Unless your habitation is under a geologic formation, by now you are aware that President Obama was reelected. There has been much weeping and gnashing of teeth among conservatives and evangelical Christians, but the people have made their choice. Some are predicting gloom and doom, some talk about moving, but what should our response be?
Not surprisingly, the bible has some things to say about this:
“First of all, then, I admonish and urge that petitions, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be offered on behalf of all men, For kings and all who are in positions of authority or high responsibility, that [outwardly] we may pass a quiet and undisturbed life [and inwardly] a peaceable one in all godliness and reverence and seriousness in every way. For such [praying] is good and right, and [it is] pleasing and acceptable to God our Savior…” 1 Timothy 2:1-3 (AMP)
Yes, that’s right, Paul tells us to pray and intercede for “…all who are in positions of authority ….” I heard that comment, I didn’t say like him, no, you don’t need to agree with his policies, but you are commanded to pray for him. Oh one more thing, you are also commanded to love him. Hold on, hold on, don’t leave just yet, I do have a solid biblical basis for this:
“But I tell you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, to show that you are the children of your Father Who is in heaven….” Matthew 5:44-45a (AMP)
“But love your enemies and be kind and do good [doing favors so that someone derives benefit from them] and lend, expecting and hoping for nothing in return but considering nothing as lost and despairing of no one; and then your recompense (your reward) will be great (rich, strong, intense, and abundant), and you will be sons of the Most High, for He is kind and charitable and good to the ungrateful and the selfish and wicked.” Luke 6:35 (AMP)
You don’t have to like him, God never demanded that, but he does demand that we love others as He loves them.
So then how do we pray for our elected officials? Well we don’t pray our will, for example, “God make them see how foolish this policy is,” but we pray God’s will. We pray that He will grant them godly wisdom and understanding, pray that he will change and soften their hearts, pray for divine protection and that his will be done in their lives. Most of all, pray that those who do not know him as Lord and Savior, will, and that those who do will hunger for a deeper, more intimate relationship with our Lord. Also, ask Him to grant to them the strength and courage to make a stand for godly values in all we say and do.
Finally, pray for the nation. Ask for revival, ask for the Kingdom of God to manifest itself in this nation. Call for an awakening like we have seen in the past, one that will touch and change this nation. That is where our hope for the future lies, not in a party, not in a philosophy or any other invention of the mind of man. As good as they may be, they can not effect the fundamental, foundational changes we need. Only a sovereign move of God across this nation can accomplish that.
PS: I wrote the draft of this a couple of days ago. Since then the news breaking of General Petraeus’ infidelity has broken, serving to underscore the need to pray for our leaders. If a man with the strength and moral fiber of David Petraeus can fall in this way, how much more so those lacking such discipline. Yes, we are all tempted every day, but I believe that those who would serve in high office receive special attention from the enemy. When we fail to pray and stand in the gap for them, we leave them open and vulnerable to attack. I will say it again, pray, pray for all of our elected and appointed officials, pray for them whether you like them or not. Pray regardless of what you feel about their policies. Pray for them all, and pray for our country.