Like millions of other Americans, I will confess, I was temporally devastated by the re-election of Mr. Obama as President of the United States. From a human and political point of view it makes, from my perspective, no sense at all. A good number political pundits and pollsters got it wrong when they raised the hopes and dreams of multitudes with assurances that this election would turn the clock back to a kinder, gentler, more rational, more financially sane America. Chances are now, however, it is not going to happen within the next four years—and possibly never again.
However, if rational thought, if political common sense cannot explain the re-election of the most flawed President in American history—including the failed presidency of Jimmy Carter—then thoughts must be turned in a new direction for understanding and insight.
It is always dangerous to presume to speak for the Divine, and I will not be so presumptuous to do so, but a divine perspective must be considered for history, in the end, is God’s story (His-tory). I speak now primarily to the Christian community, and suggest that maybe, just maybe, the Lord would have the church remember a few things.
First, the church is to remember her first love. Writing to the church of Ephesus in the late first century, the Lord said, “I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love” (Rev. 2:4). I would like to suggest that many Christians can now return to their First Love and discover Christ all over again. All the time assiduously following national politics, can be redeemed, by pursuing hard after Christ and falling in love with Him afresh. The church can once more take time to be holy.
“Take time to be holy,
speak oft with thy Lord;
abide in him always,
and feed on his word.
Make friends of God’s children,
help those who are weak,
forgetting in nothing
His blessing to seek.”
Second, the church is to remember its rich heritage. Before there was an America, the church was strong, and vital, and thriving. Despite false accusations, persecution, heresies, internal strife, ecclesiastical corruption, and many other failings, the church remains the most glorious institution on earth, because it alone can give to the world the only message for its survival. Only the church can give to the world the gospel.
Only the church can give to mankind the Savior of the World in the person of Jesus Christ. The rich heritage that the church offers is Love and Truth, united in the God-Man, the Lord Jesus Christ. Only the church can offer fallen humanity the hope of redemption, and the way of temporal and eternal salvation. Only the church can say, “This is the way, walk in it.” So let the church sing, “Because He lives, I can face tomorrow.”
Third, the church is to remember that it too is a nation that can exalt itself above all the nations of the Earth and, one day, it shall be exalted. The concept of the church being a spiritual nation is found in 1 Peter 2:9. Speaking to believers, the apostle Peter wrote, “But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light.” The church is a nation within a nation, indeed, within all the nations on Earth.
Despite the greedy, entitlement driven, self-destructive, and suicidal tendency of national elections—at home and abroad—the church can rise above partisan politics to live out the ethics of those who enter into the kingdom of God.
If it is asked, “What is our financial policy of the kingdom of heaven?”, the answer is, “to owe no man anything but love” (Rom. 13:8).
If it is asked, “How shall we then live?”, the answer is that we shall continue “steadfastly in the apostle’s doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers” (Acts 2:42).
If it is asked, “What shall be the political platform in our kingdom?”, the answer is, “The Sermon on the Mount as spoken by the King of our nation, Jesus Christ the Lord, in Matthew 5, 6, and 7 is the ethical and political platform by which we shall exist”.
If it is asked, “Will we prevail among the nations of the earth?”, the answer is, “Yes, we shall prevail, for we are more than conquerors through Him that loved us (Rom. 8:37). We are of the Lord’s kingdom, “and of His kingdom there shall be no end” (Luke 1:33). “In the end the kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever” (Rev. 11:15).
“So let the storm clouds rage high,
The dark clouds rise,
They don’t bother me;
For I’m sheltered in the arms of God.
He walks with me,
And naught of Earth shall harm me,
For I’m sheltered in the arms of God.”
Herein, I submit, is a divine perspective on secular presidential politics.