I feel compelled to respond to the aftermath of our presidential election. Regardless of who you voted for or how you feel about the results, I would like to address those who read this from the point of a follower of Jesus Christ and a leader in his church, not from any political perspective. I will not tell you which way I voted so don’t ask. I do not want what I have to say to be tainted by my own political opinions. Political opinions are just that, opinions which have been formed by our experiences, circumstances, and those we listen to.
Some of you are very disappointed and angry over the results of the election. Others are elated and excited over the results of the election. I find that people who love and trust in Jesus Christ are on both sides of the issue. Often, regardless of which side you are on, you are unable understand the other side.
Let me say that there are a lot of ungodly responses on both sides of the issue that we as followers of Jesus Christ must not give in to. Many Trump supporters are gloating and acting very arrogant over the Republican candidate’s victory. These are inappropriate and ungodly characteristics for a follower of Jesus. On the other hand, many Clinton supporters are angry and acting out with violence and verbal attacks against those who voted against her. These are also inappropriate responses and ungodly characteristics for a follower of Jesus.
Ultimately what is happening is that Satan is once again dividing the Church of Jesus Christ, this time over political views. If you claim Jesus Christ as your Savior and Lord, if you claim to love him and follow him, and if you care about establishing his Kingdom on this earth, then you must not allow this political situation to divide the Church or cause you hatred toward the other side.
Friends, we have a much greater purpose and agenda than the politics of a nation. Certainly, I believe that we as Christians, who live in a country where we have the opportunity to participate in the political process, should take advantage of that opportunity. However, the politics of this nation is not God’s primary concern. I know there are some of you who would disagree with that but the Word of God teaches us that God has a much larger agenda than the presidential election of the United States of America. In fact, the United States of America is not found in the Bible anywhere.
Before Jesus left this earth he did not command his followers to go elect people to public office and pitch a fit when you don’t get your way or arrogantly gloat when you do.
Jesus said, “All authority in heaven and earth has been given to me. Therefore, go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit; teaching them to obey all I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always to the very end of the age.” Matthew 28:18-20
Most of you recognize this passage as our primary marching orders. We call it the Great Commission. The priority of every true follower of Jesus Christ is the advancement of his Kingdom, his Church, through the proclamation of the Gospel and the spiritual growth of those who believe.
Therefore, followers of Jesus must not let this election divide us nor steer us from accomplishing the will and purpose of our Savior and Lord. We must not attack and argue with those who follow Jesus Christ yet disagree with us politically. We must not allow Satan a foothold in our lives or in the Church through anger and bitterness. Bitterness will destroy our individual lives as well as the unity in the Body of Christ.
Friends this is a time to set aside our differences and come together for the glory of God and for the exaltation of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. I don’t know if the people of this nation are going to be able to unify for the good of everyone in the country. I don’t know if this will divide our country even more. But I do know that we must not let it divide the Church. I know that we must not verbally attack each other, fire off angry slurs or make proud derogatory remarks. I know that if there is ever a time for the Church of Jesus Christ to unify around the Gospel and Jesus’ purpose for us, it is now.
I implore you to set aside your angry or proud feelings. I urge you to forgive those you disagree with. And I beg you to obey the words of Paul in Ephesians 4:3, “Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.”
The response of every follower of Jesus Christ should be to pray for our new president elect (whether you like him or not), pray for our leaders in congress to make wise decisions regarding the good of this country, pray for peace in our country, and most importantly pray that we will have the opportunity to share the Good News of Jesus Christ to those who don’t know him.
Perspective #2 tomorrow
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James Seal, Pastor