Should Christians really vote?
This coming Monday Canadians return to the polls and I absolutely believe every eligible Christian should vote. You can revisit some of my thoughts on that here, if you like.
This issue for Christians, as I see it, isn't if they should vote, but how they should handle their hearts as they do.
A lot is at stake.
And I don't mean federally.
I mean in your heart!
The deceptive lures of idolatry lurk around every corner, especially in election times.
Jesus is quoted in Mark 8 as having said "Beware of the yeast of Herod." There are layers of meaning in His words here. One of the things He is saying here is this:
"If the hopes for world transformation you have are held in political powers, you are in the wrong." In other words, if the kind of change you dream of seeing unfold in Canada is achievable humanly (through politics), YOU HAVE MISSED JESUS.
This is why as followers of Jesus we must handle our hearts well as we prepare to vote.
To help with this, let's do a brief exercise. You might remember this from our Ecclesiastes series earlier this year. Author and speaker, Tim Keller, came up with this inventory, which I tweaked a little for our purposes and entitled a "Yeast of Herod Inventory." Identifying any of these in our lives will help us to repent and remember our need for Jesus (and not an idol of earthly power). Let's go through this and allow God to realign our hearts and hopes with His.
Yeast of Herod Inventory
[ ] When things do not unfold politically as you hoped, you feel fear.
[ ] You begin to consider political opponents not simply as mistaken, but as evil.
[ ] You begin to think that something besides sin is the main problem in the world and something besides God is the main remedy.
[ ] You struggle to accept that political programs you support will also have significant and negative side-effects.
[ ] You struggle to accept that other political ideologies have good ideas and merit.
[ ] Others around you are able to identify that you have begun demonizing or deifying political causes and people.
[ ] You have put the kind of hope in a political leader or policy that was once reserved for God and the work of the gospel.