Why So Many Christians Vote Republican

In the next 2 weeks my goal is to break down as simply as possible why many in Christians in general vote for either of the two major parties in elections. Christians who are staunchly Republican may wonder why someone who shares the same beliefs, values, and worldview would dare vote for a Democratic. Christians who are staunchly Democratic may wonder why someone who shares the same beliefs, values, and worldview would dare vote for a Republican. Christians who are neither of these may wonder the same about either.

[click here for my answer to why so many Christians vote Democrat
here for my answer to why so many Christians vote Libertarian
here for my answer to why so many Christians abstain from voting]

2000px-republicanlogo-svgWHY SO MANY CHRISTIANS VOTE REPUBLICAN

Personality
Christian conservatives tend to be from or attach to an older generation. They tend to have a faster reaction time when responding to what they see as threatening. They also have a greater need for certainty, and an intolerance for ambiguity. This attracts them to conservative values, taking more hasty measures toward perceived outside threats, marking clear and definite boundaries, and enforcing heavy consequences. But it’s not just about personality. It’s also about ideology.

Party History
Founded over 150 years ago by anti-slavery, anti-tyranny ex-soldiers, the party has changed over the years, and today is less founded on America as a republic than it is on representing what are commonly called “Conservative Values.” It’s important to unpack this and understand what it means, both for those who call themselves conservative and for those who don’t. It has been held for many years that the Republican party stands for conservatism, and is therefore an ally of Christian religion.

It’s been a long story. Lincoln both divided and united the nation as the most famous Republican president of our past, and both parties generally cite him as an inspiration. Over time, from Teddy Roosevelt to Dwight D. Eisenhower, it stood for the gold standard, high wages, and both big and small business, Commie-busting, small government, and Congress having more power than the President. But each of these has its exceptions. And if you notice, most of these issues trace back to economics and government size.

Enter More Social Issues
Then we get to Reagan, the new President mascot of the party. Around the time of his election, Christian leadership figureheads like Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson stirred up a large host of Evangelical American voters to vote Republican. This election was one of the main reasons this pattern still continues today. The so-called “Moral Majority” was a major force in both getting Christians to vote Republican and putting more issues on the political table that concerned conservative evangelical southerners: traditional family values, influence in the media, gun rights, homosexuality, abortion, prayer in schools. This happened greatly in reaction to the “permissive 60’s” counterculture.

To conserve means to hold on to, maintain, preserve, protect. Because dedicated Christians believe in holding on to the Word, maintaining its teaching and righteous living, and cherishing the values they are raised with, conservative Christians view the Republican party as the one that clearly represents their values. It is a party that champions their liberties, but more importantly, stands for the values they believe the “founding fathers” stood for. To conservative Christians, the Republican party of the Reagan era and onward has taken up the moral torch of the Constitution and the Bible.

The Founders in the Eyes of Conservative Christians
The founders of America were for the most part religious men who ascribed to Christianity and vocally endorsed the religion as vital to the nation they were building. The Constitution makes reference to our “Creator” who gave us natural rights, and the First Amendment guarantees the freedom of religion, which the founders held very sacred. Measures must be taken to “establish justice,” “insure domestic tranquility” and “provide for the common defense,” and a strong military and law enforcement will ensure that. In order to “secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity,” we must protect our religious freedom and please the God who blesses us with laws that uphold moral values.

Because of this, conservative Christian voters tend to support whatever promotes the religious values of the founders, as well as protects their own right to both practice and promote Christianity as freely as possible. They believe that as voters it is their task to maintain, preserve, and protect Christian culture, and that this task is what America was founded on. They believe that the leaders they support must be ones who pass laws that reflect these values.

But here’s the thing: Many Christians who vote Democrat believe something very similar, that The Constitution should protect Christianity, and for some, that our laws should even promote it. Once again, a great deal of it comes down to the values shared by the “moral majority” and solidified around 1980. Because of this, the “religious right” tends to push for more private power and less government power when it comes to taxes and programs, as well as push for more restrictions on what are called “social” or “moral” issues.

How They View The Issues: Let us generalize and summarize a conservative Christian stance on major issues. It is important to understand that not every conservative Christian aligns with all of these stances on all these issues, or for the same reasons. I will represent these as from a generic Christian Republican viewpoint.

Church and State—The Constitution not only guarantees our right to pray and have church, but as a Christian nation we have a duty to pray in public settings. Voting for those who pray in Congress, for example, will bless Congress. Enacting laws allowing teachers and principals to say prayers  will focus the next generation on God. Having the Ten Commandments in places like courthouses will remind us all of the most important laws. Those who seek to separate Church and State not only add to the Constitution, but are seeking to restrict our liberties and silence God in a nation founded on belief in him.

Reproduction— The Bible and science say that unborn children are alive. Abortion is murder because God’s word and the laws of medicine are clear. Legalized abortion is an effort to destroy the family by encouraging women to abandon motherhood, and for unmarried couples to end a life rather than start a family. Stem cell research dependent on murdering unborn children should not be funded. While women’s rights to choose are very important, it does not surpass the right of an innocent child to life as guaranteed by the Constitution and granted by God.

Sexuality—Using tax money to hand out contraceptives endorses premarital sex and promiscuity. God’s plan for families is very specific, and it is the nation’s duty to define marriage Biblically in order to defend it and honor God. Homosexual marriage, for example, is dishonorable to God, and should not be legal. The media we consume should be regulated so that the public is not exposed to sexual indecency. The virtue of loyalty between spouses should be encouraged by law and society.

Public Education—God intends for children to learn in the home. Homeschooling or private schools are preferred by many. For others, public school should preserve the Christian values of the founders and teach them to children, otherwise they should not receive funding for failing at this most important task. Intelligent Design must be taught alongside with, or instead of evolution. Textbooks should teach the founders were Christians. Our children shouldn’t be forced to read literature that exposes them to sex, drugs, and other controversial content without a parent present. Sex education that does not teach abstinence violates the rights of parents. It is unethical to force children to be educated in a system that deprives them of spiritual nurturing and replaces it with pagan or atheistic ideas.

Crime—The Word is clear that sin is wrong, and is punishable. The government is tasked by God with punishing evil. When people do wrong, they must be given punishment, which must be severe in order to deter crime. Being soft on crime condones it. Capital punishment is necessary as a just punishment for murder, because if you take a life you forfeit your own.

Drugs—Recreational drugs are a danger to individuals and to society. They cloud the mind and create life-destroying addictions that put families in ruin. Legalizing these drugs will allow more people to use them, and will harm society more. Legalizing marijuana encourages the gateway drug that leads to worse drugs.

Illegal Immigration—Although Republicans are divided about how to handle illegal immigration, conservatives tend to view America as a sacred place where Christianity is to flourish. Illegal immigration is a problem because it is lawbreaking and it violates the idea that America, a new promised land for godly people, is being snuck upon by those not following the laws. Ungodly nations should not send their people here without our ability to monitor them as potential threats, both to culture and to security.

The Market—The Bible does not say much about trade, except that it should be honest, so the government should not limit it much at all. The providence of God blesses those who work hard and rewards the nation with wealth based on our morals. Tax cuts should be given to those who are bountiful due to their work ethic and virtuous dealings, and they should choose how to return to God and fellow man their reward.

Weapon ownership—As the founders fought with guns to secure individual rights, our rights are secure because we are able to threaten a tyrannical government. More importantly, as the family is the basic unit of society that God made, and men have a duty to protect their family, we must be able to own guns for self defense against criminals, or anyone seeking to harm us or deprive us of our God-given rights.

Warfare—As a Christian nation, America must defend herself and her values across the world. Like the leaders of Israel in the Bible, we must be courageous to fight for what is right. This may mean going abroad to protect other nations who want to follow our example, or to contain threats to our security, safety, and godliness. God has blessed us, and as a beacon to the world we must defend democracy and freedom. We will support the state of Israel, since she was once God’s chosen people and her values closely resemble ours. We will fight extremists Muslim terrorists, clear enemies of God who reject Christ, by purging the Middle East of militant Muslims who seek to harm us. To some, Biblical prophecy hints that our involvement in the Middle East is key to Jesus coming back.

Welfare—The Bible teaches we must help the poor, and that people need to be taken care of. Examples in scripture show us that individuals and churches are to carry out this holy task. Charities and para-church organizations have done wonders to help the needy. Government  using our tax money to make decisions about giving money to people claiming to be poor is at best clumsy and at worst unethical. Welfare programs cannot distinguish between those who need more and those who need less, cause lazy and ungrateful people to look to man and not God for blessings. Private institutions can creatively help the poor when not restricted by the government, and should be given freedom to decide how and when to help people claiming to be in need.

Race and Class—Racism is wrong. But we learned in the 1960s that many ungodly elements latched onto the Civil Rights Era and used it to damage America. Martin Luther King Jr. was a hero of the Civil Rights Movement and a strong Christian. He restored race relations to where they should be, and while racism is not solved, it is much less a problem than it was before. America is one nationality, and the Church is one “new” race made of all races. Focusing on racism and assuming racist motives all the time divides us rather than unites us. Current efforts to identify racism among conservatives is usually a masked effort at destroying our credibility or taking away religious liberties in the name of diversity.

The Environment—God made the earth, and we should care for it. Damaging the environment is wrong. However, climate change theory rejects that God made the earth and that it will last until the day he chooses to close his creation and bring us to a new heaven and a new earth. We should be skeptical of legislation to protect the environment based on evidence we cannot more readily see, especially if it hurts free enterprise.
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Why do they NOT vote for Democrats?
At best, Christian Republicans view Democrats as too secular and tolerant of social sin, separating Church and State until the state persecutes Christianity and approves of dishonorable living. Democratic leaders write laws that intrude on family values, ridicule churches, and give too much power to a state that increasingly does not associate itself with God. This is also why some may go as far as to view Democrats as baby-murdering, anti-Christian, morally depraved, pro-Muslim tyrants who tolerate everything but Christianity.

What do they fear?
Godless leaders, tolerance of indecency, terrorism, persecution, crime in the streets, society spinning out of control, the wrath of God.

What do they love?
At the heart of Christian Republicanism
 is, I think, the belief that God instituted the Church, the family, and the civil government, and that the founders of America are the first to have built a nation on this principle. Because of this, they believe America is exceptional in the world because of our freedom, and our freedom is given to us by God. We are blessed because of our righteous roots, and if we continue to please God we will continue to be blessed. An abrupt change in social morality around the 1960’s put America in danger of losing the grace of God, and we have had to fight to legislate righteous morality ever since. A godly government will safeguard the morality of society and its behavior, and unashamedly declare the glory of God.

If you are a Christian who is staunchly Republican, I invite you to share your reflection. How much of this represented you?
If you are a Christian who is staunchly Democratic, or anything else but Republican, do you better understand why so many Christians vote Republican?

In the next post, we do the exact same thing with Democrats. I will attempt to equally represent Christians who vote for Democratic candidates.

12 responses to “Why So Many Christians Vote Republican

  1. I am no longer a Republican, but I do still hold to a lot of the conservative views posted here. At the heart, I suppose I still agree with these philosophies, but I think the Republican party is failing to hold to them. I don’t claim to be a Democrat either, as I think their philosophies are too permissive. I am very interested in reading your overview of the Democratic party, though!

    • Thanks for sharing! What’s interesting about me posting these now is that it seems like for both parties so much is at stake in this election that has less to do with party stances and more to do with character of the candidates. But it’s also why I want people on opposite ends to understand each other so they can connect and agree that they have chosen bad candidates and can reevaluate with more unity what can be done.

    • I don’t consider myself a democrat but I am liberal, especially compared to your average evangelical, so I tend to agree with democratic philosophies on social issues and I want to address the idea that they are “too permissive”. I’m interpreting this comment to basically mean that liberal Christians are too secular, too loose with their acceptance of homosexuality and abortion and too willing to see religion (specifically Christianity) diluted in day to day life (remove the ten commandments, no school prayer, remove mention of God from currency, etc). If my interpretation is incorrect then this post will be mostly pointless but, in general, I find that these are the types of complaints conservative Christians have in mind when making the “too permissive” argument.

      For me to explain why I am comfortable with more liberal policies in these areas I’ve got to start by explaining how the Bible informs my world view. We obviously live in a post-resurrection world. As a crude review of the Biblical timeline – God wanted to restore His kingdom through Israel, it didn’t work out so well. God sent Jesus to announce His kingdom and establish His Church, which, with Jesus as it’s head, is the vehicle through which God is reestablishing His kingdom on earth. For me this means that the Bible and, even more specifically, Jesus should be the moral compass by which I chart my path through life. Hopefully, as I strive to live a Christ-like life, I take part in restoring and spreading God’s kingdom.

      I don’t think there would be many Christians, conservative or liberal, who would disagree with any of that; however, I think the way conservative Christian politics (in America) play out often times betray this basic belief structure. I’ll try to explain.

      It seems to me that many conservative Christians, while they would agree with my world view, live (and hope) in a way that identifies America, not the Church, as God’s new Israel (His vehicle to restore His kingdom). Conservatives like to tie God’s favor towards us with how closely our social policies align with Biblical morality. There are obvious historic flaws in this idea. America became a great nation through trampling on Native Americans then profiting on the backs of slaves. If we want to hold the view that our country is great because of God’s favor, and that God favors us because we hold to Biblical morality, we have to be willing to either ignore history, or claim that Biblical morality isn’t in opposition to genocide and slavery. This is a big enough problem in and of itself; however, for me, the bigger problem is the idea that God has called or led America in a position of prominence as a way to restore His kingdom. His plan for restoring His kingdom is to use the Church, not our country. To get the two confused is, in my opinion, idolatry and it presents one of the (if not the biggest) challenge to American Christianity… nationalism.

      The clear objection to all of this is that Christians can, and should, use the political structure of our country to promote Biblical morality. My response to this has several layers.

      First, you can’t legislate morality. Marriage equality is a relatively new development in our country. Homosexuality existed, and was prevalent, long before marriage equality was adopted. Additionally, making abortion illegal would not prevent abortions (funny, this is the same argument conservatives use to protect gun rights).

      Second, to dive deeper, lets operate under the assumption that making abortion illegal would put a complete and total stop to abortion. Or that any legislation could completely wipe out a sinful behavior or action. That would be awesome, and it is a worthy goal; however, would we have helped usher in His kingdom? His kingdom isn’t comprised of “better” people or “good” people or people who don’t sin. His kingdom is comprised of people who recognize their depravity and who recognize that their Creator loves them enough to send His son to be their reconciliation. His kingdom isn’t full of people who don’t have abortions. His kingdom is full of people who glorify Him and make Him their first love. Do we accomplish this through legislation? Or do we simply sleep better at night comforting ourselves with the idea that God will “bless America” because we have outlawed a nasty practice? Christ would not meet women considering abortion by protesting at a clinic. Christ met desperate women at a well and when a prostitute was brought to him to be convicted. The prostitute was convicted; however, it wasn’t a legal conviction, her heart was convicted by His love and we can assume this allowed her to hear love rather than condemnation in His admonition to “go and sin no more”. As a Christian it is not my duty to legislate her morality. It is my duty to love her and to work to find ways for her to know the love of Christ through her circumstance.

      Third, if Christians insist upon legislating morality we need to slow down and consider the logs in our own eyes. We present a major stumbling block to those who observe us when we parade pastors (who weigh 350 pounds and who are fighting self inflicted diabetes and heart disease) out to preach on the abomination of men who hold hands ignoring all of the Biblical warning against gluttony. We need to be equally as alarmed by our own lust-fullness as we are by gay marriage. After all, if I “look at a woman with lust I have committed adultery with her in my heart”. In short, we have chosen some really convenient social issues, ones that we (Christians) tend not to struggle with, to identify as the issues where permissiveness is dangerous. Yet we ignore gluttony, lust, pride, selfishness and even promote greed. It is no wonder that we are dogged by the impression that we are hypocrites when we take stands where the stand is convenient and shy away where the fire may burn a little too hot for comfort. I am not railing against gluttonous preachers or lust-full Christians. I am railing against pretending that there are two or three important social issues that the success of our society and our Christian witness hinges on.

      Fourth, in general, I can’t think of anywhere in Scripture that teaches God wants Christians to enforce Biblical morality on non-believers. It seems to me that the way it is supposed to work is that we are supposed to be “fishers of men” bringing people to know His love and that He will transform us through the renewing of our minds. Not through the political force His followers exert in their society.

      For me, I am much more comfortable with a liberal political stance on social issues. This stance certainly allows me the freedom to live my conservative Biblical convictions while still working to bring His kingdom, not by political persuasion but by love, which is His chosen agent of change. It allows me to influence the hearts of others so that they may become interested in what He offers through seeing His impression on my life. I then trust Him to transform the lives of new Christians through the renewing of their mind rather than hoping that legislating their behavior will do the trick. This perspective helps me keep my focus on participating in the establishment of His kingdom as my goal rather than making it my hope that America can be a great nation because of our superior morality, on handpicked issues, established through politics.

      That was a lot longer than I meant it to be, I hope it is coherent and maybe even helpful.

      • I don’t know why I’m such a glutton for debate when I can’t do it very well, but I guess I can’t help it. I’m not actually trying to debate, but just explain myself (maybe?). And I won’t be able to do it in short terms either, sorry.

        This is something I wonder … did Republicans choose these social issues to address, or was that forced on them because liberals were trying to tell them these were not sins? For example, let’s pick abortion. Was it at one point widely understood by the majority of Americans that this was sinful until liberals decided, “hey, this is not a sin and a woman should choose what to do with her body!” and so they made laws allowing for it, and now it’s more widely accepted as something a woman has the right to do. (Now who is it using laws to moralize?)

        I mean, the same can be said for so many of these issues. The church preached what it did on sin (including homosexuality among a long list of others), until someone said, “hey, I want the government to make it legal for me to marry my same-sex partner” and so the government makes laws, YOU have to accept it as not being a sin, and our culture now is convinced that homosexuality is not a sin and we have to accept not only their behavior but allow it to infiltrate our families, our churches, everywhere.

        I don’t have a great memory, even from recent history, but am I remembering the order of events incorrectly? Was it actually the Republicans that sought to make these things illegal before it was really an issue?

        This is a WAY side note, but also take the recent bathroom issue. I feel like most people were minding their own business on this one, it WASN’T an issue – if you look like or identify as a guy, use a guy’s bathroom. You look like a gal, use the gal’s bathroom. You might be a guy but you look like a woman, and you’ve used the woman’s bathroom, and I had no idea! And I didn’t care! But one day some people were bored and wondered how they could create a media hoopla and problems for the conservative ignoramuses, so they said, “let’s make a law that you can use whatever bathroom you want to!” Hello! That was kinda already what was happening! All of a sudden there was a problem, a law was necessary, and conservatives jumped into the trap to argue what really hadn’t been an argument to begin with. That’s really how I saw all that – if I misunderstood anything, feel free to correct me.

        I honestly think Democrats are right on in trying to take care of the impoverished & needy in our nation. But I don’t think their methods are right on. The reason it seems there is a need in the first place is because the church isn’t doing what it’s supposed to. Now, did the church fall behind in taking care of folks and then the government had to step in, or did the government start taking over and so the church got complacent and lazy about providing the care they should have? Again, not sure of the order of events here, but it’s something I think about.

        So yes, I say “too permissive” – firstly because liberals by definition are more open and permissive. It’s a fact that they WANT to be more permissive, and it’s more than I’m comfortable with. I truly feel that when your culture decides to be more accepting of sinful behaviors, then you lose your population to those behaviors. And they’re doing it with laws and government control. Look at your sons and tell me you are looking forward to the day when pedophiles will not be held accountable for raping with children. That day IS coming.

        Don’t get me wrong, I think Republicans go about countering the Democrats in all the wrong ways, which is why I no longer want to identify with the Republican party, and sometimes I want to just not vote altogether. I honestly don’t see a way out of this, unless God wants to bless us with a miracle. Both parties are too far down their paths for me to see any kind of restoration.

        Honestly, I don’t always care. I mean, I don’t really want to see my children have to go through more of the crap this country is creating, but I don’t hold as much loyalty to these United States. If anything makes Christians rise up and claim their own nationality, then I think they are going to have to be forced into it by their grief over the direction of the government. I don’t think God will take over the government and make it easy on us. 🙂 (In His wisdom, He knows that doesn’t really make it easy on us anyway!)

        I won’t take a liberal political stance personally, but if our government is going to be liberal, the rest of your last paragraph is spot on! It will force us as Christians to say, “hey, it’s not about what the government is doing, but about what we need GOD to do in this country.” I think you’re right – a more liberal government will push Christians to rely more fully on God.

        (Praying I didn’t sound totally ignorant!)

        And all this started because I just thought Caleb’s post about the origins of Republican values was interesting!!! Thanks a lot, friend!

      • Lisa – I want to start with the idea of “who started it”. When it comes to social policies liberals typically aren’t pushing for news laws on the books; or for new laws that give them permission to do what they want to do. Much more often liberals are fighting court cases to get existing laws revised and/or repealed. The classic example is Roe v. Wade for abortion. For marriage equality there are dozens (Perez v Sharp; Loving v Virginia & Adams v. Howerton are the three I am most familiar with). The truth is the definition of marriage in America has been constantly evolving. Initially, marriage could crudely be described as the transfer of property of one woman to one man as long as they were the same race. Through liberal activism marriage has evolved to the point where women aren’t viewed as property, where interracial marriage is legal and now to the point where two consenting adults can enjoy the benefits of marriage that the government grants regardless of gender. So who started it? Whoever decided that marriage was a relationship where a white man owned a white woman started it… To tie it more directly to today’s politics Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson were the driving force behind the “Moral Majority” that started in the 1980’s with emphasis on politicizing social issues to help push Christians in the direction of the Republican party.

        So to clarify your statement “the church preached what it did on sin, until someone said, ‘hey, I want the government to make it legal for me to marry my same-sex partner’ and so the government makes laws.” In reality the definition of marriage (per the US government, not per God) has been in a constant state of flux. The laws have reflected the culture and while liberals have pushed to make it legal for same sex couples to marry this hasn’t required the government to “make laws” but rather to adjust laws that are already in place.

        I also want to address the sentiment that if the government makes it legal “YOU have to accept it as not being sin, and our culture now is convinced that homosexuality is not a sin…” Just because something is legal does not mean that I have to accept it is not sinful. Greed is legal, and largely encouraged, I still recognize this as sin. Lust is legal and I still recognize this as sin. Gluttony is legal and I still recognize it as sin. The list could go on quite a while. If you’re contention is that everything that is sinful should be illegal so that our culture doesn’t get confused about what God is okay with and what He isn’t okay with then we have a lot of work to do. In reality it just isn’t practical and from a Christian perspective God as not called us to make sin illegal. Morality can not be legislated.

        I also want to add that our culture does not think homosexuality is not a sin. Most people recognize that the Bible calls homosexuality sinful. The Church has done a fine job of making this perfectly clear. What has happened is that our culture no longer cares. The reason our culture no longer cares is because the Church spends more time and energy on trying to legislate morality than it does on “loving God and loving people”. Our culture sees the Church (and as a result our God) as dispensable because all they see is the hypocrisy of a group of people who want to demonize sins we tend not to struggle with in the Church and turn a blind eye to those sins we more comfortable with. I contend that if the Church filled the role we are called to fill (being the body of Christ), rather than the legislative role we want to fill, our culture would look more the way we want it to.

        Concerning the bathroom issue, you are exactly right on some points and exactly wrong on others. The way it used to work was you went where you went and we were all good. Then the Republican governor and Republican controlled state legislature in North Carolina passed House Bill 2 which requires people to use the restroom that corresponds with the gender indicated on their birth certificate. This bill also revised the standards for employer discrimination. The bill disallowed discrimination based on race/ethnicity, sex, age, religion etc… the obvious omissions were sexuality and sexual identity. This left the door open for employers to fire people based on their sexuality and/or status as transgender. Liberals climbed all over this. Most of the media attention was over the bathroom stuff because it makes better headlines. Most of the outrage was actually over the omission of sexuality and sexual identity as categories people couldn’t be discriminated against by their employer for. Nobody said, as you stated, “let’s make a law that you can use whatever bathroom you want to”… Lot’s of people said “House Bill 2 is ridiculous it needs to be amended to provide work place protections for homosexual and transgender people”. That got a spun by conservatives as “those liberals want to repeal this law that protects our kids from sexual predators in bathrooms”.

        I understand that you want to adhere to Biblical morality, liberal Christians want to as well. The difference is that I am not comfortable being “too permissive” when it comes to greed, gluttony, lust, fear, anger, covetousness etc. and pretending that all of that is okay as long as I take a hard line stance on homosexuality and abortion. The conservative stance, that “the sins we all struggle with shouldn’t be illegal, but we need laws for these others that we aren’t as comfortable with” paints an incredibly inaccurate picture of the God we serve. I also am not comfortable enforcing my religious beliefs on others through political force; I certainly would not want Muslims to enforce their religious beliefs on me. To be consistent, and to follow the Golden Rule, I’ve got to be okay living in a society that reflects the culture. Being a Christian, I will live in a way that reflects my beliefs, and I will hope to influence the culture which in turn may lead to a society that honors God. I won’t pretend that legislating morality accomplishes that goal.

        In the past, as I’ve thought about this, it has occurred to me that there is a lot in common between conservative Christians and Israel in the promised land. Israel wanted a king; and a king they got, at the expense of a the relationship with God they were supposed to have. Conservative Christians want to legislate certain aspects of morality so that and for decades Christian morality has been the law. In the end the American Church has often times focused its attention and energy in the wrong place and created an idol out of our nation, just like Israel continually lost its way and forgot who God promised them He would be. I won’t fall into that trap.

        There is one more thing you said that I want to address directly. “Look at your sons and tell me you are looking forward to the day when pedophiles will not be held accountable with raping children. That day IS coming.” First – I know evil is real in this world. I will do my best to live the calling I have as a Christian to be salt and light in this world and hope that I can influence the culture and society I exist within. I will NOT pretend that God cares more about what laws our country has on the books than how His Church represents Him. I will not take a conservative stand on social issues so that I can rest easy at night pretending that I am a Christian warrior. Second – there is absolutely no evidence that anybody thinks pedophiles shouldn’t be held accountable for raping children… where did that come from? Last I saw it was a conservative judge in California letting rich college kids go will 3 months in jail for raping passed out drunk girls behind college bars. The outrage he faced came from all directions, not least from liberals.

        To close, you said “hey, it’s not about what the government is doing, but about what we need God to do in this country.” I only want to make one change. It isn’t about what the government does, but about how the Church lives to influence our culture in our country. If the Church was more concerned with bearing the image of Christ, rather than legislating morality, I suspect our country would look much different. We have largely lost our salt and light. That isn’t the fault of liberals, that isn’t the fault of a secular culture. That is the fault of generations of Christians who have (like Israel) traded the promises of God for political clout. In the end, I believe the secular culture we live in is the result of our culture watching generations of conservative Christians politicize our religion rather than working to bear the image of Christ. I understand why generations of conservatives have done this. It is easier to pass laws and vote for Republicans than it is to live like Christ did. It is easier to feel like we are fighting for God and honoring him by pushing our morality rather than doing the dirty work of loving people. After enough generations of the Church putting its faith in our country and its laws rather than in the self-giving God of love we claim to worship, I understand why our culture thinks we espouse a bunch of bull. I won’t take part in that, and if I have to wear a “liberal” label, or appear “too permissive” that is a price I consider well worth paying to be able to do the best I can do as a Christ-ian.

        Or maybe I’m just a whiny millennial, it’s hard to tell 🙂

      • You’re not a whiny millennial. You know a lot more about laws & politics than I do. Thanks for the education. I don’t really keep up with stuff; I knew it was a mistake to get into it with you. 🙂 No, but seriously, I didn’t now all that about NC. And definitely what you said about the Moral Majority and how things were when our country first started – good points.

        I’m always very curious and fascinated about how things start, which is why I enjoyed Caleb’s original post and love learning more about both sides. I typically don’t really get into politics, and I’m not much of an activist. I recognize that there are times throughout history when a group of activists takes up a cause, a lot of people groan and roll their eyes or even persecute the activists because they’re against the change or they’d rather just leave things the way they are, and then now, looking back, we see what great things came from that group willing to charge against the flow and propel us toward progress. I guess because I tend to be a conservative person, I relate more to Republicans and might want to defend them, but I enjoy listening to and learning from folks of all political persuasions. And the truth is, I really don’t know enough about anything to actually defend a position! I hope and pray that the reason I don’t worry or care too much about politics is because I’m trying to make a difference in someone’s life in a personal way, by showing them love, not trying to use the government to “help” them or force them on the right path.

        Mostly what I learned today is not to even TRY to debate, especially with Justin. (o;

  2. You did a pretty good job with your description of why Christians tend to vote Republican . I was a democrat ,when I realized they were pushing abortion so hard I switched . I feel like any Christian should vote Republican abortion is like modern day Holy innocents with selling of baby body parts I cannot even imagine a Christian voting Democrat but people are able to justify anything Christians I know that vote Democrat say it’s because social issues
    Well we have always been pretty good with social issues but we still end up with homeless people yet the amount of people getting assistance has more than doubled.Trump and Pence say they will put Roe vs Wade in the ash heap it belongs!This Election cycle has been eye opening with Wikileaks the corruption in our government is mind boggling! I voted for Rubio in the primary like a lot of people I didn’t care for Mr. Trumps style ,but when he won I started listening to him Mr Pence his family all good people(not too sure about Chris Christie never thought he seemed trustworthy so I really hope he doesn’t give him a job) people don’t have any good reasons not to like Trump except they don’t want change . I think Change is exactly what we need.The Democrats are so corrupt the republican r too just not as bad .In my humble opinion that is one of Mr Trumps assets he is not a career politician if you listen to him at one of his rallies He Loves America he wants to fix our broken system We as Christians can only pray for the Holy Spirit to guide him . There is no hope with the Democrats they are too far gone!They will take our country down to the point of no return. God will stop giving us chances at some point He will just give up on us !!(rightly so)

  3. Pingback: Why So Many Christians Vote Democrat | CALEB COY

  4. Good questions, Lisa.

    In America it was generally understood for a long time that homosexuality was immoral and abortion was shunned. However, there were also always people who believed outside of those codes. So maybe the chicken-egg question is who is first responsible for trying to change laws?

    Well, often these laws don’t change until a lawsuit goes to the supreme court. That’s what happened with abortion. The famous Roe V. Wade, one of the most recited court case names. So, when society in general changes to a certain point, a person’s convictions mixed with judicial opinions lead a case to the supreme court, or at least a state court. Public opinion influences juries, lawyers, judges, etc. And groups like the NAACP will give funding and attention to a case based on how important they think it is based on the issues they focus on. So I think it’s a lot of factors, and I think there is a lot of back and forth escalation. So once one person sues Target over a bathroom thing, whether conservatives mock it or liberals defend it first, both (esp. in media) are responsible for drawing attention to it.

    Be sure to also check out my post on Democrats I posted Monday. One is coming on Libertarians, and one on the concept of not voting. Then I’m taking a break.

  5. Pingback: Why So Many Christians Vote Libertarian | CALEB COY

  6. Pingback: “You Didn’t Vote! You Can’t Complain!” Why Many Christians Don’t | CALEB COY

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