Rejoice with the good, deplore the bad.

Justin Taylor has had some great posts today from guest bloggers talking about how Christians should respond to Obama’s election. In particular, he’s had a couple of African-American brothers talking about the double-edged sword of having a black President who is also so radically pro-abortion. (Read the posts from Thabiti Anyabwile, Eric Redmond, and Anthony Carter, along with all the others.)

Some of the commenters are having a really hard time simply granting that it’s an encouraging thing that America has elected a black man to the White House. I think I’ve made my personal take on Obama pretty clear, but I see no reason why we can’t simultaneously rejoice in the historic significance of this moment and mourn over its potential effect on the greatest moral issue of our day.

This is particularly frustrating to see in comments from a predominantly Reformed readership. We’re supposed to have a robust view of God’s sovereignty that sees God working even in the midst of the sinful choices of human beings– yet doesn’t excuse the sinfulness of those choices. We marvel at Scriptures like Genesis 50:20, where Joseph says that although his brothers intended evil against him, God used their sinful actions to bring about the deliverance of Jacob’s descendants from famine. Why, then, should we have such a hard time praising God for this step toward racial reconciliation, while still calling him out for his sin of approving what is evil?

That a black man can be elected President 40 years after Martin Luther King is wonderful. That a candidate with such a terrible view of the humanity of the unborn could be elected is frightening. So voters were faced with a choice. I made mine: abortion and plenty of other issues trumped the appeal of his race for me. But now there is no choice to make; he’s been elected and he will be our President. I rejoice with my African-American brothers and sisters. I rejoice for our nation. I rejoice (thanks to Abraham) that my kids won’t know a day when a black man couldn’t hold the highest office in the land. And I pray for his heart to change on abortion, or else for his efforts on that front to be defeated.



  1. “Why, then, should we have such a hard time praising God for this step toward racial reconciliation, while still calling him out for his sin of approving what is evil?”

    I think: in old and new Reformed circles our theology is often mostly intellectual or traditional… with our actual piety being more like typical evangelicalism, where the reality of life (and often of our own lives) is not actually engaged, and under the guise of faith we retreat into repeating words and ideas of which we have little experience. God help us.

  2. Man, what a great post Jake

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s