Voting Like a Christ Follower

I’ve seen the “Jesus 2020” signs around my town. I like them, because I get their message—“Jesus is our only hope.” But it got me thinking about the way that we as Christians in America view voting.

Because I hate to be the one to break it to you, but Jesus ain’t on the ballot this year.

Yet, I do believe that we (Christians) should be voting.

So with those two facts hitting us in the face—we should vote, but we can’t vote for Jesus—what do we do?

What does it mean to “vote for Jesus” in the election coming up on Tuesday? Here’s where I’m at on it:

You can’t vote for Jesus, but you should vote for Jesus.

I know that doesn’t make sense, but hang with me.

You can’t opt for clichés and call it good. You can’t put the “Jesus 2020” sign in your yard and be done. You can’t just share the “Jesus wins” meme on Facebook. These cannot be the extent of the intersection between your faith and your politics in your life.

Yet, there should be an intersection of your faith and your politics. If there’s not, you’ve got a problem. That problem is probably that you don’t actually have a faith in Jesus like you think (or say) you do.

A lot of people go to the polls with a mindset that faith and politics don’t mix. Their vote is completely divorced from their faith. They say they’re Christian, go to church, read their Bible, post-Christian stuff on social media, all that, but they leave it all behind when they go to the polls. Christian people, except on Election Day. Christian people voting as non-Christian people.

Here’s what I mean. They choose their candidate based on whether they’re pro-union or anti-union, big government or small government, for socialized medicine or against it.

Or more likely: blue or red.

In my circles, it seems to be all about the economy. Which candidate will create the best economy? Translation: which candidate will get me more money?

What we really should be asking is “Which candidate is for more of what Jesus is for?”

• Jesus is for saving and protecting the lives of those most defenseless.
• Jesus is for helping the poor.
• Jesus is for healing the sick.
• Jesus is for honesty, truth and integrity.
• Jesus is for crossing cultural boundaries with love.
• Jesus is for offering grace to the sinner (even the ones condemned to death on a cross next to him).
• Jesus is for … (let your Bible fill in the blank).

I’m not saying we can legislate Christianity or somehow vote people into heaven, but I am saying this:

Just because you can’t vote for Jesus, doesn’t mean you can’t vote for the Jesus in a candidate.

That’s what we should be doing next Tuesday.

So if you’re a Christ follower, I want to challenge you with this thought: What determines which candidate gets your vote? Their Economic policies? The color of their tie (blue or red)? The tax incentives they support? Or is it the Jesus in them?

Where you go from there can be debated back and forth ad nauseum, but at least you’ll be at the right starting point.

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Jake Mills
Jake Mills

Jake Mills is a pastor, speaker and author who is passionate about church multiplication and gospel transformation. He currently serves on the teaching and senior team at a large multisite church in Abilene, Texas, called Beltway Park.