What is the Primary Focus of Christian Responsibility?
There are many forces at play today that request or even demand our attention. There are issues galore from sexual perversion or abortion to political corruption that scream out to the Christian for a response. The Christian must, however, carefully balance those demands with the primary focus that should occupy our attention where the unbelieving world is concerned.
The Christian’s message to the world is Jesus Christ and Him crucified; that is the answer the world needs and not either more or less of something else, whatever that may be. If we were somehow able to do the impossible and abolish all sinful acts would that provide salvation? The answer to that is no, it would not! The world needs salvation through faith in Jesus Christ as Savior; there is no other answer!
Salvation is God’s remedy for mankind’s basic problem, spiritual death, and that needs a Redeemer in order to live again and be saved from the penalty of sin. Let us be careful not to muddy the water concerning salvation through Christ by introducing unrelated issues. Entirely too many Christians today are letting less vital issues determine their message to the world.
The Apostle Paul set a marvelous example in the New Testament. There was no shortage of issues that Paul might have addressed in Roman society; in addition to many we have today in our country, one can add slavery. Paul’s message was, nevertheless, always clearly focused on the big issue; what will you do with Christ?
The question then becomes, how does the Christian achieve a Biblically sound balance between important issues and the vital message of personal salvation in Jesus Christ? Let us consider the question of our responsibility for our government.
Christian Responsibility in Elections
The year 2012 could go down in history as the critical turning point for the United States. The election this November may well determine the direction this country will take for many years to come.
The options have never been more clearly defined; Socialism, which is being vigorously pursued by the present administration and is asking for more time to fundamentally change America versus a return to a more capitalistic environment which had, in the past, served America well.
Forces on both sides are preparing for a serious battle for control and the lives of all of us depend on the outcome of this struggle. Those of us who are watching the national scene see the results every day of the encroachment of socialism and the efforts of the progressives to create a one-world government.
I have read for years that progressives viewed the economic health of the United States as the greatest single obstacle to world union. Before unity could even be started on this continent it would be necessary to destroy the economy of this country in order to make the people more agreeable to international union and the loss of national sovereignty.
Christians in a Republic
If all of the above is true then what is our responsibility as Christians in these turbulent times? The republic as it was created in the United States did not exist in New Testament times so it will be difficult to make a direct comparison between then and now.
At the time Paul wrote Romans 13:1, “Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God.”
We must be mindful of the nature of government under which Paul lived as he wrote those words. At that time Rome was ruled by Nero and I believe most of us are familiar with his reputation. We cannot say that Paul was living under a fair and benevolent government yet he writes those words in 13:1.
This principle was stated earlier in the Bible in Daniel 4:17 when Nebuchadnezzar discovers who’s really in charge, “The decision is announced by messengers, the holy ones declare the verdict, so that the living may know that the Most High is sovereign over the kingdoms of men and gives them to anyone he wishes and sets over them the lowliest of men.” The Bible clearly teaches that leaders are placed in office by God regardless of the mechanics of the process; so the leaders of nations are God’s servants fulfilling His will for the nation.
There is one significant difference and that is our presidents are placed in office by the election process; Nero, on the other hand, was not the choice of the people. The opportunity for the people to express their preferences for president as well as the Congress and Senate is coming up again in November of this year and we, as Christians, have the obligation to vote for the candidates that we believe will most closely support Christian principles.
God is Sovereign in the Affairs of Men
Based on the testimony of Scripture I believe I can safely say that whoever wins the election will be the one chosen by God to lead this country. God’s will is not going to be thwarted by the will of man; God’s chosen candidate will take the oath of office in January, 2013 just as he has taken the oath of office in every previous election.
The outcome of the next election is a spiritual matter, not a political matter regardless of what you may otherwise hear. This nation has turned its back on God and God has started a process of judgment against this nation. Whether we are yet to the point Israel reached when the Lord told Jeremiah in Chapter 15:1, “Then the LORD said to me: “Even if Moses and Samuel were to stand before me, my heart would not go out to this people. Send them away from my presence! Let them go!”
Have we as a nation spurned the Lord to the point He is regarding the United States this way? Is He going to “let us go?” I hope not but it is vital that we recognize God’s hand in all of our affairs and pray for His mercy and grace.
While this is not the Church’s land, our land is in heaven, we are a heavenly people but we are, nevertheless, here as ambassadors at this moment and its wellbeing directly affects our lives. It is important that we pray for God’s mercy and then vote in accordance with Biblical principles.
The next President of the United States will be the man God has chosen to either manifest his judgment or His grace. May God be praised!