I am an avid reader, but I use the term “reader” very casually. I should say that I am an avid listener. I am in the car a lot, and most would say it is unsafe to read and drive, so I have made it a habit to listen to audiobooks when I am in the car for at least 20 minutes.
I recently “read” a book by Pastor Robert Jeffress, the pastor at Dallas, First Baptist Church. The title was Twilight’s Last Gleaming.
I am not going to give a synopsis of the book, but I would highly recommend reading it. Dr. Jeffress presents a great legal analysis and how, through the court system, our nation is going through troubled times.
The part that I want to focus on is a voting rubric that Dr. Jeffress lays out in the book. There are four questions that every Christian should ask themselves before they walk into a voting booth.
Question 1: “Are they a Christian?”
The first question is obvious: do they believe in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior? This is the bedrock question that every evangelical voter should ask, but it is not enough for someone to say they are; do they live out the Gospel in their everyday lives?
This may seem like the most basic question, but it has reaching implications. In our political world, we see so many political campaign slogans about being a Christian or a life dedicated to sharing the Gospel, but if you peel back the layers, that is not always the case.
Question 2: “How does a candidate’s faith impact their policies?”
Another obvious question. A candidate must be true to their beliefs while serving in office, and that must mean that they practice what we preach. Pun intended.
If a candidates says that they are a Christian but they also say that their faith won’t impact their policy making, that is not a candidate that I want representing me. My faith, and hopefully your faith, guides every action and thought we have. I cannot separate my faith from my life, nor should we want to.
Question 3: “Does a candidate’s policies align with the Bible?”
If we elect Christ-centered leaders, are they going to govern with Biblical principles in mind? When we interact with candidates, we have to ask (and they need to answer!) about the type of leader they will be and what policies they will support.
When, maybe if would be better, we get policy positions from candidates, we must research if those policies fall in line with what the Bible lays out.
Question 4: “How does he (or she) view the Constitution?”
This might be the most undervalued question, but I think it might be the most important. This question, to me, serves a dual purpose. Candidates for any elected office must have a stance on the Constitution. How do they view the words of the founding fathers? Is the Constitution a living document that changes with the times or a document that stands the test of time. Written words were meant to be what they are, not what we would like them to be.
If a candidate thinks that the Constitution changes with the times, then they probably believe the same about the Bible as well.
I cannot vote for a person who doesn’t live by their faith and doesn’t appreciate the words written, both Biblically and Constitutionally, but would insert a modern approach instead.
We can change the Constitution, but we cannot change the Bible. Any elected official, or wannabe elected official, needs to stand up for both.