A Christian Republic Election Procedure

By Jessica Sosnoski

Why do candidates that are going to raise taxes, legalize gay marriage, kill babies, and confiscate guns make it into office? The answer is simple: it is because corrupt voters put them there.[1] Sometimes, ironically, the candidate is not in office very long before many citizens don’t approve of that person anymore. For example, in 2009, President Obama’s approval ratings were nearly 70%, while now they are below 50%.[2]

What would our country be like if the majority of people believed in the sanctity of life and marriage? What if people generally supported the right to bear arms and believed that taxes should be lowered? What if most people believed that criminals should be punished, not bailed, and that we should protect our borders from illegal immigration, removing the hand-outs illegals are currently receiving? What if 90% of American politicians – nationwide – were conservative?

This achievement seems impossible, but it can be achieved through gradualism. The obstacle of our voting system. Currently, we live in a democracy. Probably anyone one meets on the street supports democracy, because it is anti-oppression. Anyone who doesn’t support democracy is most likely assumed to be communist, a supporter of dictatorships, or tyranny.

Contrary to popular belief, the founding fathers were not striving for democracy in this nation. As Dennis Woods points out in his book Discipling the Nations, “Our founding fathers despised democracy almost as much as they hated tyranny. Notes from the Constitutional Convention contained references to the framers denouncing the “excesses of democracy,” Elibridge Gerry said, ‘the evils we experience flow from the excess of democracy,’ and  ‘[democracy is] the worst…of all political evils.’ After the convention, James Madison in Federalist #10 noted that ‘democracies have ever been spectacles of turbulence and contention…and have in general been as short in their lives as they have been violent in their deaths.’ Earlier, puritan clergyman John Cotton had warned, ‘Democracy, I do not conceive that God ever did ordain as a fit government either for church or for common wealth. If the people be governors, who shall be governed?’”[3]

The Founding Fathers did not want democracy; they wanted a republic. Dennis Woods also explains the components of a Republic: “In the republican form, the most godly and able men are selected as representatives. These then meet in deliberative assembly to codify law and decide cases on the basis of Biblical principle apart from local or factional concern.”[4] This method would assume that not just anyone could elect the godly representatives, because not everyone in the country would be God-fearing at any one time. There would have to be a checks and balance system even for election purposes. According to Act 6:3, the “brethren” – not the country, and not the state, but the church – were to appoint God-fearing leaders who were full of the Holy Spirit.[5] In the Old Testament, leaders were chosen, who were God-fearing, to reign over the small and great groups of people.[6] This election was provided that the people were Israelites – those who were God’s people. There is no Scripture that indicates the pagans, or strangers, in the camp were permitted to elect people as leaders. Only “Israelites” and “brethren” did so. This restriction was in place, because people, if left to themselves, could come up with all kinds of proposals. Without a standard, they become their own standards, and their choices will be based upon what they think is good. Goodness according to human reason results in chaos.

In today’s day and age, anyone who is 18 years old and older can elect leaders. A voter can be from any religious background, any cultural background, or even from any country[7]; although the latter is considered illegal, it cannot be easily stopped. So generally speaking, there are no restrictions other than age to keep one from the voting booth. Even “age 18” is not Biblical – all references to drafts and elections in the Bible reference “age 20” to be the legal age.[8] But at any rate, as can be seen in light of Scripture, there is a problem with our voting system.

In early America, citizens were not allowed to vote unless they owned property and went to church. The “owning property” factor may not work anymore in our society, since there are citizens who rent or live in apartments, but there is no reason why voting privileges should not be solely for church members. Church members are constantly being educated in Biblical law and principle (and, we hope, are retaining and applying the knowledge). They are constantly required to weigh every area of life against Scripture. Whether they embrace it or not, they will be able to identify someone who is at least moral, if not Biblically conservative. The seat of government would more easily be preserved for a godly candidate.

If an individual attends a church and insists on voting for the ungodly candidate every time, he should be eventually excommunicated, especially if he starts getting people to vote the same way he does. He doesn’t have to return to church, but at least the republican election process would be preserved. The seat of governance would not be threatened with the possibility of an incapable, ungodly man assuming that position.

Restricting the voting privilege to church members might seem like only a good goal without a way to get there. Millions of people that don’t attend church in America would start uproar. The way to achieve this goal is not through legislation that forces people to do anything; it’s through educating people about what the role of government is and making them realize that what we have in government today is not meeting the correct standards, constitutionally or Biblically. Publishing educational articles in newspapers or small hand-outs, creating audio or video links online, or holding lecture meetings are all good ways to begin this process. The ones who need educating first are the pastors in our country, especially those pastors who believe that we should hide from the country’s political scene, and those who are contented with political status-quo.

Part of this education process has to concern state incorporation. Pastors must understand that being state incorporated means that the State is in charge of what they say and how they say it. Churches can only say and do certain things that harmonize with what the state officials are willing to hear. In early America, and in ancient Israel, the church was a close confidant and advisor to the state – not a controller, but an advisor, one that the governing official especially sought. State incorporation reverses the church and state roles; the state becomes the church’s advisor, and the church cannot act according to God’s word unless it doesn’t interfere with the State’s agenda. The State should not be able to act against GOD’S agenda, which agenda the pastors and church elders most clearly understand (or should.) A key factor to returning the voices of the pastors is to eliminate incorporation. Pastors must value their freedom to speak the truth more than they value members who only attend to receive a yearly tax-deduction. Biblical economics must be taught in every church, with the underlying principle, even if each detail is not in place, that God and His people must steward what He owns.

Once the pastors start educating their congregations on obedient political action, and the congregations know what they should see in government, there should be fundraisers for God-fearing candidates at a local level for each election. As many congregations’ members that can be given a job to do should do a job for the common goal. The man they put up for election should be chosen based on Biblical principles. If he gets elected, the candidate should make his Christianity known. Every Christian who is elected to office should make known his bias for Christ and for the church ordinance.

When the non-Christians, or non-church members, of the town realize that they don’t have any say in a matter because of a bias government system, they may do one of two things: they might begin a verbal or physical protest. Or, they might think “if we can’t beat them, we should join them,” and they might choose the most liberal church they can find, just to say they attend a church in hopes that a government official would at least give their liberal views a chance. While attending a church, even against their will because of the pressure, they might begin to have second thoughts about Christianity, because even though this church might be liberal, we already covered the base that most pastors have to educate on Christian political action. But even if the person doesn’t have second thoughts, if he is still against Christianity, he will still bite the bullet and sit in that pew for his required 20 minutes.

Voting regulations could then be changed. Perhaps everyone who goes to the voting booth must write what church they attend. Maybe a non-church member’s vote would be considered one-half for a while. But by this time, since the pattern of the elected candidates have been strongly conservative or Christian, and more people have been driven to attending a church just for the sake of securing an official’s ear, it would not feel so radical if a law was passed for that community, that a church member’s vote was of more worth, and it would pave the way for securing that only a church member has the rightful authority to elect a governing official. Maybe the voting privilege of a church member would only apply, for a while, to the community votes, and then anyone could vote in a presidential election. But, maybe by that time, other communities nationwide would be up to speed, and we could get godly men in higher offices – such as congress, maybe even president – and the gradualism provision would not be necessary.

Through all these stages of development, we must remember that this will happen over a period of years – maybe generations. Regardless of the time it will take, Christians can’t lose sight of what their goal is, because when they do lose sight, they’re going to slip backward again. And it’s a lot easier to slip backward than to move forward. Once a piece of ground for God’s kingdom in government is secured, it must be held, or else the process will be that much longer to regain it again. As was stated earlier, the whole chain of events starts with educating people, especially pastors. If the community defends Christ, it is of a surety that the efforts will not return void.[9]

[1] “Discipline the Nations,” by Dennis Woods, Ch. 8, pg. 144

[3] “Discipling the Nations,” by Dennis Woods, Ch. 8, pg. 141

[4] Ibid, Ch. 8, pg 138

[5] Acts 6:3

[6] Deut. 1:13-15

[8] Num. 1

[9] Isa. 55:11


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