“Have you voted yet?”
This election day I was asked this question more than I’ve ever been asked before. No. I haven’t voted yet, I would say. I don’t vote. Of course, the question is “Why?”
First of all, it is nice that at this time and in this country, for the most part, a person can discuss this topic. The level of tolerance is a thing that I appreciate greatly.
I also respect the reason that people ask as well as their follow up challenge to my answer that I do not vote. They are concerned about the public good and concerned about positive change in the government. They think of the blood of those who have died in order for this current state of tolerance to be enjoyed. I respect that spilled blood as valuable as well.
It is not because I do not respect the sacrifices of well meaning people throughout the history of the United States in making changes toward tolerance of having a public voice and other freedoms. Nor do I dodge civic obligations as I routinely share in helping my neighbors develop better lives volunteering my own time and energies for this purpose. As well, following the laws of the land and the spirit of those laws is important and I endeavor to be such a law abiding citizen in all things.
Really, the chief reason that I don’t share in the voting process, or really any political effort, is because of my personal religious understandings and beliefs. Secondly, the rationale that arrives out of these insights enables me to see other reasons why I wouldn’t vote.
The Bible actually starts off by describing a great project that God was involved in. He was preparing the Earth for habitation and then development under human guidance. Humans, in turn, were plainly to be guided, not by instinct nor principally by other humans but by God’s laws and principles. Having set that scene the Bible then describes a rebellion from God’s sovereignty. Adam, the progenitor of all humans, decided that he would do what he wanted rather than what God directed. Making such a statement was profound. Questions had been raised, “Can humans successfully govern themselves? Is God’s rulership necessary?” God ruled that these questions and others closely related needed to be answered for all time. Thus, he allowed Adam and Eve, the first parents of humanity to proceed with their experiment.
Humans have tried all kinds of government among them monarchies, republics and democracies. God’s standards for measurement is different from what ours might be. His purpose in creating the Earth was to have a beautiful planet populated by healthy, undying human beings who govern their habitat and the creatures in it effectively, “painting” with the palette of creation beautiful things and living at peace and harmony. As you probably realize, each and every government that has ever ruled has been an utter failure. Each government lies to it’s people, fails to protect and govern its people, and abuses their power over them. They do not consistently set good examples in behavior and they are unqualified to fulfill their objectives.
Although God has allowed this rebellion to continue, God has not approved of it. He does not approve of human self-governance. Right away, in Eden, God spoke of a seed that would crush the person behind the lie that incited Adam and Eve into rebellion. Further study of the Bible reveals that this “seed” is a subsidiary government that will actually restore God’s sovereignty to it’s proper place over the Earth and carry out God’s will expressed toward the Earth and the human race as stated in Genesis 1:28 and enlarged upon in other Scripture. Jesus’ purpose in being sent to the Earth was to tell about this government. He called it “the Kingdom of the Heavens” and “God’s Kingdom” and so forth. It is what he taught all Christians to pray for and to seek to support the development of in his famous model prayer. “Let thy kingdom come”. One program of that government will be the resurrection, a complete restoration to life for all those who have lived and died since the rebellion (with only a few exceptions which God has not revealed in full). Though human government has lied about a lot of things they have not attempted to say that they could possibly do anything of this nature. However, eight resurrections were recorded in God’s Word of truth so that we may realize that the Creator can recreate anyone who has ever lived whenever he sees fit.
The Kingdom of God – as represented by it’s principle ruler, Christ, when he was on Earth – has always conducted itself as neutral when it comes to political affairs. It requires it’s subjects to do the same. God’s will as stated for the governments of Earth is that God’s Heavenly Kingdom will destroy them at his appointed time. (Daniel 2:44.) This is revealed to be an action of God, not humans. Christians have been commanded by Jesus to preach a message of peace and cease carnal warfare and support of such.
As the Bible teaching about the folly of human rulership and God’s invincible purpose has allowed me to look objectively at human government without either 1) ignoring it’s corruption and 2) becoming depressed. Though I respect all governments, including the one that I’ve lived under all of my life – the United States of America – I do not look to is as a superior example of government.
Even while in school I learned in civics class that the U.S.A. is not a democracy. It was originally a democratic republic. An electoral college actually chooses the highest office, that of the president. The U.S. Senate and House of Representatives make up this electoral college which is supposed to represent the people of the United States. Arguably, early in the history of the United States this actually occurred. However, this is not the case now. Powerful forces in banking and other industries control a large number of these seats and are able to sway and threaten those who are not fully under their control. The office of the President in the last century nearly always can be found to be representing the interests not of the general populace but of the groups that placed and keep him in office.
This sort of corruption has been growing at alarming rates, not only in government but in every area of human activity.
These are among the reasons why I maintain my political neutrality and have become one of Jehovah’s Witnesses who teach others about the only real and lasting solution to all of humanity’s problems, God’s Kingdom. Jehovah’s Witnesses do their best to learn and apply God’s standards as set forth in the Holy Scriptures. The fruitage of these efforts has been the end of war among them. They do not share in any politics or war efforts in the 235+ lands of the Earth in which they live. They are concerned with their neighbors and reach out by teaching about the solution. This leads to high levels of literacy, lower levels of disease and poverty, more peaceful humans, wives and children, neighborhoods and again, responsible and caring citizens and has actually ended carnal warfare among them as an international populace as well as other positive results. All of this is a matter of public record although it is as unbelievable (more so, I feel) to many as any miracle in the Bible.
While waiting patiently for God’s solution to be implemented Jehovah’s Witnesses realize that God has allowed humans to continue self-rule. According to Jesus and Bible writers, those that put themselves up as rulers are to be respected and obeyed even when they don’t appear to deserve either respect or obedience. As far as it depends on me I obey all laws of my government except where these might command me to break God’s laws. Thankfully, the United States is currently a nation of relative tolerance where this conflict rarely happens.