic, or social environment.
And yet our elected leaders and their policies do impact the outworking of the kingdom of God in our courts, cities, schools, churches, states, society, and nation. Our votes have consequences in how easy or difficult it is for believers to live out their faith, spread the message of the gospel, and fulfill God’s purposes in their lives.
Remember, the gospel has survived for over 2000 years through good times and bad, when leaders honor God and when they do not. Sometimes the most difficult times for believers result in the greatest spread of the gospel.
Even so, our responsibility remains. We never have ALL the facts, and we cannot foretell the future. But to the degree to which we can discern it, our decisions in the voting booth must be based on the impact our vote will have for the kingdom of God – regardless of how we feel about specific personalities.
So what should you do now?
- First, PRAY! For our leaders. For our nation. For the outcome of the elections. For wisdom to see how your vote may impact the kingdom of God.
- Pay attention. Find out where those seeking public office stand on issues that may impact the kingdom of God. Don’t just look for who you like the best (or hate the least).
- Vote. See your opportunity to vote as a responsibility first as member of the kingdom of God who is then also a citizen of your community and nation here.
Finally, I’ve made my decision on who I will vote for. After thought and prayer, I believe I see clearly who is most likely to be beneficial for the kingdom of God. And now, what about you?
P.S. I’m not inviting political discourse here. But I do welcome comments on what criteria you use in choosing who to vote for.
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