The Lesser of Two Evils
Perspective on the News
Monday, October 17, 2016
By Pete Garcia
It would seem that with each passing election cycle, true born-again evangelical Christians are being forced to make further and broader conciliations about who we will accept as the next president. This has popularly been framed as having to choose between the lesser of two evils. Will this continual acquiescence to having to choose between two, less-than-stellar candidates finally lower our threshold of what we understand as righteousness? In keeping with the doctrine of demons and the duplicitous nature of our enemy, Satan, I believe that the question itself has been high-jacked, and purposely so.
Given the fallen nature of our world, there aren’t many true, born-again believers who stand a chance in the political arena of these final days. That is of course, should they really stand on their Christian convictions. The best we can hope for then, and given our knowledge of where the Bible says the world is heading in these last days, is that whoever is elected, will include in his or her circle of influence, men and women of faith who can help guide their decisions to rule rightly. One party seems open to this, while the other, not so much.
Meanwhile, there is a counterargument that our activity, political or otherwise, should not be watered-down, or compromised in any fashion. So by either voting, not voting, or voting third party, we might lose the election, but we will still have our principles. The American Thinker has a well-written article even citing Charles Spurgeon as a source of hopefully prompting evangelical Christians to never compromise principles by voting for anyone who doesn’t perfectly align themselves with their beliefs. The article writer cited Spurgeon, who then cited Moses, as the catalyst for not compromising, and showed how he aligned himself with the enslaved and impoverished Hebrews rather than with the supreme power of their day, the Pharaoh. Thus, evangelicals should vote (or not) per their convictions, and not on what’s best for the nation as a whole.
The real decision isn’t between which candidates to vote for, but rather are we, as citizens of a nation that is supposed to be built on laws and a constitution going to uphold our end of our duties, that is, to vote. The real lesser of two evils, is deciding whether we vote, or not vote. It is easy to despair, given our current choices, but we must remember that we aren’t electing the next ‘pastor-in-chief,’ but a politician — a politician who ultimately, will steer this nation in one direction or the other, for better or worse.
Furthermore, citing Moses as an example of uncompromising piety is in my mind, a misnomer. The Pharaoh was worshipped as a god-man, thus if Moses aligned himself with Pharaoh in any way he would lend credence to just such a false claim of divinity. The President of the United States on the other hand, is not divine. He is simply supposed to be a public steward of the common-wealth of our nation and its resources. Our voluntary silence by not solidifying our vote behind the candidate who ‘best’ represents our values, must be seen not as a means to an end but in its end-state itself. To not do so, is an acquiescence to the greater evil.
A small, but growing number of Christians feel that increased persecution and trials are a good thing. Their view is that the climate in America over the last 100 years, minus tribulation and persecution, has weakened and made soft our testimony making it virtually worthless. For them, even though persecution and tribulation aren’t good, it ultimately will refine the remnant here and now, further separating the wheat from the tares.
Political boycotts centered on moral principles sound good in theory, but I would add that this repeated call for political inactivity has already been tried in the 2012 election. A great many evangelicals sat it out because they refused to vote for a Mormon, ultimately costing Romney the White House. What did that gain evangelicals? Four more years of Barak Obama, along with all the progressive-liberal agendas he could manage to cram down our throats. It also expedited the rise of the transgender and homosexual agenda, along with many other issues that directly assault our Judeo-Christian values.
Furthermore, we aren’t saved as “Americans.” We are saved as individuals, and individually, God moves in mighty ways in our lives. It is true that for the better part of 200 years Christians have not had to suffer for their faith in the United States. But for all our faults as a nation, the United States still has had the greatest number of evangelists and missionaries of any nation in the world. We were the world’s largest exporter of Christianity. We also exited WWII as victors who were the first to recognize Israel as a nation again after surviving almost 2,000 years in diaspora. On a national level, we served a purpose, but America isn’t Christian, because nations can’t be. What America can be, is a conduit for Christians to either do good or not in a world that is in its final stages of entropy.
Besides, enduring persecution doesn’t confirm our testimony any more than not having any condemns it.
Where was the tribulation in the 18th-20th centuries when the great evangelists like Moody, Sunday, Spurgeon, and Graham were going from coast to coast, nation to nation, and across the oceans, winning countless millions of souls for Christ? They weren’t doing it under threat of torture and death but because liberty prevailed and afforded them the opportunity to do so, and because God was doing it through them. They were simply tools in the hand of an almighty God, and He didn’t need massive, wide-scale persecution to accomplish this did He?
But that point aside, if tribulation comes for the church, it’s only because God has already allowed it, and in truth, it could happen under any political party; but it’s virtually guaranteed under one. Jesus stated in the Upper Room discourse, “in this life you will have tribulation, but be of good cheer because I have overcome the world” (John 16:33). That is an acceptance of the reality of life in this world, not a calling for us to go and seek tribulation.
For Christians, the vast majority of time in the last two millennia has already been spent in persecution and misery, and the fact that we here in the west are not now suffering terribly is also by God’s design. There is a persecuted Church, and has been in every age, and there has arisen in the west those who aren’t persecuted. The fact that this has already been foretold is fulfilling what God’s Word has said.
We know that the Bible is largely prophetic in nature. God declares the end from the beginning (Isaiah 46:9-10), and has deemed that these final days of human history mimic another period of time long before Christianity ever came into existence- the days of Noah and Lot (Luke 17:26-30). The Bible says the world would be—
Wicked and violent-check
Hearts would wax cold-check
People, lovers of money and themselves-check
Many false prophets would arise and lead many astray-check
Churches would fall into apostasy-check
The church would become lukewarm-check
And yet there is in this fallen state, a sense of normalcy as people come to accept whatever state they’re in as the normal state of affairs-check.
If Trump wins, it too is because God allows it so as to fulfill some plan not yet understood by us. There is one unique thing about Donald Trump that gets overshadowed by most of the other political noise, and it is, that should he win, and should he keep his word, he would be the first president in the modern history of Israel to finally accept Jerusalem as the undivided capital of the state of Israel. We know according to Scripture that the world will unify and come against Israel in the last days, so maybe his willingness to finally recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital is the last straw that triggers the final day events.
No doubt we are living in trying and perilous times. Trying to live this life without salvation from Jesus Christ, especially with the way the world is today, is not just an act of rebellion, it’s an act of lunacy. For the non-believer, this might seem like religious hyperbole given the current fact that there are billions of people in the world going about their everyday life without a thought or care as to Christianity. To that degree, an ignorance of truth is not a protective shield guarding one from destruction, but a darkened pathway one must feel their way down without the benefit of light and whose end drops into eternal damnation. The reality is that the world is in a mess and people across all ethnic, religious, economic, and political boundaries are all wondering the same thing: who can fix this?
We might consider Trump as one last act of desperation in fighting for the soul of a nation, but we already know where this all ends…we just don’t know when. And since none of us knows when Jesus Christ will return (as no man knows the day or hour), we must live in this world in whatever state it is in until that time comes. But if we are going to wait for THE perfect candidate to come along before we finally cast our vote, that ain’t gonna happen until Jesus Christ returns at the Second Coming to finally usher in His perfect, and eternal kingdom.
A non-Christian can’t even begin to name the evil which faces all mankind. A non-Christian has this inability to call the true nature of evil what it is, chiefly that sin has infected this world, causing it to exist in a fallen state, governed by dark spiritual powers and principalities, who themselves answer to the “god of this age.” In these regards, it is not all that dissimilar to the liberal democrats’ inability to call recent global terrorist attacks for what it is, radical Islamic terror.
Donald Trump isn’t going to ultimately save this world any more than Hillary can destroy it. The United States and subsequently any nation tied to her well-being, will either thrive or collapse not because of peak oil or fiat currency, but whether or not God allows it to. This is the fine-line that the Christian must walk, in both accepting the sovereignty of The Almighty and trying to coexist in a world that is in its final moments before it actually does collapse.
But there is also nothing wrong with exercising your God-given right to not vote for voluntary tyranny and oppression. The Lord isn’t guaranteed to come back tomorrow. It might be ten years from now, but that doesn’t mean I want to leverage my principles by allowing evil to have more of a foothold than it already does. Many now feel that Christians should welcome persecution, because in that we will somehow find purification in the process. They invite this by doing nothing. Perhaps the Christian citizens of Germany in 1932 would think differently now with hindsight, given the chance to go back and change things. They didn’t get involved, and in that vacuum they got a little man with a funny mustache. Like the old saying says, the first country Hitler invaded was Germany.
If nothing else, set aside the man, and look at the agenda. Which party stands a better chance of reducing, restricting, or abolishing abortion on demand? Which party stands to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s undivided capital? Which party has the potential to roll-back the aggressive homosexual agenda being forced upon us and our children? Which party will support freedom of speech, freedom of religion, the right to bear arms, etc.? As Governor Mike Pence stated, “the choice isn’t between two persons, but between two futures”. What form of government are you willing to subjugate yourself under…until I might add, that Day comes? We can’t stop the rise in evil that is foretold to come, but I don’t have to help it along either. So do you choose between the lesser of two evils, well, that is a question you have to ask yourself?
“Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God. Therefore whoever resists the authority resists the ordinance of God, and those who resist will bring judgment on themselves. For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to evil. Do you want to be unafraid of the authority? Do what is good, and you will have praise from the same.” Romans 13:1-3 NKJV