Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, 2 for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence. 1 Timothy 2:1-2
While the Bible doesn’t tell Christians how to vote, it does tell us how to pray. I found this passage extremely helpful for me as I consider the perplexing situation that we find ourselves in the USA at this season.
Christians sometimes discuss the relationship of man’s responsibility and God’s provision in prayer:
- “Work like everything depends on you; pray like everything depends on God.”
- “It is true that God feeds the sparrow, but he doesn’t throw the food in its nest.”
- What prayer is pointless? Praying for the fruits of labor that I’m unwilling to work for.
We recognize that its silly to pray for wisdom but ignore the source of wisdom at our disposal. This is why the Timothy passage is helpful for me as I consider voting. My first priority in voting, is the same way I pray: for the candidate most likely to allow me to live a “quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence.”
The early Christians in Timothy’s day didn’t have the ability to shape their own government like I do. To a great extent, I don’t use my ability directly. I’m not running for office; I’m not volunteering for my local government (although maybe I should). I can vote, though. At the end of the day, I’m not expecting unsaved people in the world to be like me. I don’t know which candidate would be better/ worse for running the country. However, I do think there is a difference in their attitudes toward my religious freedom, and I can vote for that.
I can’t see the future, so I’m going to cast my vote and then let God deal with the big picture. I’m praying, and I’m at peace. There is a here and now that is taking up more of my attention. Helping my daughter with math. Making dinner. Talking about loving God’s Word with my children.
How about you? What Bible passages give you peace when you consider the politics and government of your country? What are you sharing with your children? What are you talking about within earshot of your children?