As I consider the varying opinions of my Christian friends this election season, I feel the need to address the issue of integrity and compromise. This is a call to consider our own hearts as we decide whose name we will endorse for Commander in Chief.
It’s About Integrity
As Christians we have a duty to uphold the truth of Jesus Christ, not a particular political party or candidate. We are called to integrity.
I’ve heard so much about how Donald Trump may not be the best candidate, “But, hey, at least he’s not Hillary”.
The Bible teaches that moral character is to be judged against one standard alone, the Word of God. This means we need to stop justifying our decisions to vote for a particular candidate based upon how they may or may not be as morally bad as the other, and take a real honest look at how the beliefs they live by; beliefs that will undoubtedly drive their decisions and policies once in office, stand with or against Biblical truth. I know the U.S. president is not obligated to obey the Bible if they do not openly profess to be a Christian. But if you are reading this, and you are a Christian, and you plan on walking into that voting booth this November, your vote speaks loudly as to whether you heed that solemn obligation.
No One Said It Would Be Easy
I’m not saying that this is an easy vote, for me, or for anyone. And I’m not going to hate or fight against my Christian brothers and sisters who vote differently and do so based on solid convictions. Even the most respected theologians, pastors and Christian leaders in our country are admitting difficulty.
But I’ve not heard anyone struggling with not voting for Hillary. That decision seems quite easy for the majority of evangelicals. After all, she stands in support of homosexual marriage and the killing of the unborn. No God-fearing man or woman should cast their vote in the direction of such policies. Anyone is “free” to do so in the laws eyes, but those who do can only have had their consciences seared and callused.
What about Trump? Does he present an easy decision? Not by a long shot. Even after the evidence is in and the tapes have been played, why, even after seeing the immaturity, the lies, the pride, the unwillingness to own up to past atrocities, do so many evangelicals still stand behind the republican candidate with such zeal?
I think in part it’s due to fear; the fear of man. It may also be due in part to political tradition.
Some will vote their party no matter what. Not to would be treason in their eyes. But who told us it had to be this way? What about the truth? What about integrity and honor that looks more to how God sees you than how the world, or a political party, or even your friends and family sees you? Are we not to fear God more? If we honor Him above all, even if that means others hate us, persecute us and blame us for the mess, God will honor our integrity, and that matter more to me than winning?
God is in the Ends and the Means
According to the Bible it is God who controls both the end and the means.
“Declaring the end from the beginning and from ancient times things not yet done, saying, ‘My counsel shall stand, and I will accomplish all my purpose” Isaiah 46:10
Our part is in the means. The Christian should say, “God, I will honor and stand upon your truth, now, and trust you with the outcome.”
Some will be looking beyond the candidates and banking on the justices each one says they will nominate. It’s a big deal. The decisions of the Supreme Court basically shape our day to day life and freedoms here. But again, it’s not their names on the ballot. It will be Hillary, Trump or a third party write-in, and they all come with baggage. Some say that they know Trump will make a horrible president and likely run us into the ground, but at least he will nominate conservative justices. And that’s the definition of compromise.
Trust God this election season. He is sovereign and He acts when His people are filled with faith, not fear. God can use an evil dictator to accomplish His ultimate will. God can use a grossly sexually immoral man to bring about the ultimate will He has for a nation, but should His people be found rallying behind that person? Absolutely not!
Some will mean to vote the lesser of two evils. Others reluctantly abstain from voting for the first time ever. But whatever you decide to do, make sure your decision rests on faith and a clear conscience.
Our Greatest Privilege on Earth
One of our greatest privileges as Americans is the ability to elect government officials, but it is not our greatest privilege. Our greatest privilege is to honor Christ in this ever-increasing, crooked world. Through our fearless trust and our faithful witness, even against the popular flow, many will come to know Him. Jesus made it clear that when He comes He is looking for faith on the earth. Let’s be those people, that Church and those servants. Let’s continue to fight for the cause of life by believing and living out a gospel that loves and forgives sinners like Jesus did. Let’s be part of rescuing the fatherless, caring for widows, feeding the poor and setting captives free by standing for Biblical values. Franklin Graham said he may be plugging his nose while voting, as if to say he know that the decision he’s making stinks, but he’s going to do it anyway.
I went in for early voting yesterday and I can tell you that I did not have plug my nose. I voted for someone I could stand behind without cringing at the thought. You can rant and rave all you want about how voting for the third party is a wasted vote, but try convincing my conscience of that.
I’m encouraging you to be a man or woman who votes with integrity. Your concern for this country should not lead you to compromise, but to stand more firmly on the truth which God has placed in your heart and conscience.