In just four days Americans will enter the voting booth and this dizzying and sometimes exacerbating Presidential election will finally come to an end. It has been a campaign season like no other. Unfortunately, it has created deep divides even within the church.
But no matter what the results are or how debated they might become, our relationships must stay intact—both with our fellow believers and with unbelievers. We must not burn bridges as a result of the contentious spirit of this election and the disdain the majority has with both major party candidates. Strong respectful debate is good and is to be encouraged. It sharpens our understanding of what is important. But the simple truth is that when the dust settles in America the greater work for the kingdom of God must and will go on.
For this we need each other in the body of Christ. For this we need a platform from which we can still speak with our neighbor. For this we need a commitment to godly relationships that will last beyond this and any election.
There is much at stake in this election. There is great concern for the future of the Supreme Court and rightly so. But maintaining the capacity to work together for the gospel and the opportunity to preach the gospel is of even greater concern. This is also at stake in this election, though not in the voting booth, but in the manner in which we conduct ourselves towards others.
We may feel frustration that we cannot affect the direction of our culture as much as we wish and that our vote often feels like a drop in the bucket when it comes to the national election. But there is one thing we are fully in control of and responsible for—our attitude. So as this temporary earthly election cycle comes to an end, like many before it and many to follow, I encourage you to reflect on how you have conducted yourself and will conduct yourself both in speech and in deed. Your reputation and that of the gospel of Christ will last way beyond Tuesday, November 8.
These are the priorities of the citizens of a greater and everlasting kingdom. And it is these priorities that should ultimately shape our conduct and vision. Our primary responsibility is to demonstrate our allegiance to Christ’s Lordship and kingdom not any political party or cause. Whatever is at stake in America—remember—eternity is at stake in the gospel. Recall also that the saints who have gone before us endured hardship for the sake of the gospel by “looking forward to the city that has foundations, whose designer and builder is God” (Heb. 11:10).
Paul said, “Walk in wisdom toward outsiders, making the best use of the time. Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person” (Col. 4:6).