Now, before I start getting messages from my Bible scholar friends about this title, let me first say that I am aware that Herod the Great was an appointed king. But just stay with me. Some may think I’m crazy for writing a blog post relating to politics. You might be thinking, “Will she tell us who we should vote for as a Christian?” By no means, friends. I’m simply here to share the journey to freedom and hope that God has taken me on in regards to His sovereignty and his masterful planning of history.
Let me give a little background to myself. I was raised in Small Town, USA where life depends on the crops and the coal mines. Any typical patriotic country song would give you an accurate idea of where I was raised. I knew countless people who went into the military and when 9/11 happened, I adopted the same patriotic anger as Toby expresses in "Courtesy of the Red, White, and Blue." Along with this patriotism came my passion for a particular political party. I put my hope and happiness in having the right person in the oval office—I was in captivity. Thankfully though, God had sent his Son to set the spiritually captive free and he broke my chains, redirecting my hope to him.
How does this relate to Herod? Well, Herod’s rule and reign are a perfect example of God’s sovereignty and ultimate control. Many of us know Herod from the story of Jesus’ birth. Herod, being sick with power and paranoid of losing control, couldn't stand the idea of another King rising against him. His response? To kill all the male babies in the area in hopes of killing this coming king. Luckily, God sent an angel to warn Joseph and they set off to Egypt to keep Jesus safely out of reach of Herod’s order (Matthew 2).
Was it a mistake? Was God scrambling around trying to avoid such a fate for his newly sent Son? Was he unaware of Herod’s plan?
No. He is all-knowing and all-seeing. He knew of Herod’s evil plan long before Herod came to power, and yet he still chose for Jesus to be born in that time and place.
I want to make a bold statement here: God uses politicians and elected leaders to express his glory and to strengthen His Church. For example: Queen Mary of England, also known as Bloody Mary, was responsible for countless murders of Christians during the Reformation; or the Communist regimes in Eastern Europe, Germany, and China, which led to the persecution of millions of christians; not one of these political figures or parties extinguished the glory and power of God’s gospel or His Church. They might have tried, but God’s people were never silenced—the gospel of Christ was more powerful than any political figure or king. As Christians, we no longer set our hopes on elected officials or politics because we know God has ultimate power and an ultimate plan.
I know it’s been a tough election cycle friends. I’ve felt burdened, brokenhearted, concerned, and confused at what is happening in our country right now. If you listen to the fiery words used to describe these candidates by political pundits on both sides, they make it sound as if we'll be electing a leader as evil as ‘Herod,' no matter who we pick.
So, what are we to do? Who do we vote for?
I don’t know; your right to vote for who you want is between you and God. But for this election, I hope you'll join me in doing these few things:
- Remember that this world is not your final destination. Keep perspective. We do not live for satisfaction in this world. (1 Peter 2:9-11)
- Do all things for the glory of the Lord. Do not let one election cycle ruin your witness for Christ. (1 Corinthians 10:31-33; Romans 8:18-19)
- Pray earnestly for God’s will to be done. (Philippians 4:4-7; Luke 18:1-8)
- Trust and have faith in the outcome. God already knows what will happen on November 9th. Praise Him that his kingdom reigns! (Romans 8:28)
I don’t intend for any of this to discourage you from voting or standing up for what you believe in. I’m simply urging you to keep your hope in Jesus and the reign of the King of kings. Go and vote. Vote your convictions, but trust the outcome to God. No politician can bring us true hope; only King Jesus can.