As our modern times get ever increasingly troubled, we see a disheartening trend among government, and more specifically with politicians. It is no secret what this trend is, it has been happening since ancient Biblical times. So desensitized is our culture to this issue we (the world) continue, over and over, to elect the most corrupt of men and women into government. Why does this culture make such a majority of bad decision making? It is in the way the voters live that makes them inept at placing someone into government who can fit a moral and ethical mold.
How is it that a voter who lives a Biblically-lawless life (churchianity), or more fittingly, a voter who has abstained from keeping Yahweh’s Laws expected to have the wisdom, knowledge and understanding to vote properly?
Making an educated guess on the lesser of two evils seems to be the more apt description of what today’s voters accomplish by placing their check mark besides someone’s name.
Some, in our own faith, have added their thoughts on this subject to the side of being involved with the political process, but what does the Bible teach we should do?
We go to Deuteronomy 17:
If there arise a matter too hard for thee in judgment, between blood and blood, between plea and plea, and between stroke and stroke, being matters of controversy within thy gates: then shalt thou arise, and get thee up into the place which Yahweh thy Elohim shall choose; And thou shalt come unto the priests the Levites, and unto the judge that shall be in those days, and enquire; and they shall show thee the sentence of judgment:
And thou shalt do according to the sentence, which they of that place which Yahweh shall choose shall show thee; and thou shalt observe to do according to all that they inform thee:
According to the sentence of the law which they shall teach thee, and according to the judgment which they shall tell thee, thou shalt do: thou shalt not decline from the sentence which they shall show thee, to the right hand, nor to the left.
And the man that will do presumptuously, and will not hearken unto the priest that standeth to minister there before Yahweh thy Elohim, or unto the judge, even that man shall die: and thou shalt put away the evil from Israel.
And all the people shall hear, and fear, and do no more presumptuously. When thou art come unto the land which Yahweh thy Elohim giveth thee, and shalt possess it, and shalt dwell therein, and shalt say, I will set a king over me, like as all the nations that are about me;
Thou shalt in any wise set him king over thee, whom Yahweh thy Elohim shall choose: one from among thy brethren shalt thou set king over thee: thou mayest not set a stranger over thee, which is not thy brother.
One could infer from these Scriptures that whether it be a priest (Levites), judge (Judges), or king, that they must come from one of Yahweh’s own. From the passage above I think we have a clear definition of who might qualify to serve over us in a authoritarian role, remember that the kings over Israel were placed for the position of judgment of civil affairs. Much like the politicians of today are appointed over the people as civil leadership. Our president and state governors and mayors, act as types of kings and rulers.
The comparisons of our government to ancient Israel’s rulership type are difficult because our system of government is roughly modeled after Roman republic type rule.
Read PDF of Roman Republic Constitution and Form of Government
We could, after reading the set of Scriptures above be content with a simple answer from Yahweh’s own command “thou mayest not set a stranger over thee; which is not thy brother” but let’s study this issue a bit more…
The people wanted a civil leader, they clamored for what the pagan nations around their area had, a king, lets see how that goes for Israel:
And it came to pass, when Samuel was old, that he made his sons judges over Israel. Now the name of his firstborn was Joel; and the name of his second, Abiah: they were judges in Beersheba.
And his sons walked not in his ways, but turned aside after lucre, and took bribes, and perverted judgment. Then all the elders of Israel gathered themselves together, and came to Samuel unto Ramah, And said unto him, Behold, thou art old, and thy sons walk not in thy ways: now make us a king to judge us like all the nations.
But the thing displeased Samuel, when they said, Give us a king to judge us. And Samuel prayed unto Yahweh. And Yahweh said unto Samuel, Hearken unto the voice of the people in all that they say unto thee: for they have not rejected thee, but they have rejected me, that I should not reign over them.
According to all the works which they have done since the day that I brought them up out of Egypt even unto this day, wherewith they have forsaken me, and served other mighty ones, so do they also unto thee.
Now therefore hearken unto their voice: howbeit yet protest solemnly unto them, and show them the manner of the king that shall reign over them.
And Samuel told all the words of Yahweh unto the people that asked of him a king. And he said, This will be the manner of the king that shall reign over you: He will take your sons, and appoint them for himself, for his chariots, and to be his horsemen; and some shall run before his chariots.
And he will appoint him captains over thousands, and captains over fifties; and will set them to ear his ground, and to reap his harvest, and to make his instruments of war, and instruments of his chariots.
And he will take your daughters to be confectionaries, and to be cooks, and to be bakers. And he will take your fields, and your vineyards, and your oliveyards, even the best of them, and give them to his servants.
And he will take the tenth of your seed, and of your vineyards, and give to his officers, and to his servants.
And he will take your menservants, and your maidservants, and your goodliest young men, and your asses, and put them to his work.
He will take the tenth of your sheep: and ye shall be his servants. And ye shall cry out in that day because of your king which ye shall have chosen you; and Yahweh will not hear you in that day.
Nevertheless the people refused to obey the voice of Samuel; and they said, Nay; but we will have a king over us;
That we also may be like all the nations; and that our king may judge us, and go out before us, and fight our battles.
And Samuel heard all the words of the people, and he rehearsed them in the ears of Yahweh. And Yahweh said to Samuel, Hearken unto their voice, and make them a king. And Samuel said unto the men of Israel, Go ye every man unto his city.
1 Samuel 8: 1-22
As Israel went on through the ages the kings were mostly bad especially over the ten tribes. The kings over Judah, however, were some good but there were several evil as well.
|Before the split of Israel as a complete 12 tribes kingdom:||Type of King|
|David||mostly good, made some bad choices|
|Solomon||mostly good but also made bad choices concerning women and worship|
|Kings of Israel (Ten Tribes)||Type of King/Ruler|
|Omri (overlap)||extra bad|
|Jehu||not good but better than the rest|
|Jeroboam II (overlap)||bad|
|Kings of Judah||Type of King/Ruler|
So we’ve had many OT examples of civil leaders, mostly bad leaders. Also remember how bad decision making by the civil leaders also proved detrimental to the religious aspect of society for many reasons. Bad kings appointed bad priests, bad priests were an abomination to the Temple and as a result an offence to Yahweh.
In Yahshua’s time things did not seem any better. Thousands of years of bad civil and religious leadership had finally come to a head when Yahshua appears on the scene to usher in a new way of living, taken from the commandments of old. Herod, the Sanhedrin, Pharisees and Sadducees, all comprised civil and religious leadership during Messiah’s time on earth.
Herod, puppet king over the land, most likely appointed by his Roman masters, is a classic example of cruel misguided leadership. Although he was probably not voted in or appointed by other Israelites his presence as a secular governor gives us more to think about when gathering Biblical evidence for politicians in this age.
The Sanhedrin, a religious governing body, most likely made up of priests from various religious sects. They may have been voted or appointed by their respective sect to serve on a board of “judges”. The chief priest of the temple is said to have served on this board. The Sanhedrin of Yahshua’s time was instrumental in condemning our Messiah to His eventual impalement. They wanted Him killed but because they didn’t have the power to sentence one to death they influenced Pontius Pilate to execute mortal judgment. They played the politics of the day by manipulating the Roman system of government. Sly politicians they were, perfect for this present day and age of corrupt men in government. Who may manipulate this U.S./Roman style of government to persecute us?
With all that has been written in this article against politicians and secular government there is hope… 2 Peter has a glimmer of what Yahweh’s place is in raising up authority, we read:
Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Master's sake: whether it be to the king, as supreme; Or unto governors, as unto them that are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers, and for the praise of them that do well. And down to verse 17
Honour all men. Love the brotherhood. Fear Elohim. Honour the king. 1 Peter 2:13-14, 17
Yahweh’s hand is raising up the authority, so why should we worry about whom he places as our next president?
We shouldn’t! It isn’t up to us who Yahweh chooses to lead this world, it’s His decision who will lead or govern us. Good or bad we have to “Honor the king”. However, the Bible does not encourage us to vote or appoint these secular leaders. In fact, the Bible seems to say, as in Deut 17 that there is only limited qualification for such an appointment:
Thou shalt in any wise set him king over thee, whom Yahweh thy Elohim shall choose: one from among thy brethren shalt thou set king over thee: thou mayest not set a stranger over thee, which is not thy brother. Deuteronomy 17:15
Take comfort in knowing that Yahweh’s true and only “Yahshua” led government will soon be established as in Isaiah 9:
For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty El, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.
Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of Yahweh of hosts will perform this. Isaiah 9:6-7
Take comfort in knowing no matter how many corrupt politicians (and governmental policies) we need to endure (maybe to our persecution) in our daily lives, Yahweh is in control allowing them to do what they do for a reason, and that ultimately accomplishes His will for them and us. This may be difficult for us to see now, as human as we are, but through prayer, fasting, and reflection maybe we will gain a spiritual understanding to Yahweh’s plan.
An exception in favor of voting could be made in voting for issue specific legislation. These would include issues like abortion, homeschooling laws, food laws etc…