Summary: The Nov. 8, 2016 election results represent an open door of opportunity for the American Church? What now? What will we do with this opportunity? What is at stake? This message is a prophetic call to seize the day!
A monumental event occurred in America last Tuesday. The media has been talking about it ever since. Some people are so upset about it that they are rioting in the streets. Although there is some evidence that some of that was planned and people bussed in to make it happen. The point is that people all over the world know it was a major shaking. I want to make a few observations from a biblical point of view.
I. God answered prayer.
It would be a mistake to attribute the results to secondary causes. Yes, Hillary’s credibility was undermined by some of the things exposed by Wikileaks and other revelations. The timing of the Anthony Weiner scandal during the last week of the campaign changed the dialogue. There were many secondary factors at work. But behind all that was God answering prayer.
During the last year the Holy Spirit led our prayer meeting to ask God over and over to “expose the hidden works of darkness” going on behind the political scene. I suspect many others were led to pray that same prayer. And in answer to that prayer God exposed the activities and motives of both Democrats and Republicans. The process unfolded in a way that shined the light on the real intents of insiders on both sides of the isle. God answered prayer by pulling back the curtain and revealing a lot of ugly things. God also answered prayer by raising up people of integrity like Ben Carson, Mike Pence, Mike Huckabee. Carson and Huckabee had to humble themselves and take a supportive role instead of the lead role. But they had the character and humility to do that. Mike Pence may be God’s man of the hour. God has His people in strategic places just like He did in the days of Esther.
God raised up leaders like Franklin Graham to take a bold stand and lead many Christians into prayer. The prayer generated the votes. I do not believe the majority of Christians really got serious about prayer. But it did not take a majority. It only took a remnant. God saw enough of His people humbling themselves and praying that He mercifully intervened. Remember when Abraham interceded for Sodom. He began by asking God if He would spare the whole city if there were 50 righteous people in it. That was certainly a minority, not a majority. But God said He would spare the whole city if there were just 50 righteous people in it. Abraham kept praying until God even agreed to spare the whole city if there were just 10 righteous people in it. Of course, it turned out there were not even 10 and the city was destroyed. God does not need a majority in order to demonstrate His goodness and mercy.
The votes were important; but they were a fruit of the prayers. God found enough sincere godly people that He has turned a pending disaster into a powerful opportunity. For the last couple of years God has had us focused on 2 Chron. 7:14 “if My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.”(note 1) We have been very careful to stay with that mandate. I’m sure many other Christians were doing the same. I believe overall we did what the Lord told us to do. This Scripture will always be important to us and always have application. We never arrive at a place where there’s no pride to address and no humbling to do. We never arrive at a place where we don’t need to pray. However, I sense a shift in our assignment. The focus is shifting outward to a lost world. I’ll talk about that more in a moment. I draw this conclusion from Tuesday’s election. God answers prayer.
God also confounds the wise with His wisdom.(note 2) Pollsters and broadcasters were confounded by the results they saw. How does a candidate put his foot in his mouth so many times and still come out on top? How did Donald Trump make so many foolish statements and still win the election? God raises up whom He chooses to raise up; and He puts down whom He chooses to put down. Frankly I saw other people running for the presidency whom I believe are more upright and godly people. But God has His purposes and His ways for bringing His will to pass. And He doesn’t always do it the way we think He should.
In Eccl 9:11 Solomon made this observation. “The race is not to the swift, Nor the battle to the strong, Nor bread to the wise, Nor riches to men of understanding, Nor favor to men of skill; But time and chance happen to them all.” God hands opportunities to people as He sees fit. In the Parable of the Talent the master gave one servant five talents, another two, and another only one (note 3). It was His to give. In Rom. 9:16 Paul is talking about the sovereignty of God and says, “So then it is not of him who wills, nor of him who runs, but of God who shows mercy.” If you fully understood the sovereignty of God, you would fully understand God. And that is not going to happen. Just understand that His ways are higher than our ways (note 4). He knows how to run the universe. People don’t always get the credit they deserve. Later in verse 14 of Eccl. 9 Solomon tells the story of a little city that was under siege. The army coming against the city was overwhelming and there seemed to be no way the people in the city would survive. But there was a poor wise man in the city who came up with the answer and saved the city. He had done something no one else could do. After it was all over with no one remembered the poor man who had actually brought about the victory. There may be behind-the-scene people who were strategic to this victory that no one recognizes or even knows about. There may have been some little grandma on her knees at home that made a big difference. Who knows? Bottom line, God cast the deciding vote!