Monday, October 04, 2010

Everyone Did As They Saw Fit

Election Day is coming!  Less than one month and we will have the chance to select new (or old) representatives in this republic.  I've been thinking of the election in terms of my experience of reading through the Bible last year and commenting on it here.  I'm up to the book of Judges.  In this book, the Israelites have taken possession of their land (mostly) but they are not under a unified rule. 

The defining passage of this book is the statement "in those days, Israel did not have a king, and everyone did as they saw fit."  Really, this is the reason we contract together under government at all.  We know the outcome when everyone does as they see fit.  But unfortunately, a government can only balance our competing interests and minimize the damage of everyone doing as they see fit.

Today, we have a clash of competing interests.  Two sides who seem to believe that the other is both incompetent and ill-intentioned.  They both seem concerned with getting their own way and holding power more than they are concerned with acknowledging the great responsibility of leadership and accepting it with humility and strength.  From our leaders and our citizens we could learn from the chaotic story of the book of Judges that we can't simply do as we see fit.

We must value and respect each other and learn that neither left nor right can exist without the other.

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