Barack Obama is President of the United States (POTUS) again. On Tuesday the Commander in Chief was reelected to remain in his office for four more years.
If you look at the voting statistics, it was a fairly close vote. Maybe it wasn’t as close as some people thought it would be, but it was by no means a landslide victory.
So now what? What will all the Republicans do? More importantly, what will conservative Christians do? As I shared in a previous post this week, there are a number of things that are concerning about what the Democrats are trying to do. There are things being approved and proposed that are contrary to our faith and beliefs. Thus, many conservative Christians might have been left frustrated and disturbed after Obama was reelected on Tuesday.
What are Christians to do? How are we to react?
With respect and honor! Once again, we review two key Bible verses:
Romans 13:1-2 Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. Consequently, he who rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves.
1 Peter 2:13-14, 17 Submit yourselves for the Lord’s sake to every authority instituted among men: whether to the king, as the supreme authority, or governors, who are sent by him to punish those who do wrong and to commend those who do right . . . honor the king.
No matter who is the President of the United States–or even if we live in a country with communism and a dictator!–we owe our government respect and honor. That doesn’t mean we have to agree with every policy or platform. But that does mean we ought be humbly respectful.
God is in control of this entire universe. He created it. He preserves it. Thus, it was according to his holy will that Barack Obama is the one he has allowed to become president.
Only God knows.
But we do know these things:
- God promises never to leave us or forsake us
- God promises that all things work for our good
- God promises that his kingdom and his Church cannot be defeated
Thus, humbly we accept God’s will and move forward. Maybe Obama was your vote. Maybe not. It doesn’t matter any more. God allowed Obama to retain his office. God’s will was done.
Therefore, we are to respect our President. We are to pray for our President. We are to pray for our country. And, if we want to make some real changes in our lives and in our country, then we can be resolved to vow what Joshua did in the Old Testament:
Joshua 24:15 But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD!
That crystial-clear focus will bring real change in our lives, our communities, and our country.
God be with President Obama. God be with the United States of America. God be with us.
May his will be done. May his kingdom spread.
Text: Romans 13:1-7
There isn’t a lot of respect these days when it comes to government.
It’s not quite the same feel as the Vietnam Era though. There aren’t quite so many protests or anti-war hippies (to be stereotypical) running around. But one could argue that there’s even less respect for the government today than ever before.
First, politicians haven’t done much to earn respect lately. In a new age of social media and instant notifications and news, hardly anything is hidden. So when there is scandal, it is instantly a huge deal. And there have been plenty of political scandals of late. Embezzling, theft, fraud, adultery, immorality and more litter and tarnish the reputations of so many.
Then there are the citizens themselves. Again we can look at the technology and social media available today. Any person in the world can share what they think and believe by blog or Facebook or Twitter or dozens of other avenues. If someone has an opinion about government–even misinformed, wrongful, and biased opinions–those opinions are readily and easily availably to all.
So when it comes to lines in the sand, the differences between liberals and conservatives are vast and nearly insurmountable. Of course, then there are those who form political parties completely different than all the rest!
In this boiling political pot then, there is little respect given. Liberals can’t stand conservatives, and vice versa. Peace-lovers can’t stand war and the military. The military can’t stand those who seem to be “unpatriotic.” Republicans think Democrats are looney and Democrats think Republicans are ancient and archaic. Citizens call for real leaders. Leaders call for real citizens. (Whatever either of those things means.)
How different from what God teaches and commands! Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities this chapter opens with. If you owe taxes, pay taxes; if revenue, then revenue; if respect, then respect; if honor, then honor.
What a rude wakeup call that is for most United States citizens!
Note how it didn’t say, “only if you agree with the government,” or, “if it’s your political party,” or “if you think things are going well.” These are blanket commands from God to submit to the government and to give respect and honor, no matter what government or leader you are under.
For there is no authority except that which God has established.
So even if you are of a different party, different opinion, or different agenda, the government is due honor, respect, and obedience because God has established it. You can disagree. You can work to pass different laws. You can vote however you want. You can discuss better choices. But the government is always due honor, respect, and obedience because God has established it.
So on this Memorial Day, we can give thanks for our government leaders. We can give thanks for our military personnel past and present who have given of their time and even their lives to defend this country and our freedoms. (Note in verse 4 how God allows for military force and appropriately severe punishments!)
No matter your political party, no matter your opinion on the “issues,” no matter how well current politicians are leading us, we can thank God for the government he has given us and then give them appropriate honor and respect.
God be with our leaders. God be with our military. God be with our country.
Prayer: Lord God, you hold all times and places in your hands. You watch over, protect, and preserve your faithful people. You provide safety and protection through governments of this world which you have established and guide in the days and times of history. I ask that you continue to watch over our good country. Bless us. Preserve us. Give us good leaders. And finally, guide us through your plans for this world until we join you in your glorious kingdom. I pray in your mighty name. Amen.
The Fourth Commandment
Honor your father and mother, that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.
Would you be alive today if God’s Old Testament laws were still in place? God demanded in Deuteronomy 21 that any son who refused to obey his parents should be stoned. If I had known as a child that I should have been killed for disrespecting my parents I might have thought twice before letting my little defiant heart make itself known.
God knows his creation. He made everything you see out of nothing, so it makes sense that he knows the best, most beneficial way for this world, his world, to run. In this commandment he gives some clear directives on how to get the most out of this creation. This is the first commandment with a promise attached to it. God says that if this commandment is obeyed a long, enjoyable life is promised. Implicit in this promise is that if we fail to follow this commandment things will not go very well. Read the rest of this entry