The Christian As Voter
I posted this article two years ago before the 2010 midterm elections and I saved it to post before the Presidential election this year. The article is by John Flanagan. He is the founder and editor of the Oro Valley Christian Reader. Hope it gives you some things to consider.
As we are on the brink of another election cycle in our country, many American Christians will soon go to the polls and cast a vote for their favorite candidates and preferred political party of choice. I have often wondered how a professing Christian could vote so casually and without considerable reflection upon the character, integrity and values of the candidate of their choice. Yet millions of professing Christians will support candidates who are openly wicked, leading scandalous lives, and holding convictions that are anathema to the faith and even, in some cases, detrimental to the moral direction of America in these troubling times. Dear Reader, as you are about to cast your vote, does it matter to you if the candidate of your choice favors abortion, including late term abortion? Does it matter to you, as a Christian, if your candidate has no concern for traditional marriage between one man and one woman? Do you care if the candidate of your choice is a man or woman who is openly antagonistic towards religious freedom, free speech, or viewpoint expression? Is it important to you that the party represented by your candidate has a platform that supports abortion for convenience, favors the rescinding of the Defense of Marriage Act, supports hate crimes legislation to stifle criticism that dares to contradict deviant and immoral lifestyles? Is the candidate of your choice an individual who articulates evasive or vague responses to important issues affecting American Christians, or is your candidate direct and unafraid to speak the truth? Are you willing, as a Christian voter, to weigh these areas against the word of God, conscience, and the moral direction of our land? Many Christians will claim that these issues are not important and will vote on the basis of positions for or against an intrusive centralized government, socialist policies, limited government, activist courts, fiscal spending, foreign wars, or concerns about immigration and border security, as well as the threat of terrorism and the policies needed. While these issues are important, too often Christians will compromise their faith values for the sake of supporting candidates who may openly hold Christianity and morality in contempt. Are candidates of this type, despite agreement on some issues, worth our vote? Should a Christian voter prefer to be pragmatic rather than righteous? Does this justify voting for a particular candidate? These are questions each reader must ask himself or herself. Some Christian leaders oppose the church’s involvement in politics or activism, while others promote activism as an expression of our faith and values. Social causes are important, however, the true role of a Christian is to be a witness for Christ in a fallen world, rendering to Caesar what is Caesar’s, but avoiding activism at the expense of evangelization. Even without participation in protests or activism, a Christian should always be a good citizen, and in nations where there is a Constitutional right to vote, one must be sure to vote. However, when a Christian does vote, it is not a casual matter. Who you vote for reflects your values as well as the condition of your heart.. Reader, as you approach the polling place this November, remember that God looks at the heart. The Bible says that “the eyes of the Lord are in every place, beholding the evil and the good.” If the candidate of your favorite party does not hold a worldview that is compatible with your faith, it is incumbent on you to reconsider your vote. Character, integrity, virtue, respect for life, moral values; these all count. Our nation needs men and women of character in government, and we must be discerning in our thinking before casting our votes. ——- John Flanagan is the editor and publisher of the Oro Valley Christian Reader