During July we are reminded of the blessings God gives us through our nation and through good government. We are kept safe and we can freely worship the true God without fear of the government telling us what we are to believe. For these and many other blessings that God gives us through our nation we ought to be thankful to God.
God is clear in his Word that we have a responsibility toward our government:
Submit yourselves for the Lord’s sake to every authority instituted among men: whether to the king, as the supreme authority, or to governors, who are sent by him to punish those who do wrong and to commend those who do right. (1 Peter 2:13–14)
This and other Bible passages remind us to respect our leaders. Proper respect will show itself in attitudes and in words. How we talk about our leaders reflects the attitude of our hearts. Let God’s Word set your attitude as you are moved by God’s grace to show respect to your leaders in the way you speak about them – even when you disagree with them.
While we will respect our leaders, the Bible warns us not to put our faith in our leaders. They may be God’s servants to do good for us, but that does not mean that they have replaced God. The Psalmist says:
It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in princes. (Psalm 118:9)
Or Isaiah was inspired to write:
Stop trusting in man, who has but a breath in his nostrils. Of what account is he? (Isaiah 2:22)
In particular, I think this reminds us during this upcoming election cycle that the right leader is not what will solve all our problems. God is still God. His grace is what we need, not this candidate or that one. To trust in people is foolishness. Even wise King Solomon was not a perfect leader. Solomon laid such a heavy burden on the Israelites that they demanded his son lighten their labor and taxes. When he refused, Israel was torn into two nations. Earthly leaders, even good ones, will not create heaven on earth.
Of course, that does not mean we should not give thought to how we will vote. But as you consider how you will vote, let your faith remain firmly on the promises of God to bless you, not the promises of any particular candidate.
In Isaiah God said:
Woe to those who go down to Egypt for help, who rely on horses, who trust in the multitude of their chariots and in the great strength of their horsemen, but do not look to the Holy One of Israel, or seek help from the Lord. (Isaiah 31:1)
What a vivid picture for God’s people. Political alliances do not lead us to prosper. Trusting in our mighty military is a misplaced trust. Instead, look to the Holy One, the Lord! He is your hope and your Savior. He provides “daily bread” for our earthly needs and his grace for our spiritual needs. God’s love and forgiveness allow us to live at peace.
Pastor Tim Wempner
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