HWJV (How would Jesus vote?)
With a looming Federal election, there’s never been a better time to ask this question.
Over the last decade I’ve heard more political jokes and one liners than I’ve had hot dinners. Some of them funny, some of them lame, but sadly most of them not being very far from the truth.
Alas, the credibility of most modern day politicians is right up there with used car salesman. Why is it so?
There are three common areas of complaint. People hate it when politicians:
- Bad mouth the other side
- Put the agenda of their political party before the needs of the people who elected them.
If you toe the party line rather than doing what your constituents want, you have compromised and prostituted your position.
Traditionally, in the western world, there has been a “grand canyon sized” yawning gap between the political ethos of the left and right. In the United States we have the Republicans and Democrats. In Britain, The Tories and Labour, and in Australia the Labor and Liberal parties.
These political duopolies have been lobbing hand grenades at each other, across their various chambers of Parliament for as long as anyone can remember.
In more recent times there has been an alarming centralisation of political thought, to the point where one could be forgiven for thinking that there was very little difference between Labor and Liberal at least when it comes to political campaigning and behaviour. The more we have embraced “presidential style politics”, the shallower the political gene pool has become.
The left has moved to the right, and the right has moved to the left, so that the differences have become almost imperceptible.
Have you ever noticed how that when one side of politics comes up with an idea, it is immediately lampooned by the opposition, (that is of course until later on when they so often turn around and adopt an almost identical position claiming it as their own.)
One need look no further than some of the spectacular policy backflips of recent years by the major political parties. None more strident than their position on the Asylum seeker issue. Rhetoric has become more important than rescue, and both sides of politics have engaged in a “race to the bottom” in trying to outdo each other in showing a lack of charity that would make a Samaritan blush.
I cant help think of the salient advice of James 1:27 (NLT)
“Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you.”
So how would Jesus vote?
- Under no circumstances would Jesus have ever toed the “Party Line”.
- He would have always put people ahead of politics.
- He would’ve always been on the side of grace and mercy.
My prayer for all of us as we head into this election season, is that we will engage with diligence in the political process. Read up, familiarise yourself with policy, and be lead by the Holy Spirit to make wise and informed choices at the ballot box.
Serving a Mighty God,
Rev. Christopher Foley is an ordained Wesleyan Methodist Minister, and was elected four times as the Independent State Member for Maryborough (Qld) Serving in the 50th, 51st, 52nd,and 53rd terms of the Queensland Parliament.