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11/1/2020 Which “animal” do you believe in? (你會相信哪隻「動物」?)

by Rev. Benjamin Chung (鍾立恆牧師)


If you’re wondering, I’m not suggesting an idol or your Chinese zodiac animal. What I am referencing is how in two days, we are to vote in the US election. Some of us have probably voted absentee, while others might be planning on going to their local polling location. In any case, it is vital for us to remember that God is not behind either political party, despite what you might hear from others. I am not saying that one party might not align more with Biblical values over the other. What I am saying is that in the end, when push comes to shove, we must as believers choose the Lamb of God (Christ Jesus) over the Donkey (Democratic Party) or the Elephant (Republican Party). Sadly, some have turned their politically affiliated party into their religion. Lord, help them! [On a side note, if anyone wants to know who I voted for and my reasoning, I’m available to converse, if the conversation can be kept civil. After all, we live in a country where we have the freedom to speak, affirmed through the First Amendment.]


Let us consider the miracles of Jesus and whom he assisted. Jesus healed a centurion’s servant due to the centurion’s faith. Imagine Simon the Zealot’s confusion. Jesus helped the “enemy”! Or Jesus’s selection of Matthew the tax collector. Many Jews, including many of the disciples likely despised Matthew for his “betraying” work as a tax collector, collecting taxes from his fellow Jews and giving them to the Romans. At one point, the disciples were even arguing who was the greatest of the 12 among them! Luke 22:24 says, “A dispute also arose among them, as to which of them was to be regarded as the greatest.” Needless to say, the 12 disciples Jesus chose were not in agreement regarding many topics.


Back to the US Presidential Election. It is puzzling how so many can become infuriated over the mentioning of the name of a nominee, to the point where there are outbursts of anger and verbal derision. Lord, have mercy. Let’s pray for these brothers and sisters, especially for those who claim allegiance to Christ! Ephesians 4:29-32 says, “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. 30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 31 Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of

malice. 32 Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.”


Lastly, I have heard of great fears being spoken by many, due to the election’s outcome. I heard a Chinese politician state that there could be unrest if there is a narrow victory for either nominee. I have also heard Black pastors state that they are fearful of a Trump loss, as they or their churches could be targets of arson. Some have had their churches shot up with bullets, so their fears are warranted. Lord, protect us! We pray your love, protection, peace and understanding cover over all those who seek to cause harm and are fearful of harm. Guide us in how to respond when called to act, O Righteous Lamb! In your name, Jesus, we pray. Amen!


Translation:


你可能有點疑惑我想說什麼,我在這裡並不是在暗示一隻偶像又或是在指你十二生肖中其中一隻動物。我所指的是兩天之後我們將如何在美國大選中投票。我們中間可能有些已投了缺席票,而另一些可能計劃前往本區的投票站。但無論你從別人那裡聽到什麼,我們都必須記住,上帝並不是在背後支持任何一個政黨。我並不是說一個政黨可不可能比另一個政黨更合符聖經的價值觀。我的意思是說,最後,當推來推去時,作為信徒的我們必須最後選擇神的羔羊(基督耶穌)而不是選驢子(指民主政黨)或選大象(指共和黨)。可悲的是,有些人將其政治黨派變成了他們的宗教。主啊,救救他們![閒話一提,如果有人想知道我會投誰的票以及我對政情的推理,歡迎和我對話,但請保持對話文明有禮貌。畢竟,我們活在一個有言論自由的國家,而這一權利是得到美國憲法第一修正案所確認的。]


讓我們回想一個耶穌行過的神蹟和衪所曾幫助的人。 一次因百夫長顯出信心,耶穌曾醫治了百夫長的僕人。 試想像一下宗教狂熱分子西門當時的困惑: 耶穌竟然幫助了他們的「敵人」! 又例如耶穌揀選了稅吏馬太做門徒。許多猶太人,包括耶穌許多門徒,可能都會鄙視馬太作為收稅員的「賣國」工作,因為馬太向自己的同胞猶太人徵稅,然後將錢交給羅馬人。 又有一次,門徒們竟在爭論誰是十二個中最大的一個! 路加福音22:24 記載:「門徒起了

爭論,他們中間那一個可算為大」。 不用說,耶穌所選擇的十二個門徒在許多話題上都並沒有一致的看法。


讓我們回到美國總統大選。 令人困惑的是,當提到某後選人的名字時,許多人會突然怒火中燒,甚至會爆出生氣和嘲弄的情緒。 求主憐憫。 讓我們為這些弟兄姊妹祈禱,尤其是那些表示尊主基督為大的人祈禱! 以弗所書4:29-32 說:「29 一句壞話也不可出口,只要隨著需要說造就人的好話,讓聽見的人得益處。30 不要使神的聖靈擔憂,你們原是受了他的印記,等候得救贖的日子來到。31 一切苦毒、憤怒、惱恨、嚷鬧、毀謗,和一切的惡毒都要從你們中間除掉。32 要仁慈相待,存憐憫的心,彼此饒恕,正如神在基督裏饒恕了你們一樣。」


最後,我曾聽到許多人都表達對這次選舉的結果存有極大的恐懼。 曾聽過一個中國政客說,如果任何一位後選人以微弱的優勢獲勝,社會可能會發生動亂。 我亦聽過一些黑人牧師表示,他們擔心特朗普一但落選,黑人或黑人的教堂都可能會成為縱火的目標。 有些教堂已經被子彈擊中過,所以他們的恐懼是有所根據的。 主啊,求祢保護我們! 我們懇求祢以袮的愛,袮的保護,袮的和平與諒解護蓋所有想傷害人的和所有懼怕被傷害的人。 當呼召來的時候求祢指導我們該如何回應,該採取何種行動,正義的羔羊哬! 祈禱奉耶穌的名求。 阿們!


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