Voting as a Christian

Voting as a Christian

People vote for all kinds of reasons, according to what is important to them. Sometimes there is one issue that is close to someone’s heart (like the environment or asylum seekers), and they will vote for the party that has the best policy on that issue. Many simply vote for the party that they think will produce a stronger economy, or worse, the party that promises them the most financial benefit. A great many don’t really care who they vote for and only vote to avoid a fine; surely it doesn’t make that much difference?

As Christians, we need to be more thoughtful than this. We need to vote in line with what is important to God as revealed in the Bible. If we are thoughtful about this, it will change how we approach the question. We will want to know what the various parties have to say on issues like abortion, euthanasia, the treatment of the vulnerable in society, and religious freedom.

The federal election we will be called upon to vote in next week is an important one. I have usually not commented on politics or given any guidance on voting direction, but in this election, I am making an exception. There are some significant issues at stake in this election, particularly in the issue of religious freedom.

It is generally assumed that the two major political parties in Australia are the same as one another. In times past, this was generally true in many ways. There were differences in economic policies and stances in foreign policy, but in the core issues, things were pretty equal. That is no longer the case. The Labor party, and the Greens who are allied with them, have a stated ideology that they are attempting to impose on the Australian people. The Labor party has policies to remove religious exemptions to discrimination law. The effect of this would be that Christian schools could no longer restrict who they employed; they could be forced to employ unbelieving teachers and other staff despite them disagreeing with the core values these schools stand for. This could flow on to churches losing their ability to restrict the staff they employ and have an impact on what can be taught in churches on the topics of gender and sexuality in particular. These same parties are supportive of the teaching of a specific gender ideology in schools and removing public funding to hospitals that do not provide abortion services. The Liberal party is by no means a Christian party, but on these issues, Christians are likely to function far more freely in a society that they govern.

When I was younger and starting to vote, I didn’t realise a lot of these things. I thought the Greens were great as they cared for the environment and asylum seekers. I didn’t realise that, on pretty much every other issue, the Greens oppose Christianity and Christian values.

This election, be thoughtful about how you vote. If you’d like more information, you can find a helpful comparison of the major parties’ stance on issues important to Christians here. You can also vote for minor parties, some of which are more closely aligned with a Christian worldview.

In a democracy, each vote makes a difference. Serve God with all of your life, including your vote.