Many would expect the voting decision of a Christian to be informed by immigration, national security, support for Israel and national debt, but David Jeremiah, pastor of California's Shadow Mountain Community Church, says there's something far more important that he will base his choice of who to vote for president on.
"While all of these issues are important and will continue to be the talking points of both candidates, I have not determined for whom I will vote based upon any one of these things or even all of them together," the pastor of the El Cajon megachurch said in his address during the July 4th weekend.
It's an "election that is pulling at the very soul of our nation," the New York Times bestselling author continued. "I believe this election is first and foremost about the candidate who will make the best appointments to the Supreme Court."
Jeremiah, founder of the Turning Point ministry, explained, "That such a statement should be made tells us that something has gone seriously wrong. While both the executive and legislative branches of our government limits the number of years they can serve, under the U.S. Constitution the Justices of the Supreme Court serve for life…no justice has ever been removed by impeachment."
Justices who do not embrace an originalist interpretation are like those who do not adhere to the divine inspiration of the Bible, he stressed, and went on to say that America is "now facing a judicial time bomb the likes of which we have never seen before."
"So what is before us now is not about one election. It's about the heart and soul of our nation," he continued. "We are a nation of laws, not a nation of dictators, but rest assured these Supreme Court Justices who sit on the bench for life wield more power than most of the kings and dictators in this world. In just 128 days we will elect the 45th president of the United States of America, and that President will appoint at least two, and possibly as many as four, justices. My decision – your decision – will affect our nation in ways that are more profound than any of us can imagine. That is why I must vote. That is why you must vote. It is your Christian responsibility. It is your American responsibility."
Jeremiah added that many Christians decide not to cast their votes because they do not like either of the two candidates, and in this election, the presumptive Republican and Democratic presidential nominees are Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, respectively.
"We should know better. We tried this approach in 2012 when 25 million evangelicals – who were registered to vote – did not take the time to do it...The difference in the 2012 popular vote was less than 5 million votes, and 25 million evangelicals refused to go to the polls," he said, urging all Christians to go to the polls.
"The evangelical voting block is one of the largest – if not the largest – voting blocks in this country, but what difference does it make if those who are a part of that block never choose to go to the polls? When you vote in this year's election you are not voting for someone who will serve as president for four or eight years, you are voting for someone whose Supreme Court decisions will affect us for decades to come. You must decide who you think will appoint the best Justices for the Supreme Court, and then whatever else you may think of that person, you must vote. Donna and I have made our decision. If you care about the freedoms we celebrate today, you must make yours."