Elections: What Pastors Need to Know
The church, for 20 centuries, has stood as a voice of righteousness in our culture, and its voice is greatly needed in our nation today. We are encouraging you to help your congregation participate in the choosing their elected officials. We are blessed to be able to choose who is Caesar in our nation and personnel makes policy. We are not asking you to tell your congregation to vote for a particular party, but we DO encourage you to tell your congregation to vote biblically, and we have a lot of ways to help you do this.
1. First, please educate your congregation. Many church-goers are unaware of what the Bible says regarding government. In Romans 13, the Apostle Paul wrote how government is a God-established institution, like the church and the family. When one of these institutions is sick, they all become sick. In 2 Samuel 12 and Matthew 14, we see Nathan the prophet and John the Baptist, representing God, His Word, and his people, correcting King David and King Herod, who represent the government. It is important that we the church stand up and correct when the government steps out of line and does not pursue righteousness. We encourage you to thoroughly educate your congregation on the role of government and the role of the church.
2. We also encourage you to educate your congregation on the many issues facing our culture today, which are all Biblical issues, including but not limited to: abortion, adoption, sex outside of marriage, homosexuality, sexuality, debt and finances, loving the poor and needy, and education. As you know, the Bible has much to say on these issues, and we encourage you to inform your congregation on current crises in these and other areas, so they are equipped when they go out into the world.
3. We also have tools to inform your congregation about where the candidates stand on these biblical issues. We work with multiple organizations to provide voter guides, which tells you where a candidate stands on important issues.
You and your congregation can walk through important issues and discuss what the Bible says. They can then see if the candidates do or don’t line up with the Bible, and vote accordingly. People ARE influenced and informed on how to vote; who better to inform them than the church and the Bible?
4. What about my 501 (c)(3) status? Here is a video from our legal counsel, Attorney Chuck Hurley, that will walk you through what you can legally do and maintain your 501 (c)(3) status. You will be surprised how much you can legally do!
5. Also please make sure your congregation is registered to vote. Here is a link to a voter registration form: sos.iowa.gov/elections/pdf/voteapp.pdf. Once the form is complete, just mail it into your county auditor located in your county’s courthouse. Forms are due into your county auditor 10 days before the election. If you do not get registered in time, do not worry. Even though registering before is best, in Iowa you can register on Election Day at the polls. Just simply bring your driver’s license and a utility bill with your current address on it to your polling place.
6. Also please inform your congregation when and where to vote. Polls are open 7:00 A.M. until 9:00 P.M. on Election Day in Iowa. They can vote any time during that time period at their local polling place, which can be found here: sos.iowa.gov/elections/voterreg/pollingplace/search.aspx.
If they are unable to vote on Election Day, they can vote via absentee ballot by simply sending in this request form: http://sos.iowa.gov/elections/pdf/absenteeballotapp.pdf.
We cannot tell you enough how important it is that your church votes. In a past election, a candidate that stood for righteousness lost by only 100 votes and another won by only 13. Your congregation can help determine if pro-life and other righteous legislation will pass in the Iowa Legislature.
We greatly appreciate you, and understand how important the local church is to God’s kingdom. If you have any questions or needs, please contact us. Feel free to call me at 515-263-3495 ext. 105 or email me at email@example.com. We are here to serve you.