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Thursday, November 6, 2008

Exercise Your Rights II

In my last blog I laid out the choice that was being presented in this election.  We have made our choice, now what?  This is America, right?  Our government can't change from democracy to socialism, can it?  This is still the best country in the whole world!  But, anything CAN happen; we as a country are not immune.  It is all up to you!  I think it is time for everyone to wake up and take an ACTIVE role in our government.  Let your voice be heard!  Elections are not the only time to do that.  Our government is, after all, of the people, by the people and for the people.  But this only remains true IF you remain active—it is when we are passive that this right is taken away.


 


What not to do:




  • Disrespect – We are to respect the office of our president, vice president, senators, congressmen/women, governors, mayors, etc.  These are offices of authority.  What example is it to our children when we disrespect authority?  How can we expect them to obey us?

  • Complain, grumble, slander or in any way bad-mouth the people in office.  This does not produce good fruit; it does not bring change.

  • Feed off the ranting of others—this includes conservative media (radio shows, etc.).  You can keep yourself informed without filling your mind and heart with negativity.  Sort through actual news and ranting and tearing down of government officials.  Again, it is not fruitful; it makes you mad, but doesn't bring about change.  Philippians 4:8Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.”


What we need to do:




  • Pray

  • Be informed.  For example, do you know what the Fairness Doctrine is?  Or the energy bill that is phasing out the sale of filament light bulbs?  Both of these issues affect your life.  Get your news from an unbiased source; this won’t be channels 2, 6, or 8.  You need to find out the issues.  Check out www.khouse.org, onenewsnow.com, AFA.net, worldnetdaily.com, worldmag.com, to name a few.

  • Get in contact with your legislators (local, state, and in DC) and STAY in contact with them.  You can write them letters, send emails, and make phone calls.  I heard somewhere once that every contact they get, they treat as the view of 1000 of their constituents.  They are bound to uphold the views of those constituents.  But how can they know how we feel when we just sit on our couches and stew?  You can sign up for the AFA.net email newsletter--they will send you alerts on legislation and they make it very easy to send a quick email to the appropriate legislators.

  • Place your trust in the Lord.  Proverbs 21:1  He is in control.  He is not surprised by this election, He know the end from the beginning.  Isaiah 46:10

  • Above ALL, we must obey the Word of God!  Paul tells us in Romans 13:1-7 to respect the authority of government for they are appointed by God to restrain evil on the earth.  When we are disrespecting the government, we are disrespecting God!  Ouch!  Peter tells us in I Peter 2:13-17 that it is the will of God that we submit to the laws of government.  I believe this applies when those laws do not directly contradict the Word of God.  When Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-Nego were told to bow down and worship the idol that King Neduchadnezzar had built, they refused because it contradicted God's law.  (See Daniel 3)  Paul tells us in I Timothy 2:1-4 that we should pray for our government leaders so that we will lead peaceable lives and that they may come to the knowledge of the truth.


Think about the world that Peter or Paul or Daniel lived in.  I highly recommend reading through the book of Daniel to see an excellent example of how we ought to conduct ourselves in this world.  Peter and Paul lived in the Roman empire—Peter in the province of Judea and later in Rome, while Paul traveled extensively throughout Asia Minor, spending time in Rome also.  At that time in history the world was extremely pagan.  The rulers were the Caesars who wanted to be worshipped as gods, hardly what you consider a godly leader.  Yet, see above for what Peter and Paul had to say about their government.  Christians were severely persecuted in that time, too.  Nero killed both Paul and Peter.  Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego were captured from Judah and taken to Babylon where Nebuchadnezzar was ruler.  Babylon is the birthplace of all false religion.  It was a normal part of the culture to worship idols, eat unclean foods, and practice all sorts of perversion in the name of their worship.  These things contradicted the Jewish laws that Daniel and his friends observed.  Nebuchadnezzar was an absolute ruler that could execute any one of these Jews at any time for disobedience if he wished.  What did Daniel and his friends do?  Did they disrespect their captors?  Did they complain?  We see through the book that they obeyed God's law above the law of the king, but were at all times respectful and as a result were promoted to high government offices.  In the times when they were persecuted by the government for refusing to obey the king, God protected them.  Let this be a lesson to us.  Our world, even though it seems to be getting worse, is not as bad as the pagan cultures of ancient times.  Let our conduct be like Daniel, whose coworkers could find no fault with.  (Daniel 6:4)  Also note how the emphasis throughout the book is that God is the one who gives the kings their kingdoms.  He’s in control and there is no cause to live in fear and worry!

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