Let Me Tell You How To Vote|
Posted: November 1, 2006
Warning: I'm about to do something politically incorrect. Something that some would frown on and others would tell me is not just inappropriate but downright illegal. I'm going to tell you how to vote!
Let me be clear, however. I did not say that I am going to tell you who or what to vote for. I merely said that I am going to tell you how to vote. There is a difference. I am not going to tell you to vote for Candidate A and against Issue X. Instead, I want to give you two biblical principles to help you decide for yourself whether or not you should vote for Candidate A and against Issue X.
The first principle is to let God guide your vote.
Consider, for example, Psalms 31:3 and Psalms 32:8. In the first passage the Psalmist asks for God to guide him: "For thou art my rock and my fortress; therefore for thy name's sake lead me, and guide me." In the second we see God's promise to do so: "I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way which thou shalt go: I will guide thee with mine eye."
In order for God to guide us we must pray and seek His face before we vote. We need to say, like Paul on the Damascus Road, "Lord, what wilt thou have me to do (Acts 9:6)?" After all, we cannot expect God to guide us if we are not willing to sincerely ask for His guidance. As the Bible says in James 4:2, "...ye have not, because ye ask not."
The second principle is to glorify God with your vote.
Consider what the Bible says in 1 Corinthians 10:31: "Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God." This passage teaches us that as believers we are obligated to glorify Him in all that we do. Obviously, then, that includes how we vote.
In order to glorify God through our vote we need to become an informed voter. We need to understand both qualifications of the candidates and the positions they have taken in regards to the issues and concerns of the day. We need to understand the purpose, as well as the impact and ramifications of the various issues facing us on the ballot.
Knowing about the candidates and the issues is only half the battle though. We also need to know what God has to say about the issues and concerns of the day. We need to "Study to shew [ou]self approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth (2 Timothy 2:15)." "That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive (Ephesians 4:14 )".
Now, with these two principles in mind, let's apply them in a fictitious election by imagining that Sam Snert and Sylvester Snort are both running for the office of Chief Despot. How do we as a Bible-believing Christian determine who to vote for?
As Chief Despot, whoever wins will have the opportunity to rule on, vote for, or otherwise influence a variety of matters of interest to us. Some of those issues involve taxes, international trade barriers, the war in Marzipan, gun control, capital punishment, stem cell research, and abortion.
With a little investigation we find out that Sam Snert wants to raise taxes and increase barriers to international trade, is against the war in Marzipan and capital punishment, and is for gun control, funding embryonic stem cell research, and abortion on demand. Sylvester Snort, on the other hand, wants to lower taxes, remove barriers to international trade, strengthen national security, is for the war in Marzipan and capital punishment, and is against gun control, funding embryonic stem cell research, and abortion on demand.
In order to let God guide our vote and to glorify God with our vote we decide to see what the Bible has to say about these various issues. An examination of Psalm 139:13-16, for instance, reveals that God views the newly conceived embryo as a distinct human life, even before any form of differentiation occurs. (Science, by the way, echoes that thought. The "product of conception" is not a tumor or a puppy. It's a unique human being, genetically distinct from both it's mother and it's father.)
With that in mind, we realize that Sylvester Snort's position against funding embryonic stem cell research and abortion on demand recognizes that in each case you are ending a human life. Sam Snerd's position, on the other hand, allows for human beings (not puppies or tumors) to be killed.
Knowing how God views murder should make it easy to determine who to vote for. After all, one of the Ten Commandments says, "Thou shalt not kill (Exodus 20:13)." With that in mind, what do we make of the two candidates positions on the war in Marzipan and capital punishment?
We go back to the Bible and find out that the Sixth Commandment is actually a prohibition against murder. Further, we find that capital punishment was instituted by God in Genesis 9:6: "Whoso sheddeth man's blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made he man." In addition, Romans 13:4 says, "For he [a ruler] is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil."
Killing the enemy was also authorized in time of war. The Old Testament is full of accounts of and references to war. Notice Deuteronomy 20:1-4: "When thou goest out to battle against thine enemies, and seest horses, and chariots, and a people more than thou, be not afraid of them: for the LORD thy God is with thee, which brought thee up out of the land of Egypt. And it shall be, when ye are come nigh unto the battle, that the priest shall approach and speak unto the people, And shall say unto them, Hear, O Israel, ye approach this day unto battle against your enemies: let not your hearts faint, fear not, and do not tremble, neither be ye terrified because of them; For the LORD your God is he that goeth with you, to fight for you against your enemies, to save you."
Even Jesus said to the soldiers in Luke 3:14, "...Do violence to no man, neither accuse any falsely; and be content with your wages (Luke 3:14)." Jesus recognized their role as soldiers who were charged both with maintaining public order and defending the nation. However, Jesus cautioned them not against killing when necessary but against using violence and false accusations for personal gain. The same would apply to police officers exerting deadly force as well.
Now, both Sam Snerd and Sylvester Snort are for protecting life in some cases and allow for taking life in others. Sam Snerd believes that the lives of murderers and the enemies of our country should be protected and the lives of unborn children can be taken. Sylvester Snort believes that the lives of unborn children should be protected and the lives of murderers and the enemies of our country can be taken. If we are going to glorify God with our vote then we need to vote for the candidate who's position most closely lines up with the Word of God. In this case, Sylvester Snort is that candidate.
But what happens if you think taxes should be raised, international trade barriers should be increased, and guns should be outlawed ? Well, in that case you have a decision to make. You need to decide whether those issues are more important to you than the biblically based issues of life and death.
As Bible-believing Christians we have an obligation to let God guide our vote and to glorify God with our vote. Consequently, we need to learn about the candidates and issues that face us on election day. We need to pray and study the Bible for insight into what God thinks about the important matters and issues of the day and try to view the candidates and issues on the ballot through the lens of the God's Word.
That's how you should vote!