Our Hope Is Built on Nothing Less
October 12, 2016
TODAY'S BIBLE READING:
It’s election season. This used to be only a few months long, but this election has been dragging on for nearly a year. I’m usually a political junky who loves to keep up with all the twists and turns of the campaign, but even I am sick of it. It’s no news that most of the country is without a candidate they can get behind. This seems true even in my college town which is a very political place. Our bumper sticker to bumper ratio is way above the national average, but for the first time since I’ve lived here (going on 18 years) I rarely see a sticker for either candidate. This vacancy is times a hundred among those of you who make up the millennial generation. This year my son Cooper (age 19) will be voting for the first time. It’s a big moment, or at least it should be. I remember when I voted in my first election. I backed one presidential candidate and my roommate backed another. We covered our walls in our respective candidate’s posters and had some spirited debates. I’m fairly certain you’d be hard pressed to find such a scenario in many dorm rooms across America today. So what’s one to do with this bizarre season in American politics? Perhaps it’s an opportunity to reflect on the nature of God’s kingship in the world and rest in it like never before. As I’ve been watching the campaign unfold, I keep thinking on Jesus’ interaction with Pilate – a ruthless governor who seemed to hold the power of life and death over Jesus. When Jesus is unwilling to answer a few direct questions, Pilate gets a little testy. He tells Jesus, “Do you not know that I have authority to release you and authority to crucify you?” Jesus quickly responds, “You would have no authority over me at all unless it had been given you from above.” It’s a window into Jesus’ “worldview”. Jesus understands that ultimately God is sovereign over all, even corrupt or incompetent rulers. Ironically, in that moment, God was using one such ruler to execute his plans to save the world. So what does that mean in terms of who to vote for? Honestly, I don’t know. I would encourage you to vote because it is part of being a citizen under the form of government that we currently enjoy. And what I do know is that we need not freak out. If God is able to take a brutal Roman governor in a brutal Roman empire and work a plan of salvation for sinners through one of the most brutal means of execution in human history, I’m certain that he can handle the 2016 U.S. presidential election. Jesus is King over all and has proven it. Also in the Gospel of John, where Jesus says the above comments to Pilate, He speaks of the kind of authority that He wields when he says, “No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down, and I have authority to take it up again.” He’s speaking of his own life. While Pilate thinks he has the power of life and death over Jesus. Jesus is the one who actually has power over Pilate. And not only that, Jesus has the power over life and death. Jesus doesn’t just talk the talk about dying and rising at a Thursday press conference. He walks the walk by dying on Friday and rising by Sunday. This is the kind of politician we are all looking for. The kind that makes amazing promises about what their administration will do and then backs it up one hundred percent of the time. This is the kind of King who rules the universe and can be trusted with our lives, with our eternity. Not only that, He’s not up for election. He has already won, by his own right and power. He has conquered sin and death and will return to restore our world by ushering in the fullness of his rule and reign. The words of the old hymn ring as true as ever. “My hope is built on nothing less than Jesus’ blood and righteousness; I dare not trust the sweetest frame, but wholly trust in Jesus’ name.” So don’t fret. Do vote. And rest assured that the right leader has the ultimate power in this life and the life to come.
Robert Krumrey is founding pastor of MERCYhouse in Amherst, MA that serves the community as well as students from five area colleges including the flagship campus of The University of Massachusetts. ]]>
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Josh Moody (Ph.D., University of Cambridge) is the senior pastor of College Church in Wheaton, IL., president and founder of God Centered Life Ministries, and author of several books including How the Bible Can Change Your Life and John 1-12 For You.
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