On October 19th, 2015 the Canadian democratic process ushered in a new majority government under the leadership of Justin Trudeau. The evidence of a long campaign still remains as lawn signs are firmly in place and campaign posters have not yet been removed. But make no mistake, things have changed. There are some who are excited about this change, some who are cynical that real change will take place and others who strongly oppose this change. But the question we need to ask ourselves as the church is not whether or not we like this change, but rather the question we must ask ourselves is what is the Christian response to governmental change?
This post is not supporting any particular political view/party or attempting to create new political controversies (we all know there has been enough controversy over the past few months). At this point it is appropriate for us to put down our red, blue, orange or maybe even green colours for a moment and return to Paul’s first letter to Timothy. In an appeal to this young minister, Paul gives this instruction:
“First of all, then, I urge that entreaties and prayers, petitions and thanksgivings, be made on behalf of all men, for kings and all who are in authority, so that we may lead a tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and dignity. This is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.”
1 Timothy 2:1-4
What is clearly being said here is that we are to respond to our leadership by praying for them, regardless of our own personal views or opinions. In fact, Paul connects our prayers for our leaders to the spreading of the gospel:
“For there is one God, and one mediator also between God and humanity, the man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself as a ransom for all, the testimony given at the proper time…Therefore I want the men and women in every place to pray, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and dissension.”
1 Timothy 2:5-8
Christ has been given as a ransom and has become our mediator. No government or principality can change this truth in our faith. So regardless of who leads this country, the church is called to pray for its leaders and carry out the mission of God, the same mission that existed yesterday before the election took place and the same mission that will remain until His return.
So, place down your ‘rights’ for a moment and fall to your knees to pray for Justin Trudeau. Pray that he would lead us into continued peace. Pray that God would give his government wisdom in the days ahead. And pray that God would use him for the furtherance of His kingdom.