Tuesday, October 25, 2016

God On The Throne, The USA Down The Drain?

Everyone must submit to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except from God, and those that exist are instituted by God.
Romans 13:1

First of all, then, I urge that petitions, prayer, intercessions and thanksgivings be made for everyone, for kings and all those who are in authority, so that we may lead a tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and dignity. This is good, and it pleases God our Savior, who wants everyone to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.
1 Timothy 2:1-4

Barring any hanging chads or other "election rigging," we will have a new president on November 9th. Well, it won't be official until the Monday after the second Wednesday in December when the electoral college makes it so, but we'll have a pretty good idea who will sit in the big chair for the next four years.

Thank God there is a throne far above that big chair, and thank God He is on it.  His throne is over all the kingdoms of the earth - elected, appointed, and otherwise. He is rightly called King of kings and the Lord of lords. It is comforting to know He is sovereign. It was comforting for those who first read this letter from Paul to the Roman church.

In those days, Nero was sitting in the big chair. Some say there are similarities, but neither Hillary nor Donald have yet reached his level of depravity. We have lost much and will probably lose much more of our religious freedom, but nothing like what those Roman believers faced. Nero was the instigator of the systematic and brutal persecution of Christians that would ebb and flow for the next 300 years.

It's interesting that Roman believers probably received Paul's letter just a few years before all of that started. So, in His sovereignty, God lovingly prepared them for it all by reminding them that He was still on His throne.

You've heard it said, "No matter what happens on November 8th, God will still be on His throne on November 9th." That's true, but I believe it's also true that America may well be on its way down the drain.  We who follow Christ and believe the Gospel should be preached and lived outloud have already been threatened. We know that our nation is declining morally. This election could be the final straw that breaks us.

I have two thoughts about God's sovereignty? First, God's sovereignty does not dismiss our responsibility. That is clear by what Paul wrote to Timothy. God is on His throne, but we are to respond to that sovereignty with obedience. We are to pray for our leaders. A peaceful society that is open to the Gospel appears dependent upon the prayers of the church.

Second, God's sovereignty is not tied to America's success. If the next president turns against God and our nation continues it's downward moral spiral, He is still on His throne, the Gospel is still the power of God unto salvation, and we are still responsible to live it and preach it to all people. Even if it costs us everything, it is our responsibility. God has often used the judgment of a nation to wake His people up. Maybe that is what is happening right now. Whatever happens, God will use this for His glory. The question is whether we will be part of that glorious kingdom.

Will you seek His wisdom and abide by His precepts as you enter the voting booth? Just as important, will you and your church be on your knees for current and future leaders?

The prayer meeting is the least attended meeting of the church. I have talked to many pastors, and with few exceptions they confirm that. We are all alarmed at what is happening in our nation and in this election. Why, then, are we not filling up the prayer meeting? Why are we not calling out to our Sovereign God? Can we claim the assurance of "God is on the throne" if we do not follow the commands of that same God?

Our church prays at all its meetings, but our church-wide meeting is Wednesday at 6:00 pm. You are welcome at that meeting. If your church has a prayer meeting, be there. If it doesn't, start one.  God is on His throne, so pray.