As Christians, we have a unique vantage point on American politics. On one hand, our primary citizenship is in Heaven (Philippians 3:20, Hebrews 11:13). On the other hand, our earthly privilege is to exercise the great liberty we have in this country to vote.
For these reasons, I believe we should approach the polling booth with four realities in mind:
1. The greatest need of our nation is the gospel.
What our country most needs is not any particular leader, but to hear the gospel of Jesus Christ. If we as American Christians care more about an election than we do about sharing the gospel with the lost, we have lost our bearings. If we are quicker to share our political opinions—whatever they may be—than we are to share the gospel, that reflects poorly on our gospel focus.
Jesus commanded us, “Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature” (Mark 16:15). This remains the greatest need of the world and the greatest responsibility of Christians.
2. We must urgently pray for our country.
As believers, we need to pray for our country. The needs are great, and the determined bent away from God and righteousness is alarming. Proverbs 13:34 tells us, “Righteousness exalteth a nation: but sin is a reproach to any people.” We need to urgently pray for God to send another spiritual awakening that leads to revival and righteousness. And regarding this particular election, we need to pray that Christians will vote and that they will vote biblical values.
I have encouraged our church family to focus on prayer in three ways, and I invite you to all three:
- Fast and pray: Consider setting aside at least one meal today and spend that time in earnest prayer for our country.
- Live prayer on Monday night: Join me and hundreds of others at 7:00 (PST) this evening at LBCLive.tv as we pray for this election.
- Live prayer on Wednesday morning: Join us again at 10:00 (PST) on Wednesday morning at LBCLive.tv as we pray again for our nation. We may or may not have the results from the election at that point, but we will give God thanks either way, and we will pray for revival.
I believe that our country is in need of miracles, and God is able to do miracles. We must pray.
3. The platform of a candidate is more important than the personality.
Sometimes candidates say things that make us cringe. Sometimes their personalities or pride make it difficult to appreciate their policies. But the reality is that a candidate’s policy decisions, which we assume will be based on his or her stated platform, are what we are voting on.
I recently wrote about the importance of policy alignment and stated platform for voting, and in that post, I mentioned a guide that compares the party platforms on the sanctity of human life, redefining marriage, conscience rights in healthcare, religious liberty, international religious liberty, and several other areas. (You can download it here.)
4. Our goal should be to vote as close to biblical values as we can.
Sometimes this choice is hard because a particular candidate may not always be as close on every issue as we would like. But we should at least do our best to filter our choices through biblical values and principles.
As a pastor in the same church for over thirty-four years, my goal has always been to encourage our church family to study God’s Word personally and base their decisions on what God says about moral issues. As I’ve written many times over the years, I believe these moral issues include life, the family, and our relationship with Israel.
There is no perfect candidate, and there is no perfect political platform either. For these reasons, we look forward to the coming reign of Christ. Meanwhile, we remember that what our country most needs is the gospel. With an eternal mindset, we witness, pray, and vote.