King Solomon, the wisest man in the world, and President Obama have one very significant thing in common, i.e. both were established in their office by God.
King Solomon acknowledged that premise:
“Now, O LORD my God, You have made Your servant king…” I Kings 3:7a
And the Apostle Paul affirmed that truth in the New Testament, hence President Obama. That is where the commonality stops.
Presently the United States is involved in election year politics. President Obama wants to retain his position while Mitt Romney wants to unseat him. And while both are trying to convince the electorate they are the best choice, as we’ve just seen, the final decision is God’s. And incidentally, the decision was made long before the campaigning began. That fact, however, shouldn’t lessen our interest in voicing our opinion or exercising our right to vote inasmuch as God’s providence and man’s choice are totally compatible.
Perhaps the issue that most differentiates the two presidential candidates is who is best able to improve the status of all citizens, i.e. the government, or the citizens themselves. Those who believe the government is best able to improve each individual’s lot must also realize that government doesn’t generate revenue. Government must take revenue from individual citizens or corporations that have, and redistribute it to those who have not. In fact that is one of President Obama’s primary campaign issues. Romney contends that individuals in the private sector should be able to keep more of their earnings and have unfettered opportunity to pursue the American dream on their own.
Who is right? Much insight can be gleaned from the Bible. What did King Solomon do?
Shortly after Solomon began his rule as king, God asked him what he desired to have. Solomon without hesitation replied.
“…‘You have shown great mercy to Your servant David my father, because he walked before You in truth…and in uprightness of heart with You…and You have given him a son to sit on his throne…Now, O LORD my God, You have made Your servant king instead of my father David…’” I Kings 3:6-7a
Before making his request to God, Solomon acknowledged that his father, David, had found favor with God because he lived and exercised his kingship in the light of God’s righteousness and truth. Solomon was now placed in the position to continue his father’s legacy.
“…but I am a little child; I do not know how to go out or come in…Therefore give to Your servant an understanding heart to judge Your people, that I may discern between good and evil. For who is able to judge this great people of Yours?” I Kings 3:7b-9
Solomon confessed that on his own he was totally inadequate to do his job. He, therefore, asked God to grant him wisdom to be able to discern between good and evil so he could judge God’s people properly. He further stated that no man on his own was capable of judging correctly.
“The speech pleased the LORD, that Solomon had asked this thing… ‘Behold, I have done according to your words; see, I have given you a wise and understanding heart, so that there has not been anyone like you before you, nor shall any like you arise after you…So if you walk in My ways, to keep My statutes and My commandments, as your father David walked, then I will lengthen your days.’” I Kings 3:10-14
Notice the continued emphasis on obedience to God’s statutes and commandments.
One of Solomon’s first decisions as king was to determine the true birth mother of an infant. He judged according to God’s wisdom. Solomon’s judgment was profound and had profound effects.
“And all Israel heard of the judgment which the king had rendered; and they feared the king, for they saw that the wisdom of God was in him to administer justice.” I Kings 3:26
President Obama is searching for a new campaign slogan. Here’s a suggestion.
“Are we closer to God’s standard of justice today than we were four years ago?”
If the answer to that question is ‘yes’ then America would automatically be better off than four years ago and the incumbent might keep his job.