|Written by Office|
|Tuesday, 07 February 2012 22:33|
Today is the Republican Caucus in Minnesota. This means voters are once again faced with the challenge of trying to decide which candidate to support, and who they think will best represent their individual values. Over the past week or so I have been reflecting on this topic quite a bit. More specifically, I have been wrestling with my own views on how Biblical Christian beliefs intersect with and affect the the my decisions and actions as a voting American Citizen. Here are a few of my own open-ended questions in relating to this topic.
1. I believe in the God of the Bible - A trinitarian God who is creator and sustainer of the world. With this being so, I also believe that God is deeply involved in the ongoing processes of the world. This means I as an individual can pray to him and expect he hears me and guides me in daily life, but it also means that he is currently overseeing governments and the goings on of politics on the world stage. So how does an absolutely righteous, good and holy God, not only put up with but use our secular, imperfect government to carry his plan forward, not to mention doing the same all over the world.
2. I believe that our God is deeply concerned with justice. More specifically, justice related to the value of every human life. I believe that God values all people equally, rich, poor, American, non-american, white, ethnic, educated, uneducated - he loves all of us for the simple reason that he created us. With this in mind, I believe seeking justice, equality and freedom from abuse is a deeply rooted Christian value. But, is it the place of a secular governent to uphold these values for all people around the world, or are some of these issues places that only the church can intervene and government should avoid? Additionally, to what length should the government go to uphold these values and by what means - taxation of those with much, jeapordizing the soveriegnty of another country, war, death-penalty etc.
3. I believe that an authentic faith will never be a private faith. In other words, faith is personal - God knows us and calls us as individuals, but faith cannot stay private. If my faith is real, it will naturally affect every part of my life. The way I live, vote, spend money, speak and relate to others will all flow out of my beliefs and devotion to God. With this being said, what should we expect from our political leaders in regards to their faith. Should they openly talk about it, even though some who they are serving do not hold the same beliefs. Should the subject be off limits - religious belief is no litmus test for office. Should we expect our political leaders to make decisions based upon their faith, or should we somehow expect that when it comes to decision making time, they will put their personal convictions aside and do whatever they thing the majority would like the best.
These are just a few questions I have in dealing with my own faith and citizenship. I believe that discussing these issues should be of value to Christians. If we never discuss politics because we do not want to offend anyone, we will miss a great opportunity to learn from each other, and wrestle with scripture as a group. At the same time, I would never support one candidate over another in a public setting because I do not think it is a pastors place to make those decisions for their people. And besides that, it is against the rules.
We will be discussing this issue a bit more over the next few weeks in Bible Study. If you have questions send me an email. If you have thoughts on this subject I would love to learn from you.
For one great resource read Jim Wallis's book titled "God's Politics." It is a great help for Christians exploring these issues.
|Last Updated on Tuesday, 07 February 2012 23:08|