Scripture tells us that in our assemblies, when we come together, we should pray for “kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty” (1 Tim. 2:2). This is something we regularly do in our worship service. But when it comes down to it, we also need to vote in the same direction as our prayers, and this next Tuesday is a time when it does come down to it.
As you know, it is not my place, from this pulpit, to urge you to vote for candidate x or candidate y. Vote for Murphy, or vote for Schultz, have no place here. The pulpit must never become a place for factional politics, or partisanship. At the same time, the presence of the Church in the world is inescapably political, and this means that if we do not draw the charge of partisanship, we are not doing our job. If we are not drawing the charge of license, we are not really preaching grace. If we are not drawing the charge of fatalism, we are not really preaching God’s rule over all things. So then, in the same way, if the political presence of the Church in the world makes no political difference to those given over to partisanship, then we are not fulfilling our calling rightly.
The outcome of this local race will make a great deal of practical difference to us all over the course of the next few years. The margin of victory in the last mayoral race we had was less than the population of just one of our parishes. So while I will not be doing any endorsing from this place, I do charge you—in the name of Jesus Christ—to be present in our town as a thinking Christian this next Tuesday.
So I can and will tell you that if you are eligible to vote here, you have a responsibility to do so. This is a responsibility that you must discharge before God, in a calm and responsible way. You are not to give way to the lies of secular democracy, which want you to treat your vote in some sacramental way, as though it were a sacred thing. It is nothing of the kind. But it is part of your Christian responsibility in seeking the good of the city where you live. This is not complicated.
One last thing. If you are not up to speed on the issues, then seek out someone you trust at church after the service, and simply ask.