How Should We Vote in November?
by Jack Cottrell (Notes) on Monday, July 23, 2012 at 9:35am
Bob Russell recently posted a note about voting for the presidency in November. He was dealing with the fairly common idea that Christians should not vote for Romney because he is a Mormon, and Mormonism is a seriously wrong cult. Bro. Russell’s view was VERY good, and I shared his post on my page. That generated a lot of discussion, including many remarks advocating–alas–voting AGAINST Romney because he is a Mormon–the very thing Russell was arguing against. Today I decided to enter my own comment on this subject, attached to the discussion just mentioned. I have decided to publish my comments as a separate note. This is not a thorough examination of the issues, but gets to the heart of the matter. I may do more with this later. But for now: here is why you should NOT vote against Romney just because he is a Mormon, and why you should NOT vote for Obama just because you perceive him to be some sort of “Christian.”
The deal is this: BEING a Christian, even a practicing Christian, does NOT necessarily make anyone a good choice for public office. Likewise, being a Mormon, even a good Mormon, does NOT automatically disqualify someone from public office–even the presidency. Many of you are trying to merge the two distinct institutions God has ordained to fight sin in this world: the church, and human government. God has a purpose for each, and they do not mix and should not be merged. The church represents one side of God’s nature to the world: his love and grace as exhibited in and distributed through the cross. Government represents the other side of God’s nature to the world: his justice and wrath, as distributed through the sword. The one ordained purpose of government is to protect the rights of innocent people in this world (including unborn babies). Romans 13:3-4a and 1 Tim. 2:2 express this purpose. HOW is government supposed to accomplish this purpose? By punishing evildoers (as represented by the sword). See Romans 13:4; 1 Peter 2:13-14. WHOEVER believes in this purpose and program for government is qualified to be a policeman, state representative, U.S. senator, judge, or president. IT DOES NOT MATTER how they came to their conclusions about this! IT DOES NOT MATTER what religion or lack thereof they may also hold to. If they understand what government is supposed to do, and are committed to see that it does it, this is what we should be looking for. One other note: To say that government is ordained by God to PROTECT our rights from being violated by others DOES NOT MEAN that government is supposed to PROVIDE us with everything we have a right to. Advocating the latter in the name of justice is the biggest error of liberal (progressive) politics, and is one of the main things that has got us into the mess we are in today. Please: stop deciding how you will vote in November by weighing Obama’s vs. Romney’s religions. Whatever kind of Christianity Obama has and practices HAS NO CONNECTION whatever with his qualification for office. What he believes government is supposed to do is the point, namely, redistribution of wealth in the socialist sense, until everyone is poor. If this is what you want, vote for him. Whatever commitment Romney has to Mormon religious beliefs, this is relevant only insofar as it affects his view of what government is supposed to do. I cannot see any negative applications in this regard, but I do see positive ones. I urge you Mormonophobists to start thinking straight on this matter. The church is one thing; government is another thing entirely.