Like many of my fellow conservatives, I have been watching with a mixture of trepidation and pride as our country moves away from Election Day 2008. The pure history of the moment has not been lost on many people, the fact that our nation has elected a leader of color, the first predominantly white country to do so I believe. On the other hand, almost daily news comes from the Obama Transition Team that leads many of us conservatives to fear the worst, politically speaking.
Just so there are no misunderstandings, I do not like Obama’s views on…well, just about everything. From national security to economics to tax policy to immigration to energy policy, I suspect that if he and I sat down for a conversation (were I to have the chance), we would disagree on most areas. It isn’t that we would necessarily disagree on the ends, but the means. And in the political/social/economic realm, means are just as important as ends.
Which brings me back to the conundrum. Because while my views are conservative, I am also a Christian, and because of that I have (or at least should) a higher authority to answer to. Herein lies the conundrum – I am commanded to pray for him, and not only that, the Bible says that all leaders are annointed by God. Ouch! To be perfectly honest, that is a tough pill to swallow.
The worship pastor at my church has an interesting blog post on it here, which has inspired some interesting comments on the subject. He makes the point that if we believe that God is in control all the time, then we have to believe that God allowed Obama to win (note to liberals:before you begin gloating, that also means that he allowed folks such as Truman, Nixon, Reagan, and George W. Bush to be President as well). He asks the question who are we to question God? Double ouch!!!
The conundrum gets worse – while I can agree with praying for the guy while disagreeing with his policies, the Bible also says that rebelling against the government is rebelling against what God has instituted. Wow, that is a tough one. So, was the American Revolution rebelling against God? Our founders certainly didn’t think so – they thought they were taking the necessary steps to secure the rights God had given them. Is it rebelling to vociferously argue against policies that you believe are ineffective and in many cases immoral? Is it possible that the reason Obama is in office is partly to galvanize people to take action against many of the policies that I suspect he and the rest of the government will try to enact?
Unfortunately, I don’t have the answer, at least a definitive one. What’s more important, following the leaders appointed by God over us or securing the rights that he grants each and every person? I know where I come down on the argument, and so did many of the Founders – this quote from Thomas Jefferson says it all:
And what country can preserve its liberties if their rulers are not warned from time to time that their people preserve the spirit of resistance? Let them take arms. The remedy is to set them right as to facts, pardon and pacify them. What signify a few lives lost in a century or two? The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants. It is its natural manure.
Obviously, I am not preaching armed rebellion, but TJ knew a thing or two about securing our natural rights and dealing with a government that had become obtrusive and tyrannical in nature.
I am interested in comments, both for and against. This is a subject I am almost certain will be covered in the future. But for now, I will pray for Obama and his family – that they remain safe and that God’s wisdom and discernment would permeate not just them, but the people he appoints. And I will keep the proverbial powder dry.