Found this never published post in my “draft” file. Don’t know how I lost track of it but here it is a 18 months late but still with an important point and now with a brief reflection on how to live post election.
In My Humble Opinion.
Every election is important. In a republic, it is important who we elect to represent us and to lead us. In the separation of powers defined by our constitution and amendments, it is critical that we evaluate the character and policies, as well as the guiding principles for decisions of the men and women set before us by the major parties of the nation. It’s also important to evaluate past patterns. Why? Because, as one wise leader once told me, “The greatest predictor of future behavior, is past behavior.”
This year, three of the major candidates, Bernie Sanders (74), Hillary Clinton (68), and Donald Trump (69) all will have birthdays before taking the oath of office if elected. What is the significance of that? Two things to think about:
- All of them would be older than Ronald Reagan in his first term who many thought was too old for the rigors of the job. Interesting that the media has said nothing about that this year. Which suggests a silence of intent and that suggests further evidence that the media are utterly untrustworthy and partisan.
- All of them (Bernie, Hillary, and Donald) have a long track record from which we might make educated predictions about how they would govern. People can change but that’s why we examine their character, their policies and the guiding principles for their decisions. In addition, it is usually telling to examine who are a person’s advisors. Parents are wise to examine their children’s associations and we don’t consider them judgmental when they do. Instead, we consider it reasonable.
Others still in the hunt, Cruz (45), Kasich (63) are more within the normal range of age for candidates for president and seem to be both more reasonable and honorable men. Recently, a dear friend and mentor, one of the men I most admire in life challenged my thoughts on the candidacy of Donald Trump. I have been extremely disappointed about the support Mr. Trump has garnered in the country, especially that portion of support that comes from my brothers and sisters in Christ. Some have asked me, “Would you rather have Bernie or Hillary?” Often time this question is posed with a kind of “hold-your-nose and vote for the republican because any republican is better than the two alternatives this year” attitude. It is a question that I hope I never have to answer. I think all candidates named Bernie, Hillary or Donald would be absolutely disastrous for the country this year.
When a car is heading for a cliff and needs 100 feet to stop and is now only 50 feet from the edge, it makes no difference whether the car is going 100, 80 or 60 miles per hour. All drivers (Hillary, Bernie, and Donald) are taking the car over the cliff. So here are some of the questions I want to wrestle with:
- Is it judgmental to write articles or suggest articles to readers that will help them evaluate different candidates who are presenting themselves for the highest office in the land?
- Is it possible to have an objective standard against which one can judge a candidate’s suitability for office?
Nothing is more important than the gospel. Not my job, not the economy, not my country, not my family, not my life, not even my wife. My loyalty is to the King of Kings who lived, died, rose and is coming again to judge the living and the dead.
[That is the end of what I found in the draft pile. I probably put the piece away to try and finish up another day and that day never came. Now, the presidency of Donald Trump is in full swing and it seems pointless to finish. But the last paragraph is still important no matter who is in the White House.
I am absolutely thrilled that Hillary Clinton is not the President. Nothing, absolutely nothing in me is thrilled that Donald Trump is. I think he is a dangerous adolescent in a 71 year-old body with a horrendous track record of ethically immoral decisions. He is petulant, impulsive, vindictive, arrogant, over-confident and narcissitic. None of these judgments are even controversial with regard to his character.
Pray for the President. Pray for him not because he is good, righteous, wise or godly. Pray for him because he is none of those things and the country needs better leadership. Pray for him because his task is great and the consequences of action and inaction mean people live or die in places near and far. Pray for him because you are enjoined in Scripture to pray for your enemies as well as your friends. Pray for him because you are commanded in Scripture to pray for all those who are in authority.
But as you pray, remember that there is a Ruler, a King, a King of kings, who is absolutely righteous and good, absolutely wise and just, and He is coming to judge the living and the dead. Draw near to Him and pray that His righteous kingdom would come soon. Pray that His will would be done on earth as it is in heaven. There is much more that you can and should do, but make sure that you start with prayer. And don’t stop. Pray without ceasing.]