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Voting for Jesus? June 8, 2017

Posted by P, J, or J in Uncategorized.
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I just got to vote twice!

There wasn’t much of a queue and the nice people in the polling station let me have two ballot papers.

I should probably explain that the reason for that was that my wife is away this week and registered in time for me to vote on her behalf. I’d like to think both votes were proxies, voting as if we were voting on behalf of Jesus and the interests of the world he loves.

Like everyone else on the planet the local candidates and party leaders fall short of the glory of God (see Rom 3:23) , so (in case there was any doubt) there will be no perfect government.

There are just under 12 hours left to vote and to encourage others to vote. Most of you who get to vote today have already made your decision. Whether you vote with or against the majority in your constituency, I hope you remember to make your mark.

Along with the policies and personalities, here are some questions you may have already considered.

  • Should you vote on behalf of our own interests or on behalf of others?
  • Which policies are most important?
  • Should you vote for policies and parties or people and leaders?
  • How would Jesus vote?
  • Would Jesus vote?
  • Which party would the disciples vote for?

WhichPolicy

As this blog is as likely to be read outside the UK I should clarify that I’m thinking about the UK general election but the questions might be applicable elsewhere. There are a lot of elections happening around the world and there are no borders in the Kingdom of God.

Even in the elections you cannot vote in you can (and should) pray.

“Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Phil 2.4 (ESV)
Whichever version you choose (here is Phil 2.4 in 19 English versions if you want to check) it is clear from this verse that we’re meant to think about the needs of others and not just ourselves. It’s not of course a passage that’s talking about voting in elections and there are other passages that will influence your thinking on individual issues.

I don’t know how Jesus would vote. My understanding of his teachings points me more towards one party than another but I suspect that he could say to candidates in each of the major parties (and some of the minor ones) that they are not far from the Kingdom of God. I side more with the Christians on the Left, but I also recognize that there are valid concerns and reasons why not every Christian agrees. There are Christians in Politics in each of the parties. Some of them can sit and chat passionately over a cup of tea and disagree while still being able to respect one another.

Jesus disciples came from different parts of the social and political spectrum, fishermen, tax collectors, zealots. How much did their life experience affect their outlook?

If they could have voted I suspect they would have voted for different parties, but would that have been because they weren’t listening to Jesus teaching or because they identified more strongly with some statements than others?

Of all the policies which is the most important?

Jesus was never asked this question. In Mark 12 he was asked about taxes, marriage and about what he thought was the greatest commandment. At the end he told one of the people quizzing him that they were not far from the kingdom of God.

At various points in his ministry people wanted to kill Jesus, at other times they wanted him to be king.

VoteJesus

A week after his triumphant entry into Jerusalem the people got to vote – not for who would rule but about who should die.

At the time that vote looked like a disaster. But God was the one in ultimate control.

He still is.

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