As election day approaches this year, the prospect of voting looks different to me than it has in the past. Whether I look to the left or to the right, my thoughts echo the prophet Jeremiah: “…Why does the way of the wicked prosper? Why do all who are treacherous thrive?” (Jer 12:1).
Hopefully the situation improves by 2024.
Some may wonder what principles would normally make a Christian feel obligated to vote. They include these:
- Those in government have duties assigned to them by God (1 Pet 2:14, Rom 13:1-5).
- In nations with rule of law and elected lawmakers, we’re all in the government in at least two ways: the power to choose lawmakers by voting, the power to seek justice through the courts.
- Love of neighbor means acting in ways that make for a better society for them, and this applies even more to family and church (Gal 6:10).
These are solid and compelling principles, and some of the reasons I’ve heard for not voting don’t hold up either.
Wrong reasons to skip voting
(1) This world is not our home. Our citizenship is indeed in Heaven (Phil 3:20). It doesn’t follow that the condition of the world we live in now doesn’t matter or that we have no duties to our fellow humans. The fact that we will live forever somewhere makes what we do here matter more, not less. “Just a passin’ through” doesn’t seem like the right way to view our stewardship (Matt 25:14-27, 1 Cor 4:2).