With the issuance of the Writ of Election, Singapore will be conducting the General Election (GE) on 10 July 2020. This pastoral guideline sets out how congregants of Prinsep Street Presbyterian Church can conduct ourselves as Christian citizens in a prayerful, discerning and respectful manner during the GE.
B. A PRAYERFUL PROCESS
As Christian citizens of the country, we have the responsibility to “seek the welfare of the city… and pray to the Lord on its behalf, for in its welfare you will find your welfare.” (Jeremiah 29:7) The GE is an especially significant time to seek the welfare of the country by committing the campaigning process and electoral outcome in our prayers.
C. A DISCERNING PROCESS
The Apostle Paul writes in Romans 13:6, “For the same reason you also pay taxes, for the authorities are ministers of God, attending to this very thing.” The nominees are campaigning to be elected as public officers whom Scripture recognizes as “ministers of God”. Therefore, we need godly wisdom to discern the calling, character and competence of nominees as we listen to campaign broadcasts and receive house visits so that we elect those who can best uphold and advance the welfare of the country.
D. A RESPECTFUL PROCESS
The Apostle Paul also writes in Romans 13:7, “Pay to all what is owed to them: taxes to whom taxes are owed, revenue to whom revenue is owed, respect to whom respect is owed, honour to whom honour is owed.” The democratic process allows the robust debate and contestation of ideas and opinions. In addition to the need for wise discernment, all exchanges of political views should be conducted fairly, truthfully and respectfully, especially with the prevalence of many online postings that are biased, inaccurate or disrespectful.
Although Christians may hold onto differing views along the political spectrum, we need to remember that we are first and foremost brothers and sisters in God’s family, members of the one body of Christ and united by the Holy Spirit in the bond of peace (cf. Ephesians 4:3). Our spiritual unity precedes, surpasses and outlasts our political differences.
Rev Darryl Chan
23 June 2020