It has been a difficult political year for the Church in America, and we Christians are faced with the always daunting task of participating in a democracy to choose a leader for this nation. Tomorrow, we invite you to read a debate between our two bloggers, Jason Marianna and Robb Brunansky, on how a Christian should vote in the upcoming presidential election. We (Robb and Jason) see this issue very differently; we have agreed to this debate because the issue matters a great deal to both of us, and we both think it should matter to the church as well.
While we may disagree on this particular issue, we are unified on many matters, including the most important matters of life. Both of us view the issue of how to vote as an in-house debate. Neither holds the other as being outside of the faith because of this particular viewpoint. Rather, we both recognize that two brothers in the Lord can disagree and see an issue such as this differently and yet remain brothers. How we vote should be seen as important but not fundamental to our faith. On that which is fundamental, we regard one another as allies fighting on the same side against the same foes.
Furthermore, while both of us have agreed to speak plainly about our own positon as well as the opposing position, it must not be construed that we are denigrating one another as individuals. We condemn such action and believe it ought not to characterize believers. Make no mistake, we absolutely do not agree on this issue, and we believe that one another’s ideas have dire consequences for both the nation and the church. But we both are committed to attacking one another’s ideas without attacking each other, continuing to hold each other in high esteem. We both recognize that we are called by Scripture to think of one another before ourselves, to bear one another’s burdens, to forgive one another as we have been forgiven, to pray for one another, and to remember that we both need others in the church – even others who disagree with us. Our friendship is firmly in place, our brotherly love for each other warm as ever.
On Tuesday, we will post our arguments to the blog simultaneously. We each want you to read both (and comment if you’d like!) as you decide how to vote this year. We feel that each argument can sharpen your own thoughts and we acknowledge the desire of the other to be biblical, honest, and genuine in our concern for the church and desire for God’s glory. On Wednesday, we will post three questions we asked the other, and our answers, in an attempt to cross examine the other’s viewpoint. Finally, on Thursday, each of us will make a shorter rebuttal of the other’s main argument as well as closing arguments for our position.
At any point, you may post comments and interact with the debate. In fact, we highly encourage it! We only ask that you extend to other commenters and to the debate opponents the same level of respect and love we are committed to showing one another. May you find this helpful as you make the important decision and participate in our Republic.