The upcoming Presidential election creates a major dilemma for many Christians. Here’s the basis for our dilemma: Neither major party candidate exemplifies even the most basic Christian ethics and standards. Neither is worthy of the office of the President of the United States of America.
Some Christians believe the best course of action is to abstain from voting on November 8. Others feel they should cast their vote for the “lesser of two evils.” (Check out this helpful article by Russell Moore, “Should Christians Vote for the Lesser of Two Evils?“) Which action is the right response? Could there perhaps be another option?
Let’s take a step back and briefly lay a biblical foundation for government and our responsibility as citizens.
First, God holds complete sovereignty in establishing, upholding, and removing all nations, rulers, and authorities (Daniel 2:21, Daniel 4:17, Acts 17:26, Romans 13:1). He established government for our good, to suppress evil, and to prevent chaos. Government at all levels provides structure for the country and service to the people (Romans 13:1-7).
The Bible also establishes principles for a believer’s relationship to government:
- Intercede Faithfully – God commands us to support the government and our leaders with our prayers. In fact, regular intercession for everyone pleases God (1 Timothy 2:1-4).
- Submit Respectfully – Christians should obey the laws of our land and submit ourselves to the authority of our leaders. Paul goes as far as saying that rebelling against our government authorities is the same as rebelling against God. The Bible even says we should submit with a good attitude! (See Romans 13:1-2, Titus 3:1-3, 1 Peter 2:13-17.)
- Fulfill Responsibilities – Believers are now and eternally citizens of the Kingdom of God. But while we still live in this world, we are also citizens of an earthly kingdom. As citizens, we have rights to enjoy and responsibilities to fulfill. More than once, Paul exercised his rights as a Roman citizen (Acts 21:25-29, Acts 25:10-12). Jesus not only taught we should fulfill all our obligations to the government, He set the example (Matthew 17:24-26, Matthew 22:15-22). Note: Yes, government is subject to corruption because it is comprised of sinful men. And when forced to choose, we must always obey God rather than man (Acts 4:19, Acts 5:29). However this election doesn’t take us there.
How should these biblical principles impact my vote?
So, how do these principles apply to the upcoming presidential election? The United States of America is a republic. Citizens have the right and responsibility to elect the government officials who will represent us.
But this go around, that responsibility seems much heavier. I am struggling with this myself. I am praying and thinking about the right thing to do. I understand why many have decided to simply not vote at all. Yet, that won’t prevent a new president from being inaugurated in January. That won’t fulfill my responsibility as a citizen of the United States.
There is another option. One I am contemplating. We can fulfill our responsibility as citizens and not vote for either of “them.” There will be other candidates on the ballot. Or we could cast a write-in vote. Yes, we can exercise our right and vote our conscious.
Without bashing or endorsing any candidate, how are you dealing with this weighty responsibility?
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Just today, I read this article someone shared on FB. Check it out. It might be the best answer for us.
I asked someone who is very knowledgeable in Political Science, if what is explained in the article could work. That person said, “Yes! I’d have to check actual numbers of states for the electoral college math, but if no one gets to that magic number, the election is supposed to go to the House of Representatives. They would then choose the next president- that’s what happened in 1824. So it is possible.” Here is the link. http://thefederalist.com/2016/10/14/stupid-simple-way-trump-vs-hillary-2016/
Thanks for sharing this. I’ll check it out!
I’ve written two blog posts on this election and why it’s so important for Christians to vote Platform and NOT person. Franklin Graham has written numerous articles about this and went to all 50 state Capitols and in my second blog post below there’s a link that discusses both platforms. Listening to the first 15 minutes of the third debate should have left no question in Christian’s minds who we should vote for…Clinton boldly said she would uphold Roe vs Wade, endorsed abortion up to delivery date, will choose liberal supreme court judges, and has made it clear that “Christians will have to change their religious beliefs” and lied through the whole debate. Trump is the first candidate I have ever heard who boldly said he would try to overturn Roe vs Wade and would appoint conservative judges.
Voting for a 3rd party is a complete waste of your vote. NEVER in history has a write in or 3rd party done anything but dilute and divide a vote…it’s like being a conscientious objector…do not base your vote on who Trump used to be…look at his platform today and the Christian men and mentors he has surrounded himself with and the conservative platform he represents. Read God’s Chaos Candidate…first chapter is free at http://www.GODSCHAOSCANDIDATE.com. Do not be deceived by how Satan is using the liberal media. The future of religious freedom for our children and grandchildren rides on this election. Christians must vote for the conservative platform or there will be a price to pay worse than any of us have seen in the past 8 years. Please if you’re reading this…take the time to at least read the two blogs here and the first chapter of God’s Chaos Candidate and think about the times in the Bible God used an unlikely person to pursue His agenda…I can assure you it is NOT Hillary Clinton.
Forgot I had another comment about Russell Moore’s article. I was so disappointed that he would use his platform to write such a confusing article where he bashed both candidates and then left his readers with no conclusion but to not vote for either! I kept thinking as I read to the bottom he was going to say, what I said in my last comment…read their platforms and vote platform not person…but he did what so many have done..just led Christians not to vote…which millions of Evangelicals have not done in the past which is how we ended up with 8 years of Obama which then we watched what happened and Evangelicals cried fowl but they sat home and let it happen. I believe Moore was way out of place, as have been several other Christian leaders who have done the same thing. Exactly what the liberal progressives (another word for atheists) are hoping will happen. Satan has so manipulated this election through the liberal media we must be wise and not deceived. Put on the full armor of God (Eph. 6:10-18) or we will become a casualty of his spiritual battle and God may be saying enough. (Rev 10:6)
I just reread Moore’s article. He was encouraging believers to vote their conscious. What I understood is that he planned to cast a write-in vote. I did not at all get the impression he was encouraging believers not to vote.
I felt like he left it open to not vote because it was so confusing…and whose to say any of the write ins are any good and that just further dilutes the Christian vote? What sense does that make? If they didn’t win in the primary, they are definitely not going to win as a write in…it may make someone feel good…but it’s a wasted vote. A write in vote is like a non vote. NEVER in history has a write in vote won nor will it this election. And they’re not even trying because they know they can’t win. Even when Perot stayed in the game, he never won. It’s like throwing away your vote. Whether people “like” Trump or not is not the issue…he does represent the Conservative platform that is the only chance for us to uphold our religious freedoms and dividing that vote among Christians is like giving votes to Hillary. A house divided cannot stand and the Progressive liberals know that. You don’t see them dividing…they quickly rallied around Hillary whether they “liked” her or not. I would highly encourage you to read at least the first chapter which is free of God’s Chaos Candidate. http://www.GODSCHAOSCANDIDATE.com. I was not for Trump in the primaries either…but he is the candidate that represents our chance at holding on to our religious freedoms and for our grandchildre because we surely will lose them under Hillary and she’s made no bones about that.