How to Think Biblically: Part 2 of Maintaining Joy
Historically, election years have been intense seasons of strong opinions, competing values, and heated disagreement. However, with all of the competing positions, perspectives, and ideologies, how do we know where to land? In this sermon, you will receive some practical advice on how to think biblically in an increasingly unbiblical world.
In our previous sermon, Right Praying, we considered what it looks like to pray biblically when people, situations, and feelings arise that attempt to steal our joy. But along with prayer, we must also take care of what we set are minds to thinking about. When Paul wrote his letter to the church at Philippi, he gave them the following advice:
Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things.Philippians 4:8
In today’s world (that seems to highlight the negative, immoral, and the darker side of life), Paul encourages us to focus on the brighter side of life. When we keep our minds focused on God in thought and prayer, we can claim an amazing promise: “that the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.”
Notes: Sermon available for online listening until April 26th, 2020. To view more sermons, visit our Sermon Archive.
Voting, Churches, and Church Leaders
It is an election year and, therefore, a lot of debate between the candidates and their supporters is prevalent about those running for elected offices and ballot issues. The scripture tells us to obey the law of the land and to pray for those who rule. Paul wrote:
“Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment. For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad. Would you have no fear of the one who is in authority? Then do what is good, and you will receive his approval, for he is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword in vain. For he is the servant of God, an avenger who carries out God’s wrath on the wrongdoer. Therefore one must be in subjection, not only to avoid God’s wrath but also for the sake of conscience”Romans 13:2-7
Legislation Regarding Churches
Currently the law concerning 501(c)(3) non-profit organizations, which includes churches and our tax exempt status defines us as an organization “which does not participate in, or intervene in (including the publishing or distribution of statements), any political campaign on behalf of (or in opposition to) any candidate for public office.” However, this legislation does not prohibit churches from advocating for ballot legislation. In other words we can stand for or against ballot measures, but cannot, as a legally operating 501(c)(3) organization endorse one candidate over another.
That means that the church leaders cannot stand as representatives of this church and support one candidate over another in a public forum.
So what can each of us do to make a wise choice on who to vote for?
There are a number of voter guides that can be found on the internet that will show the candidates opinions on important issues. Take some time, do your homework, and vote intelligently. Lucerne Community Church takes no stand on any political candidate but to pray for them all and for our country also.
Pastor Dwight <><