One of, if not the biggest reason our society is in the trouble it’s in is because believers have shirked their responsibilities to society. What do I mean by that? Well, among other things, believers have given charity over to the government. This includes feeding the poor and caring for the sick, but also the care of our parents. These are all clear violations of Yeshua’s commands, but there is another, equally important responsibility that has been given to the people of this country: the vote. This is one place where the Church can and should be soundly condemned. Give me your ear and I’ll explain why I say this, and why I am absolutely convinced I am correct!
We start with two passages from the Scriptures. I have linked to the greater context, but have only posted the passages in question. I have also hilighted the most important parts in bold. Please, read carefully:
Exodus 18:1-27 New American Standard Bible
Jethro Counsels Moses
17 Moses’ father-in-law said to him, “The thing that you are doing is not good. 18 You will surely wear out, both yourself and these people who are with you, for the task is too heavy for you; you cannot do it alone. 19 Now listen to me: I will give you counsel, and God be with you. You be the people’s representative before God, and you bring the disputes to God, 20 then teach them the statutes and the laws, and make known to them the way in which they are to walk and the work they are to do. 21 Furthermore, you shall select out of all the people able men who fear God, men of truth, those who hate dishonest gain; and you shall place these over them as leaders of thousands, of hundreds, of fifties and of tens. 22 Let them judge the people at all times; and let it be that every major dispute they will bring to you, but every minor dispute they themselves will judge. So it will be easier for you, and they will bear the burden with you. 23 If you do this thing and God so commands you, then you will be able to endure, and all these people also will go to their place in peace.”
24 So Moses listened to his father-in-law and did all that he had said. 25 Moses chose able men out of all Israel and made them heads over the people, leaders of thousands, [of hundreds, of fifties and of tens. 26 They judged the people at all times; the difficult dispute they would bring to Moses, but every minor dispute they themselves would judge. 27 Then Moses bade his father-in-law farewell, and he went his way into his own land.
How do we know that YHWH approved of this action, and that it wasn’t just of Moses and his father-in-law? This is how:
Numbers 11:1-35 New American Standard Bible
The Complaint of Moses
10 Now Moses heard the people weeping throughout their families, each man at the doorway of his tent; and the anger of the Lord was kindled greatly, and Moses was displeased. 11 So Moses said to the Lord, “Why have You been so hard on Your servant? And why have I not found favor in Your sight, that You have laid the burden of all this people on me?
Seventy Elders to Assist
16 The Lord therefore said to Moses, “Gather for Me seventy men from the elders of Israel, whom you know to be the elders of the people and their officers and bring them to the tent of meeting, and let them take their stand there with you.17 Then I will come down and speak with you there, and I will take of the Spirit who is upon you, and will put Him upon them; and they shall bear the burden of the people with you, so that you will not bear it all alone.
24 So Moses went out and told the people the words of the Lord. Also, he gathered seventy men of the elders of the people, and stationed them around the tent. 25 Then the Lord came down in the cloud and spoke to him; and He took of the Spirit who was upon him and placed Him upon the seventy elders. And when the Spirit rested upon them, they prophesied. But they did not do it again.
OK, now, let’s break this down. First, notice how Moses was told that it is too much for him to judge and care for all the people? Remember, at best, we are talking about somewhere between 2 and 4 million people, and that is judged to be too much for one man to handle. So, why do we expect one person to be responsible for a modern nation of some 350 million people (i.e. the President)?
Second, look at how Moses was advised to put representatives over the people. This was done in a hierarchy (groups of 1,000’s, 100’s, 50’s and 10’s). Notice how YHWH allowed it and, later, told Moses to select a council of 70 to help him bear the burden of the people. Notice how it was stressed that all of these representatives were to be men who were loyal to YHWH’s TORAH, and how they were tasked with the responsibility of insuring that society functioned according to the dictates of TORAH. This is what is known as a representative republic. Moses set up a government that operated according to the rule of law and utilized representatives of the people to accomplish this task. It’s just that YHWH was the Magistrate (i.e. King).
The founders openly stated that they found the principles they used to create our system of government in the Scriptures (when asked where the principles came from by a friend, Franklin actually said, ‘ancient texts, why, the Scriptures, of course’). They also told us that our system could only function if the People remained moral, and that they will only remain moral if they remain religious.
” Without morals a republic cannot subsist any length of time; they therefore who are decrying the Christian religion, whose morality is so sublime and pure…are undermining the solid foundation of morals, the best security for the duration of free governments.”
— Charles Carroll, signer of the Declaration of Independence [Source: To James McHenry on November 4, 1800.]
Furthermore, the Founders stressed the need for the People to not just be religious in word, but in deed. This is where we find the impetuous to recognize and attend to our duty to others (and does not the Bible tell us we have a duty to others?).
— James Madison, Federer, William J..”James Madison.” America’s God and Country, Encyclopedia of Quotations”. 2000: 411, 412
Therefore, given what our Founders had to say about the subject, for believers, the question at hand should clearly be understood to be:
How do believers live their faith in regards to government?
Luckily, our Founders answered this question, as well:
“When you become entitled to exercise the right of voting for public officers, let it be impressed on your mind that God commands you to choose for rulers, ‘just men who will rule in the fear of God.’ The preservation of [our] government depends on the faithful discharge of this Duty; if the citizens neglect their Duty and place unprincipled men in office, the government will soon be corrupted; laws will be made, not for the public good so much as for selfish or local purposes; corrupt or incompetent men will be appointed to execute the Laws; the public revenues will be squandered on unworthy men; and the rights of the citizen will be violated or disregarded. If [our] government fails to secure public prosperity and happiness, it must be because the citizens neglect the Divine Commands, and elect bad men to make and administer the Laws.”
“In selecting men for office, let principle be your guide. Regard not the particular sect or denomination of the candidate — look at his character. It is alleged by men of loose principles, or defective views of the subject, that religion and morality are not necessary or important qualifications for political stations. But the scriptures teach a different doctrine. They direct that rulers should be men who rule in the fear of God, men of truth, hating covetousness. It is to the neglect of this rule that we must ascribe the multiplied frauds, breaches of trust, speculations and embezzlements [sic] of public property which astonish even ourselves; which tarnish the character of our country and which disgrace our government. When a citizen gives his vote to a man of known immorality, he abuses his civic responsibility; he not only sacrifices his own responsibility; he sacrifices not only his own interest, but that of his neighbor; he betrays the interest of his country.”
–Noah Webster, Founding Father, scholar, author of the first and still respected American Dictionary
Here is where I seek to convict every believer who reads this post:
How can you insure the survival of this country if you leave the election of our leaders to people who do not fear or obey God?
The preachers of our founding preached proper government from their pulpits. They did not let the fear of government silence their voice, they trusted the Lord as the Scriptures command us to do. In other words, they ‘walked the walk.’ Yes, it cost some of them their lives, but they were obedient to the Lord’s commands. But we have allowed government — which the Scriptures define as a beast — to silence us. Our pastors no longer teach the principles our Founders said were the key to preserving our nation. In fact, our Founders taught that they were actually obedience to God! So, why doesn’t your preacher teach this in your Church? Doesn’t your preacher trust the Lord? Is your preacher more afraid of the Beast than the Lord? Heaven forbid, but I know — in far too many cases — this is the truth: preachers are more afraid of the forces of evil than the One, True, Living God. And did not Jesus tell us that wolves in sheeps clothing would sneak in to devour the flock? So why should we be surprised to realize that it has not only happened, but it has happened in our own congregation?
My challenge to you now is twofold:
1st — If you church is not teaching the proper principles of Godly government, and urging you to vote accordingly, LEAVE!
2nd — Vote! And urge every believer you know to vote. But vote according to Scripture.
To this end, I would offer a strong note of caution. Scripture teaches us to judge, but to judge correctly — which, to me, means with a heaping, heavy dose of grace. So, if we are presented with two imperfect candidates (and we always will be, since we are all flawed people), the key is not so much to look at the persons past mistakes, but at how they are living now. Do they point to God? Do they advocate for His law and the rule of law? Do they defend life? Do they speak the truth? Do they follow through on their promises? Does that candidate urge you to live righteously, and to serve others? Do they teach the basic principles of Scripture? Or do they align themselves with godlessness? Are they lawless? DO they murder, or hold life in low esteem? Do they lie or deceive? Do they break their word? Do they teach immorality? Do they promote Government over God? Do they advocate Man’s ways over God’s?
These are the questions that should direct your vote. Do not look to Party, sex, or race. Be gracious with personal mistakes, or vices — especially if they are in the past. Look to the trend in the candidates life. Are they moving closer to God, or farther away. Do they urge others to obey God’s principles, or do they advocate for the ways of Man? Answer those questions and your decision will be made for you — not by Man’s politics, but by YHWH’s TORAH (i.e. teachings, ‘the Way’). However, the one thing you must do is VOTE! Especially in a nation that is supposed to be based on and operated according to God’s Laws. If God’s own People turn their back on that, well….
If God’s People would turn their bac on the task of running a nation based on God’s Law, then are they truly God’s People?
ONE MORE THING!
If you start thinking you have to vote for someone other than the person who best meets the qualifications I just described because ‘that person has no chance to win,’ please understand, you just moved toward the side of the adversary. That is Man’s way of thinking, and God’s People do not live according to Man’s ways. In this country, we always have a choice — even if it is a write-in vote. So, consider all your options and vote according to God’s ways. Remember, ultimately, it is to God we will answer — not Men. This is the essence of what this man was saying when he penned these words:
“Always vote for principle, though you may vote alone, and you may cherish the sweetest reflection that your vote is never lost.“
–John Quincy Adams