Saturday, November 17, 2018

Die Here or Recant (song)

In keeping with the theme of persecution in my last post, this song seemed appropriate. Some may doubt the reality of what feels like the year of attacks on Christian faith at times but that may be because they are viewing the world through an American lens. Even the USA and North America in general are experiencing a number of subtle (and some not-so-subtle) acts of persecution and affronts to the faith. The degree is not nearly to the level that brothers and sisters in The Lord face the world over, particularly in China and Middle Eastern countries. That doesn't mean that North America and the Western world will be spared persecution that involves not only loss of rights and freedom but maybe even to the point of death. And as we face such things in the body of Christ, though no one necessarily wants to face that, we know that the weight of glory is worth more and weighs more than any of our light and momentary sufferings. I'll steward God's grace and blessings well enough; I must also steward the trials and persecutions He allows to come. If it comes down to the government vs. God, I choose God above all. Thus, when the choice is to die here or recant, go tell Nero I can't. To live is Christ and to die is gain! (Philippians 1:21)


"Die Here or Recant"
(parody of "Year of the Cat" by Al Stewart; copyright by Nathan Ludwick 9/7/2018)
(Matthew 10:26-33, Matthew 24:4-14, John 15:18-27 and 16:1-4, Acts 1-12, Acts 5:29, Romans 8, Hebrews 11:32-40, Philippians 1:21, Philippians 3, Revelation 2:10-11, Revelation 5:9-11, Revelation 14:12-13, Revelation 20-22)

With a warning from a bogus jury
In a council that says, "Don't preach Christ"
You go scrolling through Acts now for Pete's retort
In Acts 5:29
Lord God raised up The Son that you killed by hanging (on the cross)
God our Father over men obey!
Our Father gave our Lord exaltation
We must tell you in His Name
That we fear God, not man
"They will not give up Christ!" - "Arrest them!"
But we've locked up behind bars before
And The Lord's angel opened doors of the prison
(They) completely disappeared
It's a futile cause; they're at temple walls
There's no prison door they fear, you dudes
We'll take that Gamaliel's advice
Just like the wicked run but these dudes
(Are) Bagheera the cat!
Signs and wonders, dude- so cool, Steve!
They tell lies that cite the dude's blaspheming!
He wants forgiveness for bad jury
When they stone him- if it's forsake Him for life
To adhere I just can't
More mourning comes when James' killed after
And Jesus said persecutions (would) come!
It won't go away- His voice or cross or mission
So we have to hold on
Until trumpet sounds and in The Light remain!
And the minute persecutors say
"Avow Lord Christ or now go meet Him!"
To live is Christ (and) die is gain!
So tell Nero I can't
There's no recant
.................................................

A Call for Endurance

"Do not fear what you are about to suffer. Behold, the devil is about to throw some of you into prison, that you may be tested, and for ten days you will have tribulation. Be faithful unto death, and I will give you the crown of life. He who has an ear, let him hear what The Spirit says to the churches. The one who conquers will not be hurt by the second death." (Revelation 2:10-11)

"Here is a call for the endurance of the saints, those who keep the commandments of God and their faith in Jesus. And I heard a voice from Heaven saying, 'Write this: Blessed are the dead who die in The Lord from now on.' 'Blessed indeed,' says The Spirit, 'that they may rest from their labors, for their deeds follow them!' " (Revelation 14:12-13)

Let us keep praying for the Iraqi saints and followers of Christ all over the world who are facing such tribulation and persecution that they would be faithful to Jesus no matter what and that they would keep loving their enemies, praying for them, speaking The Truth in Love, and faithfully obeying Jesus. And may we all heed the call to be faithful to Jesus and endure no matter what may come. The temporal life and its pains are temporary, but the celestial life and its joys are eternal. And let's keep praying for those who are so opposed to Jesus who need to know that He loves them too and only wants them to repent, trust Him and live.

The Scriptures here and the situation going on with the persecuted church around the world made me think of a very spiritually true and sound line from "The Dark Knight"- "What would you have me do?"- Bruce Wayne/Batman.... "Endure."- Alfred Pennyworth...... It's just as Jesus said in Matthew 24:13-14, "But the one who endures to the end will be saved. And this Gospel of the Kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come." ..... So, as Matthew 24:44-46 tell us, "Therefore you also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect. Who then is the faithful and wise servant, whom his master has set over the household, to give them their food at the proper time? Blessed is that servant whom his master will find so doing when he comes."   Note that the passage clearly tells us that the Son of Man is coming at a time we don't expect-therefore, we must be ready. Ready-not standing around speculating on His return or just bemoaning the state of the world and wringing our hands. We also can't be disinterested bystanders sitting back comfortable in our faith and waiting for our sweet chariot to swing low and take us home. We should be a faithful and wise servant of The Master-we have been set over His household as members of the body of Christ and we are to work together to care for His body and give food to His household at the proper time. This of course includes all of His domain-the whole earth and universe. Speak The Gospel Truth-the Words of Life to edify the church and to throw out the lifeline to resuce the perishing. We must be faithful in obeying Jesus and sharing His love with others that they might come to salvation too. And until Christ does come, we must be the face of His Love on the earth and His agents of change to help keep the peace and show grace and mercy and love to a lost and cold, uncaring world. Keep looking up, for our redemption draweth nigh-in His time, which may or may not be in our lifetime (we don't know and don't need to know and don't need to worry about trying to know)- and keep enduring and being faithful. And don't worry about tomorrow for tomorrow will worry about itself. Be faithful with what God has given you today.

A Response to Grace


(Note: This was written in reaction to reading an excerpt from "Vanishing Grace" by Philip Yancey, so consider it a book report of sorts. :-))

Beautiful post here! What a great reminder of how The Gospel of Jesus Christ has so radically transformed individual people's lives and entire nations for the better!

   This is a very helpful reminder for me because I often have discussions with a friend who most often seems to see the ugly side of Christianity and rarely acknowledges any of the good. In having apologetics discussions with people about the reputation of Christianity in the world, I prefer to redirect people to Christ. I am well aware that there are people who may have been genuinely Christians while also being genuinely mistaken about interpretation of The Bible's commands who brought about much evil in the world. (It's hard to forget the large number of Christian American settlers who helped wipe out so many Native Americans and kidnapped Africans and enslaved them....and the examples can go on.)

   And some might combine history like this with the difficult passages in The Bible regarding slavery and laws regarding sexual behaviour and so forth and conclude that slavery and rape are acceptable practices in Christianity.

    Of course, the Christian church today steadfastly condemns such actions. And part of the reason why is because we look to the person of Jesus Christ as the ultimate model for human behaviour. And as you mentioned, we can see how Jesus embraced and empowered racial minorities and women and truly lived out His mission to preach Good News to the poor. And He ultimately fulfilled this mission on the cross of Calvary and in the empty tomb. The Good News Jesus brought us is that we can have forgiveness of sins and be reinstated in His family. All are welcome! The rich and poor are on equal footing in His kingdom. There are no races in Him- no slave or free- no male or female- we are all one in Christ Jesus. This is the way His kingdom operates in opposition to the world that assigns value to some things and people and decides others to be worthless. In a paradox described in Psalms 8, we are both utterly worthless and infinitely important and valuable at the same time. "What is man that You should think of us, Lord?" writes the Psalmist. "Yet You made us a little lower than the angels."

    Isaiah 53 says that Christ had nothing in His appearance that we should desire Him, yet our fallen state had nothing in it that He should desire us! But The Desire of nations desires all nations to come to repentance and into His kingdom! Of course, there is only one reason that explains the reason for this paradoxical pursuit- Love! Love all excelling- Love Divine! Love of course makes absolutely no sense and I think sometimes that may be the surest way to know we are truly acting in Love when our actions make absolutely no sense in the world's eyes. This is the power of The Gospel and truly the power of Love. Love pours abundant grace on us by absorbing our guilt and enduring our punishment. And of course, as Song of Songs 8:6-7 tells us, Love is stronger than death. So of course, Love conquered the final enemy and opened the way for us to enter His presence as we triumphantly ascend from death's sting into the presence of The One who took away death's power.

    Jesus Christ, Lover of my soul and body- the embodiment of Love (1 John 4:8-10), provides for both my soul and body. In John 10:10 He said He came to give us life and life abundant. I think it is His example exactly that moves us as His followers to bring comfort to the needy and afflicted and poor and poor in spirit in the world. We must freely give as we have freely received. Matthew 25 gives a practical way of soothing the hurts of this world with The Balm of Gilead. Give the hungry food. Give the thirsty water. Shelter the stranger. Clothe the naked. Visit and aid the sick. Go and comfort the prisoner.

    These are all ways we love our neighbour as ourselves and in so doing we demonstrate our love for God, Whom we love with all our hearts, souls, minds and strength. And we always speak The Truth (John 14:6) in Love. (Ephesians 4:15) May I ever do these three in tandem, reaching a hand out in Love to all and especially the least of these.

    Of course, the aid and Love is given despite the response. Jesus healed all 10 lepers who came to Him though only one returned to thank Him. We must do no less in offering help to all regardless of the response. The response is always the responsibility of The Holy Spirit in any case.

     That is the vision I want to see my life continuing to grow in every day I walk with Jesus. I trust that He is continuing to shape the saint out of the sinner. I trust that He is helping me to have the faithfulness of the elder brother without the judgment and bitterness as well as the penitance of the younger prodigal brother. I recognize that I am nothing more than a ragamuffin beggar at the door of God's grace. Praise God that He gives generously to those who don't deserve it, can never earn it or repay it and can only appropriately bow in gratitude and humbly share Grace with others.

I know I am far from perfect in doing that and I seek to be better by His power every day.

I believe God has been doing that work in me over the years of my walk with Him ultimately through the working of His Spirit in Scripture reading, prayer, church service and encouragement and rebuke of the brethren and sisters. I believe He has also used a variety of Christian people and the artistic gifts He's given them to help me in that process. I could name numerous writers and musicians and missionaries and pastors and other laymen and laywomen. Of course, I think it's most often the lowly of this world (by worldly standards) that have been some of my dearest friends who continue to remind me of God's heart for the vain things of this world. (1 Corinthians 1:18-31) They continue to soften my heart and make glad my heart.

Of my favourite artists though, I must say that among others like Brennan Manning, George MacDonald, C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, A.W. Tozer, Henri Nouwen, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Corrie Ten Boom, Jim Elliott (the anniversary of his martyrdom and entry through Gates of Splendor is today, January 9, by the way), Joni Eareckson Tada, Watchman Nee, Voddie Baucham, Mister Rogers, Martin Luther, Charles Wesley, Keith Green, Larry Norman, Chris Rice, Carolyn Arends, Andrew Peterson, Rich Mullins and many others still- including many personal friends whose names are not known by the world at large (but of course God knows all these names quite well), Philip Yancey has quickly entered that pantheon and I am very grateful indeed for his writing. I appreciate the writing that acknowledges the reality of God's wrath and judgment without minimizing the incredible extent of His amazing grace! Fellow Christ followers like these and more have helped me realize more and more this truth. God is way more intolerant and punishing of our sin than we often realize and He's way more gracious and loving than we can fathom. It is both truths at once that we must embrace. And praise God that through Christ, mercy triumphs over judgment!

   Books like "Disappointment with God" and "The Question That Never Goes Away" and "What's So Amazing by Grace?" continue to remind me so often of these truths and bring me to my knees weeping in both grief for sin and in tears of joy for God's grace that is greater than all my sins! I feel sure "Vanishing Grace" will do the same when I read that next. So thank you again for letting God use you to bless, convict and encourage so many hard hearts and heads. (While I believe my head went soft ages ago ;-), I pray my heart will ever grow softer before The Lord as He keeps working.)

May The Lord continue to bless you and your family and use you for His glory richly. :-)

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

New Heaven and Remade Earth (song)

As a Halloween and Reformation Day treat, I thought these next two songs would be appropriate. This is sort of my Hell and Heaven suite. The first one has the devil in the details, detailing his origins, his workings now and his assured eternal destruction. This second one is about the happiest place not on Earth- and that's Heaven! The world also paints a lot of images and ideas about this that place that do not be lending any light on on the subject. Heaven's only entered One Way- through faith in Jesus' death and Resurrection to pay for our sins. This world is in a horrible mess because of sin- it's like a broken car pile in a junkyard. We will never fix it in human strength and make a Heaven on Earth. However, Jesus promises to take us to Heaven if we trust Him to fix us and everything else- and He will one day make a new Heaven and new Earth. And He uses us now to point people to the rebirth that only comes from Him who makes all things new! That's the day we long for! Behold, the One who promises this says He is coming soon. Even so, come Lord Jesus!


"New Heaven and Remade Earth"
(Parody of "Heaven Is A Place On Earth" by Belinda Carlisle; copyright by Nathan Ludwick 5/30/2018)
(Genesis 1-3, Philippians 1:21-27, Genesis 11, John 6:44, Romans 5, Ephesians 2:8-10, Philippians 2:1-18, Psalms 2, Psalms 16, Psalms 137, Isaiah 66, John 14, Matthew 5:16, Revelation 19:16, Revelation 20-22)

Ooh, hating seems to only get worse
Ooh, Heaven- come invade the Earth
The day when Heaven's Son returns
He'll remake Heaven (and) remake the Earth
New Heaven and a remade Earth

When The Christ calls now
The wait is through and He's come back down
All the world lays eyes on Him now
Babylon finally dies!
And our talk to self-improve
It's all a joke- falls apart- Psalms 2
Adam's sinning cursed the world and us
And You lifted it off by way of the cross

You saved me and each soul- what's our worth?
Ooh, Heaven is a grace undeserved
The Way to Heaven- God draws first
We make Heaven by faith not works
2 Ephesians- we're saved for good works

This world's not my home- I'm just passing through
Psalms 16:11- Home!
Then in John 14- our hearts rejoice
You prepare for me!
In His world, we get new beginning
And now with man again our Lord is living
66 Isaiah- saith The Lord
All flesh come to praise- praise The Lord!

Ooh, praise Him! Make Him Lord while on Earth
2 Philippians says all praise- 10th. verse
Don't waste a second- Love or Curse?
Get saved while living- too late in hearse
Choose Heaven! Put your faith in Christ's work

In His world we'll have no sinning
No hunger and thirst- we're all filled by King of Kings
Babel tower's our way and Hell's door
But Lord God's The Way and only Door

Ooh, Satan- do your gloats for now, jerk
Revelation says your doom's assured
You see 'cause Heaven's Love beat curse!
No wrongs Heaven's embrace can't cure
Ooh! Heaven cures all plagues of earth
Ooh! Heaven leaves no trace of curse
Ooh! Heaven's agents of change on earth
Winds of Heaven and stuff of Earth
Like (in) Heaven, do God's will on earth





Killer (song)

As a Halloween and Reformation Day treat, I thought these next two songs would be appropriate. This is sort of my Hell and Heaven suite. The first one is about one of the scariest figures in The Bible- the devil himself! The world paints a lot of false images and ideas about him, but the world doesn't know jack, son. The Bible gives us information about that old serpent throughout its pages and sometimes thinking about his and his demons' evil workings in the world can be more frightening than reading the latest Stephen King thriller. But even though he is a thief, destroyer and killer, we don't need to fear Him when we're in Christ because we know the One who has defeated sin, death, Hell, the demons and the devil. And in the end, his doom is sure- one little word shall fell him.

"Killer"
(parody of "Thriller" by Michael Jackson; copyright by Nathan Ludwick 7/31/2018)
(Genesis 3, Revelation 12, Ephesians 6, Zechariah 3, Matthew 4, Isaiah 14, Ezekiel 28, John 8:32-36, Job 1-2, James 4:7, 2 Corinthians 11:3 and 13-15, 1 John 4:4, 2 Corinthians 4:4, John 8:39-47, Luke 10:17-20, John 10:10, Genesis 4:1-7, 1 Peter 5:8-9, 2 Corinthians 6:2, Matthew 16:21-23, Romans 8:11, Romans 10:9-13, Revelation 20, Romans 16:20, Revelation 20:10)

He's closed in his sights and something evil's lurking in the garden
Pumping half-truth/lies, Lucifer's trying to just sow doubts in hearts
Adam and Eve- what terrors will resound after you taste it!
Now Earth's diseased- with horror, look how you bought all the lies
You're penalized!

'Cause he's a killer, thief and liar!
And God's Son's gonna save you from the beast though His heel he'll strike
You know it's written- Genesis line
3:15 prophesies that Christ will crush the snake's head- that's right!

You read some more- bam! Ezekiel shares from where he did come
"You were in Eden- anointed as a guardian cherub"
You chose thug life- you know that this is just in 28, son
You were exiled when there was evil creeping up inside
You're out on your behind

'Cause you were filled with killer pride
O Day Star, son of Dawn- Isaiah chapter 14 writes
You said, "I will be like Most High"
Your flight has been denied because Jehovah's always Most High

The devil's fall-
12 Revelation gives a pass backstage
Third go with Satan in star wars of Heaven- 4th. line
(The demons' side)
Since the dragon's tail swung wide

They're out to get you- those demons and dragon- 17 line
They will possess you unless you take The Saviour's offer now
Now is the time- go 2nd. Corinthians 6:2- it's there
All through The Christ- He'll save you from the terrors of your sin
He'll make you clean

'Cause He was killed for sinners' plight
And Christ's life was restored by Holy Ghost
Romans 8:11- right!
World, there's a killer, thief and liar!
Won't quit 'til out of time- serpent's a-accuser, tempter, imitator angel of light!

Read in 1st. Peter 5:8- right!
The lion roars at your door- 4 Genesis
The 7th. verse mind
World-roaming killer still at large
So let's read Romans line 16 verse 20- God wins!

(Background vocals: He's gonna school him- that's right!)

(Spoken:)
Dark forces trawl across the land
The midnight hour draws closer at hand
(Since) devil's fall, he's out for blood
To tempt mankind- call evil good
And whosoever shall be found
Without their soul's name written down
In Lamb's Book of Life- they're bound for hell
Those bought by Christ- to joy eternal

(Background vocals: I'm in The Lamb's Book of Life! Will ya be?)

(Spoken:)
Look out! Resist temptings- (and) beware!
He'll run as 4:7 James shares
1 Peter too- Read 5:9- boom!
The God within you's greater too!
And though snake fights to sway your mind
Adversary's marked for Gehenna
For more, read John's Apocalypse
'Cause He will burn forever!

(Ah ha ha ha!)
(Laughter and fade)
...........................................


Sunday, October 7, 2018

Who do you say I am?

(Note: This piece is an analysis of the claims made about Jesus by the secular world, in particular as demonstrated by this T-shirt produced by John Fugelsang in the link below- in comparison to what The Bible actually says about Jesus.
https://johnfugelsangstore.com/products/tagless-t-shirt-2)

      Interesting description of Jesus and spot on in some regards but there are a number of descriptors here that are unBiblical and untrue. Jesus is not anti-wealth; He's anti-greed. He is not necessarily anti-public prayer; after all, He regularly went to synagogue where public prayer was held for those who came. Yes, He is against making a show of it- that's what Matthew 6:5 is talking about. The concepts of abortion and birth control as we know them were not around in that time but Jesus certainly spoke out for the vulnerable and children. He said for anyone who leads one of the little ones who believe in Him astray- it'd be better for them to have a millstone put around their necks and thrown into the sea. (Matthew 18:6, also in Luke 17 and Mark 9) Jesus said the thief comes to steal, kill and destroy but He came that we might have life and life more abundant. (John 10:10)
Jesus also said that whatever we do to the least of these, we have done it unto Him. (See the parable of the sheep and the goats in Matthew 25- specifically verse 40.)
Jesus rebukes James and John for wanting to call down fire from Heaven to destroy those who don't believe in Jesus. He told them that the Son of Man came to save people's lives, not destroy them. The Bible makes clear a number of times that God hates the shedding of innocent blood. (See Proverbs 6 for one.) Jesus upheld all of Scripture (Matthew 5:17) and as the Second Person of The Holy Trinity, He is God and all of Scripture is His word.
And He clearly condemns Ammon for the sin of ripping open pregnant women in Amos 1:13. God is concerned about the both the death of the women and the babies.
And by the same measure, Jesus upheld Scripture's teaching on the sin of homosexuality. (Leviticus 18:22, Romans 1, 1 Corinthians 6:9-11 and others) Jesus Himself addressed the issue of God's order for sexuality in Matthew 5 and Matthew 19. Jesus reminded the Pharisees that in the beginning God created human beings male and female. Then He quoted Genesis 2:24 to the Pharisees, which says that for this reason a man will leave his father and mother, be united to his wife and the two shall become one flesh.
Jesus held this model up as God's standard for marriage and human sexual relations.
In regards to comments about the poor, The Bible does give us the principle that he who does not work shall not eat. This is not to condemn poor people for the situation they are in but to condemn Christians for being lazy and idle. (As 2 Thessalonians 3:10 is written to the church.) Of course, the Thessalonians were also told to help the weak and always seek to do good to one another and to everyone. (See 1 Thessalonians 5:14-15) There are numerous commands for Christians to help the poor.
I also don't know that non-violent is the best descriptor for Jesus, seeing as how He made a whip and drove corrupt moneychangers out of the temple! He was pretty mad then. But yes- He doesn't promote violence in general but obviously there are some things where some force is justified.
I also don't know if "anti-death penalty" is the best descriptor since Jesus upheld all of the Scriptures and the Old Testament Law is where we get the notion of the death penalty to begin with. (An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.)
"Anti-slut shaming" is an interesting one too. Jesus did make clear that adultery is a sin. (Matthew 5:28) And we should certainly be ashamed of sin. I imagine this descriptor is referring to John 8, where a woman caught in the act of adultery is brought to Jesus by the Pharisees. It is true that He tells them that whoever is without sin to cast the first stone- and they all leave until just He and the woman are left there. Of course, Jesus is the only One without sin who could rightfully stone her to death but He asks her if any of her accusers has condemned her. She says that none of them did and then Jesus says, "Neither do I condemn you. Go and sin no more."
This is important to note because as John 3:17 says, Jesus didn't come to the world to condemn it but to save it! Yet He didn't tell this woman what she was doing was okay. He told her to go and leave her life of sin.
To get back to the point of Jesus being against the death penalty, I do like that one because I think that is true in some sense.
(I think a lot of these are trying to make political points but need to be considered in terms of spiritual points. Politics is not going to save humanity. Jesus came to save us from the problem that plagues us all the most- sin. Changing people's hearts for eternity is what it's about.)
Jesus came to put an end to the death penalty because that's what we all deserve for our sins. "For the wages of sin is death but the free gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord." (Romans 6:23)
Though we all deserve eternal punishment in Hell, Christ endured that for us and paid for all sins for all time through His death and Resurrection. And because He lives, we can live also if we put our faith in Him and follow Him.
That's the most important revolution Jesus came to bring- a spiritual one. He wants all people to be saved so that we might all experience eternal joy with Him in Heaven.
That is a Biblical picture of Jesus- He is God. And God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son so that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.

Sunday, September 30, 2018

Christ and Caesar, Politics and Pulpits and Everything In Between

(Note: For this reflection, I offer a response to some critiques levelled at some Christians' political choices. It seems it has been a constant refrain since the 2016 US election to hear various critiques and defenses regarding Christians and their politics. I think this is an area we as the church need to examine, for sure, but we must always do it in love. I am largely basing this writing on the blog entry posted below. I will post a different article that suggests a way forward for Christians in engaging politics at the end.)

https://johnpavlovitz.com/2018/08/16/christians-supporting-trump-arent-christians/?utm_campaign=coschedule&utm_source=facebook_page&utm_medium=John%20Pavlovitz



        The distinction between actions and attitudes of Christians and non-Christians is spot on. I have read some of Mr. Pavlovitz's blog entries before. He offers a lot of self-reflective critique that the Christian church needs to sometimes examine. I can't say I always agree with all his assessments though. One point I would say regarding this piece- I hesitate at ever saying who is a Christian and who is not. Ultimately, only God knows people's hearts and if they have truly put faith in Jesus' death and Resurrection to pay for their sins and follow Him. It is not my place to judge that and so I will always give people the benefit of the doubt. However, that said, Jesus said that we will know His disciples by their fruit- good trees produce good fruit and bad trees produce bad fruit. (Matthew 7:15-20) So I can often say of many professed Christians that I feel about 99% sure they're not who they claim to be.
The Bible actually exhorts Christians to examine ourselves and see if we're really in the faith. (2 Corinthians 13:5-8) So there is definitely a need to hold a mirror up to ourselves and make sure we're really reflecting Christ.
It is also worth noting that this pendulum swings both ways. As much as our works should be present to demonstrate our faith in Christ (Philippians 2:12-13, Ephesians 2:8-10, John 15:8, the entire book of James basically), our good works must be done out of our faith in Christ and because of that or they don't count for anything. Jeremiah 17:9 makes clear that no one naturally has a good heart. Rather, the heart is deceitful and desperately wicked- who can know it? Isaiah 64:6 says that all our good deeds are like filthy rags before The Holy Lord God. Not only can we never do enough good works to please God (since His standard is absolute perfection- Matthew 5:48, Leviticus 11:45), we can't even truly do any good works apart from His righteousness working in us! In Matthew 7:21-23 Jesus delivers some of the scariest words in The Bible. He clearly says that not everyone who says to Him 'Lord, Lord' will enter the kingdom of Heaven but only the one who does the will of His Father is in Heaven. On the last day, many will say to Him, 'Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and cast out demons in Your name, and do many mighty works in Your name?' And then Jesus will tell them, 'I never knew you; depart from Me, you workers of lawlessness.' (Some translations add, 'The things you did were unauthorized.') Chilling words indeed! Shortly before He said this, Jesus warned about wolves in sheep's clothing. There are numerous other warnings regarding this. (See Matthew 13 for Jesus' parable of the weeds and Matthew 25 for Jesus' parable of the sheep and the goats.) In Acts 19:11-20, there is yet another example of this, when some guys went around trying to heal folks of demon possession by invoking Jesus' Name even though they didn't know Him and this one time the demon possessing a dude called them out on it, saying it knew Jesus and Paul, but who are those guys? The demon-possessed man overpowered the lot of them and beat them up, so that they fled naked and wounded. And thus, the Name of The Lord Jesus was extolled.
There are numerous other passages that speak to this as well (Romans 1-3 and Galatians 3 and the book of Hebrews all offer explanations of the balance and relationship between faith and works.)
I personally have decided that I am not going to judge someone's Christianity (and/or religiosity in general) based on their political choices alone. I have friends who are on very opposite ends politically (both some who vote Democrat or Republican or something else altogether) and I don't doubt their faith in Christ. Now I do think faith in Jesus should direct and influence our politics and voting, as it affects all of life. But I don't think the pastor should tell the church who to vote for. My advice on that is to vote for who you think God wants you to vote for. Thus, do research on all the candidates and pray and vote as you feel God leading you.
And this is where it's important to note a definition of terms. What does it even mean to support the President? By definition as American citizens, don't we all support the President regardless of our religious faith or lack thereof? I mean, surely we all want the President to do a good job of leading the country and hopefully make wise and morally right choices for the country. In some general sense, I support every President in the hope that he or she will perform the duties of the office to the best of their abilities, whether I voted for them or not. It should also be remembered that not everyone who voted for President Trump agrees with everything he says and does and only did so extremely reluctantly because they felt he was the best viable choice that might make some decisions that would honour Christ better than others. In the same way, some Christians may have voted for Mrs. Clinton extremely reluctantly only because they felt she might make some decisions that would better honour Christ than others. The same could be said for the other candidates. As I've already said, I'm not going to judge anyone on the basis of their political persuasions alone. Too often this leads to untenable assumptions and mischaracterizations made about people due to my own biases and stereotypes held about any particular political party and that is a large part of our problem in America, I believe.
Though I have voted in every presidential election since I've been old enough to do so, I certainly have not supported everything all the Presidents have done, even for ones that I voted for. For the last two presidencies, I have not voted for the candidate who became President. For the last two elections, I have not voted for the Republican or Democrat candidate (or the Libertarian or Green Party candidate, either for that matter- because there are more than two parties in America). Ultimately, unlike the joking comment Jamie Foxx once made about President Obama at the 2012 Soul Train Awards, my Lord and Saviour is Jesus Christ. I look to Him above any other human being. (Isaiah 2:22) He allows some to be in power and takes them down too. (See Daniel 4) I am eternally grateful that He is eternally in control and He is still on His throne and holding the whole world in His hands, no matter how crazy it gets. I pray for earthly leaders and support the policies I can agree with Biblically and other times I have to submit to ones I disagree with out of greater respect for The Lord and the human authorities He has established. (Romans 13 speaks to this point well.) However, when the policy in question puts me in a place of choosing between following the government or God, as Peter said in Acts 5:29, 'We must obey God rather than men.'
That is all I can do in the end. I stand for Jesus and the things He said to do and I try to let Him work in me more all the time so I can ever be more like Him and be the light of the world He called me to be. I do try to give credit where I can when it's due to any President and I also stand against things that are Biblically morally wrong, even if it is something the President is pushing and promoting. I take advantage of the freedom afforded me to make my views known through peaceful free speech, assembly and petition, freedom of the press and freedom of religion, and through voting in elections. And through it all, I ultimately look to The Lord Christ above all else because I know He is always in control and His kingdom always reigns above all- and I'm glad He is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. I just remember that I've got another King coming. 


For another article to consider about this topic, check out this opinion piece from Rev. Timothy Keller.

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/09/29/opinion/sunday/christians-politics-belief.html