Jesus is Not Standing for Election
An article by the Very Rev. Dr. Justyn Terry
As the 2012 election season gets into high gear the process of democratic election is once again in our daily view. Candidates and their supporters are presenting their policies and inviting us to give them our vote. Where those policies do not enjoy widespread support, we can expect them to be modified in the hope of getting more votes. Such is the process of democratic election.
Sometimes I wonder whether the way candidates refine their policies in view of public response influences the way we share our Christian faith. We can be so concerned to commend Christ to people that we sometimes shy away from sharing aspects of our faith that are unpopular. There is a temptation to modify our presentation in order to generate more interest. We can sound like we want people to vote for Jesus.
Perhaps it is time to remind ourselves that Jesus does not actually need our vote. He is already God’s chosen one (1 Pet 2:6). His rule is in no way dependent on our acknowledgement of it.
We who have the privilege of being followers of Jesus have the task of calling other people to become His followers too. We must not hold back on proclaiming the whole counsel of God in the hope of winning more people to Jesus. We need to talk not only about His love but also His holiness. We need to discuss His justice as well as His mercy. And we should proclaim not only His forgiveness of sins but also His coming to judge the living and the dead. One day everyone will see Jesus for who He is and we want them to be ready.
So as we enter into the final stages of this year’s election campaign let us be careful that our proclamation of Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord is not modified by the democratic process. Jesus is not standing for election. He is already the Son of God through whom and for whom everything was created (Col 1:16). He is already the King of kings and Lord of lords (Rev 17:14). One day every knee shall bow before Him (Phil 2:10). It is now for all people of all nations to acknowledge this just and gentle ruler and live as members of His everlasting kingdom.
The Very Rev. Dr. Justyn Terry is Dean and President of Trinity School for Ministry
and Associate Professor of Systematic Theology. He lives in Sewickley, PA with his wife Cathy and their two daughters.