I don't think I am better than anyone else, and view myself as a failure that isn't good at much. One area I do consider myself fairly knowledgeable is politics. I have paid attention and don't just listen to sound bites or the powers that be who try to dictate my politics and beliefs.
**Disclaimer 2: This is not aimed at people who are reluctantly voting for Trump and not saying stuff like I am addressing. I don't agree with you, but I understand why you are doing it and am not condemning you.
One of my favorite Bible stories is the story of Shadrach, Meshac, and Abednego. They were in a foreign land, and at a large gathering everyone was ordered to vote for the Republican candidate, or face unlimited vitriol and hate.........oops, wrong story..... they were ordered to bow to a golden statute of the king or be thrown in the fiery furnace.
Can you imagine we modern day American Christians in that scenario?
"Hey Shad! You're making the rest of us look bad. Get on your knee and just say a prayer to our God"
Many of us would do just that. Bow and promise God that inwardly we aren't bowing.
This election reminds me a bit of that story. I still cannot fathom how the party that is supposed to have values and morals bypassed a few conservative and very decent candidates and went for Trump. The more I see and hear of him, the more sure that I cannot vote for him.... a stance that is as unpopular as not bowing to the golden stature of Nebuchadnezzer. Other Christians who have surely been mocked, maligned, and more for daring to stand up for something are throwing all that out the window and refusing to admit that I and others could possibly be right in feeling we can't vote for this man who has taken over the Republican Party.
I have been called stubborn, stupid, egotistical, and just plan too critical by Christians who are throwing their support behind Trump. It is getting beyond ridiculous. Check out exhibits A and B below:
This was posted by a Christian who I know of, but am not friends with. Sadly, I saw at least one of my friends "like" his comment, and though I could not see all of the comments, it did not seem anyone called him out for his insane comments.
Read that last part again: This Christian man says we who feel we can't vote for Trump are as disgraceful as the Westboro Baptist Church. Think on that. Even if you are 100% Trump, don't you find that just a tiny bit wrong and hateful? Do you believe that we who feel we cannot vote for Trump as Christians are as bad as people who protest at the funerals of soldiers, who spread hate instead of love, and say the worst possible things about gay people? Do you really believe that? If you were friends with this man, would you "like" his comment.... or would you call him out?
This is from someone who goes to my church. Take note of conscience being in quotes. According to this young blowhard, the idea of us not voting for Trump because of conscience is worthy of being mocked and not worth consideration or understanding.
How can I say this as nicely as possible...... it seems too many Christians are putting politics and Donald Trump above the Bible and God.
Consider this: Trump promised to further gay rights, which will very likely infringe on our freedoms and rights as Christians. He defends Planned Parenthood and is not pro-life... yet my Christian friends who are supporting him keep bringing up the Second Amendment, that Hillary will do away with it. They bring up that Trump will put good judges on the Supreme Court, and Hillary won't...... though they have no assurance of that.
Since when did gun rights and the Supreme Court become more important to us as Christians than abortion and homosexuality/moral issues? Since when did voting for whoever is on the Republican ticket become a must for Christians, no matter what that candidate is like?
At the RNC, something a man did in Trump's campaign - who will most likely get a job in his administration if Trump should win - is not getting the attention it should. He announced from the platform of the RNC that he was proud to be gay...... and got applause. As my best friend pointed out, if this had been at the DNC, Christians would be decrying it, but since it was at the coronation of DT at the RNC, it didn't cause a ripple among Republicans.
This party has become as opposed to the Bible and Christian values as the Democratic party, but somehow stopping the Democratic candidate has surpassed everything we stand for and believe, and even God and His Word must be set aside to stop the Democrat. This party is tossing aside the same values we have condemned the Democrats for tossing aside, and we just follow along and vote for whatever candidate they give us, lowering our standards more and more each election.....and how much lower can we go now if we support Trump?
What have we become as Christians? Are we forgetting that we are not living for this world? Have we forgotten that Christian morals and values are more important than the freedoms our government is still giving to us? Have we forgotten what it means to stand up for truth and integrity so much that we attack and mock those who are doing it for something that we have give in to?
It isn't ego. It isn't stubbornness or stupidity..... it is prayer, a lot of thought, and the desire to do what is right as a Christian and for God - not for America or the Republican party........ though I don't think it is right for anyone.
I have people who mock me and think I am nuts for not giving into my same-sex attractions and just living that lifestyle...... even other Christians.
I have other Christians who knock the way I keep the Sabbath.
I have other Christians think I am crazy for my stance on alcohol, smoking, tattoos, immodesty, and other things.
So this Trump debacle is nothing new for being misunderstood and mistreated for my beliefs. If you live your life for God, it comes with the territory. I am not living to please anyone here on earth. I have to do what I believe is right and that will please God, and I must abstain from those things that I feel is displeasing to God... yes, even voting for Donald Trump.
And let me be blunt: If you cannot understand that, then maybe you have already caved too much on other issues that God wants you to take a stand on. If you can't understand that, then maybe you are not the Christian you should be. And maybe, just maybe your unwavering defense and support of a vile candidate like Trump is an indication of your spiritual condition, or at least of your priorities.
A friend of mine said it is possible Trump OR Hillary may be God's judgment on America. We are past due for judgment, and neither candidate is going to do anything good for our country moral-wise or religious freedoms-wise. On election day, I am going to be as upset and sad no matter which candidate wins.
Another friend said these Trump supporters are dependents of the "give us Barabbas crowd".... and it does seem that way. The same friend also said there is truly a falling away from morals and consciences must be seared....... and it does seem that way. When a Christian can mock the idea of another Christian not doing something because of their conscience, and another one says we are as bad as the Westboro church, something is wrong.
I want to live a life pleasing to God, not people. I want my priorities to lie with Him and His Word, not my country or political party. As someone recently said, we should feel more in common with our Christian brothers and sisters in other countries than with our non-Christian fellow Americans.
And let me take that a step further: We American Christians should feel more in common with our fellow Christians in America than with our political party or candidate of our choice.
I would rather keep my conscience clear and "throw my vote away" than to vote for evil and throw my conscience away.
So vote your conscience and do what you think is right, but don't you dare mock me, or say any of these other things to me for doing the same thing.
And remember, we aren't living for America or this world - or for the Republican party and freedoms we hold as Americans. We are living for God and eternity. That is what matters... not a political party.