American politics is strange stuff. It's powerful, narcotic,...and divisive.
I still love you, I even still like you if you vote for Trump.
But y'all need a stooge slap.
In love, of course.
Let's start with some good doctrine.
Q. What is your only comfort in life and death?
A. That I am not my own, that I belong--body and soul, life and death--to my faithful Savior, Jesus Christ. He has fully paid for all my sins with His precious blood and has set me free from the tyranny of the devil. He also watches over me in such a way that not a hair can fall from my head without the will of my Father in heaven; in fact, all things must work together for my salvation. Because I belong to Him, Christ, by His Holy Spirit, assures me of eternal life and makes me wholeheartedly willing and ready from now on to live for Him.
So goes the opening question of the Heidelberg Catechism. He also watches over me in such a way that not a hair can fall from my head without the will of my Father in heaven.
Unless Hillary gets elected.
In which case all bets are off, God has fallen off His throne, and I'm screwed. Or, at least, that's the rationale of this demographic who simultaneously identify as Christians and Trump Supporters.
It's the economy, Stupid
....quipped Bill Clinton's 1992 presidential campaign manager, James Carville, about the most important issue of the day. Naturally, Carville was wrong. It's Mena, Whitewater, and a trail of dead bodies and gullible women, Stupid. But Carville was right, too. Elections can be boiled down to one overarching issue. In following elections, it was character, Stupid. It was the Constitution, Stupid. It was legitimate government, Stupid.
But enough with the stupid. In this election, we're no longer talking about the general electorate, populated largely by fools. This election has hefty ramifications for The Church, whom I love. So let me redeem Carville.
It's the Gospel, sisters and brothers.
The issue at stake in 2016 is our Gospel witness.
When I say that I am a Gospel Christian, people are watching.
When I say that this Gospel codifies an absolute right and wrong, people are watching.
When I say that this Gospel promotes the sanctity of marriage, people are watching.
When I say that this Gospel promotes racial reconciliation, people are watching.
When I say that this Gospel promotes the sanctity of life, people are watching.
When I say that this Gospel promotes the high value of women, people are watching.
And if they get so much as a whiff that I think an elephant is more crucial to the life of this nation than the Cross, I'm toast.
I should close my Bible, close my mouth, and go home.
My gospel witness is over. Finished. Done. Kaput.
I am the Church. I have one job: to proclaim the Gospel, to guard it against heresy, and to live it. My vote must be a Gospel-driven vote.
If we look at Trump by himself, it's very easy to see his wickedness. He is a serial fornicator. He's spoken disdainfully of races other than his own. He runs casinos and bullies people and buys political favors. He calls his sister, a pro-abortion judge, 'phenomenal.'
But for some reason, when we put him in a room next to Hillary Clinton, his wickedness loses its clarity. Friends, this is an optical illusion. Trump is the man he is, regardless of who is standing next to him. Wickedness can never be defined in relative terms.
We can not proclaim to the world that we love what God loves and hate what God hates...
and then vote for someone who loves what God hates and hates what God loves.
Stop. Stop taking comfort from and seeking refuge in the wicked. Don't be taken in by the horror of a Clinton Administration. That is not the worst thing that could happen. The worst thing that could happen is that God's Church in America is rendered impotent because, despite all of our talk, when it really counted (on Election Day), the Gospel meant...nothing.
What is the theme of this election?
It is the Gospel.
Let good and kindred go, this mortal life also.
The body they may kill.
God's Truth abideth still.
His kingdom is forever.