Christians – are you afraid of politicians? Donald Trump seems to think you are. Or at least hope you are. But really, the question is deeper than that.
But first, let’s get into why the question even comes up. It’s because of an article from Politico, titled‘Dangerous levels of contempt’: Trump deploys a convention to attack Dems on religion. A short excerpt will shed light on what’s happening.
Facing signs of slippage in his appeal among religious voters who helped seal his victory in 2016, Trump is carving out a deliberate and vocal message this week to evangelicals and Catholics who may be tempted to stay home on Election Day due to frustrations over the faltering U.S. economy, ongoing coronavirus pandemic or recent Supreme Court losses. Through night after night of programming, the president’s team hopes to remind religious Americans of the battles Trump has fought on numerous cultural fronts and scare them into believing their lives will irrevocably change if Democrats rise to power.
So three questions come to mind.
Christians, are you afraid of politicians from the Democratic Party?
Are you afraid that your life will irrevocably change if the Democrats win the election? In what ways do you think your life will change, with no chance of ever going back to the way it is now? Do you even want to stay with the way things are now? Or do you want things to be better? And do you really believe the Democrats have that kind of power?
And even beyond that, are you considering not voting Republican due to frustrations over the faltering U.S. economy, ongoing coronavirus pandemic or recent Supreme Court losses?
Christians, are you afraid of politicians from the Republican Party?
I fell like I have to ask this question, because there is still, at least in name, a Republican party. But honestly, it really looks like most Republican politicians are afraid of Trump. They’re either backing him, or afraid to go against him. Which leads to the third question.
Christians, are you afraid of the politician Donald Trump?
Are you at all concerned about the image portrayed by Trump, the things he does and says, and your allegiance to him? Are you being, as the church words go, a good witness for Jesus when you support such a man as Trump?
Either way, we have a close to a dictator as this country has ever had. Are you afraid of that?
One final question
Christians, do you fear God more than you fear politicians?
That question assumes you know what fear means, when it comes to fearing God. Let’s look at Psalm 111 to get some idea of what fear of the Lord really means.
Ps 111:1 Praise the LORD.
I will extol the LORD with all my heart
in the council of the upright and in the assembly.
Ps 111:2 Great are the works of the LORD;
they are pondered by all who delight in them.
Ps 111:3 Glorious and majestic are his deeds,
and his righteousness endures forever.
Ps 111:4 He has caused his wonders to be remembered;
the LORD is gracious and compassionate.
Ps 111:5 He provides food for those who fear him;
he remembers his covenant forever.
Ps 111:6 He has shown his people the power of his works,
giving them the lands of other nations.
Ps 111:7 The works of his hands are faithful and just;
all his precepts are trustworthy.
Ps 111:8 They are steadfast for ever and ever,
done in faithfulness and uprightness.
Ps 111:9 He provided redemption for his people;
he ordained his covenant forever—
holy and awesome is his name.
Ps 111:10 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom;
all who follow his precepts have good understanding.
To him belongs eternal praise.
Fear of the Lord
When we talk about fear of the Lord, it’s not about being afraid of God. You see, the Hebrew word we read as fear is this:
3374 יִרְאָה [yirʾah /yir·aw/] n f. From 3373; TWOT 907b; GK 3711; 45 occurrences; AV translates as “fear” 41 times, “exceedingly + 1419” twice, “dreadful” once, and “fearfulness” once. 1 fear, terror, fearing. 1A fear, terror. 1B awesome or terrifying thing (object causing fear). 1C fear (of God), respect, reverence, piety. 1D revered. Strong, J. (1995). Enhanced Strong’s Lexicon. Woodside Bible Fellowship.
When we revere God, are in awe of Him, we don’t have to be afraid of Him. It’s when we don’t rever God, don’t have awe for Him, then we need to be afraid. For more on that thought, please see The problem of “Fear of the Lord” over on my other site.
Just think back to the Greatest Commandment. Consider our relative awe of God and various politicians.
22:34-40 pp — Mk 12:28-31
Mt 22:34 Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. 35 One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: 36 “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”
Mt 22:37 Jesus replied: “ ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”
Conclusion – Christians, are you afraid of politicians?
We need to ask ourselves some final questions. With The Greatest Commandment and the true meaning of fear of the Lord, who do we “fear” more? Are we more afraid of politicians? Or do we have enough fear of the Lord that as Christians, we aren’t afraid of politicians?
|↑1||Strong, J. (1995). Enhanced Strong’s Lexicon. Woodside Bible Fellowship.|