Walking Wisely: How Scripture Guides Our Thinking and Our Voting

Walking Wisely: How Scripture Guides Our Thinking and Our Voting
Faithfulness During Political Divisiveness (Part 3)
Selected Scriptures

Recommended Resources
How the Nations Rage, by Jonathan Leeman
How Can I Love Church Members with Different Politics, by Jonathan Leeman
Before You Vote, by David Platt
One Nation Under God, by Ashford and Pappalardo
God and Politics, by Mark Dever

Key Idea: We must vote faithfully and wisely (or abstain from voting) according to our biblically informed conscience.

I. Purpose: What is purpose of our government and the purpose of our vote?

A. What is the purpose of government? (Romans 13:1-7; 1 Peter 2:13-14))
– To curb evil and promote the good of the people.

– Key question: Which candidate/law/proposition will best curb evil and promote good?

B. What are the practical purposes of our vote?

1. To install a government that curbs evil and promotes good

2. To love my neighbor (Matthew 22:34–40)

3. To represent Christ (Matthew 5.13-16)

a. We represent Christ, our candidate doesn’t
b. We represent Christ much more than we represent our candidate
-Application – We must remember that how we represent our candidate, will affect our representation of Christ

II. Dangers: What are the dangers to a Christ-honoring vote?

A. Ignorance and foolishness – Following the wicked, sinners, scoffers, or fools

1. The ungodly (Psalm 1:1)

2. The foolish (Proverbs 13:20)

Practical applications:
 Don’t follow the culture, follow Christ
 Don’t believe conspiracies, believe in Christ
 Don’t embrace biases, embrace Christ

B. Sin
1. Selfishness
2. People pleasing
3. Hypocrisy
4. Pride
5. Apathy
6. Faithless fear

III. Wisdom: Who (or what) best carries out the purpose of government?

“Consider and pray” – we need to think biblically and wisely, and we need to bring it to the Lord in prayer.

A. Consider and pray about the different issues involved (with a particular candidate/law)

 Why we should be cautious of being one issue voters:

1. Because to love well, we want to make sure we take into account all the ways people will be affected by a particular candidate or law

2. Because holding to one particular issue does not make someone a qualified candidate
John Piper – “No endorsement of any single issue qualifies a person to hold public office. [for example] Being pro-life does not make a person a good governor, mayor, or president. But there are numerous single issues that disqualify a person from public office.”

B. Consider and pray about the complexity of the issues – What are the different issues really about?

C. Consider and pray about the straight-line and jagged-line issues involved (This is an idea I got from Jonathan Leeman)

D. Consider and pray about how to love others (Matthew 22:34-40)

Practical application: Don’t be so quick to dismiss certain unbiblical ideas that you dismiss real concerns.
Example: Question to ask about racism – Is my view on racism encouraging me to engage it? Or dismiss it?

E. Consider and pray about the weightiness of the issues – Of the many important issues, which are more significant and which are less significant? (Example – Matthew 6:26, 30)

F. Consider and pray about the character of the candidate (Psalm 1:1)

G. Consider and pray about the difference biblical desires versus practical reality (Matthew 21:28-32)

H. Consider and pray about the consequences

 Application – Pursue change but be willing to play the long game.

IV. Conscience: How does my biblically informed conscience lead me to vote (or not vote)?

o Joe Carter – “Conscience is an internal rational capacity that bears witness to our value system.”
o Andy Naselli – “The conscience is your consciousness of what you believe is right and wrong.”

Romans 14
A. We must vote (or abstain from voting) according to our biblically informed conscience

B. We must be careful of judging others who are voting (or abstaining from voting) according to their biblically informed conscience

V. Hope: How can I trust in God?

A. Realize that you can honor God if you vote according to your biblically informed conscience

B. Embrace what God is doing in you through this election season

C. Recognize that God is sovereign

D. Remember the bigger story of redemption