Sometimes we hear a lot of hoopla about decisions that don’t really matter and we Christians can feel comfortable in just standing aside and ignoring it all. This is not one of those times. In a few days, every seat in Virginia’s General Assembly will be up for grabs, and every one of us has a decision to make. Tuesday, November 5th, will be a significant day for those of us who live here, but every American will face similar challenges in the year ahead. The issues confronting us here, like those we face nationally, affect the basic moral and ethical principles that are foundational to our Judeo-Christian beliefs. We will not just be choosing a candidate. We will be making a public statement about whether we actually believe what we claim to believe or not.
Next Tuesday will be a time for making sobering choices, and now is a good time to remind ourselves that the call for God’s people to make sobering choices isn’t new. For instance, prior to their entrance into the land He had promised to give them, God’s spokesman, Moses, declared:
I call heaven and earth as witnesses today against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing; therefore choose life, that both you and your descendants may live. (Deut. 30:19 NKJV)
Later, the fledgling nation faced a critical choice between the God who redeemed them from Egyptian slavery and the pagan idols worshipped by their neighbors. Some of God’s people had begun by that time to see idolatry as appealing and began to engage in the sinful, hedonistic practices involved in their “worship.” Since there was no way that the claims of both deities could be true; one or the other had to be abandoned. In clear, unambiguous terms, Joshua demanded that a choice be made between God and the idols of the land.
Choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve… (Joshua 24:15 NKJV)
Centuries after that, Elijah called out to God’s vacillating people once again and challenged them to make a decision.
How long will you falter between two opinions? If the LORD is God, follow Him; but if Baal, follow him. (1 Kings 18:21 NKJV)
Those instances in Biblical history have a few things in common with the situation facing us as we contemplate the choices we will make on Tuesday:
- The values advocated by the opposing sides were irrevocably incompatible.
- The mandate to choose was individual, but the collective impact would affect the welfare of their entire nation.
- The options were clear and understandable. No complex terms were employed, and no ambiguous, nuanced language was involved.
- The call to decide was immediate. Circumstances were of such urgency that procrastination was not an option.
- There was no middle ground, no “neutral” place to stand. Refusal to take a positive stand constituted yielding to the other side.
God demanded that a choice be made by each of His people, and He would not make it for them. The decision itself was theirs alone, but their choice would determine God’s reaction. A right response would lead to personal blessing and the kind of overall prosperity that He promised. Conversely, if they chose to abandon God’s truth in order to follow their own lust for pleasure, then He would allow them to suffer the destructive consequences that rebellion against Him always brings with it.
“God Is in Control” . . . But He Delegates Responsibilities ~
On a personal level, I take issue pretty strongly with the idea of adopting a “do nothing” approach to avoid civic responsibilities and spiritual commitments. Refusing to make a decision about the kinds of vital issues we face in almost every election cycle across the nation these days is a decision in itself, and one with disturbing implications. Those who refuse to take a stand lest they “offend” someone and who seek to validate their lack of involvement by declaring that “God is in control,” are missing a very important point. The same God deemed to be “in control” today was also “in control” in the instances referenced earlier, yet He demanded that His people make a personal choice and demonstrate it in a public context. In the face of the spiritual crisis engulfing their nation, this “in control” God delegated to each of His people the responsibility for making individual decisions that would ultimately determine the future welfare for all of them. God would not allow them to passively yield to idolatry and then claim that having wicked people with evil policies running their country was His fault or something He must have wanted.
“Either Way” Won’t Work This Time ~
I saw a cartoon once (wish I had a copy of it to post with this piece) where a guy had wrecked his car. The road had come to a place where it branched off in two directions, like a ‘Y’. He ran his car into a post in the middle of the intersection that was holding up a huge sign that said, “Either Way”. Sometimes failing to choose one road or another holds its own recipe for disaster.
Let’s at least be clear about this . . . Regardless of how many names are on the ballots and/or which office is at stake, each candidate represents one of only two real choices. In almost every election, there’s more to be considered than just party affiliation. Regardless of campaign rhetoric and speeches that sound conservative, unless a candidate has an unambiguous, clearly stated commitment to support traditional family values, to protect the lives of unborn children, and to defend our religious liberties, they will almost certainly abandon or actively oppose those principles once they’re elected. If the candidates in your district happen to be incumbents, there’s still time to check out their voting record and see where they really stand on issues vital to faith and family. (Contact The Family Foundation of Virginia for an electronic copy of their Legislative Scorecard and Voting Guide.)
The Options Are Clear ~
When the polls open on Tuesday, November 5th, we will be called upon to decide more than which political party will hold the reins of power in our legislature. We will be choosing between two profoundly contrasting visions for Virginia and for America’s future. Many of us are repulsed by the corrupt, deceitful, and destructive policies being advocated by the “progressives” who own mainstream media, our educational system, and most of the entertainment world. This election is a choice between the policies they promote and the ones that made America the greatest nation on earth. The choice isn’t complicated. The time to decide is now, and there is no middle ground. The God who many claim to be “in control” will not cast our ballot for us—that responsibility belongs to us and no one else, but He will not ignore our response. If we choose poorly or fail to be involved at all, we needn’t expect Him to step in and stop the evil we allow to be unleashed on our state and nation. I implore you to engage in some “Right Side Up Thinking,” and encourage everyone you know to vote for conservative candidates on Tuesday. Remember . . . Elections do have consequences.
“TWEETABLES” ~ Click to Tweet & Share from the pull quotes below. Each quote links directly back to this article through Twitter.
- “…if (God’s people) chose to abandon His truth in order to follow their own lust for pleasure, then He would allow them to suffer the destructive consequences that rebellion against Him always brings with it. @GallaghersPen (Click here to Tweet)
- “Those who refuse to take a stand lest they “offend” someone and who seek to validate their lack of involvement by declaring that “God is in control,” are missing a very important point.” @GallaghersPen (Click here to Tweet)
- “This election is a choice between the policies that progressives who own mainstream media, our educational system, and most of the entertainment world they promote, and the ones that made America the greatest nation on earth.” @GallaghersPen (Click here to Tweet)
- “The God who many claim to be “in control”… will not ignore our response. If we choose poorly or fail to be involved at all, we needn’t expect Him to step in and stop the evil we allow to be unleashed on our state and nation.” @GallaghersPen (Click here to Tweet)
Check out Ron’s book, “Right Side Up Thinking in an Upside Down World ~ Looking at the World through the Lens of Biblical Truth”
Click HERE for details …
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