Amos 8: 4-7 

Psalm 113 

1 Timothy 2: 1-8 

St. Luke 16: 1-17 


Grace and Peace to you my brothers and sisters in Christ, Amen. 

In the past I have been asked multiple times, with regards to  voting, “Who should I vote for?” Even by members of this  congregation. Now whereas it is easy for me to answer that  question, and even more easy as a pastor of a strong religiously  conservative denomination, to do so behind the pulpit is much  more difficult. Yet across the nation, many pastors have decided, myself included, to preach on what it means to be an American  Citizen as a Christian. What are we obligated to do, and what  does our faith says with regards to voting. So, in like manner, I too  will provide a sermon on citizenship. But first, a legal caveat. 

Supposedly, according to the law, I am not allowed to tell  you behind the pulpit who to vote for and which party to vote for. I  say supposedly because there is no such stipulation, but in recent  past many pastors and congregations who lean particularly in one  certain direction have been attacked by the IRS. So I will not,  behind the pulpit at least, provide a sermon on who to vote for,  but rather preach on the importance of voting as Christians and  then imploring that you vote on good and legitimate Christian  values, as oppose to those fake Christian values that are not  supported anywhere in the Bible. I will do this by using Scripture,  the Book of Concord, and official statements of the NALC.

Regarding Government, what does Scripture say? The two  most important Scriptures we should read from regarding  government are from Romans 13 and Acts 5. The first says, “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 too 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.” The latter, “We must obey God rather  than men.” What does this mean? Quite simply that we are to  obey God first and foremost and that as Christians we are to obey  government in so far Government also obeys God. Basically,  because government is a gift to us by God himself, we are to  obey government because their authority stems from God.  However, if we are forced to choose obedience to government or  God then we must disobey government because the only reason  why we obey government is because we first obey God. 

The concept I just described can be best interpreted as  such: we are first and foremost Christians and secondly  Americans; our primary citizenship is to the Heavenly Kingdom of  God and our American citizenship compared to such is but  secondary. Many times through the Psalms this is expressed, as  King David lauds God above all nations. Psalm 22: 27-28, “All the  ends of the earth shall remember and turn to the Lord, and all the  families of the nations shall worship before you. For kingship  belongs to the Lord, and he rules over the nations.” Psalm 47: 8, 

“God reigns over the nations; God sits on his holy throne.” And  from today’s Psalm, Psalm 113: 4, “The Lord is high above all  nations, and his glory above the heavens!” Thus, in all that we do  as Americans, to include vote, we do so first as a subject of God’s  Kingdom. 

Within our Book of Concord, particularly the Augsburg  Confession Article 16: Of Civil Government, all this gets neatly  tied together. It reads, “Concerning public order and secular  government it is taught that all political authority, orderly  government, laws, and good order in the world are created and  instituted by God and that Christians may without sin exercise  political authority; be princes and judges; pass sentences and  administer justice according to imperial and other existing laws;  punish evildoers with the sword; wage just wars; serve as  soldiers; buy and sell; take required oaths; possess property; be  married; etc. Condemned here are the Anabaptists who teach that  none of the things indicated above are Christian. Also condemned  are those who teach that Christian perfection means physically  leaving house and home, spouse and child, and refraining from  the above-mentioned activities. In fact, the only true perfection is  true fear of God and true faith in God. For the Gospel teaches an  internal, eternal reality and righteousness of the heart, not an  external, temporal one. The Gospel does not overthrow secular  government, public order, and marriage but instead intends that a  person keep all this as a true order of God and demonstrate in  these walks of life Christian love and true good works according  to each person’s calling. Christians, therefore, are obliged to be  subject to political authority and to obey its commands and laws in  all that may be done without sin, but if a command of the political 

authority cannot be followed without sin, one must obey God  rather than any human being (Acts 5:29).” 

Therefore it is perfectly alright for Christians, who are first  and foremost Christians, to serve in government and to vote. By  doing so the relationship between Church and Government, and  in effect their obligations with regards to each other, are fulfilled.  For as Lutherans, we identify three holy estates ordained by God:  Family, Government, and Church. The family’s sole duty with  regards to the other two is to be the foundation of which good  citizens and Christians are raised. The sole duty of government  with regards to other two is to be the physical protectors. This  means government exists to use the power of the sword to protect  and preserve the Church of God. And as for the church, its sole  duty with regards to the other two is to keep them holy. By  preaching the Good News and letting Christian values influence  government then we are fulfilling our Christian duty of maintaining  government as one of the holy estates. 

That’s the key, and the reason why we vote and get involved  in politics: to make sure politics is always downstream of religion.  We all know that due to original sin, without the help of God we  are all helpless at performing even one singular good though or  deed. We are all born completely corrupt and enslaved to Satan’s  domain of sinfulness. Every pore of our very being is infected with  this invasive disease known as original sin. We cannot save  ourselves, and if we hope to do anything remotely good then we  need the help of God which is indeed already provided for through  our Savior Jesus Christ who died on the cross to forgive us our  sins and lead us toward a life of holiness. Now if government is 

made up of men and laws are created by men, then would that  not also imply that our completely corruption under sin would  influence government? Correct! For because of original sin even  government is completely corrupted and subject to Satan. This is  why we preach multiple times about how the world hates Christ;  for this is because, without the help of God and the salvation  found in Christ, government is helplessly a victim of the Devil’s  demonic schemes. Therefore, as the Church, for the sake of  government, should we not ought to do everything in our power to  allow God to influence our nation more so than the Devil? For if  we don’t then we as a nation will ultimate start exalting and  protecting man-made abominations, and in fact we already are. 

This is why we pray for our leaders and ask God to bless our  nation. We pray not because we agree with the agenda of our  leaders, but that God’s agenda is ultimately accomplished. We  ask God to bless this nation because without His help we will  degrade into wickedness. This is also why we as a whole vote,  participate in government, serve as judges, etc. with our Christian  faith always on our sleeves. Our faith always comes first. 

In addition, this is also why within the Solid Declaration of  the Formula of Concord, the defining document of what it means  to be an Orthodox Lutheran, the following are listed as heresies.  Again, the follow statements are heretical and we do not abide by them: That governmental service is not a God-pleasing walk of life  in the New Testament; That a Christian cannot hold an office in  government with a good, clear conscience; That Christians may  not with a clear conscience exercise their governmental office against the wicked in appropriate situations, nor may Christian 

subjects of the government appeal to its power; that Christians  may not with good conscience swear an oath in court or pay  feudal homage to their prince or lord with an oath; That  governmental authority may not with a clear conscience impose  capital punishment upon criminals; That a Christian may not with  a good conscience own or possess private property, but rather is  bound to surrender all to the community (Socialism is officially  labeled a heresy in Lutheranism). 

Now some may falsely claim what about Separation of  Church and State? To that I say no such thing exists in America,  and if it did then we are compelled as Lutherans to disobey such  nonsense. If there is a separation it is a separation of duties and  not of relationship. The Church and the State have two separate  

list of obligations given by God, the two do not act as the other,  but the two do relate to each other. The State protects the  Church, and the Church influences the State. 

What does this influencing the state looks like? First and  foremost, the ultimate influencer is God. Therefore, of all things the most important thing we can ever vote upon is letting God be  more present everywhere, aka lifting up radically so Religious  Freedom. There is a reason why it is the first freedom in the Bill of  Rights; because our first speaker of the house, a Lutheran pastor,  Rev. Frederick Muhlenberg, understood this to be the most  important freedom in America. For all our founding fathers  understood that without God, this great experiment called  America will fail. Thus we vote in favor of radically capitalizing on  our freedom to follow the Great Commission in every corner of  our life. We are to preach, teach, and baptize in the name of the 

Father, Son, and Holy Spirit to all nations. And if this is our chief  goal – to defend religious freedom and our right to preach the  Good News everywhere without fear of governmental punishment  – then we need to be honest with ourselves. Who is more likely to  punish Christians? Be honest when you vote, ask, between all the  candidates who has the highest likelihood to rigorously defend  your right to preach about your orthodox faith in all walks of your  life? Also ask, who has the higher likelihood of punishing, or  supporting punishment from other sources, Christians who  outwardly act upon their faith? I don’t care about a candidate’s  conduct, only their policies. Ask yourself, if given the authority  who would use everything in their power, using the force of  government, to shut down this church and throw me in jail vs  protect and preserve this church? Be honest with yourself! As for  me, the answer is obvious. 

As for our other Christian values, do not be swayed by the  political manipulations of the Christophobic crowd. If a Christian  value was never politicized in the past but is now that is due to  political manipulators who wish to terrify churches into silence, so  that good non-political Christian messages are never spoken out  of fear of opposing a particular recent political stance that only  one party stands up, in an extremist manner, for. If we the church  was to allow the world to silence us out of fear of being falsely  labeled of being political then we will inevitably act in the same  manner as those Christians in Nazi Germany who never dared  spoke up against the atrocities of the then current administration  out of fear of politicizing the Church.

Now the Christian values that the NALC stands up for that  are not political, and of which all good Christians vote for,  includes: protecting the innocent lives of all human beings from  conception to grave; fighting against the LBGT and their entire  demonic agenda; and lifting up religious freedom. And if you don’t  believe me that these are official stances of the NALC, I have  documents in the Narthex prepared to prove my case. 

In the end, what are we to do as Christians? First, we must  deny our sinful tendencies to follow worldly desires and instead  deny ourselves in humble service towards God. Next, we should  learn to fear God more than fearing Man, for true wisdom is not  found in mankind but in the fear of the Lord alone. And last, now  that we have submitted ourselves to God and not to demonic  political stances, we vote and promote policies in line with our faith while we also pray for the Lord’s blessing to guide us. I hope  that satisfies some of the questions many have had regarding  how we who are first Citizens of God’s Kingdom function as also  citizens of America. 

Let us pray, 


Dear Heavenly Father, you are the King of Kings and all  authority and nations bow down to you. No one is higher than you  and deserves more respect than you. Help us to serve you with  our whole heart, mind, soul, and body so that we can better serve  our neighbors. Help us remember that though we are citizens of  America, we are even more so citizens of your heavenly kingdom.  In your holy name we pray: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Amen.

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