II Corinthians 10:5

"Casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ."

September 2, 2008

Fiat Justicia et Pereat Mundus – Do the Right Thing, Come What May


A recent caller on the Rush Limbaugh Show posed the following question: Should we vote for an alternative 3rd party candidate instead of John McCain, thereby signaling to the republican party that we won’t accept a very mediocre conservative? Mr. Limbaugh replied that we can’t afford to have Barack Obama win the election in November.

With this response, Mr. Limbaugh implied that we should forgo voting for perhaps a better candidate (at least from the Christian perspective) in the hope that we would be saved from the greater of two evils.

The purpose for this article is to show that as Christians, this reasoning is wrong and ultimately dangerous.

Now there might be those of you who are thinking “But McCain is the only other candidate who has a legitimate shot at beating Obama, and he would be a lot better choice than Obama would be.”
While it is true that McCain is probably the only other candidate who could beat Obama, there are two main reasons why he really would not be a lot better choice than Obama.

First, here’s why John McCain isn’t much better of a choice than Obama from a political point of view.

John McCain supports stem cell research
Catholic News Agency, Jan 23, 2008

Would not support a Roe v. Wade reversal
Washington Post, August 24, 1999

In favor of abortion of babies who are conceived via rape, incest, and to prevent a woman’s death
Washington Post, August 24, 1999

Has repeatedly voted to fund pro-abortion providers with federal tax dollars
Chuck Baldwin, August 2008

Does not support a federal marriage amendment
CNN.com July 2004

Co-authored a bill with Democrat Russ Feingold, which keeps pro-life and pro Second Amendment groups from broadcasting ads that mention a candidate by name 30 days before a primary and 60 days before a general election (really a violation of free speech)
Chuck Baldwin, August 2008

Co- authored a bill with liberal Senator Ted Kennedy in which they proposed to give amnesty to over 12 million illegal immigrants

Now, I think it is pretty well known that John McCain is a liberal conservative senator, who has strayed farther away from the basic principles that most conservatives like. How did such a middle-of-the-road conservative get nominated to be the republican candidate for president? This very fact shows how much we have strayed from our true values as a party. Instead of trying to justify voting for him, would it not be better to purge the mediocre from our party, and send the country the signal that we are committed to voting for candidates with true God-honoring values.

Secondly, let’s look at the spiritual implications in voting for a mediocre candidate such as John McCain.

We must first realize that above all Christ calls us to faithful stewards of what He has given us. This includes voting for the candidate that best represents our Christian values. Christ does NOT call us to be successful. Sure, sometimes when we act faithfully we will inevitably be successful in our endeavors, but He never calls us to make success our number one priority.
Unfortunately, too many Christians will fall into the trap of forgetting their most important voting responsibility, which is to be the best steward of Christ we can be. Instead these Christians will sacrifice their duty of stewardship, and vote for a less-qualified candidate all because that candidate has a better chance of SUCCESS. In other words, Christians will drop their God-given duty of stewardship, and instead sacrifice it on the alter of winning/being successful in the election.

Why will Christians put success above being the best stewards we can be and voting for the most qualified candidates? We do this because of fear. We fear the worst candidate will get into office and the negative effects he will create on our country. Yes, in essence we fear the worst candidate (in this case Obama) more than we fear Christ.
We need to remember that as Christians, we are apart of a far more important race than a political one. We are called to be faithful stewards of Christ even when worldly success is doubtful. We are always better off when we make success take a back seat to faithfully persevering in what Christ has called us to do.

Pray that God would give you wisdom as who to cast your vote for- I think you will be able to find someone. Also, as we pray for you, our reader, please pray for us. Pray that each and every one of us would faithfully be Christ’s stewards and that we would leave the earthly results to Him.

“Never be afraid to trust an unknown future to a known God.” –Corrie ten Boom


-Daniel Wanschura

49 comments:

Aronne said...

Hey, neat blog! It's sort of like the blog I co-contribute to. I insert a shameless plug for it here:

http://graftedones.blogspot.com/

Anyway, thought provoking article. Not everything on our blog is as well thought-out!

Still, thought McCain's refusal to support fully a federal marriage amendment is annoying, that doesn't mean he's against the principles involved. In that CNN article, he is quoted as saying that other methods should be used before creating an amendment. I am afraid all of America will have to come to a much greater consensus on the meaning of marriage before we get any sort of federal amendment.

http://www.cnn.com/2004/ALLPOLITICS/07/14/mccain.marriage/

If I may ask such a question, who would you recommend as a good candidate in this election? No one I remember fit my idea of a top choice candidate.

Ted Sands said...

As the previous commenter said, McCain didn't flat-out not support a marriage amendment. In the Forum on Faith and Values hosted by Rick Warren, pastor of Saddleback Church in California, McCain said that the prerogative to define marriage rests with the states which is true - all powers not granted to the federal government within the Constitution of the United States resides with the states. He stated in the forum that if things ended up at the federal level because of such challenge (or something else I don't quite remember), then he would be for an amendment. I support McCain in this because of the distribution of power to the states instead of a centralized government.

Other than that, I don't think you made a concise case for voting your conscience in general instead of voting for the lesser of evils. You gave some debatable examples specifically for McCain but not for the issue in general. Cannot being a "good steward" include making sure a "more evil" person is prevented? Cannot there be a reason other than fear for voting for McCain over Obama?

From another angle, the beginning of your article seems to indicate that one is to vote as unto the Lord according to one's duty to God and not with any other entanglement. Is not voting to show disapproval to the Republican party on par with voting to prevent the Democrats from winning?

--thoughts

Isaac Alzen said...

Hey Dan,

You had a lot of great points. It really made me think.

I won't turn eighteen until march, so I can't vote in this election. Because of this, I haven't paid as much attention to the race as I would have had I been voting. So I honestly don't know who I would vote for (other than not Obama). But there was one thing that I was curious about. I know that McCain has not had a very clear stance on abortion in the past, but hasn't he repeatedly said recently that he is pro-life (correct me if I'm wrong)? Do you think he is lying, or has he changed his stance?

Btw, nice blog!

Anonymous said...

Daniel, I agree with you that many people vote out of fear and not fear of God. The right thing to do is to vote for a candidate who most closely stands for the values you hold as a Christian. I believe we will be accountable for every word thought and vote. How can we stand before God some day and say we voted for a man who believes in using aborted babies for stem cell research because we were afraid of the alternative? We must vote our convictions and I don't think that you mean that we are voting against the Republican candidate. Wouldn't we vote for a Democratic candidate if he stood for the values that we hold dear?

Congratulations on a good blog. For too long Christians have been afraid to do the right thing and I believe that is the reason the world is getting darker. The world is doing only what the world can do, it is the light that is not working.

Aronne said...

Okay, I have to post again. (Sorry.) There are three things I missed.

One blogger asked: "Wouldn't we vote for a Democratic candidate if he stood for the values that we hold dear?"

No! No Democrat would stand for the values we hold dear. If he had the right stance on abortion, there would be all those economical issues to consider. Sorry, but I'm not voting for socialized health care.

Ted Sands mentioned "the distribution of power to the states instead of a centralized government" - that was something I was going to mention but forgot. Our founding fathers originally intended for the states to have a lot more power than they do today. Federalist judges beginning with John Marshall have changed that. (I wish we didn't have to deal with defining marriage at all: it's gross what some people think & do.)

Lastly, and most important, was Mr. Sands' "keeping Obama out of office" argument. In the original article, you had a fine point about fear (which will continue to make me think). But, something must be said for accomplishing the greatest amount of good possible.

If five people are in danger of drowning, will you say, "I can't rescue them all. I'll wait until it's possible to get all of them out of the water"? No! You would jump in and rescue as many as you can, even if some drowned. The experience would be horrible, but because of your action, it would be less horrible.

That may be an unfair example, but in this election we can do a lot more good voting for a candidate who (practically) has a chance to win against a candidate that has truly awful values (i.e. Obama). Is it against the Christian conscious to vote for McCain? Then it must even more against the Christian conscious to stand by and let Obama assume the reigns of government. That is what we would be doing if we *didn't* vote at all. And how much less in voting for a candidate such as, say Ron Paul (in my opinion a worse candidate than McCain in certain aspects)? McCain's faults are grievous, but one must still ask, "Is it worth it, voting against both Maverick and The One?"

And if Obama were to win (God forbid), God's plan would not be thwarted. Yes, the United States may become more communistic, but still God is in control. Let us remember what Paul wrote in Romans 13:1 "Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God." (ESV)

Still thinking...

Northern Lights said...

Hi everyone, glad to see you’re reading! Thank you for your comments; they truly make for a much better blog. My personal response on the issues raised are found below:

I will concede the point about John McCain not supporting the federal marriage amendment. Maybe he would support it if it ever became a federal issue. My main objective here was to solidify the premise that McCain isn’t much stronger on moral issues than Barack Obama is.
Just where is his stance concerning homosexual rights?
You may want to check these out,
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/15334189/
http://www.azcongresswatch.com/?p=2575 …what does he really believe?

Next, I will respond to the question “Cannot being a ‘good steward’ include making sure a ‘more evil’ person is prevented?” In short, I would reply, sure it does…as long as you vote for someone who is the best choice. If you aren’t voting for the most qualified candidate, no it does not.
In the case of McCain: I don’t believe he really truly has strong convictions on Christian morals. Because of this, isn’t it fair to assume that he does not really appreciate other truths about governing (such as recognizing that his authority comes from God alone)?
A vote is a very powerful gift from God – it shows who we want to give the responsibility of leading our Country to. When I stand before Christ, I don’t want to say that I voted for an individual who didn’t truly respect Christ and His principles, regardless of how much worse the alternative was. I don’t want to give authority to anyone that really doesn’t deserve it. God doesn’t tell us to be successful in our endeavors, but to be faithful to Him and His principles.

Sure there may be other reasons than fear for people to vote McCain over Obama, but it still does not excuse them for voting for a less-qualified candidate. It doesn’t excuse them for giving authority to an ill-qualified person, regardless of whom the “enemy” may be. Were we faithful, fearful, or just misguided?

Let it be known that I consider myself a “Republican.” However, I do not vote for the Republican Party because I fear/disagree with the Democrats. I vote republican because I agree with their position on important issues. However, as the Left leans further left, I see the Republican Right following suit. My point: wouldn’t it be better to try to bring the party back to the basic God-honoring principles it was founded upon, instead of continuing to support them as they go farther and farther away from them? Is it really good in the long run, for our party and for our consciences if we support people who don’t support our convictions?


As it was asked who I support as president, I will let everyone know, that I have not yet made up my mind. However, I am looking into candidates Alan Keyes, and Chuck Baldwin.


Thank you all very much for your comments-please continue!

DW

"Always vote for principle, though you may vote alone, and you may cherish the sweetest reflection that your vote is never lost."
-John Quincy Adams

David Quimby said...

Dan / Meg -- I like the name of your blog. Did you know that there's a constellation in the southern hemisphere called 'southern cross'? btw: i would prefer 'northernlights' or 'mnnorthernlights'... but i'm compulsively orderly.

Good article... principle-based. There are probably studies that show principle-based living leads to more inner peace... regardless of circumstances. [btw: the prince of peace came to bring peace and we still have war... is he gonna try again? he came mainly to bring 'inner' peace... on earth... and eternal peace... in heaven.]

A thought: Does God need a marriage amendment to validate / sanctify marriage? Is marriage sanctified absolutely, eternally, and unconditionally... regardless of what the u.s. congress and 3/4 of the state legislatures think?

Grammar check: 'Pray that God would give you wisdom as who to cast your vote for'? [btw: i prefer not to end sentences / phrases with a preposition... although it's a gray zone. i think that concluding a sentence with the object of the preposition mkes a stronger sentence... like a bridge with an anchorage at each end. There's usually a way to do it.]

"He will make your righteousness shine like the dawn, the justice of your cause like the noonday sun." - Psalm 37:6 NIV

Onward!

Anonymous said...

Very good discussion. What would happen if a few Christians decided to do what was right and not go with the crowd? What would happen if a few Christians fasted and prayed and asked the Lord to raise up a leader to turn this nation back to its roots? Is He not the same God who slayed a giant through a faithful shepherd boy named David? Is He not the same God who told that same shepherd boy some years later to not trust in the number of his army but to trust in Him? Is He not the same God who started this nation 400 years ago with ordinary men and women who cried out to Him for a place to worship and raise their families for His glory? Is He not the same God who guided that nation to break from their mother land and defeat the great British Empire through an untrained army of God fearing farmers and laborers? Is He not the same God who brought victory to this nation over the Axis of Evil even though we were overwhelmingly outnumbered?

Our God wants to do great things through His people. All He wants to see are a few faithful people. He has so much for us if only we had the faith to receive it!

Anonymous said...

After reading Dan's article and the many comments, I am intrigued and would like to offer some of my thoughts.

As far as Barack Obama goes, he is more than just an inexperienced, arrogant man-he is the most extreme, communistic candidate to ever be put forth by the "Socialist Party." He would devastate our nation's economy and put the government in charge of what we the people ought to be in charge of.

I believe that as this presidential campaign has evolved, McCain has listened to the cry of the conservatives of our country, and will fight for our cause. Why else do you think he picked Sarah Palin as his running mate? She has very pro-life and pro-family values. McCain choosing Palin shows that he knows that those issues are desperately important to the base of the republican party and he will fight to bring our nation back to those founding ideals. Dr Dobson recently said, "If I went into the polling booth today, I would pull the lever for John McCain." See what Dobson and others have to say about the McCain/Palin ticket: http://www.citizenlink.org/content/A000008074.cfm

It surprises me that no one has commented about Palin yet. Did anyone listen to her speech at the RNC Wednesday evening? Check it out at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vKgNrb3baNM It was beyond inspiring. She pointed out what this presidential race is really about by fighting back against the ultra-liberal media and the democrats. They are the ones who are getting scared at this point in the race because they KNOW that Palin represents the conservative base and that she is a major threat to their evil agenda. They are going to work awfully hard to defeat the McCain/Palin ticket BECAUSE of how conservative it is.

With all the excitement that I have heard and seen about Palin, I believe that we are on the right track. Electing McCain on November 4th can pave the way to electing an even more conservative president in four years-perhaps Palin herself!

However, if we are being "good stewards" by voting for a candidate who has no chance of winning, we are throwing away our votes. It is essentially handing the presidency to our greatest earthly enemy (thus far) on a silver platter. It would be a major step backward for our country and would have devastating results. Four years from now, we may not have the chance to elect someone as conservative as McCain because government and the liberal forces will have grown.

We are in a moral battle with this election. I agree with aronne's analogy of saving those who are drowning even if you can't save them all. Besides, no candidate is going to be ideal to all people. Remember, we are dealing with fallen humans, and we must pick the one who is the best choice for our country. As the Burnsville City Chair for the McCain Victory Campaign, I believe that best choice is Senator John McCain and Governor Sarah Palin.

Please do your own research on Obama and McCain and prayerfully consider joining me on the campaign trail for McCain/Palin '08

Sincerely,
Anna Kihlstadius

Anonymous said...

How do you feel now that Sarah Palin is McCain's choice for VP?

Aronne said...

The following argument by a previous blogger weights heavily. I have heard it a number of times:

"However, if we are being 'good stewards' by voting for a candidate who has no chance of winning, we are throwing away our votes. It is essentially handing the presidency to our greatest earthly enemy (thus far) on a silver platter."

I believe "greatest earthly enemy" is quite an exaggeration. Obama is a horrible candidate, don't misunderstand me, but I think elevating (or reducing) him to (in essence) the antichrist is a mistake. Is indeed an antichrist, but that is no unique label. Such persons exist in plenty in this world.

Though McCain will may not make as great attempts to make our country more conservative as some people may try, he is going to bring our country no farther left than it is currently. He will not support a leftist agenda and will keep liberalism in check as best he is able.

And McCain did say, "I do not believe gay marriage should be legal." The point where he and I disagree is when he makes a distinction concerning civil unions, saying anyone should be able to enter legal agreements.

No ticket is perfect, and it remains that there are only two men that have any chance of being elected this November. Which will it be?

As for Palin: she was a wise choice for McCain to make. He will pick up a lot of conservative votes just because of her.

I have heard the argument that Palin should not be running as her place is with her family. I don't really agree entirely, but see where the arguer is coming from.

What do you think?

Anonymous said...

To respond to what aronne said:

Yes, to call Obama "our greatest earthly enemy (thus far)" does seem to be an exaggeration. Perhaps it is. To clarify, I see him as an enemy to our conservative roots and the people of our country. He is the greatest threat put forth as a presidential candidate. Does this make more sense? I do not think that he is the Anti-Christ that is predicted in Scripture, but do agree that he is an anti-christ among many that are predicted to come before the ultimate one.

As for the argument that Palin should not be taking on this position because she should be home being a wife/mom: I understand the biblical concerns here, but, I believe that since her husband apparently supports her in this pursuit, then it is not wrong for her to pursue the vice-presidency. A wife is to be in submission to her husband and to God. I believe that Palin is honoring both of these authorities.

And for further interesting information, check out the church that the Palin family attends: http://wasillabible.org/

Sincerely,
Anna Kihlstadius

Northern Lights said...

As far as Sarah Palin goes: I personally think she's a pretty sharp candidate, although there is a case to be made whether or not women should be the leaders of a country.

One problem though Sarah Palin may be a great candidate with great values, she isn't vying for the presidency-John McCain is. We vote for presidents, not VP’s. Why did McCain pick Palin? -Because he was already favorable with moderates and independents.
He needed to lock up the base of the party if he wanted any chance of winning.

McCain does know that moral issues are very important to a lot of people within the Party. But does he really share the same convictions as us, or is he just trying to get our vote?

_ DW

Aronne said...

Anna K. wrote:

"He is the greatest threat put forth as a presidential candidate. Does this make more sense? I do not think that he is the Anti-Christ that is predicted in Scripture, but do agree that he is an anti-christ among many that are predicted to come before the ultimate one."

Precisely. Read that paragraph again, for it is exactly true and more people need to realize it.

On Palin: Her husband's consent doesn't change what the Bible says. I'm not necessarily disagreeing with her, it's just that her husband doesn't really change too much. (Of course he consents to her actions!) The question is: should Palin, a woman, run for public office, particularly during the family difficulties she is undergoing? (I reserve my right to answer later. [:]-)

Northern Lights: "does [John McCain] really share the same convictions as us, or is he just trying to get our vote?" That is a very good question. I am sure he has done a bit of smooth-talking to comfort the right. Still, many of his convictions are terrible, just not as conservative as they could be.

Example:
http://www.ontheissues.org/Senate/John_McCain_Abortion.htm

I will still think hard on this issue.

Riley Pritchett
http://graftedones.blogspot.com/

Anonymous said...

In case y'all are interested, take a look at the videos of the speeches from the Republican National Convention this past week:

http://www.gopconvention2008.com/videos/

I think it would be helpful to hear McCain and Palin's speeches especially.

Sincerely,
Anna Kihlstadius

Brian W. said...

Dan-
Up until McCain's pick for vice president, I was not going to vote for him. First and foremost, I consider myself a conservative, not a republican. I believe it was because of people like you and me, and Rush, that McCain picked a true conservative like Palin. I believe that McCain will only last 4 years. Palin, a conservative will be the new face of the Republican party.

Very good article, I liked one of the other writer's example however,
if 5 people are drowning, you aren't not going to try and save them because you wouldn't be able to get all of them, you would save the one or two.

The same goes for my country. I have to vote for the people who will not destroy the country. I believe Obama would.

I wanted to make one more comment on stem cell research. As long as its not being down at the expense of aborted babies, I believe that it is a tool that can be used for furthering medical wonders. Just my thoughts.

Anonymous said...

Has anyone heard what Oprah has said about Obama? Take a look at this interesting article: http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=28408 I know it is a bit of a stretch, but, the author is simply questioning Obama's religious beliefs based on his association with Oprah and her adherence to the Tolle Doctrine.

Also, to dig into who Obama REALLY is, check out this book: http://www.amazon.com/Case-Against-Barack-Obama-Unexamined/dp/1596985666?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1217013001&sr=8-1
My mom read it and said that if anyone took the time to read it, they would do everything in their power to prevent Obama from being elected President.

Sincerely,
Anna Kihlstadius

Tyler Godin said...

Hey Dan!

Great post! Very thought-provoking! As you know, I'm not voting this election (maybe that's a good thing this year), but I thought I would add my opinion. :)

I agree with you that McCain isn't very conservative. I would have liked to see Huckabee take the nomination instead. And, I see what you are saying about voting third party as opposed to a fairly liberal Democrat.

However, I am sure that we would all agree that we will have a President Obama or President McCain in January. If we were to vote for a third party candidate like Chuck Baldwin, the Republican party would be split, and Obama would take the presidency easily. I just think that by voting for McCain, we would keep a worse candidate out of office. Even though McCain might support stem cell research on aborted embryos, a lot more babies would be murdered under an Obama presidency (which would occur by voting third party and spliting the Republican party). Wouldn't voting third party be tossing out our vote, and handing the presidency to a full blown liberal?

Just my thoughts of course...maybe I'm just way off. Any comments anybody?

Keep up the great blog!

Tyler Godin

Tyler Godin said...

Ooops! I ment to say "fairly liberal Republican" instead of "fairly liberal Democrat" in that 2nd paragraph. (Speaking of McCain)

Northern Lights said...

My friends, thank you for your continued comments!

It seems that the focus of a lot of this discussion is Barack Obama, and how bad he would be for the country. I agree that he is a terrible candidate. However, let me reiterate a point I have already made. I believe we would not be voting our values, but would be voting to try to keep Obama out of office, and therefore would be voting out of fear.
Though our intentions may be noble, it is always harmful to lower our standards, (small as they may seem) no matter what we are faced with. Christians stray from their convictions not by lowering all their standards at once, but by lowering them little by little. As it says in the book of Acts, “We ought to fear God, rather than men.” – My opinion is that it is better to fear God by voting for the best possible, rather than vote to potentially give the keys of the Country to an ill-qualified candidate. We can’t let the potential outcome sway us in our voting decision. Fear The God, and not the enemy.

I don’t believe the example of the five drowning people is really coherent to this discussion. You wouldn’t have to lower your moral standards and convictions by jumping in the water to save just a few people. You would have to lower them in the case of voting. I realize no candidate is perfect, but does that mean we should still not vote for the best option?

It is my opinion that we should not vote according to the “potentials”, but on the invariableness of what God has told us.

That's my opinion - what do you think?

_DW

Tyler Godin said...

Dan said:

"I realize no candidate is perfect, but does that mean we should still not vote for the best option?"

I think you are right on, and that we should go for the best option. I guess it depends on which candidates you compare in order to find that best option. I look at Obama and McCain, and you are including third party candidates. If you only look at the first two, then McCain is obviously the best. See what I mean? Maybe I am still way off. :)

Tyler

Tyler Godin said...

Like I said, since we all would agree that McCain or Obama will be president, wouldn't it be using our vote wisely and pleasing to God by voting for the best out of the two? Would we be wasting our vote by voting third party and handing the presidency to Obama? Just my thoughts of course...

Meagan said...

So how far are we loyal to "our" party? What makes us all Republicans in the first place? At least for me (even tho I've never voted), it is because of the standards that they hold. However, when they start to depart from those standards, do we depart along with them, or do we hold fast to our convictions? We can't just blindly vote for whoever the Republican Party spews out as us, or where will it stop?

Thoughts...

-Meagan Wanschura

Aronne said...

Quick thought: How can we be voting our values if we knowingly let Obama into office? (Not sure if I totally agree with myself, but I see where I'm coming from...)

Tammy Kihlstadius said...

We have to keep in mind our goals in voting. Granted, our ultimate goal would be to have the finest people possible. However, the sinless ticket has yet to be nominated. So I look at which ticket will have the highest probability of advancing my ideals and goals the furthest. Yes, I am sure that there are some obscure tickets that represent a higher level of "righteousness" by our standards but do they really have any probability of advancing my goals of a more Godly nation? No. Voting for a Republican is not a compromise, it is a very rational decision based on advancing my Christian goals.

Aronne said...

Here's another way in which McCain and I don't see eye to eye:

"Global warming is a serious threat. There is overwhelming evidence that increasing amounts of carbon dioxide [and other gases] are heating up the Earth's climate and that inaction could be disastrous. ... [I]n this case, doing what will earn respect and support around the world is also in our own best environmental and economic interests and is the right thing to do. Even if, despite all the evidence, one chooses to remain a skeptic on climate change, taking action today -- as an insurance policy -- is the only wise course of action. As the mercury rises, so does the need for a creative solution."

- Senator John McCain

http://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Global_warming

Tammy Kihlstadius said...

I do agree that McCain's position on Global warming is rather pathetic but I think time will prove that it is not the disaster everyone fears. When I was in high school debate in 1978, we had plenty of "evidence" that showed the earth was cooling and we would run out of petro by 2000. The "experts" also predicted we would all starve by now. Advances in technology have shattered the myth of finite resources. Nuclear fusion is the next step. We now produce more "product" per unit of energy than we ever did!

Anonymous said...

Check out this website with info on the new, more conservative than ever, Republican Party platform. There are also links to related issues that might be interesting to check out:

http://www.citizenlink.org/content/A000008074.cfm

Sincerely,
Anna Kihlstadius

More thoughts in my head, but not enough time to type them. :-(

Christina Hall said...

Vote McCain/Palin versus Vote Third-Party!
Reasons and rhetoric submitted, these two positions vie for our approval...

Thus far, the argument of “voting your conscience” has been used mainly by those in defense of Voting Third Party. I am assuming this discussion is between sincere Christians who are trying to determine how to vote in light of scripture. Therefore I would like to clarify that none of us disagree with the mandate from God not to sin against/violate our conscience. It is not that those who plan to vote McCain are planning on feeling guilty about it. The option is not between “voting your conscience” and “voting the lesser of the two evils.” Followers of Christ do not have the option to “sear their conscience.”

So the question is: is it right to “vote the lesser of two evils?” (for if it is, our conscience will not condemn us in it).

In light of biblical principles and Christ’s example we are to (among other things): Be salt and light to the world (Mt 5:13), Execute judgment for and relieve the oppressed (Ps 103:6, Is 1:17), Leave grandchildren good inheritance (Pr 13:22), Destroy the works of the devil (1 Jhn 3:8).

I have always been an idealist, but as I’ve gotten older, I’ve realized that I do not live in an ideal world. Man is fallen. To deny man’s fallen state is to live in denial of the truth. But be of good cheer, for the terrible state of reality regarding man is nothing compared to the wondrous state of reality regarding God. God has proven Himself powerful enough to work through fallen creatures. More than that, He has always had a perfect plan to redeem mankind. Even on this earth we can enjoy a foretaste of glory – but this is only possible as we live in accordance to His standards, His nature, His Spirit. I call His standards my ideals. Though the world is an ugly place, I am still an idealist because I believe in the redemptive power of my God. To apply all this to the current issue...I will never lower my standard for the ideal president/leader, which is “a regenerate follower of Christ who lives fully in accordance with the nature of God”, but I will still vote for someone who doesn’t meet the standard (which BTW, no one does), because I am looking to affect this fallen world for Christ AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE.

Is it POSSIBLE for your third party candidate to win? And if you admit that your third party candidate, who is not even really the "ideal candidate," doesn’t have a chance at getting into office, how is voting for him doing anything to accomplish the mandate from God to be salt and light to the world?

If you know it’s going to be either Obama or McCain this fall, and you also know that Obama will oppress the unborn and increase the devil’s foothold in society, how is voting for an acknowledged loser seeking to relieve the oppressed, secure a good future for your grandchildren, or stop the advance of Christendom's enemy figurehead, the devil?

As far as McCain being any better than Obama...he is, if not by much. Here's a chronological summary of the two candidates’ claims and voting records on the issue of abortion (my source: http://www.ontheissues.org/Senate/Senate.htm)

MCCAIN
• Aug 1999 Wants Roe vs. Wade made irrelevant, but would not repeal it.
• Oct 1999 Voted YES on banning partial birth abortions.
• Jan 2000 Overturn Roe v. Wade, but keep incest & rape exceptions.
• Dec 2003 Rated 0% by NARAL (National Abortion Rights Action League), indicating a pro-life voting record.
• Dec 2006 Rated 75% by the NRLC (National Right to Life Committee), indicating a mixed record on abortion.
• May 2007 Supports repealing Roe v. Wade.
• Oct 2007 Voted YES on barring HHS (U.S. Department of Health & Human Services) grants to organizations that perform abortions.
• Mar 2008 Voted YES on defining unborn child as eligible for SCHIP (State Children's Health Insurance Program).

OBAMA
• July 1998 Supports Roe v. Wade.
• May 2004 Protect a woman's right to choose.
• 2005-2007 Rated 100% by NARAL on pro-choice votes in these years
• Dec 2006 Rated 0% by the NRLC, indicating a pro-choice stance.
• Oct 2007 Voted against banning partial birth abortion.
• Mar 2008 Voted NO on defining unborn child as eligible for SCHIP.
• Apr 2008 Undecided on whether life begins at conception.
• Apr 2008 “We can find common ground between pro-choice and pro-life.”

It is clear that McCain is not the ideal candidate regarding abortion. His Roe v. Wade position in 1999 was a very weak pro-life and its increase in strength (though fairly steady over the years) still leaves it far from the ideal (I refer to, for example, his stance on embryonic stem cell research). But McCain's record, and for me - the belief that his integrity is strong enough to hold him to the pro-life claims he is making in his campaign, is sufficient evidence to believe that under President McCain, the murder of unborn humans will become more difficult, and babies that would be aborted under President Obama will live. Again, I am not arguing that the McCain/Palin ticket is the ideal ticket. I am arguing that to vote "the lesser of two evils" need not always be to vote against your conscience. Indeed, in this election, it may be the only right thing to do. I do fear God. I fear that when I stand before Him and my vote in this election is weighed, He may say to me:

"Because you, although you 'understood the times' [knew the probable repercussions of not voting for McCain, and knew that getting McCain into office would at least ebb the tide of murder in America], chose not to do what you could to keep Obama from gaining the presidency, the blood of the humans he allowed to be murdered via abortion is on your hands as well."

I don't mean to make your head spin with that gigantic word "if" (as in "if you would have voted McCain, millions of now dead babies would have lived to see the light of day"). GOD IS SOVEREIGN (is not this overwhelmingly relieving?)! Voting third party will not necessarily keep McCain from winning as much as voting for McCain will necessarily keep Obama from winning. But we all will have to answer to God for our votes. I have some reasons to give in defense of my vote for McCain (as that is who I am presently planning on voting for) - reasons that, so far as I've thought on them, seem to be sound. Daniel W. or anyone else who disagrees with me: I am very open and even anxious to read the clarification or strengthening of your position to Vote Third Party. I come to this discussion table with a limited understanding of God's nature and am not firmly set in my decision. Convince me that God's Word and Nature dictates another course of action in this election, and I will heartily recant.

In the spirit of "iron sharpening iron",
Christina Hall

P.S. Dan: In a presidential election, you are voting for both a president and a vice-president. What happens if McCain is assassinated the day after he's sworn in? Say hello to President Palin.

Meagan said...

First of all to respond to Christina's comment: "Is it POSSIBLE for your third party candidate to win?"
I believe that yes, if enough people vote for the person that best represents their ideals, it is possible. As Pastor Chuck said at church yesterday, God used twelve ordinary men to turn their world upside down. Think of the results if a few million Christians voted for the most qualified person on the ballot. When we stand before God, do we want to say that "we voted for the person who we thought had the best shot at winning"? Or do we want to say, "We voted for the most qualified man, Lord, and left the results to you." If God can take two loaves of bread, and five fish and feed five thousand, don't you think He can take the votes of a few faithful Christians and do amazing things?


Secondly, I would agree that we do elect a vice president. And if John McCain were to get shot the day after he took office, would we really want President Palin? Should a woman be commander in chief of our armed forces?

Perhaps it will take an election "lost" to get us back on the right track. Whenever Israel turned away from God, they were given a bad ruler to turn them back to Him. Maybe that's what we need in America, a wake-up call. If we continue to just blindly vote for the Republican Party, we will soon have two parties in the US, the Left, and the Farther Left.

So, as Dan said in his original post, " Christ does NOT call us to be successful." He does however, call us to be faithful.

Do the right thing...come what may

-Meagan

mn lady slipper said...

...or we could stand before God someday and hear Him say, "Why did you count me out of the equation? You know I am the God of the impossible. I called you to be faithful(which I believe is voting for the BEST, not perfect, candidate)and leave the results to me. I wanted to turn your world upside down, but you trusted in your vote and not Me."

Are not ALL things possible with God? We take matters into our own hands and then ask Him to bless the results.

And whether it is possible in our finite minds or not should not matter. A good jolt to the wishy washy Republican Party would either set them straight or start a formidable third party. We need to do something besides status quo. Status quo is not working. Abortion has continued in this country for over 35 years with Republican and Democratic presidents and Republican and Democratic Congresses. It is amazing what God will do when His people are faithful and courageous. Just ask a little shepherd boy named David. There was no chance- no chance of him defeating that giant. Talk is cheap Christians- let's face the giant!

And let's make no mistake about it- it is not a president from any party that is going to heal our land. God can and will heal our land through whom EVER He choses. Remember Nebuchadnezzer? The heart of the king is in Who's hand?

2 Chronicles 7:14

God will only do radical things when we have radical faith.

Tammy Kihlstadius said...

Well done Christina!

Tammy Kihlstadius said...

You young whipper-snappers need to search a little more history. The Republican party is very capable of moving right again. It takes hard work, dedication and education to re-establish its conservative core. It is there. In the 80's, after Jimmy Carter messed up everything, Ronald Reagan was able to rise to the top with his pure, pro-life, right wing conservatism. He rallied not only our conservative base but pulled in huge numbers of Democrats who also value life and family. And again, in 1994, after only 2 years of a liberal Clinton admin, the "Contract with America" (google it) swept the polls and established for the first time in many years, a conservative Republican house and senate. They cut welfare and taxes and then strong-armed Clinton into signing these cuts. Our economy boomed and Clinton took the credit. It can ignite again. That is why I remain loyal to the Republican party. Read their platform; it is primarily very conservative. Unfortunately, some Republican candidates are not. (e.g. Tim Pawlenty) As for the pro-life movement, as medical technology advances I believe someday a woman will have the choice to terminate a pregnancy but not kill the baby. Not that I would ever recommend that choice but it will exist and remove the need for the liberal version of family planning: kill the child. We don't want to mimic the Democrats who wistfully say, "I didn't leave the Democrat Party, it left me."

Anonymous said...

So what happens to the baby when you "terminate the pregnancy"?

Tammy Kihlstadius said...

I think that it will be able to be placed into a surrogate mother or "test-tube" (for lack of a better term) and come to full term and hopefully adopted. This is all hypothetical on my part but I think it will happen someday. For good or bad i don't know....

christina hall said...

We agree that...
God is Sovereign:::
Neither side is claiming that we voters hold the position of God this election. I believe God directs the course of history, and agree that "it is not a president from any party that is going to heal our land." (mnladyslipper)

We agree that...
It is Not the Republican Party that Holds our Loyalties:::
If I vote for McCain, it will have nothing to do with his tie to the Republican party. I do not even "consider myself" a Republican as strongly as most of you do. My loyalty is to God, and to my Country in that I desire to see it a righteous culture that honors Him. My vote will reflect these loyalties and no other.

We agree that...
Cultural Revival Does Not Depend on this Election Alone (and we agree that we ought to trust God, not our preferred candidate):::
Our country's culture is far below the standard of righteousness. I believe McCain's election will prove to bump it closer to the standard (if only on certain issues), but the work once he's president will be FAR from over. I admire mnladyslipper's spirit of revolution. I too desire cultural revolution in America, but more than that I desire spiritual revolution in America. Indeed we can not achieve the former before the latter. The "giant" is Sin, and I, by God's grace, am already facing it. "For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers..." (Eph 6:12) You can count me in on the cultural revolution as well. After we (with our vote) help McCain stop Obama and his intended evil from sinking America further, let us continue working on the foundation of America's political arena (the beliefs of the people) in order to see a more godly man elected in four years. You may argue that we have the chance to elect that "more godly man" this year. But by Dan's admission, "McCain is probably the only other candidate who could beat Obama." If all the Christians in America voted for, say, Chuck Baldwin, I think he could get into office. But the election is only two months away; we should have been coordinating a long time ago.

We agree that...
We Ought to Influence Politics for Christ:::
Those on the VoteThirdParty side hope their vote will lead to either reform in the Republican party or to a "formidable third party." In other words, they hope their vote will ultimately influence politics for Christ. But they also seem to clarify that they are simply voting for the most qualified man and "leaving the results to God," as if they would vote this way whether or not the potential outcome is good or bad. Indeed, they criticize the VoteMcCain side for voting solely in light of the potential outcome - solely because McCain can win. However, not only is the VoteThirdParty side AWARE of the potential outcome of their vote, they seem to be using this "good outcome" as an ARGUMENT to vote third party. If their real position is to vote despite the outcome, they can only say that the message sent by their vote would be an "added blessing." BTW, I think we SHOULD weigh the outcome of our vote. In essence, my argument has been that the outcome with McCain will outweigh the outcome of voting for a third-party candidate. Strategy is not against Christian principles! We are "sheep in the midst of wolves" and are to be "wise as serpents, and harmless as doves." (Mt 10:16)

But is our disagreement merely over which strategy to take? Or is it deeper than that? Would it WRONG for a Christian to vote for McCain? The end does NOT justify the means, so is McCain a "means" off-limits to followers of Christ? Is it the same thing to vote for McCain and to hold all his beliefs as your own? It it even the same thing to vote for McCain and to send a message that you hold his beliefs? I believe there IS a real danger of dishonoring Christ in my vote. I want these questions answered so that I can clearly see where that danger lies.

I too want to vote for the "best" candidate this fall. Please continue the posting as this is really helping me discern who, in light of our country's present state and God's nature, that "best" candidate may be.

By grace a sharpening iron,
Christina (Pr 27:17)

P.S. I regret having included the "judgment seat" argument in my first post (and would ask all to please disregard it). Not only should I have realized that both sides can make the judgment seat scene fit their argument (to no strengthening effect other than emotional), I am realizing, the more I think on this issue, that it is not so black and white. God will hold us accountable to the choices that we make, but He will not overlook the motives of our hearts and the knowledge that we had when we made our decisions.

Tammy Kihlstadius said...

I do think if one does the research into what kind of man John McCain truly is, you will find that he is a man of character, honor and integrity. Although he does not wear his faith on his sleeve so to speak, he does claim to be a Christian and does hold, for the most part, Christian beliefs. He comes from a generation that did not flaunt their faith but did consider it somewhat private. Probably because most of that generation did believe in God and go to church. It was just natural. He does live his faith in that he has remained faithful to his wife, loved his 6 children and abhors the corruption in Washington. He did divorce his first wife and reflects now that decision was the "biggest moral failure of my life." Find out who this guy really is and then decide.

Tammy Kihlstadius said...

Check out this interview of McCain:

http://www.beliefnet.com/story/220/story_22001_1.html

Tammy Kihlstadius said...

If you do not vote for John McCain, you have several other choices on the ballot. One is Chuck Baldwin, who on the surface seems to be an honorable, Bible-believing conservative. However, I question his judgement. In August 2007, he said: "Conservative Republicans have only one choice for President in 2008: Ron Paul."
(See article at http://www.americanchronicle.com/articles/36384) And I have deep misgivings about Ron Paul, who is a self-proclaimed libertarian. If you research the platform (See FAQs at http://www.faqs.org/faqs/libertarian/faq/) of the Libertarian party, you will find some very troubling items: legalizing drugs, legalizing prostitution, no restrictions on what is printed or shown on TV, etc, no military presence outside our borders, relaxing immigration restrictions, pro-abortion. Why would a Christian support such a candidate? Other choices suggested such as Alan Keyes or Ron Paul himself are not even listed on the official Minnesota ballot. And unless they submit a request prior to the election, any write-ins of these candidates will not even be counted but tossed aside. And who is really benefiting from that?

Tammy Kihlstadius said...

I have also read a fascinating blog statement by another Christian named Chris about voting. I will paste it here:

What is this I hear from some people that they might “sit out” the Presidential election or vote third party because they aren’t comfortable with the major party choice of candidates?

Since when are elections supposed to make us “comfortable?” Since when do we exercise that right to vote, for which people fought and died, only when it’s easy and clear-cut, and our choices are just the way we want them to be?

What we fail to do can make us just as guilty as what we do. A sin is a wrong choice, and to decide not to do something is just as much of a choice as to decide to do something.

A sin of omission is still a sin – and we are still responsible for the results.

What, then, makes us think that we are more responsible for the results of voting than for the results of not voting?

A vote is not a philosophical statement. It is a transfer of power. It is a pragmatic act to preserve, as much as possible under the circumstances, the common good, and to limit the evils that threaten it.

And in the pragmatic matter of elections, what matters is not how closely a candidate measures up to my preferences and convictions. Instead, it’s a question of who can and will actually get elected. It does little good if the person I felt most comfortable supporting doesn’t get to actually govern and implement those positions I like so much. A candidate, no matter how good, if not elected cannot do good.

The vote can be used just as much to keep someone out of office as to put someone in.

If we fail to use that tool, however, and as a result the person who gets elected is far worse and does far more damage than the other person we did not like, then we still share responsibility for the damage that will be done.

Elections have seasons. In the earliest phases, the field is wide open. We can recruit candidates, or decide to run ourselves. We build up the name recognition and base of support for the person or people who would make the best candidate. This takes years of work.

Then the season of primaries arrives, during which voters choose between the candidates who have been recruited and who have been building up their strength.

Then the general election season arrives, and we may find that we don’t like any of the names on the ballot. At that point, we have to shift our thinking and focus on “better” rather than “best.” The reality usually is that one of several unsatisfactory candidates will in fact be elected. So we use our vote to create the better outcome and to limit the damage. That’s the shift that some fail to make.

And we are still responsible for what we fail to do.

*NB: Based on an article by Fr Frank Pavone.

(I for one, plan to vote for John McCain this November.)

Northern Lights said...

Readers: thank you for your input – it is greatly appreciated! The following is primarily in response to the recent posts in the order in which they appear:

Christina’s post:
First, regarding the “voting your conscience” and “voting the lesser of two evils.” Most of us agree that John McCain isn’t the most ideal candidate (Christina: “It is clear that McCain is not the ideal candidate regarding abortion.”). The very fact that most of us agree that John McCain is not the most ideal candidate is, I believe, a testament to our conscience warning us. Why? When we think of voting for McCain, we get a check in our hearts (at least I do) because he doesn’t respect some key convictions/beliefs that most of us do. Because we are disappointed with and sometimes checked in our hearts because of our different convictions, could it not be our conscience trying to tell us something?

Next, I agree with the Biblical principles that were presented:

That we “…are the salt of the earth;” Matt 5:13 (NKJV)
My belief is that we are “salt” when we ultimately die to self, and let the indwelling Christ live through us. I am not sure why we wouldn’t or couldn’t be “salt” if we did vote for the most qualified candidate. In fact as I have stated before, I think it would be more harmful to compromise. – “…but if the salt loses its flavor, how shall it be seasoned? It is then good for nothing but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot by men.”

“Blessed are those who keep justice, And he who does righteousness at all times! Psalms 106:3 (NKJV)
and
“Learn to do good; Seek justice, Rebuke the oppressor; Defend the fatherless, Plead for the widow.” Isaiah 1:17 (NKJV)
As I said already, I don’t think by voting for a more qualified candidate, we would be sacrificing these commands. However, it is fair to ask ourselves if we would truly be executing judgment by endorsing with our vote a person who (for one thing, wouldn’t execute judgment for all babies) clearly doesn’t honor Christian convictions as much as a few other candidates would do. I believe this same reasoning could be used to address Proverbs 13:22, and 1 John 3:8.

Still, I realize that we will never have the perfect candidate. However, this doesn’t mean that all candidates should be placed/rated on the same level. There are better candidates than others. Just because the “perfect candidate” never comes along, this should not mean that we lower our ideals farther from that “perfect candidate”, but instead should vote with reflection to who holds them (our ideals) most closely. Analogy: We shouldn’t wander from Christ’s example in our lives, even though we will never be able to match it. -God knows this- Instead; we should follow as closely to Him as possible.
So, even though a third party candidate will not be the perfect candidate, he would be (I believe) the more ideal candidate.
Deuteronomy 16:18-20 says “You shall appoint judges and officers in all your gates, which the LORD your God gives you, according to your tribes, and they shall judge the people with just judgment. 19 You shall not pervert justice; you shall not show partiality, nor take a bribe, for a bribe blinds the eyes of the wise and twists the words of the righteous. 20 You shall follow what is altogether just, that you may live and inherit the land which the LORD your God is giving you.”
God wants us to be faithful to Him above all. I believe I would be accomplishing God’s mandate of being salt and light by voting in light of these (Dt. 16) types of commands. I will ask this question: If there was the PERFECT candidate, would you vote for him even if he did not have a realistic chance at winning? If not, why not? And what good are ideals if we know no one can meet them anyway? If so, shouldn’t we also vote for the most ideal, but not perfect candidate out there, regardless of success?

If I were to vote “best candidate” and Obama won the election, I would trust in God that I did the right thing ( because of passages like Deut 16:18-20). And besides, just because my “best candidate” didn’t win, this doesn’t mean I did not or cannot seek to “relieve the oppressed, secure a good future (which by the way I think I would –Dt 16:20) or stop the advance of…the devil.” I really don’t want to start a new subject here, but I believe a lot of this is the responsibility of the Church- we can’t give all these responsibilities to a government and simply become sleeping bystanders.

Whether or not Obama is worse than McCain, the real issue is still whether or not we would be endorsing the best candidate.

Yes, your right-we do elect VP’s. However, although there is the possibility, we do not elect them with the intention/expectation of them becoming president.

Mrs. Kihlstadius:
“The Republican party is very capable of moving right again. It takes hard work, dedication and education to re-establish its conservative core.”
-Yes it does! That’s precisely what we want and are trying to make happen. You are admitting that the Party has/is straying, aren’t you?!

The Republican platform may be primarily conservative…now if only we could nominate/elect someone who truly reflects that position. Also, why not mimic the Democrats in saying, “I didn’t leave the party, the party left me”?

Christina’s post – round 2:
“After we (with our vote) help McCain stop Obama…”
In response: I believe that we have our focus on the wrong thing. Instead of focusing on the most qualified, we are focusing on who is the least qualified (Obama) and are fearing him. I believe we are playing right into Satan’s hand – he wants us to be Christians who are moved by fear. Nowhere in the Bible (as far as I know) does God call/imply that His people should lower convictions/ideals to do everything and anything to prevent an evil leader from taking power. God allowed evil rulers, as Meagan pointed out. I believe we should only worry about following about following Christ. (Matt. 6:25-34 esp. 6:33)

Christina said: “But they also seem to clarify that they are simply voting for the most qualified man and "leaving the results to God," as if they would vote this way whether or not the potential outcome is good or bad.”
-Yes, I pray that I would….isn’t this the Christian life in a nutshell? To follow God no matter what?
“However, not only is the VoteThirdParty side AWARE of the potential outcome of their vote, they seem to be using this "good outcome" as an ARGUMENT to vote third party. If their real position is to vote despite the outcome, they can only say that the message sent by their vote would be an ‘added blessing.’”
- Right on! The message sent would be and added blessing.

I too believe that strategy is not against Christian principles. However, we are finite - our God is infinite. We need to be careful not to let human reasoning hinder what God may have for us/wants us to do. (Col. 2:8)

Here are my answers to the questions in the 5th paragraph:

Wrong for a Christian to vote McCain?
- God calls us to vote for the most qualified - right? Does McCain seem to be the most qualified?

Is it the same to hold all McCain’s beliefs as your own?
- No…that’s just it- because you don’t hold McCain’s beliefs, why lower your ideals/standards by voting for him? You either send the message of holding his beliefs, or that of submitting to them.


Mrs. Kihlstadius- Lots of people claim to be Christians- it’s a pretty broad term. Barack Obama is a “Christian” and so were Bill Clinton and Jimmy Carter. Although McCain may have faith, it’s fair to ask “in what?” I really have my doubts about McCain being a true Christian.
As for Chris’ post, I think he’s way off on a lot (if not most) of his points. If you disagree, I am open to discuss it further.

I certainly don’t have all the answers, but I think we could simplify a lot of things by focusing on Christ. I humbly pray I have done so. Thank you all for taking time to make your comments! They have provoked more thought than I ever would have anticipated.

Keep the Faith,
DW

Aronne said...

You guys are sucking me back into this!

Daniel wrote: "God calls us to vote for the most qualified - right? Does McCain seem to be the most qualified?"

Does He? How can we determine that "qualified" is the criterion which we should apply to candidates for the US? Looking to the Bible for answers yields little concerning voting in a governmental election (such things did not widely exist at the time), but as you will surely say, we cannot stop there. And that's where things get difficult. How far do we support the government's doings? Where do we draw the line at being against our faith? I think I know, but it's definitely worth considering...

About the postings of that Chris individual: for the most part, I think his arguments are somewhat sound.

This passage is particularly compelling: "A vote is not a philosophical statement. It is a transfer of power. It is a pragmatic act to preserve, as much as possible under the circumstances, the common good, and to limit the evils that threaten it."

Granted, he could be accused of adopting pragmatism, but really, what *is* a vote?

God wants us to be involved in politics. If there are only two options, and only one contributes at all to the common good, what do we do?

As far as I know, the McCain/Palin ticket is better than all the major third party candidates running this year. Are there really any worth voting for?

Thinking in a contemplative fashion,
Riley

mn ladyslipper said...

I am beginning to think we are hopelessly lost.

http://www.visionforum.com/hottopics/blogs/dwp/

http://www.ladiesagainstfeminism.com/artman/publish/Hot_Button_Issues_21/Woe_to_My_people1003377.shtml

http://www.visionforum.com/hottopics/blogs/dwp/2008/09/4329.aspx

Dr. Dobson's Original Statement on NOT Voting for McCain

Statement from Dr. James Dobson as delivered by Laura Ingraham on “The Laura Ingraham Show” (2/5/08):

“I’m deeply disappointed the Republican Party seems poised to select a nominee who did not support a Constitutional amendment to protect the institution of marriage, who voted for embryonic stem cell research to kill nascent human beings, who opposed tax cuts that ended the marriage penalty, and who has little regard for freedom of speech, who organized the Gang of 14 to preserve filibusters, and has a legendary temper and often uses foul and obscene language.

“I am convinced Sen. McCain is not a conservative, and in fact, has gone out of his way to stick his thumb in the eyes of those who are. He has at times sounded more like a member of the other party. McCain actually considered leaving the GOP in 2001, and approached John Kerry about being Kerry’s running mate in 2004. McCain also said publicly that Hillary Clinton would make a good president. Given these and many other concerns, a spoonful of sugar does not make the medicine go down. I cannot, and I will not vote for Sen. John McCain, as a matter of conscience.

“But what a sad and melancholy decision this is for me and many other conservatives. Should John McCain capture the nomination as many assume, I believe this general election will offer the worst choices for president in my lifetime. I certainly can’t vote for Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama based on their virulently anti-family policy positions. If these are the nominees in November, I simply will not cast a ballot for president for the first time in my life. These decisions are my personal views and do not represent the organization with which I’m affiliated. They do reflect, however, my deeply held convictions about the institution of the family, about moral and spiritual beliefs, and about the welfare of our country.”

Posted by Doug Phillips on September 8, 2008 | Permalink

Dr. Dobson, you are as wish washy as the politicians!

May God help us! Let us cry out to Him for mercy.

Aronne said...

James Dobson's changing of position has little to do with this debate. Nevertheless, his opinion is interesting.

The two main questions that come to mind concerning McCain are:

How bad is bad?
What is a vote -- what does a vote mean?

To discover the truth in this fascinating controversy, we must come to terms with both of these points (if not a few others). Simply opining that Americans refuse to vote their values or follow God at all costs does not answer the question: Why? Why would it be wrong to vote for McCain? He would not liberalize our nation in any of the primarily moral issues. I'm more concerned about his immigration and economic stance, actually.

MN Lady Slipper pointed to a number of articles, all of which are related to the Vision Forum. If this were debate, I may feel inclined to challenge the credentials of Vision Forum. Sometimes, they go a bit overboard in their interpretation of a woman's role in life.

In one of the first articles, a pastor mentions the Bible's plan for no women in civil offices. Where is that? I may simply be missing something... (But of course, some women were deaconesses in the early church.)

While it may be best for women to refrain from the realm of politics, does that mean they should not have the right to enter the fray?

Bringing up more questions than I answer,
Riley

Tammy Kihlstadius said...

How can one say McCain's position on abortion is not much better than Obama's? Nothing could be further than the truth! McCain clearly agrees that life begins at the point of conception and Obama can't even bring himself to guess when that happens! Is it at 6 weeks, 6 months or at birth? Or not even then? Obama is one of the few senators who did not support the Partial Birth ban nor did he support the Born Alive legislation.
On the subject of Government waste, Obama is the champion of pork barrel spending, earning a 0% rating from the Cititzens Against Government Waste and Spending while John McCain has received a 100% rating in the last year.

I would venture to guess some of the offensive positions and votes McCain has stood on are merely the expression of his constitutionalism. He has wanted many of these federal laws decided at the state level because that is how the founding fathers designed our government. The only real offensive vote I disagree with is the embryonic stem cell issue. But am I merely a one issue voter? I think not. Voting McCain is a compromise in a sense that voting for any ordinary human is a compromise. I have faith that God can use him because McCain has the experience and judgement that can lead our country. After all I have read about him convinces me he really is a Christian. Not a fake one like Obama. Is this faith any less valid than your faith that a third party candidate such as Chuck Baldwin has any chance of winning?

Anna Kihlstadius said...

In the interest of time, I cannot address all of the fascinating points/concerns/questions, but I wish to say a few things:

I read all of the posts that have transpired and have not been swayed. Not to say that I did not consider them, I just know in my heart that I have made the right decision to support Senator John McCain. I do not feel any "check in my heart" that I am settling for "second best." Let me explain why I have come to this decision:

After much research into who the candidates are, I believe that Senator John McCain IS the most qualified and the best man for the job out of all our choices-third party candidates included. His many years in the Navy, five and half which were spent as a POW, have developed character and integrity. His 22 years as a US Senator have trained and equipped him to take on the role of President of the United States. The more I learn about him, the more I respect this amazing individual.

No, we don't see eye-to-eye on every single issue, but I do not see this as a disqualification on his part. A person may attend a church where s/he does not agree with every stance that the church/pastor holds, but that does not necessarily mean that that individual should leave the church. The person will never find a church/pastor that s/he agrees with 100%.

As for the issue of women in politics: it is an issue that has been debated for years. Scripture does not definitively say that that women cannot work outside the home and/or be in public office. It is a matter of conviction for individuals before God. If a father/husband does not want his daughter/wife to participate in such activities, then yes, it would be sin for her to defy that authority. However, if he allows her, than she is free to participate. For example, I am actively involved in party politics. My father has blessed this pursuit and even encourages it. It is a way that I can represent him and serve our country for him since he does not have time to be involved right now. I am his surrogate in the realm of politics in our community. If my father were to ask me to spend less, or even no time on this pursuit, I would back out in a heartbeat. I am under my father's authority in this matter.

Thank you all for your thought-provoking posts, they have made me dig deeper into these issues/candidates and that research has solidified my support behind Senator John McCain. A choice that I am convinced is the right choice in God's eyes.

Due to my involvement in the McCain/Palin campaign (among many campaigns I am assisting), I will not be able to continue spending time blogging on this site. I may check back to see what has transpired, but, I must now focus on accomplishing the commitments I have made.

I pray that God will show each of you what He wants you to do in this election. He will show those who sincerely seek His will, as I am sure each of you are.

For God and for country,
Anna Kihlstadius
McCain/Palin Burnsville Chair

Tammy Kihlstadius said...

My last sentence should better said this way: Is my faith in choosing John McCain any less valid than your faith that a third party candidate such as Chuck Baldwin has any chance of winning?

But then, does faith really have anything to do with it?

hmmmmm

christina hall said...

Can an unbeliever operate in a way that mirrors righteousness and the fear of God? Though in his heart he rebels against Christ's saving and lordship, can he approve what God approves in other spheres of life? Is his mind so blinded that he cannot discern Truths in the world and live by them, even fight for them? Though God sees his heart as producing filthy rags (good works), cannot some of his choices side with morality?

I am not convinced of McCain's salvation. He is, at best, weak in professing Christ, choosing rather to be strong in professing "Country." However, McCain's record shows that on some issues, especially abortion, he sides with morality.

God hates the shedding of innocent blood and once punished all of Judah for the murderous sins (among other sins) of their ruler, Manasseh. Manasseh had "built altars for all the host of heaven" in the temple, and burned his own son as an offering (2 Kings 21:5-6). Then enemy bands of Chaldeans, Syrians, Moabites and Ammonites attacked Judah, and we're told in 2 Kings 24:3-4 that "surely [these destroying enemy armies] came upon Judah at the command of the Lord, to remove them out of his sight, for the sins of Manasseh, according to all that he had done, and also for the innocent blood that he had shed. For he filled Jerusalem with innocent blood, and the Lord would not pardon." In light of 2 Kings 21:8-9, we see that God judged all of Judah because they had let Manasseh lead them astray. They "did not listen" to God and were not "careful to do according to all that [He had] commanded them." They independently chose, along with Manasseh, to sin.

If Obama becomes president, he will lead those who do not listen to God into more wickedness (such as murder, sodomy, fornication, etc.) by accepting it, legalizing it, and doubtless encouraging it. In regards to the shedding of innocent blood, Obama will lead our nation into greater sin and greater judgment from God.

McCain holds innocent blood as valuable. As president, he will elect Supreme Court judges that share his values. The possibility? Roe v. Wade overturned. Translation = a huge decrease in the shedding of innocent blood. "Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people." (Pr 14:34)

McCain is not the only pro-life presidential candidate, but I don't believe a third-party candidate will win this election.

Questions (which overlap a bit):
1. Should I vote for the man who has the best chance at fighting abortion at the presidential level or for the man who is the best representation of a godly leader all around?
2. Does the importance of this issue allow for my voting the "lesser of the two evils?"
3. Does God want me to stand for all my beliefs at the same time? (Giving McCain my vote could be seen as my endorsing all he stands for, but I don't on so many issues.)

Another thing. I want to hear clear, scriptural exposition showing why a woman leading in the sphere of the state is unbiblical. I tend to think it is (unbiblical), but I want to understand fully why.

Oh, that God's wisdom would "come into [my] heart" that I may understand "every good path!" (Pr 2:9-10)

Undecided,
Christina

Northern Lights said...

First off, I reject the premise that McCain sides with morality, especially on the issue of abortion/embryonic SCR.

A few examples:

Supports fetal tissue research; against over-intensity
McCain was asked how he could be anti-abortion and still vote to support fetal tissue research. He supports fetal-tissue research, McCain said, because it has helped make progress against Parkinson’s disease. McCain concluded that abortion rights and anti-abortion activists should cooperate on issues of foster care and adoption. He had made his decision on abortion, he said, “after a lot of study, consultation, and a lot of prayer.” He added, “I’d like to have less intensity on this issue.”
Source: Boston Globe, p. A11 Jan 22, 2000
Abortion OK if raped; and no testing for rape
McCain was asked whether he would reinstate the Reagan era rule that prevents international family planning clinics that receive federal funds from discussing abortion. “I don’t believe they should advocate abortion with my tax dollars,” McCain said, adding that he opposed abortion except in cases of rape and incest. He was then asked how he would determine whether someone had in fact been raped. McCain responded, “I think that I would give the benefit of the doubt to the person who alleges that.”
Source: New York Times, p. A17 Jan 25, 2000
“Family Conference” if daughter wanted an abortion
KEYES [to McCain]: What you would say if your daughter was ever in a position where she might need an abortion? You answered [earlier today] that the choice would be up to her and then that you’d have a family conference. That displayed a profound lack of understanding of the basic issue of principle involved in abortion. After all, if your daughter said she was contemplating killing her grandmother for the inheritance, you wouldn’t say, “Let’s have a family conference.” You’d look at her and say “Just Say No,“ because that is morally wrong. It is God’s choice that that child is in the womb. And for us to usurp that choice in contradiction of our declaration of principles is just as wrong.
McCAIN: I am proud of my pro-life record in public life, and I will continue to maintain it. I will not draw my children into this discussion. As a leader of a pro-life party with a pro-life position, I will persuade young Americans [to] understand the importance of the preservation of the rights of the unborn.
Source: (X-ref from Keyes) GOP Debate in Manchester NH Jan 26, 2000
Supports federal funding of embryonic stem cell research
Q: Would you expand federal funding of embryonic stem cell research?
A: I believe that we need to fund this. This is a tough issue for those of us in the pro-life community. I would remind you that these stem cells are either going to be discarded or perpetually frozen. We need to do what we can to relieve human suffering. It's a tough issue. I support federal funding.
Source: 2007 GOP primary debate, at Reagan library, hosted by MSNBC May 3, 2007

- Rated 75% by the NRLC, indicating a mixed record on abortion. (Dec 2006)
- Supports federal funding of embryonic stem cell research. (May 2007)

As Christians, we would never thing of voting for Obama (for killing through abortion alone). Why then, would we consider voting for a candidate who would still kill innocent blood (through abortions, stem-cell research) even if it were not as much as the other guy?
McCain is still responsible for killing the innocent, isn’t he?

Because abortion can tell us what other beliefs a candidate holds on other issues, it is important to make sure that the candidate has God as his basis for law/commands.

Consider the following article by Gene Edward Veith of WORLD magazine
(March 10,2007)

“Some politicians are anti-abortion. But they nevertheless support embryonic stem-cell research. They have become persuaded that destroying human embryos to ‘harvest’ their stem-cells is morally justified. This is because those cells could do so much good. Isn’t killing babies of only a few cells in size worth it, they reason, if their stem cells could help cure diseases in adults?
These politicians may have pro-life records and even think they are still pro-life because they think stem-cell therapy can save lives or improve the quality of lives. But in their moral philosophy, they are utilitarians.
According to utilitarian ethics, something is good if it is useful. Instead of considering an issue in terms of objective moral truths-such as ‘Thou shalt not kill’ –utilitarians value what ‘works.’
For utilitarians, the end justifies the means. In politics, this position has always been the philosophy of tyrants.
A candidate’s position on this single issue also reveals whether a person is a strict constructionist when it comes constitutional law or a judicial activist. It reveals assumptions about the nature of the family. It tells us whether he will protect the weak, the helpless, and the unwanted.
Abortion is the single issue that tells us about all the others.”

If McCain doesn’t really understand God’s commands (i.e. Thou shall not kill), what basis does he have for law? The only basis he has for law is himself. What does this tell us about his beliefs on other issues? I don’t want to leave issues up to McCain’s ideas, but will vote for a candidate who respects God’s commands.
“If God does not exist, then, in the end, all things are permissible.”


Righteousness starts from the bottom and works its way up; it doesn’t start at the top and work its way down. When God’s people get committed about acting righteously, then will we see the exaltation of our country, and be blessed with a Godly leader.


_DW
“Do our duty, and I believe we can leave the rest most confidently in God's Almighty Hand. And in so doing, we will find ourselves walking along the same path of hope to that future which America promises — not only to our children, but to the children of all mankind; not only to our country, but, as Lincoln said, to all the earth.” -Alan Keyes