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10 Commandments of the Presidential Election for Christians

4. Remain in friendship and fellowship.

Yes. Yes. Yes.

There is neither Jew or Greek, slave or free, male or female, Republican or Democrat, but we are one in Christ Jesus.

Remain in friendship and fellowship. 

As Christians, we need to agree the most significant aspects of our relationship are not our politics, our political views or our political affiliations but that we are connected together as brothers and sisters in Christ. Politics has its role. But Christ is the most significant aspect of our community.

Amen.

5. Thou shalt not be a jerk.

Especially during the election season, please be human. Please don’t be a jerk.

For goodness’ sake, be civil. What do you not understand?

Be civil with one another.
Be civil with those you disagree with.
And please be respectful for the political candidates.

I repeat: Be human. Don’t be a jerk.

6. Thou shalt respect the candidates.

Read #5 again. I’ll wait for you.

Listen. Speaking about the respective candidates on the interwebs does not give you license to be a Ph.D in Jerk-ism and to be disrespectful. I’m talking about your snide comments, your asinine Photoshops, your comparisons to Hitler, your fill in the blank …

In my book, Obama and Romney are both good people. They are married to wonderful women. Certainly not perfect. There are things about their positions I agree with and things I disagree with. But regardless, they deserve respect—especially for choosing to serve the country through this political process. And I really do mean this.

Breaking News: The “other” candidate is not an evil person. So, join me in praying for Pres. Obama and Gov. Romney.

Agree or disagree. Like or dislike. Republican or Democrat. Tea Party or Coffee Party. It doesn’t matter. Lift a prayer for Pres. Obama and his family. Lift a prayer for Gov. Romney and his family. Pray for strength, conviction and courage. Pray for safety and peace.

C’mon. Just because you don’t like Romney doesn’t mean he hates 47 percent of Americans. Just because you don’t like Pres. Obama doesn’t mean he opposes family, faith, freedom, white dogs, Asians and human beings.

Pray for them…because one of them will be President.

7. Thou shalt not get played and manipulated.

Don’t get played and easily swayed. Be informed and know the issues. Don’t be a simple headline reader. Don’t be someone who just reads the RSS feeds. Be educated. Learn. Go deep.

In others words: Don’t get  manipulated.

Voters (and especially people of faith) have to realize political parties and candidates (all of them) may distort, manipulate, cajole, emotionalize, tug and use whatever other tactics to “speak” to our faith. And if we’re not careful, we can be dumbed down and influenced in such a way that “religion” becomes the ruling or dominant way we decide to vote. Who cares what a respective candidate’s views are about economics, jobs, immigration, poverty, education, foreign aid, blah blah blah as long as we know a particular candidate and I are “equally yoked”?

8. Stay engaged in the political process.

Listen: Politics is not the ultimate answer or our ultimate hope. No political candidate should ever be elevated as savior of sorts. But get smart, be informed and stay engaged.

Don’t get cynical. (I know it’s hard…but we need you.)

We have to engage politics because politics involves policies and policies impact people. Last time I checked, people are really important to God.

9. Be informed. Be prayerful. Have integrity. Vote your convictions.

Be informed.
Be prayerful.
Have integrity.
Vote your convictions.

Yes.
Repeat.
Worth repeating again:

Be informed.
Be prayerful.
Have integrity.
Vote your convictions.

And respect others. Be informed by our convictions…ultimately, as people of faith in Christ and the Kingdom of God. Rather than being blinded by one issue, be informed on many issues and pray for convictions consistent with biblical foundations and a life ethic that encompasses the whole of life—from womb to tomb.

10. Love God. Love people.

Yes, this might be the most important one, so let me make it as simple as possible for you:

May our love for politics, ideology, philosophy or even theology never supersede our love for God and neighbor—including neighbors who don’t share our politics.

Amen. Amen. Amen.

Alright, it’s your turn.

Any thoughts? What would you add?