Today I will cast my vote for President of the United States of America and many other offices and issues. I have delighted in this responsibility and privilege since I was 21 years old. This will be the first time I have voted early, and the first time for many other things regarding the election. I write to you because I love you — each of you to whom this is addressed. I respect you and your determination to walk in Truth and uprightness.
C. S. Lewis wrote in his book, Mere Christianity, “[The devil] always sends errors into the world in pairs — pairs of opposites. And he always encourages us to spend a lot of time thinking which is the worse. You see why, of course? He relies on your extra dislike of the one error to draw you gradually into the opposite one. But do not let us be fooled. We have to keep our eyes on the goal and go straight through between both errors. We have no other concern than that with either of them.”
Reminds one of our current state of affairs in this election, doesn’t it?
I’ve prayed, read, listened, debated, thought, argued, discussed and, yes, even tried to ignore this election and the question at hand. It would be easier if Christians were not so divided. There are people I sincerely love, admire, and respect on both sides of the conservative issue and much of the reasoning we have heard before. “Choose the lesser of two evils,” (We are forbidden to do this in Romans 3:8) “if you don’t vote for Trump, you’re casting a vote for Hillary,” “Vote for the platform, don’t worry about the man” ad infinitum. But I don’t have peace with any of those reasonings. They seem to leave God out of the equation, while staunchly declaring that God can do anything . . . but if we really believe God can do anything and speak through anything even a jackass, could He not speak through Hillary or Trump? So that argument doesn’t help me.
Lewis referred to keeping our eyes on the goal and going straight through between both errors. What is the goal for a Christian in this election? It is certainly faithful stewardship of the individual vote, but beyond that, what is the goal? Righteous government? Yes, of course, which is why voting is so important and the rest of the platform. What about conscience before God?
James Madison wrote that governments are established to protect property of all sorts and that conscience is our most sacred property. And there lies the crux of the matter for me.
When I ask myself the question, “Who or what is directing, controlling, regulating or restraining me” in this issue of who to vote for, I realize that both candidates are unacceptable according to God’s instructions for electing leaders, and that to vote for either one would be a feeble effort to choose one by leaning on my own understanding instead of following the scriptural instructions and leaving the outcome to God.
John Quincy Adams fought valiantly to eliminate slavery during his terms in Congress after serving faithfully as President of the United States. Time after time he put forward legislation to end slavery and time after time he was voted down. When asked why he continued in such seeming futility, he answered, “Duty is ours; results are God’s.”
He understood what so many of us seem to have forgotten . . . duty of conscience to be obedient to God is worth far more than all of man’s reasonings. Do we dare to live what we say we believe?
Exodus 18:21 tells us to choose able men, such as fear God, men of truth, hating unjust gain. The New Testament gives even more details in 1 Timothy 3, such as being above reproach, self-controlled, respectable, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money, having a good reputation with outsiders.
We seem to brush those requirements aside in our fear of “what will happen if Hillary . . .”. Is not God still God? And is He not still able to do good to His people?
Our Declaration of Independence was the first document stating clearly the Christian idea of the relationship between man and government, declaring, “We hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.
Is it not our goal in this election to vote for those persons and those issues that will uphold these ideals, regardless of our own understanding? Is our God still saying that He desires obedience over sacrifice? And is He not able to intervene on behalf of a people who have put their trust in Him for such a time as this?
Today I will cast my vote for the presidential nominee of the Constitution Party, Darrell Castle who has sworn to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States of America. I will commit the election to the Lord, pray for those who are still seeking Him for direction, and sleep at peace with my conscience.
May God give you wisdom, insight, courage, and peace as you seek to be faithful over your vote in obedience to Him.