How Should You Respond?
On Friday, the day before the federal election, I asked the question: How should you vote? Today, the day after the election, I’d like to ask: How should you respond? What should you do now? You may be upset that your preferred party fell short (or looks like it will) or elated that yours will be in power for the next three years. Whatever your reaction to the result of the election, I believe, as a Christian, the right and required response is the same: to pray (1 Tim. 2:1-4).
Andrew Moody is an adjunct lecturer at various Bible colleges around Australia, and he offers the following list to guide our prayers in the wake of the election:
- Thank God for our stable and lawful democracy. Pray that God would preserve our government from corruption, violence and political intrigue. Pray also that God’s people
would be faithful in praying for their government.
“I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way. This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Saviour, who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.” (1 Timothy 2:1-4)
- …Pray that God would bring about the best political outcome to allow the spread of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Pray also that his people wouldn’t be distracted from this great
“The Lord is not slow to fulfil his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.” (2 Peter 3:9)
- Pray that we Christians would treat whichever government is elected with proper respect, remembering that rulers are appointed by God and serve as his representatives (whether
they know it or not).
“Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God … Pay to all what is owed to them: taxes to whom taxes are owed, revenue to whom revenue is owed, respect to whom respect is owed, honour to whom honour is owed.” (Romans 13:1, 7)
- Pray that whichever government is elected, it would act according to its core mandate:
“Be subject for the Lord’s sake to every human institution, whether it be to the emperor as supreme, or to governors as sent by him to punish those who do evil and to praise those who do good.” (1 Peter 2:13-14)
- Pray that we would not give in to fear about political developments but fear God and trust his sovereign care:
“Do not be afraid of those who kill the body and after that can do no more … Fear him who, after your body has been killed, has authority to throw you into hell. Yes, I tell you, fear him. Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? Yet not one of them is forgotten by God. Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.” (Luke 12:4-7)
- Ask God to give us wisdom to know when it is time to disobey or confront godless laws:
[The Jewish ruling council] “…called them and charged them not to speak or teach at all in the name of Jesus. But Peter and John answered them, “Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you rather than to God, you must judge, for we cannot but speak of what we have seen and heard.” (Acts 4:18-20)
- Pray that Christians would be generous and go on caring for vulnerable people regardless of what the government does:
“And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up. So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith.” (Galatians 6:9-10)
- Thank God that Jesus is the true ruler of the world and that his purposes will prevail despite what happens in this election:
“When they heard [about the council’s threats, the disciples] lifted their voices together to God and said, “Sovereign Lord, who made the heaven and the earth and the sea and everything in them, 25 who through the mouth of our father David, your servant, said by the Holy Spirit, ‘Why did the Gentiles rage, and the peoples plot in vain? The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers were gathered together, against the Lord and against his Anointed’” (Acts 4:24-26)
Grace and peace,