Oh, how Nov. 9 can’t get here soon enough. Has there been such a divisive election year in our millennial history?
To no longer have to endure a barrage of political ads, commentary, name-calling and spoofs of the candidates; it’s nothing short of vulgar (if we even know what that means anymore.)
It’s become ridiculous, to the point where both candidates spew childish arguments over whose worse and why, and offer middle school class president stump speech promises along the lines of no homework or free pizza and soda. It’s a conundrum as to how we as Christians are to cast our vote; is there a candidate to whom our vote will be more God-honoring?
Between the two major political parties’ candidates, Democrat Hillary Clinton and Republican Donald Trump, I would argue there is very little difference. And this is where the vitriol of “but Trump ...” or “but Hillary ...” begins, and that’s all well and good. I have heard just about all of the arguments—“the things she’s done is still worse than what he’s said” or “he’s not a politician” or “everybody has sinned” or “he’ll nominate good Supreme Court justices” and so on. Might Trump nominate better justices than Clinton? Maybe, and honestly that is the best argument he has going for him—if only his character warranted trust. Personally, neither Clinton, who supports abortion, nor Trump, who says he no longer supports abortion, are anywhere near above reproach (which should hold water as to how Christians cast their votes), and neither has earned my vote. It’s the Kobayashi Maru, no-win scenario of elections, or is it?
Voting third party is a viable option. “But voting third party is just a vote for Clinton.” Funny you should say that because those on the Clinton side say: “But voting third party is just a vote for Trump.” Voting for a candidate is not voting against another, “but you are taking away a vote for our candidate and giving it to our opponent.” Um, nope, that’s not how this whole voting thing works. Florida voters will have at least six options of whom to cast a vote for president, not two. Voting third party is not taking away votes from anyone, as no candidate or party ought to own your vote; they must seek to earn it.
The only one who owns my anything is Christ, for I was bought with a price, a high price. And contrary to popular belief, the choices we make in this life matter. In fact, every choice—no matter how minuscule—matters. Are we to vote for a person of reproach in hopes of a more Jesus, pro-life and Constitution friendly Supreme Court? I can in good conscience and reverence to Christ answer no. At the same time, I would in no way impede you from voting your conscience and how you see fit, but God help us if we as the body of Christ let something as trivial in the scope of eternity as an American election be that which divides us and distracts us from the one seated on the throne yesterday, today and tomorrow. Ultimately, we serve an eternal, unchanging King, not a temporary president.
Alex Felton is student pastor at Ardella Baptist Church in Lakeland, Fla.