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3 Reasons to Discuss the Presidential Election Within Your Local Church

3 Reasons to Discuss the Presidential Election Within Your Local Church
Oct 23 Tags: politics | 2 Responses Print Save as PDF

Would you agree with me in saying that no general election has been more controversial than that of the 2016 presidential campaign? Previously, we mainly saw a divide between two political parties: those who identify with the Republican party and those who identify with the Democrat party. This election season is different. There is great divide among political parties. You have some Republicans who think Trump really will “Make America Great Again” while you have other Republicans who constantly hashtag “#nevertrump.”Among the Democrats, you have those who are confident Clinton is the best qualified candidate, while there are others who call her a liar.

Division in the local church

Unfortunately, this division has infiltrated the assemblies. Social media is the gateway to this division. While political stances may not be discussed within the assembly from the pulpit or during the fellowship hour in between meetings, simply turn to social media and you will see a myriad of political posts from brothers and sisters in Christ, flashing who they support for all their friends to see, believers and unbelievers alike. These posts crafted by other Christians are usually not phrased with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and above all, love (Colossians 3: 12).

Instead they are immoral, impure and angry. They might be calling out something ridiculous the opposing candidate said. Ridiculous to them, in their unsolicited opinion. Point blank, you are hurting your testimony. Rise above. Keep your political convictions between you and the Lord. Your comments, whether your intent or not, may be causing strife, anger and resentment among the body of Christ.

So what then? Keep quiet until November 9, when this is all behind us? No. We can’t keep quiet because most likely things won’t magically change the day after the election. Political talk will likely still infiltrate society for many weeks and months ahead, causing more and more division among America but also among the church.

Talk about unity

So here are three reasons why we should be talking about this election in our assemblies.

Unity. Elders, fellow believers, let us be reminded of Paul’s emphasis on unity. Paul tells us in Ephesians 4:3 to “maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.” This verse emphasizes two things:  1.We are unified in the Spirit – once we are saved we become part of the body of Christ; there is no separating from it. 2. There is great effort that has to be put in preserving this unity. Elders must remind the assembly that we cannot give Satan the opportunity to create division over this election.

Talk about morality

Morality. If one word could describe this election, many would say hypocrisy. Many agree that both candidates display minimal moral standards and values, yet each party is claiming the other to be immoral. There are some foundational truths that should be addressed in order to maintain our integrity and our Christian values as we approach the election.

Being moral and maintaining your Christian values does not require you to vote. The government gives us the right to vote; it does not force us to vote. The Bible does not command us to vote. Now don’t get me wrong, I by no means discourage voting. Instead, I’m asking you to be ok with Christians who have prayed and may decide not to vote on November 8. We cannot call them bad Christians.

Secondly, I’m challenging you not to identify with a political party or with an individual candidate. Testimonies can be destroyed because of identification. The only person we should ever identify with is Jesus Christ, “for you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God”.

Finally, who I vote for does not determine my moral standards. There are flaws in both political parties, in both candidates, in both of their future plans. There would be flaws in any candidate because we are flawed, sinful, imperfect people. Regardless of who I vote for, I can confidently say they will have policies that go against my Christian values. Morality isn’t based on who you vote for, but how you live out virtues found in Scripture.

Talk about end times

The End Times Eschatology (the study of end times) is another reason to discuss this election. It seems the church has forgotten that our King is coming back for us. “Our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ,” (Philippians 3:20). I have seen Christian after Christian, I’m talking well-known, respected believers among the assemblies, post comments on social media such as: “If x is our next president we are doomed.”

I can’t help but ask myself, “Are they really a believer?” The only people who are doomed are those who have not received Jesus Christ as Savior. John reminds us in his first letter, “What we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him,” (1 John 3:2). Instead of considering ourselves doomed, we should be thankful that the Holy Spirit is our guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it. I am so thankful that this election does not determine my future.

Therefore, I exhort the elders among the assemblies to consider discussing this election with the flock God has enabled you to oversee. Encourage the believers to maintain the unity of the body of Christ. Exhort them to maintain their morality and Christian values as they discuss the election and vote. Finally, remind them of the eschatological hope we have in Christ.

Praise God that this election will not determine the final outcome of our lives. May we pray that whoever is elected as president will conform us to the image of Christ. This may mean limiting our freedoms, or giving us more rights, either way may God be glorified.

Mike Dilione

“And he died for all, that those who live might no longer live for themselves but for him who for their sake died and was raised,” (2 Corinthians 5:15 ESV).   It was this verse that the Lord used to cause Mike to repent and fully surrender his life to Christ.  Mike and his family reside and serve the Lord in Jamaica.  They have been commended to the Lord’s work there by 5th Ave Chapel in Belmar.

2 Responses to 3 Reasons to Discuss the Presidential Election Within Your Local Church

  1. Tom

    From what I’ve read, the “we are doomed” stuff seems to come primarily from postmillennialists, of which there seem to be increasing numbers in evangelical circles. They are also generally speaking about America as a nation being doomed rather than about the fate of individual Christians.

    I don’t agree with their eschatology, but I recognize their sincerity.

  2. Calvin Fritchey

    I want to be careful how I say this but I have no problem allowing Christ to be in every part of my life including politics. Look at all the kings, rulers, and others like those in the “household of Caesar” and many others involved in what we call politics today. I find so many “elders” or “leaders” who are afraid to tackle any social issues (which politics is) and you can tell that by what is posted online. Professing Christians cursing on-line, supporting\doing activities that are quite questionable, posting every little complaint in their daily life, and posting things without any Biblical thought at all. At least that’s how it comes across. I use the online systems and the current political forum to try to get people to think. We are so used to being fed stuff that we do not know how to digest info or think anymore. Every person could be destroyed by someone digging into our own backgrounds and digging up dirt on most if not all persons including Christians. So many of us are offended so quickly and easily that we cannot see past the flash of anger that comes into our eyes and head. Christians are so used to saying things on-line, cell phones, I-pads, etc and can fuss and fume without someone seeing them, but when it comes to face to face they can’t handle a disagreement. Do you wonder why so many young people have left and are leaving the Assemblies? I believe this is part of it. We never taught them as 2 Timothy 2:1-2. Instead of answering the tough questions we (because it happened to me) were told well the Missionaries in so in so Country did this, well we can’t really know, or we don’t major on minors, instead of acting on these questions and saying well let’s look into the Word of God together and see if we can find out what it has to say about whatever the issue is. So relating this to politics and voting we have people who don’t know how to look beyond the rhetoric because just like in the Church they are not taught how to “search the scriptures to see if these things are so”; so they don’t know how to search things out in politics or any other type forum. Just like in their Bible Studies when they go to books or comments written by others instead of searching the Bible themselves, they do the same thing on all issues. What do others say?, then they accept whatever is said as truth since it sounds good, without ever checking it out. So few seem to know how to disagree and then think and dwell on the Word of God and pray and come to an agreement. I have an individual at work who is totally opposite of me in EVERY sense of the word. Different skin color, total liberal, totally different politically speaking, non-believer, and I have great conversations with him over politics and I end up bringing it around to the Lord. As far as voting some think the Bible does offer some comments on it when it says Mark 12:17 –“And Jesus answering said unto them, Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s. And they marvelled at him.” Notice its not just talking about taxes as He says render the “things” plural. Our government (our Caesar) gives it’s citizens the responsibility to vote to govern itself. Yes you can “ruin” your testimony by delving into politics if you do it wrong, but you can also BOLSTER your testimony using it to show that you not only say you believe the things of God, but you are also willing to stand up for them. You are able to bring your “Christian” life into every part of your life, including politics, and witness to the saving grace of Christ Jesus our Lord.

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