By Andy Waits
Associate pastor of worship and students
First Baptist Church, Springville
Politics dominate lately. While everyone has a different opinion, everyone is convinced they are correct. Many are worried. If their candidate doesn’t get elected, our nation will fall into absolute destruction with no hope of ever being salvaged. One prominent minister has said “this is the watershed of movements in our nation. Whoever gets elected, it will alter the United States for my lifetime, my children’s lifetime and my grandchildren’s lifetime.”
While everyone is talking about the upcoming vote, no one seems to be talking about God’s sovereign control over all earthly matters (which certainly includes this presidential election). We quickly forget that God is in absolute control of all things and directs all things to happen for the intents and purposes of His glory. He is not distracted. He is not busy. He is not apathetic. He is working all things together in this world exactly the way He envisioned it before time began. As I was reminded this week, our world is not falling apart; it is falling into place. Here are a few biblical truths about politics we all need to be reminded of during this season:
- Nations rise and fall but God’s kingdom remains forever. I love America. I often well-up when singing the national anthem, thinking about the men and women who have sacrificed their lives so we can be free. However, no matter how much I love my country, my citizenship is in heaven. Daniel 2:21 reminds us, “He changes times and seasons; He removes kings and sets up kings.” We must look beyond our own perspective in world history and realize God has a perfect plan that He will bring to completion in His perfect timing.
- Governing authorities are not elected but appointed by God. Romans 13 is clear on this issue. All leaders are placed by God. In America, He uses our votes to do so (yes, this election and every election in the history of humanity has been rigged). Jesus confirmed this when He stood before Pilate at His trial: “You would have no authority over Me at all unless it had been given to you from above” (John 19:11). So who wins the upcoming electoral college? Whoever God decreed before the foundation of the earth.
- Christians are to follow their leadership. Yes, even secular leaders with whom you strongly disagree. Jesus did it. Daniel did it. Paul did it. Nehemiah did it. Romans 13 and 1 Peter 2 speak about believers “submitting themselves to the governing authorities” and being “subject to human institutions.” The only exception to this rule would be when obedience would mean directly disobeying a command of God Himself (Acts 5:29). Thankfully most of us have not experienced this abuse of power yet.
Remember this when you vote: God has already determined the results. You have the privilege of playing an important role in His divine plan.
“The heart of a man plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps” (Prov. 16:9).