Tuesday, November 6, 2012

The Election

Many professing Christians have abandoned the preaching and witnessing of the Gospel for a political religion – we need only listen and watch; I have partaken of that cup myself so I know what the venom tastes like. This means that it doesn’t matter who wins the presidential election, the civic-political religion will continue. Until we are known for the Gospel we cannot preach the Gospel. Until we are known for peace we cannot witness to the Prince of Peace.

The Book of Judges tells us that there was a time in Israel when everyone did what was right in his own eyes. There is amoral anarchy in society; there is also amoral anarchy in the professing church. When Christians choose to ignore Biblical injunctions to pray for all in authority and to honor our rulers then Christians are doing what they consider right in their own eyes rather than living under the lordship of Jesus Christ. Anarchy in society is expected; anarchy in the church is frightening.

If President Obama is defeated many Christians can not only say, “I voted for Mitt Romney”, they can also say, “I never prayed for President Obama during his four years in office.”

Americans are noted for voting with their pocketbook; the professing church is the same – we won’t give of our resources to others, we won’t help the poor, we won’t protect the sanctity of life by loving those in challenging pregnancies, by serving those who have had abortions – oh yes we have our “poster children” projects but as a people we fall far short – Pregnancy Support Centers should be showcases of Christian care and charity, visually welcoming centers equal to the finest church buildings in a community; if there are any such centers in America they are the exceptions.

How can a nation with our wealth and expertise not have universal health care? Health care speaks to the sanctity of life – is the health of my neighbor not my concern? I am to love my neighbor as myself. When I frame life in economic terms then I can justify living to myself and dying to myself. The professing church does not have a distinct voice, it does not have a prophetic voice – perhaps it has never had such a voice, else how could we have countenanced slavery and the genocide of American Indians? We pay lip service to William Wilberforce, he makes us feel better – we might honor him by emulating his peaceful and prayerful ways.

Christians think there is a problem with American; we don’t realize that the problem is with us; we are a people who are not a people, pawns on a chessboard used by others as long as we are useful.

Slavery, genocide, military expansion, the horrendous conditions of workers at times throughout our history, Jim Crow; all of these and more should warn us of how Christians can be seduced and used – we should be frightened of what we look like when the Christ of the Cross ceases to be our all in all.

By God’s grace I will pray for whoever wins this election, and by His grace I will pray for the church daily – for as it stands now, regardless of which candidate wins the professing church loses.