Will some believers end up voting for Joe Biden simply because of their contempt for President Trump? Have some Christians become so offended by his personality that they will actually align with a political party that has gone on record as being anti-God, anti-faith, and anti-life?
Perhaps we need a refresher course on what the Bible says about those who govern. Instead of using the passages specifically referring to church leaders (1 Timothy 3, Titus 1:6-9, and 1 Peter 5:1-3), we need to look again at Romans 13 and 1 Peter 2:13-14. This is what God expects of those who govern a much different field of authority that includes both believers and non-believers:
*They are God’s servant for the good of the people.
*They are a TERROR to BAD CONDUCT.
*They are AVENGERS who carry out God’s wrath on WRONGDOERS.
*They are sent by God to PUNISH those who DO EVIL and PRAISE THOSE WHO DO GOOD.
There is nothing in these qualifications that talk about persona, style, method, likability, or personal morality. Rather, those who operate under God’s legitimate authority as rulers will demonstrate their leadership by punishing those who knowingly do evil and praising those who do good. As much as we can pray and hope for our leaders to demonstrate Christ-like character and civil discourse, it is not the litmus test for their legitimacy or effectiveness as rulers. (Read more on this in “MOVING FROM SWORD TO SCEPTER”!)
The American Church has put so much weight on appearances and respectability that we’ve lost our ability to test the fruit of our perceptions. If you really want to discuss the quality of this President’s leadership as a governing ruler (regardless of his personal faith), forget appearances and consider his actions towards evil and good. It might clear up any confusion.
We must continue to pray that all our elected officials would have an authentic encounter and personal relationship with Jesus Christ. And we must continue to hold high the standard of righteousness for all those who identify with Christ. But, let’s not disqualify those rulers who have not yet heard His message, or are still on journey to a mature faith. If they are truly fulfilling God’s purposes as governing authorities, their actions will speak louder than their words and their accomplishments outweigh their personal weaknesses.
Be subject for the Lord’s sake to every human institution, whether it be to the emperor as supreme, or to governors as sent by him to punish those who do evil and to praise those who do good. For this is the will of God, that by doing good you should put to silence the ignorance of foolish people. Live as people who are free, not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but living as servants of God. Honor everyone. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the emperor. (1 Peter 2:13-17 ESV)
I’m British so am not directly concerned with American politics. But the Scriptures you refer to make sense…except what if the leader/dictator of a country is actually punishing people who HAVEn’t done evil, but simply in order to retian power? I’m thinking in particular of pretty brutal dictatorships or other regiimes where it is hard to protest or have any democratic input. Unless God uses those situations to somehow bring about His purposes?
That kind of dictator is not operating in God’s authority but in human power and control. Unfortunately, in many cases those kinds of leaders get into power because “good people” do nothing to prevent them access. If the Church was doing Her job, these kinds of leaders shouldn’t have any room to gain power or influence. So, maybe the question shouldn’t be whether or not we should submit to them, but how did they get there in the first place? Thanks for asking the question!
Do you have anything about fighting against spiritual warfare in our church and out?
Becky – I address this at length in my book, Moving from Sword to Scepter! An entire chapter on it:-).
If you are for partial birth abortion, raising taxes by $4 trillion, want a Green New Deal coasting $93 trillion, want to stop all fossil fuels, etc. I’m voting for your opposition!
Thank you for your response. You make good points
God does not want us to be of the world. What are politicians? Of the world. Let’s face it, Trump has not been biblical, in any sense of the word.