How To Live Under Government...
As I have stated before I am not a political person but I try to stay informed. One of the ways I do that is by reading The Pour Over Newsletter which is a Christian perspective on the news. This helps me to know what is going on without having the feeling to dread. For me, a lot of that dread comes from the decisions that people who are in office have made for our country and community. We choose the people who are in office but there was a time in my life when I didn’t care much about my right to vote or have my voice heard. With age, I have seen just how important that right is and how much of an impact my vote can have.
As you already know this week the midterm elections were held and there was a huge turnout. Many of us went to the polls to vote on governors, senators, and proposals that will make an impact on how things are done in our states. Without going into depth about individual candidates or issues, there were some major things on the ballots, some that I feel go against the teaching of the Bible.
Discloser: This post is not saying I know what is completely right or wrong and I am in no way trying to judge anyone for the decision they made at the polls.
The purpose of this post is to try to make sense of where we go from here based on the results of the elections. In order to do that I think it is wise to look at Biblical history where we can see that God is always in control no matter who is in office. Romans 13:1 says, “Let everyone submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which derives from God, and whatever authorities exist have been instituted by God.” God knows and knew the results of this election even before the candidates were born. He will use each and every one who is in office to guild the world down the path it should go. Even if that path doesn’t make sense to us at the time. We know that God can use the worst situations to put His plan into action.
It is not new for the people of God to live under a government that was opposed to the precepts of the Lord. We read time after time about the oppression of God’s people by the government. First, in the Old Testament, we meet Pharaoh who we know as the ruler who enslaved the people of God. He refuses to let them go even when Moses comes to plead to him for their freedom. I am sure in that time the slaves in Egypt had many questions about why God would allow His people to be treated like this. They couldn’t see the bigger picture and that one day their suffering would turn into joy. We know something they didn’t and that is that the story doesn’t end there, God was able to melt the heart of Pharaoh so that he allowed God’s people to leave Egypt.
Later in the Bible, in the New Testament, we are introduced to the Roman government which saw followers of Christ as a threat to the empire. So much so that they constantly questioned Jesus and in the end, convicted and crucified Him. The persecution didn’t end with Jesus but extended to His followers and many of them were also killed for their beliefs.
I share all of this to show that our world has been through plenty of times when laws or rulers have been in place that were not of the Lord. Of course, it still matters to let our voice be heard and let our vote be counted but God is who is the ruler of our life. Acts 5:29 says, “But Peter and the apostles answered, ‘We must obey God rather than men.’” This is not an invitation to break any law that we don’t agree with but it reminds us that we have someone higher than earthly rulers to answer to.
So what are we supposed to do? The best answer comes from 1 Timothy 2:1-2, “First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way.” We are to pray for those in leadership and to conduct ourselves in a manner that is honoring to God regardless of what laws are on the books. So my plan is to pray for our leaders and pray for increased morality in our world. Will you join me?