Matthew 22:15-21 Then went the Pharisees, and
took counsel how they might entangle him in his talk. And they sent out
unto him their disciples with the Herodians, saying, Master, we know that thou
art true, and teachest the way of God in truth, neither carest thou for any man:
for thou regardest not the person of men. Tell us therefore, What thinkest thou?
Is it lawful to give tribute unto Caesar, or not? But Jesus perceived
their wickedness, and said, Why tempt ye me, ye hypocrites? Shew me the
tribute money. And they brought unto him a penny. And he saith unto them,
Whose is this image and superscription? They say unto him, Caesar's. Then
saith he unto them, Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar's;
and unto God the things that are God's.
Jesus was asked a question by the Pharisees, and the
question was this, "Should we serve man, or should we serve God?" The
Pharisees tried to tempt Jesus into giving an answer that would trick Him up.
But Jesus said, "Give Caesar the tax that is due him, but also serve God."
We are in the midst of a political campaign and I would say
that over half of the voters do not have confidence in either candidate.
They don't know which is the best person to vote for. I've felt the same
way! I don't know all the details, not do I know all the issues. So,
what do we do? Jesus tells us what to do. When the Pharisees asked
Him, "Master, it it lawful to give tribute to Caesar?", Jesus answered them
with, "Render unto Caesar the thing which are due him, and to God the things
that are God's." We cannot serve two masters equally. There is not a
person in this building that is more patriotic than I, but I realize that my
serving God supersedes everything else. If I'm not a good Christian, I not
a good American. It I'm not a good American, I'm not a good husband.
It I'm not a good Christian, I'm not fit to stand behind this pulpit.
Proverbs 14:34 Righteousness exalteth a nation:
but sin is a reproach to any people.
What does this nation need? You may disagree with me,
but we don't need economic security. That would be good to have, but that
is not the primary need in our nation. We don't need an end to terrorism.
That would be good, but that is not our primary need. We don't need
cheaper gas; although, that would be glorious. I'm looking forward to the
day when I can put a water hose in my tank and fill it up. I will say,
"Lisa, fill her to the brim when you water those flowers." Now, I can tell
you what our nation needs. It is the righteousness of God. We need
righteousness more than we need anything else. Because the Bible plainly
says righteousness is the only thing that will exalt our nation.
Righteousness is the standard by which God judges. It will allow people to
rise above their natural tendencies.
Some people say, "Preacher, you shouldn't talk about
politics behind the pulpit." Too late! I didn't get the memo. Some
people say you shouldn't mix the two. Jesus said it was alright, didn't
He? Did I not give you the verse in Matthew 22? We are getting ready
to elect someone who will lead our country for a least the next four years.
Neither of the two has ever run a country before, and probably has never run a
corporation before. So how do we base our vote on which candidate is the
best one to vote for? Some people say, "You should never allow your faith
to influence your vote." I am saying that you absolutely should let your
faith influence your vote.
Something really irritated me in a newspaper article I read
last Friday. One of the people they were interviewing said she was
pro-life, but could be persuaded to vote for a candidate that was pro-choice if
the candidate had other issues she agreed with. I will call it what it is
-- this lady is saying that she could be persuaded to vote for someone that
supports her views on issues such as education, economy, and environment and she
would overlook her belief in pro-life. For someone to say they could be
persuaded to vote pro-choice means they are pro-choice to begin with.
Another couple says they are conservative in their religious views, but
described themselves as politically liberal. Can you see the double
standards that are being presented here? It appears to me these people are
talking out of both sides of their mouths. How can you believe in the
sanctity of life, yet have no problem in voting for a candidate that believes
that abortion on demand should be legal? They are saying, "I am
conservative on the religious view, but politically, I am moderate to liberal in
my views." Can you see the double standard in that belief? It's no
wonder that people don't know who to vote for. It's no wonder they are
Let me say this -- neither person running in this year's
election is a perfect candidate and God is neither Republican nor is He
Democrat. So what do we do? Do we flip a coin? Heads - He gets
my vote, or tails the other guy gets it. Do we vote for the tallest one?
Do we vote for the "Media Darling?" Do we vote for the one with the most
hair on his head? Do we vote for the one who gives us the most promises?
Do we vote for the one with the most righteous beliefs?
Both candidates are claiming that they have righteous beliefs; yet, one says he
things its okay to do away with unborn babies. It should be the woman's
choice if she wants to abort her baby. A candidate that believes that
abortion is acceptable is not a righteous candidate. I don't care what
church he attends; I don't care what denomination they are. When someone
says they believe in the rights of a woman to kill her unborn child, I cannot
claim them to be a righteous candidate. Therefore, they will not get my
vote. You might say, "Preacher, every woman should have the right to
choose. I tell you -- Let's give the baby the right to choose life."
One candidate says, "I have been a leader in this country
for 25 years and I have always supported pro-life and I will continue to do so."
Another question asked of the candidates is this: "What is
your view on marriage?" One candidate said, "I believe marriage is based
on the relationship of one man and one woman, but I have no trouble with civil
unions." Again, double standard beliefs. I don't have confidence in
someone who speaks out of both sides of his mouth. One of the candidates
has the answer to all situations we face today. You know what? You
can open your mouth and anything will fall out, but can you really carry through
with each campaign promise? I think not.
God blesses a righteous nation. A nation rises and
falls on it's beliefs. Read the Old Testament and you will see how
judgment came because the king's and princes led the nation of Israel down an
immoral path. In order to have a fighting chance in keeping our nation
righteous, we need to vote our values and every vote counts.
Pastor Earnest Fields, Jr.
August 24, 2008