In 2009, South Africans who have registered will have the responsibility of electing representatives for provincial and national government. How we exercise this right and responsibility of voting will have far reaching consequences for almost every area of our lives.
Concerning the role of Christians in social and political matters, the Bible instructs us to:
Pray “I urge, then, first of all that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all Godliness and holiness.”
1 Timothy 2:1-2
Repent “If My people, who are called by My Name, will humble themselves and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land” 2 Chronicles 7:14
Expose Evil “Have nothing to do with fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them.” Ephesians 5:11
Improve the Community “See the trouble we are in: Jerusalem is in ruins, and its gates have been burned with fire. Come, let us rebuild the walls of Jerusalem and we will no longer be in disgrace.” Nehemiah 2:17
Seek Justice “Stop doing wrong, learn to do right! Seek justice.” Isaiah 1:16-17
Oppose Ungodly Rulers “You have been weighed on the scales and found wanting...” Daniel 5:27
Uphold Christian Standards “You are the salt of the earth. But if salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled by men.” Matthew 5:13
Disciple the Nations “Make disciples of all nations... teaching them to obey everything I have commanded...” Matthew 28:19-20
Select God-fearing Leaders “But select capable men from all the people - men who fear God; trustworthy men who hate dishonest gain - and appoint them as officials...” Exodus 18:21
Voters’ Guide to Biblical Issues
“The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God” Psalm 9:17
As responsible citizens, Christians must strive to honour God in all areas of life (Matthew 5:14-20). We are to oppose evil (Isaiah 59) and work for righteousness.
“Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a disgrace to any people” Proverbs 14:34
Amidst all the electioneering, unrealistic promises, media performances, slogan shouting and empty rhetoric, it is very difficult to maintain an objective perspective on reality. Many even find it difficult to discern between what is right and what is wrong during election campaigns.
“See to it that no-one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ” Colossians 2:8
Be careful to not merely listen to what is said, but to observe what is done. Cut through the vast volume of verbiage and evaluate each party and candidate in your area simply on the crucial Biblical issues:
1. Does the individual candidate and his party acknowledge the authority of Almighty God? (Exodus 20:3, 2 Chronicles 7:14, Psalm 127:1; Isaiah 9:6-7, Isaiah 33:22; Matthew 28:18)
2. Is the candidate a moral, trustworthy person of integrity? (Proverbs 16:32; 1 Timothy 3:4-5)
3. Does the party permit a free and open market economy based on private ownership and individual enterprise, or does it hold to the discredited socialist strategies of state interference, central control and nationalisation (theft)? (Exodus 20:15-17, Leviticus19:15, Proverbs 10:2-4, Matt. 25:14-27, 2 Thess. 3:10)
4. Does the party uphold the right to life of pre-born babies? (Proverbs 6:16-17 & 24.11, 31:8, Matt. 18:10-14)
5. Does the party uphold the sanctity of human life by punishing all murderers with the Biblical sentence of capital punishment? (Genesis 9:6, Exodus 21:12-16, Leviticus 24:17-22, Num. 35: Romans 13:4)
6. Does the party uphold the principle that education - including teachers and textbooks - must be controlled by parents? (Deuteronomy 6:2-9, Psalm 78:4-7 & 111:10, Proverbs 22:6; Ephesians 6:4)
7. Does the party oppose the granting of special privileges to perverts (otherwise known as “homosexual rights”)? (Genesis 19, Numbers 15:15, Romans 1:24-32, 1 Corinthians 6:9-10, Revelation 21:8)
8. Does the party uphold Biblical publications control to protect society from the exploitative pornography industry? (Psalm 101:3, Proverbs 14:34, Luke 17:1-2, Mark 12:31, Galatians 5:13, Colossians 3:5-8, 1 Peter 2:16)
For further reading obtain: Biblical Principles for Africa and Make a Difference – a Christian Action Handbook for Southern Africa.
The 2009 Biblical Issues Voters’ Guide in English – detailing the positions of 8 leading political parties on 8 key Biblical issues - is now available from www.SAvotersguide.com. Distribute quantities to your congregation, community and colleagues.
Quantities can be ordered from Africa Christian Action, call 021 –6894481 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Updated Afrikaans and Xhosa versions will also be available soon.
The SAvotersguide.com website also features relevant articles, helpful links, a downloadable Voter Education tract and Powerpoint, plus view responses of political parties to the Christian Action Network’s Policy Survey. In addition, it includes the following general guideline to evaluating political candidates and parties.