Posted on 11th November 2016 at 14:46 by Mark Herbert in Pastors’ Blog
Following the headline news of this week that Donald J. Trump has won the presidential election and now awaits his inauguration into office on January 20th 2017, how have you responded? We join millions across the world watching on, waiting and wondering. Some with a sense of anticipation. Many with outrage and deep concern. The recent demonstrations across America and the burning of an effigy of Trump in Los Angeles only goes to show how sharply he divides opinion. In many ways it is a good thing that this news stirs up passion and conjures emotions in all of us. This shows that we believe politics matters. Leadership matters. Our world matters. The prevalence of social media today means that it has never been easier to express instant opinions for many to see. My concern however is this: are we quicker to express opinion at a world-changing event than we are to turn to the Sovereign Lord of all things in prayer? If we are Christians, we are called to be different to the world around us. So here is a question for us all to reflect on today: does our trust in a risen and ruling King impact how we will react to this week’s news?
The Bible helps us by reminding us firstly that Jesus Christ reigns. Have a read of Psalm 2 in which God declares that there is only one King who rules supreme. His name is Jesus. Earthy rulers, however powerful, have no ultimate authority. Secondly, we are given advice about the responsibility we have to pray for our rulers. The Apostle Paul tells Timothy: ‘I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people - for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Saviour, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth’ (1 Timothy 2:1-4).
Can I encourage us to follow this example and ensure that we as a church hold on to the hope of the gospel and avoid getting dragged into the hopeless despair of the world. God knows what he is doing and so we continue to pray that his kingdom would come and his will be done. This starts with our own hearts.