Don’t Vote: An Unauthorized Approach To Voting
Today is a BIG day in America. I have talked about having an unauthorized approach to Christianity. Today, it would seem to some that I also have an unauthorized approach to voting too. And perhaps, you might consider not voting. Let me explain.
I have been accused of wanting to create a theocracy because my Christian faith informs and influences my voting decisions. It seems like some people think that “separation of church and state” means you can’t let that happen, like I talked about with this Christian flag making waves at a war memorial. But, for me, it is unavoidable.
The truth is, most people don’t realize there was never a theocracy in the Bible. What? That’s right. Let me say it again: NO WHERE is there a theocracy in the Bible in the sense that it is used on the political discourse today.
Random House defines a theocracy as:
“a form of government in which god or a deity is recognizedas the supreme civil ruler, the God’s or deity’s laws being interpreted by the ecclesiastical authorities.”
In the Old Testament, there are two forms of government that appear. There is a monarchy (King David, King Saul, King Solomon etc), but that is not the type of ‘government’ God intended for the Jews.
What God intended for the Jews was more like a commonwealth. What’s a commonwealth? Random House defines it as:
“a group of sovereign states and their dependencies associated by their own choice and linked with common objectives and interests.”
This is what happens in Exodus, Deuteronomy, and Acts. That is to say, all the people were to choose individuals of character, honesty, integrity, and wisdom to lead them in the day-day-day matters and decide between disputes that arise based on the evidence presented before them.
They were also warned about not taking money to influence their decisions and to make sure to treat everyone equally: the poor and rich. If they become corrupt, there were harsh consequences.
Although the United States of America is technically a Constitutional Republic, the commonwealth form of government is what inspired the Framers of the Constitution. Essentially, America was an improved hybrid form of a commonwealth. (Believe it or not, we are not a democracy…but we do employ democratic principles.)
It was a form of government not of might or birthright, but one chosen by the people to represent the people–and it was revolutionary.
This seems to be a far cry from where we are today in our political scene, doesn’t it? Backroom deals, earmarks, dishonest brokering, and lying have become common, all in order to get re-elected. That’s seems to be the only endgame too often. Politicians make promises to get re-elected and line their pockets. Not protecting the people’s rights. Not applying equal justice. Not being self-serving. Not leaving people alone to live their own lives.
So last night I spent 2 hours researching candidates and issues on the ballot in my area. And I tried to pick people of character. It’s not easy. Do I want to create a theocracy? No way. But I will allow, against what some people prefer, my faith to inform my values and voting decisions. And I did.
Lastly, I would like to end in the spirit of Thomas Jefferson who once said:
“If a nation expects to be ignorant and free in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be.” –Thomas Jefferson to Charles Yancey, 1816. ME 14:384
So if you haven’t researched the issues:
If you haven’t researched the candidates:
If you don’t care about the leader so long as he fits your agenda:
Don’t vote. (It will always bite you back, in the end)
And on a personal note, if you believe in large, expansive, authoritarian, ever-growing government:
PS-Have a great day!