Elections give people in Aotearoa/New Zealand an opportunity to cast their own vote – to stand up and be counted! This is a privilege many people in the world simply don’t have, but privilege carries certain responsibility. Now the word “responsibility” is generally associated with duty and commitment, and it doesn’t excite many of us. But should we let the opportunity simply slip through our fingers?
The Bible doesn’t tell us how to cast our votes, nor does it debate different forms of government out there. However, Paul the Apostle, throws open his windows and takes in a different view – as he writes to the Christians at Rome…
From Romans 13 - “ Pay to all what is due them
—taxes to whom taxes are due,
revenue to whom revenue is due,
respect to whom respect is due,
honor to whom honor is due.”
Paul gives the gospel space to breathe. He is generous towards a form of government which was often brutal with its own citizens. And he promotes a spirit of gratefulness.
The neurologist, Oliver Sachs, when dying from cancer, echoed a similar gratitude saying “I have been given much, and I have given something in return.” – such accountability is a breath of fresh air.
So, exercising your vote on Election Day could be an act of gratefulness (and honour.) Then who knows where that vote might really count!