In a few days, we’ll all have the opportunity to exercise one of our most precious freedoms – the right to vote. We will elect school board members, judges, and state and federal leaders. This is a God-given privilege, which many people in the world do not have, and every Christian should therefore seriously consider who will get their vote, and why. How can we vote intelligently when we don’t know everything about a candidate? Here are a few suggestions.
First, vote with your head. Politicians are all imperfect. It is a fallacy perpetuated by a biased media that some candidates are ‘angels’ and others are ‘demons’. No candidate is without sin: While the church is the conscience of a nation, it recognizes that all earthly leaders, like all Christians, fall short of the standard of holiness. History is littered with examples of candidates who were personally virtuous, but terrible leaders, and vice versa. (As an example on which all would agree, contrast Neville Chamberlain and Winston Churchill in WW2 Britain.)
So how do you vote with your head? You vote based on positions of absolute truth, not subjective issues. The former comes from God alone; the latter is open to debate. Politicians who promote that which God condemns should never be supported. Heading the list here is abortion: The murder of unborn babies is an abomination, and no civilization that embraces such a practice can long endure. Those who vote for politicians who promote such a practice are culpable in this atrocity.
Sadly, in recent times much of American culture has begun aggressively ‘shaking its fist in the face of God’ by openly pursuing depraved practices. Among these are the promotion of racism (through BLM and Critical Race Theory), sexual deviancy, gender fluidity (transgenderism), the physical and moral abuse of children (through exposure of young children to sexual deviancy and gender fluidity, and then puberty blockers, hormone therapy, and genital surgery), and public lawlessness (through ‘Defund the Police’).
To ‘vote with your head’ means looking not at a political party primarily, but at what a candidate supports and opposes. While it is not always possible to know where a candidate stands, organizations like Texas Values or Family Research Council provide online resources to help you make an informed decision. Beware: In the days leading up to an election, ad hominem attacks are almost always leveled at those who promote moral absolutes, so keep your eyes on the issues, and vote with your head.
Second, vote with your heart. By this, I mean prayer. Open your heart to God, and ask Him for wisdom as you prepare to vote. Recognize that our holy God is at work in the world: Our nation has flaunted the blessings we have received, and judgment is coming. But like the prophets of Israel, Christians today must take a stand for God and His truth. So in this election, keep your eyes on the Lord, and vote with your heart.
The prophet Habakkuk lived on the cusp of disaster: Israel had forsaken God, and judgment was coming. God revealed the terrible future to Habakkuk (ch.1), and Habakkuk announced the nation’s sins to the people (ch.2). But in chapter 3, Habakkuk prayed: “Lord…in Your anger, remember Your mercy” (3.2). The conclusion to his prayer in Hab. 3.16-19 is one Christians in America can echo today:
I heard and my inward parts trembled,
At the sound my lips quivered.
Decay enters my bones,
And in my place I tremble.
Because I must wait quietly for the day of distress,
For the people to arise who will invade us.
Though the fig tree should not blossom
And there be no fruit on the vines,
Though the yield of the olive should fail
And the fields produce no food,
Though the flock should be cut off from the fold
And there be no cattle in the stalls,
Yet I will exult in the Lord,
I will rejoice in the God of my salvation.
The Lord God is my strength,
And He has made my feet like hinds’ feet,
And makes me walk on my high places.