Election 2016: Inconceivable!

My thoughts on the election:

My favorite movie of all time is “The Princess Bride.” In the movie a character named Vizzini keeps using the word “inconceivable.” Throughout the movie he uses the word in many situations until another character, Inigo Montoya tells him, “You keep using that word, I do not think it means what you think it means.” In this election cycle “inconceivable” could be used almost every day for both candidates.
So, as Christians, who should we vote for? It would be “inconceivable” to vote for Trump because he is such an immoral man (according to the media) and not fit to lead the nation. It would be “inconceivable” to vote for Clinton because she is a liar (according to the media) and unfit to lead the nation. So, what is a Christian suppose to do?
Is it inconceivable to think the God of the Bible is still capable of working His will even if there is a Trump presidency or Clinton presidency? Social media is jam packed with Christians sounding the alarm for Christians to vote for a certain candidate because they think he or she is God’s chosen. Do we think as Christians that because there is a “godly person” in the White House that things will be better or morality will be the law of the land? The Supreme Court legalized (which is not constitutional, only Congress can make laws) same-sex marriage and the Christian churches screamed fear that America was going to pay dearly for this action. Question, why is God about to bring judgment on someone else’s sin instead of the sin in our own lives? Yes, I believe same sex is wrong and I would rather it not be legalized, but the government has no business in saying who should be married (the reason the government has a say is to get more taxes). Since the Supreme Court made this decision, I very seldom hear any churches say much about the decision. America is still here! My point is to let them make the “immoral” or “moral” laws! I’m confident my Lord is still able to work His will in the world He created. We all know (I hope we know) a government cannot legalize morality as much as it cannot legalize immorality. We as human beings are born with sin and the only way to achieve righteousness is through Jesus Christ and Him alone. A certain president can influence society but he or she cannot bring righteousness or unrighteousness to its people. We all make that choice for ourselves. We make the choice by accepting Jesus Christ or rejecting Him.

A certain president can influence society but he or she cannot bring righteousness or unrighteousness to its people. Click To Tweet
As a Christian, could it be conceivable to vote for a platform instead of a candidate? Even with what I said about morality and immorality, I will vote for a platform. For example, the 2nd Amendment is important to me, so I will vote for the candidate who will uphold that Amendment. I believe in low taxes, taking care of the poor (this should fall on the Church and the Church has failed miserably), small government, strong military, taking care of the vulnerable (the Church again), school vouchers, Supreme Court nominees, abortion issues and so on. Just because I vote for one platform doesn’t mean I agree with everything in that platform. Ronald Reagan was the first president I voted for and I was proud of the man, but since that vote, I only vote for a platform. I will vote for the individual who supports what I think is important. As Christians, we must stop this thought that if we elect a certain candidate, America is going down the tubes or America will have this great revival. What determines both of these extremes is the Church, and lately, the Church has failed because of leaving the Great Commission! Jesus did not say much about the government except, “render to Caesar what is Caesars.” Why? Because He was living out the Father’s will and He knew no government could stop the coming kingdom… even the Romans, President Trump or President Clinton. We as Christians must continue to build the Church so the Kingdom of Our Lord goes forth.

As Christians, we must stop this thought that if we elect a certain candidate, America is going down the tubes or America will have this great revival. Click To Tweet
Do I ignore Trump’s failures or Clinton’s? Of course not! As a Christian, I must change my tone when speaking about each candidate. Christians have a tendency to be passionate about the political realm but are hushed when discussions are about the vulnerable in our society. Pray for the candidates and be active in helping and saving the vulnerable of our society. God didn’t issue the Church on the day of Pentecost to elect government officials, but the Church was issued to preach the Good News of the Gospel. So, preach the Word with words but also preach with our actions! Love God and love people! A good start is the words of Jesus to an adulterous woman, “Neither do I condemn you, go in peace and sin no more!”

God didn’t issue the Church on the day of Pentecost to elect government officials, but the Church was issued to preach the Good News of the Gospel. Click To Tweet
I believe this great hymn, “My hope is built on nothing less than Jesus’ blood and righteousness. I dare not trust the sweetest frame, but wholly lean on Jesus’ name. On Christ the solid rock I stand (not government), all other ground is sinking sand; all other ground is sinking sand.”
What is inconceivable is not voting, but what is conceivable is to vote for a platform that represents one’s views. Let the “Battle of Wits” begin!

Shalom!

Pastor Tim Thomas

I LOVE Donald Trump!

 

trumhaterI confess, I am not the MOST politically engaged person in the world.  I rarely watch the news, for a number of reasons.  I do READ the news, however, and make an effort to stay informed from a variety of sources.

This often leads me to like, share, retweet…which is fed into my Facebook feed.  I recently retweeted a real-time comment someone made on a speech that was being delivered by the Republican presidential candidate for the presidency of the good ‘ole US of A.  This comment was aimed at the impression left that religious liberty is limited to pastors not being threatened with censure for what they are saying from the pulpit.  The tweet reads:

Donald Trump thinks allowing pastors free speech at church is the front line on religious liberty? That’s unacceptable. #RNCinCLE

A friend and brother asked a fair question in the comments below the retweet:

James, why are you such a Trump hater.

I’ve thought about my response and searched my heart for the appropriate method of responding.  I decided it was best to put it in writing, here…so, here goes:

I LOVE Donald Trump!  I really do.

There are some things I HATE about Trump, however.

I’ve chosen to outline these things I HATE based upon a familiar and often quoted scripture, Proverbs 6:17-19.  Here’s said passage of scripture, lifted from The Message translation:

Here are six things God hates, and one more that he loathes with a passion: 6:17 eyes that are arrogant, a tongue that lies, hands that murder the innocent, 6:18 a heart that hatches evil plots, feet that race down a wicked track, 6:19 a mouth that lies under oath, a troublemaker in the family.

Bible scholar friends, please don’t hate on me.  It is merely serving as an outline, here.  I understand I am not “interpreting” this scripture, here.  Also, to my friends who support Trump, don’t hear me saying that “God hates Trump,” or “God hates Hillary.”  There’s enough of that sort of rhetoric around.

My thoughts:

Trump exudes an arrogant pride that shouts down nearly every positive thing he tries to say.  That may appear to be an unfair assessment to some, but it is true.  (Secretary Clinton, the Democrative nominee, is just as guilty.)

Trump tells lies.  He is painted by many as a habitual liar, infected with a character flaw that he dangerously believes his own lies.  Have you read the interview in the New Yorker, in which his ghostwriter “tells all?”  (Again, Secretary Clinton is guilty as charged here, too.)

I’m not sure where Trump stands on abortion.  I believe abortion is murder.  In fact, I personally believe that there is no more innocent life that is taken than a baby that is killed through abortion.  There is no room for compromise, as far as I’m concerned.  Trump seems to have an evolving position, depending on where he is and what he is doing.  That is illustrated in an article from the Washington Post.  (Secretary Clinton is clear on her stance, as recent interviews show.)

In Matthew 15:18, Jesus reminds us that what comes out of a person’s mouth reveals who that person is.  Trump makes a habit of assassinating the character of those who oppose him.  He calls people idiot, loser, etc. without reservation.  The context of his speech is usually self-promotion at the expense of just about everyone else.  It’s sad, really.  (Secretary Clinton…again, guilty as charged)

Examine the life and habits of Mr. Trump.  He may not drink or smoke, as has been reported by so many of my supportive friends on Facebook, but his life is littered with evil exploits, about which he has bragged in print (see his book).  (Secretary Clinton…well, her life has been under a microscope for a long time.  No reason to rehearse it, here.)

We’ve already mentioned Mr. Trump’s penchant for telling untruths, so we’ll not visit there again.

Let me just say, my issues with Mr. Trump…and Secretary Clinton, are too numerous to fully address in a blog post.  BUT…

I LOVE Donald Trump!  I pray for him.

The same is true for Secretary Clinton.  I LOVE her!  I pray for her.

The politics of personal destruction, the politics of fear, the political machine that consumes what is right and good in our society, if there is anything, just makes me sick to my stomach.  The fact that people will sell their soul in their quest for political power and influence is beyond disappointing, particularly when I see it happening among my brothers and sisters in Christ.  The scripture twisting that is currently happening to support a candidate is nonsensical.  My heart aches over this…and so much more.

So, I’ll continue to share political news, comments, posts, etc. that I find interesting.  My sharing does not necessarily mean I totally agree or disagree.  I have folks I love on both sides of nearly every issue.  Our disagreement enriches my life.

Mark, thanks for asking your question.  I hope my answer has brought some clarity to what I am thinking.  Ultimately, I am but a sojourner, here.  My life and breath is given to a constant seeking of the Kingdom of God and His righteousness.  I continue to wrestle with the issues that face us in this election cycle.  Please, pray for me.  I’m praying for you.