Reflections

To Celebrate or Not to Celebrate


Quinton Cools February 19, 2018
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Maybe it’s you. Maybe it’s a friend. Maybe it’s someone on television or a viral video on the gram.

 

There’s a lot of hate for the President of the United States.

 

Everyone has their favorite and least favorite presidents. President Reagan is adored by conservatives, while President Obama is heralded as one of the greatest U.S. presidents by progressives.

 

And today is President’s Day. According to History, this holiday is “popularly viewed as a day to celebrate all U.S. presidents past and present.”

 

Maybe you hold an extreme view, or maybe you’re indifferent, or maybe you don’t know what to think. Maybe it’s hard for you to celebrate some presidents, our current president included. Maybe you don’t agree with their morals or their policies. Are you still supposed to celebrate them?

 

Before you answer that, I want you to consider this question: What determines what you believe? Does culture move you? Do you go with what feels right? Get this. The God who created you and called you has provided instruction for how to rightly live in this world. Our first and final source for our belief must be the Word of God.

 

The Bible doesn’t tell you to get the confetti out for the President of the United States. The eleventh commandment doesn’t say, “get out the kazoos!”

 

BUT. It does have something to say about honoring authority.

 

Peter writes, “Submit yourselves for the Lord’s sake to every human institution, whether to a king as the one in authority, or to governors as sent by him…” (1 Peter 2:13-14a)

 

Think that’s not strong enough? If you keep reading, you’ll find this: “Honor all people, love the brotherhood, fear God, honor the king.” (v. 17, emphasis added)

 

We need to take our cues from Scripture. We need to think God’s thoughts after him. That’s the only way that we will rightly live in God’s world — by “every word that comes from the mouth of God.” (Matthew 4:4)

 

God requires us to submit to our governing authorities (see also: Romans 13), and he also requires us to honor all people.

 

You know people who bash the President of the United States, don’t you? You know people who speak words of hatred and disrespect. You’ve heard people joke coarsely and you laugh. And maybe some of those times it’s YOU doing those things.

 

Today, you may not want to celebrate President’s Day.

 

Whether or not you are celebrating today, you must submit yourself to God and honor the President.

 

Think about how you may need to change your approach to honoring those in authority over you. The way you honor people and submit to authority tells people something about the God you serve. Be a faithful ambassador for Christ today and always.

 

 

About the Author

Quinton Cools

Quinton Cools grew up in the Pacific Northwest, and like any true Oregonian, he can identify the perfect cup of coffee. He is the fifth of nine… Read More

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