Ideas have consequences, and you can’t beat something with nothing. Which means we’re in a battle of worldviews in the public square right now, and only a Biblical worldview can stand. Socialism is an enemy of the gospel, and so is big, tyrannical, centralized, warmongering government. We need God to make America full of Christians.
And yet here we are again. Mr. Trump won South Carolina just last week (and Nevada yesterday), and boasted about winning the evangelical vote in S.C. because he’s “a good Christian.” If Trump is a Christian, I’m a Ford pickup. (The man has never asked God for forgiveness, which means he’s never repented, which means he doesn’t understand the gospel, which means he’s dead in his sins, which means he doesn’t know God. He needs regeneration. And prayer.)
Nonetheless, the political circus we find ourselves in right now is mostly the Church’s problem. We elect leaders who think, speak, look, believe, and act like us. What you see in D.C. is a reflection of what’s in the hearts of millions of Americans. So who do people flock to? It’s either the ‘democratic’ socialists who cheer on larceny, or the loud-mouth buffoon who thinks he can say whatever he wants.
Let’s get one thing clear: we don’t deserve a godly leader. It’s amazing to me that Christians today will pray so hard for a godly leader while claiming that the Bible really has nothing to teach us about politics. Pietism is killing us. Since we don’t actually care to apply the Bible to the covenantal institution called “the State,” whose power is derivative and owes allegiance to King Jesus (Ps. 2), we’re stuck.
That said, what should we want from our elected leaders? Here are some guidelines from Scripture to consider with regard to the character of the leader. Believe it or not, the Bible does address this! And since the Michigan Primary is coming up on March 8th, I implore my Christians brothers and sisters to think deeply about these things—-
1. Fear God/Trust in Christ (Ex. 18:21; 2 Sam. 23:3; 2 Chron. 19:7-9; Ps. 2:10-12; cf Lk. 18:2, 6).
2. Understand that their authority comes from God (Ex. 18:21; Deut. 1:13-17; 2 Chron. 19:7; Ps. 2:10-12; Dan. 2:21; Rom. 13:1-7; Col. 1:15-20; cf 1 Pt. 2:12-17).
3. Be able/Have understanding (Ex. 18:21; Deut. 1:13-15; cf, 2 Chron. 1:10; 1 Kings. 3:9).
4. Be truthful (Ex. 18:21; Pr. 16:10-13; cf. Pr. 20:28, 29:12-14; Zech. 8:16).
5. Hate covetousness/Refuses unjust gains or bribes (Ex. 18:21; Deut. 16:19; 2 Chron. 19:7-9; Pr. 17:23; cf. Pr. 29:4).
6. Be wise (Deut. 1:13-15; Ps. 2:10-12; Pr. 8:12-16; 1 Cor. 6:5; cf. 2 Chron. 1:10).
7. Be just/Not respect persons in judgment (Ex. 23:8; Deut. 1:16-17, 16:18-19; Lev. 19:15; 2 Sam. 23:3; 2 Chron. 1:10, 19:7-9; Ps. 82:2-3; Pr. 16:12, 17:15, 20:10, 20:23, 24:23, 31:5).
8. Be known (Deut. 1:13-15).
9. Not Fear Men (Ex. 18:21; Deut. 17:19).
10. Not be drunkards (Pr. 31:4-6; cf. Pr. 20:1; 1 Cor. 6:9-10; Eph. 5:18).
11. Not be adulterers/womanizers (Pr. 31:3; cf. Pr. 6:32; 1 Cor. 6:9-10).
12. Be committed to defending the needy, innocent, afflicted, widowed, and fatherless (Ex. 23:6-7; Deut. 24:17, 27:19; Ps. 82:3-4, 94:20-21; Pr. 31:8-9; Jer. 22:3; cf. Isa. 1:23).