When Edward Everette Hale was chaplain of the United States Senate, he was asked:
"Do you pray for the Senators, Dr. Hale?" "No, I look at the Senators and pray for the country." Van Wyck Brooks, New England: Indian Summer, 1865–1915.
This would be very good advice for any religious person as our elected leaders seem to have lost their way. Hale’s answer to the question gives hope to me, that America has, over the centuries, somehow survived our Representatives in Washington, and so must we, by the grace of God.
There’s an old line in Theological circles that poses, “God gives a people the leadership they deserve.” The premise appears true if you pause and ponder while reading the Old Testament. The Roman heal upon the neck of the world seems to bear this out as the Romans where decadent beyond words in early NT times.
Despite the decadence of leadership, the early Christians were encouraged to live simple lives, finding contentment at home with the wife and children, all the while saying a humble prayer for the leaders. I find it unimaginably hard to even think about praying for Nero, who married a 12 year old boy, Sporus, whom he paraded around the Empire as his queen, to say nothing of Pythagoras, also married, but as “husband” to Nero. If you can believe it, it gets worse, not to mention the atrocities that were committed upon Christians. Yet, Paul parades out Romans 13 to pray for such as the utter reprobates in Rome. Keep in mind that as horrible as things were, without the restraints of The Holy Spirit they would have been much worse.
The depraved Roman world provided a dark backdrop for God’s people!
Paine understated it when he wrote, “These are the times that try men’s souls.” Yet, those who have trusted Christ must be in serious prayer for God’s overruling hand in the political life of our country and world. Keep in mind that one day God will put “Hooks” into the jaws of Russia and drag the bear down to the Valley of Megiddo for destruction. So, He is ruling now in accordance with His design.
Philippians 2:15 “that you may become blameless and harmless, children of God without fault in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world,” (NKJV).
Copyright © 2018 Larry Lilly
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