Wednesday, February 10, 2021

Pastor's Ponderings, February 10, 2021

During This Political Crises, Let Us Pray For America

Adam Przeworski of New York University was the source of an article in The Economist October 2020 entitled, “Orderly transfers of power occur less often than you might think.” The article went on to state that in the past century, only around half of the world’s countries have managed even one crisis-free handover which is defined as government handovers free of coups, civil wars or constitutional crises after a vote.” America has been exceptional. “Eleven such handovers from one party to another have occurred in America since the end of the first world war.”  


Sincere people of different political persuasions have vastly different views of America.  Sadly, David Schoen, one of the defense lawyers in the trial of the former President Donald Trump recently warned, “This trial will tear this country apart, perhaps like we’ve only seen once before in our history,” implying America could be headed for a second civil war. If there was ever a time for prayer for America, it is now. 


Some people seem to see others as the enemy rather than simply those with whom they differ in their political views. But the religious scholar Desmond Tutu wrote, “When we see others as the enemy, we risk becoming what we hate. When we oppress others, we end up oppressing ourselves. All of our humanity is dependent upon recognizing the humanity in others.”


Rather than despise others who do not believe as you do, the Bible says that we are to love our enemy and do good to those that harass you (Matthew 5:44).  We should apply the Golden Rule of doing to others like you want them to do to you (Matthew 7:12).  We could continue to attack each other with righteous indignation, or we could apply the greatest commandment like Jesus did which was to love God completely and our neighbors as ourselves (Matthew 22:37-39).  If we choose to ignore this rule, there is a warning that we may destroy ourselves with the increasing bitter infighting (Galatians 5:15).


This is not to say we should not vigorously express our political views.  We should feel free to express our views by deciding to march, write letters, knock on doors, make phone calls, run for political office, or financially support our causes. This is a necessity in a free society. If we want to keep a free and open society, let us pray, agitate, protest and advocate but let us treat others with differing views as fellow citizens and continually pray for America.


Matthew 5:44

New International Version
44 But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you,


Matthew 7:12

New International Version

12 So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.


Matthew 22:37-39

New International Version

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.’


Galatians 5:15

Amplified Bible

15 But if you bite and devour one another [in bickering and strife], watch out that you [along with your entire fellowship] are not consumed by one another.






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