So I’m writing this on Election Day with the intent of it being posted on the day after. I was thinking about some things I read recently from one of my heroes, Mark Driscoll.
First, congratulations to the winners - what a big day for you! Second, my condolences to those who didn't win this one - there will be another chance in the future.
Today, if there is not another protracted legal battle for election results, there will be some disappointed people in this country. Some will have “won” and others will have “lost.” The unfortunate thing, from my perspective, is that many Evangelical Christians will be too invested in the results.
Here’s my concern: too many Christians are bought into an insidious form of idolatry. It is the problem of political messiah-ship. During this season, too many Christians have been enticed away from the raw fact that Jesus is not Republican and he’s not Democrat; he is the Lord.
Far too many Christians in both parties have been seduced into bad theology: “The country is going to Hell in a hand-basket if the election doesn’t come out my way.” This is, seems to me, a dangerous denial of God’s sovereignty.
Of course it’s important to vote, to be in the political process. My dad, as well as numerous civics teachers, impressed upon me that voting is not a privilege but a positive duty. For those of us in the United States, it seems to me that Romans 13:1a - “Let every person be subject to the governing authorities.” - applies to our duties as citizens. If the Constitution (our governing authority) gives a duty to vote, then our Christian obligation to the governing authority is to fully engage in the political process.
Still, there are too many, who should know better, that take their duty to participate to such an extent as to become idolatrous. They invest their time, treasures, talents and even spiritual well-being into politics to such a level that can only be compared to worship.
It seems to me that such a posture, for a Christian, is wrong. We worship Jesus; not our party, candidate, ideology, or political position.
For some of us, after seeing our candidate lose, we will need to repent of our sin of idolatry. Others of us, who have seen our candidate win, will need to repent of our sin of idolatry and resist the temptation to continue in that sin.
Others may talk of political history, cultural healing, "unifying the nation;" but there is a spiritual issue in how we've allowed politics to become our 'functional savior.'
That’s how it seems to me.