Put not your trust in rulers, nor in any child of earth, for there is no help in them. When they breathe their last, they return to earth, and in that day, their thoughts perish. Happy are they who have the God of Jacob for their help, whose hope is in the LORD their God; who made heaven and earth, the seas, and all that is in them; who keeps his promise forever; who gives justice to those who are oppressed, and food to those who hunger.
It’s the day after the elections and some are happy with the results and others are unhappy. Regardless of who won it is important to remember the words of Psalm 146 – there is no government on earth worthy of our deepest trust. Only God keeps every promise he ever made. Only God is to be trusted with our life.
We use our skills and intellect to elect earthly leaders to make and implement policies for the common good. This is important. But even at their best, those leaders are sinners. They cannot keep all the promises they make and they certainly cannot save anyone from the destruction that awaits all sinners. They cannot overturn the consequences of human sin by any legislation, fiat, or judicial action.
We vote, we pray for our elected leaders, we engage the political process for the common good of all people. We do not, however, place our trust in any earthly authority.
For only God, who has created us and all that exists, who has redeemed us by the death and resurrection of Jesus, who makes us holy by the work of the Holy Spirit is trustworthy. Only God has the power and the authority to pluck us from the jaws of death and place us into the safety of his love. Only Jesus overturns the conviction against us for our sins and gives us life eternal with him.
Happy are they who put their trust in the LORD of hosts!
Prayer: O Lord our governor, your glory shines throughout the world. We commend our nation to your merciful care, that we may live securely in peace and may be guided by your providence. Give all in authority the wisdom and strength to know our will and to do it. Help them remember that they are called to serve the people as lovers of truth and justice; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen (from Lutheran Book of Worship, #172)