Monday, October 20, 2008

How should a Christian vote?

This post is partially inspired by Jonell...if you think this post is going to offend you, please skip it :)

November isn't that far away, my growing belly keeps reminding me. But the alignment of Election Day in close proximity to my due date means I'll probably vote absentee...which means I need to make some decisions soon.

So, how should a Christian vote? Maybe Jesus' inaugural speech in Luke 4:18-21 would be a place to start...

"The Spirit of the Lord is on me,
because he has anointed me
to preach good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners
and recovery of sight for the blind,
to release the oppressed,
to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor."

Then he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant and sat down. The eyes of everyone in the synagogue were fastened on him, and he began by saying to them, "Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing."

Most of the Christian voting guides are litmus tests--two or three (very narrow) positions define the "Right" candidate--such as this one. In their mind, "pro life" is solely defined by whether Roe v. Wade is upheld and embryo destruction--in my mind, this is anti-abortion, not prolife (which embraces ALL human beings once they are born, by providing livable wages, education, health care access, etc...)

But I finally found a voting guide I can support. It does not tell you "you must vote for candidate X or you will go to hell", but rather outlines the issues and encourages voters to find out where the candidates stand. In a nutshell, those issues include:
--Compassion and economic justice
--Peace and the restraint of violence
--consistent ethic of life
--Racial justice
--Human rights and dignity
--Strengthen family and renew culture
--Good stewardship of God's creation
For each one, it gives a Biblical reference, as well as specific issues to consider.

So I'm not going to tell you who to vote for, but I do encourage you to be informed and prayerfully consider the candidates...not just for President, but for your local and state candidates, too.

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