The following is today’s blog post from Kevin DeYoung. His caution is one we all need to adopt as we enter into the presidential campaign season.
Here’s a friendly reminder for Republicans, Democrats, people like myself, and every other American: the President of the United States is not God.
I’m not talking about the current president or any specific person. I’m talking about the office. We should not expect the President to be the panacea for the nation. We should not expect that most of life’s troubles will be solved with the right electoral outcome.
As I’ve said before, I believe politics is important. I believe it’s important to have Christians in politics. I believe some political ideologies, ideas, programs, and policies are better than others–better for the common good and better in God’s eyes. But let’s remember that presidents are not omniscient, omnipotent, omnipresent, or omnicompetent.
The President is not omnicausal either. When the President is on your team, be honest to admit that not every single good thing in the whole country is because of him. And when the President is on the opposite team, don’t make it sound like every failure in society can be traced to his administration. There are 300 million people in this country. America is big. It’s complex. None but God can trace the thread of cause of effect for every person. So let’s not expect that our presidents should right every wrong, solve every problem, fix every pothole, provide health and prosperity for all, and on top of that be a likeable, fatherly, dignified, fun-loving, brilliant, down-home, urbane, humorous, serious, athletic, good looking, poet-warrior-manager man that we all want to be like and hang out with.
There are no lines to read between here. I have no one incident or person in mind as I write this post. But as one who follows politics and the campaign season pretty closely I’m continually amazed at how much candidates claim for themselves and promise to accomplish.
The only thing more amazing is how we expect them to make these claims and love them for it.