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Promises, Promises

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Political candidates these days summon our confidence by promises they make about the future. We wonder whether we can believe them. Or we jump on one bandwagon or another as if it could actually fulfill our deepest hopes and dreams—and drive away our deepest fears.


But when Jesus says, "Fear not, little flock, I have overcome the world," he is actually announcing an accomplishment of his agenda. The saints in the old covenant had to wait for the promises to be realized, but we stand on this side of victory. His representative life of obedience fulfilled the law; his death delivered us from the curse; his resurrection brought justification and inaugurated the new creation.


Down to the last word, John gives all glory to "him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood and made us a kingdom..." (Rev 1:6). He records the words of Jesus Christ: "'I am the Alpha and the Omega,' says the Lord God, who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty'" (Rev 1:8). "When I saw him," John reports, "I fell at his feet as though dead. But he laid his right hand on me, saying, 'Fear not, I am the first and the last, and the living one. I died, and behold I am alive forevermore, and I have the keys of Death and Hades'" (vv 17-18).


With this confidence as our ultimate anchor, we can be wildly optimistic about Christ's future for us without being seduced by the false promises, ideologies, and idols of our age—and the illusion that somehow our cultural and political labors are building or restoring Christ's kingdom. Rearranging the order of our loves, this good news frees us to exercise responsible vocations—including citizenship—without idealism or, it's flip-side, cynicism. We can cast our votes while casting our fears on our risen and returning King. We can even promote our candidates (outside the church!), with restored sanity. United to Christ, we should be the most responsible and the least fearful people at the polls on November 6, 2012, because our King already achieved his landslide victory in Jerusalem during Passover, AD 33.

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  • Amen and Amen!

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  • Amen! Jesus is Lord of ALL!

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  • Guest - red robin

    I can't cast my vote for charlatans, thiefs, and liars (politicians). I need to be able to sleep at night. Politicians are criminals in general - yes that's cynicism but it's also a fact.

    I cast my vote for Christ and only Him.

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  • Guest - Adam

    Red Robin,

    You're probably not far off with your evaluation of politicians, but that doesn't necessitate a cynical view of politics. Rome's politicians in Paul's day were no better than politicians today (probably worse), yet Paul in Romans 13 doesn't draw attention to that aspect. He actually tells the christians in Rome to be in subjection to them and to recognize them as under God's authority. The State is always going to be wicked and driven towards evil, but they have a God given role in this period of common grace. We don't have to vote, but the Word can't be used as support for withdrawing and refusing to vote, as if that is what responsible Christians should do. Christ is definitely reigning over this world, but he himself is allowing humans (and most times non-believers) to rule over the nations.

    A

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  • Guest - Rebecca

    >I can’t cast my vote for charlatans, thiefs, and liars (politicians).

    If you can't cast a vote for a sinner, you're never going to vote. Jesus won't be appearing on this or any ballot because he doesn't run for his office; the Father appointed him to it without reference to us.

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  • Guest - MandiM

    Really frustrating to try to choose the lesser of two evils. Both have character issues with ridiculous faith statements. It seems as though many Christians think Republican is the only "righteous choice", but given this year's candidate, I think that is a stretch.

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  • Guest - Grace

    There is nothing that commands us in Scripture to vote. To pay taxes, yes. Vote, no.

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  • [...] that he is risen and reigning over all things in heaven and on earth, even now, no matter who wins. Michael Horton reminds us that, United to Christ, we should be the most responsible and the least fearful [...]

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