E.B. White in his short metaphorical definition “Democracy” at one point said that “Democracy is the recurrent suspicion that more than half of the people are right more than half of the time.” (I realize that with our electoral college we don’t go by a straight majority, but the “suspicion” that we got it right I think is still there.)
I read a book quite a few years back by Irving Stone called They Also Ran. It looked at nineteen men who were defeated in their bid for the presidency and why they lost even when some of them were the better man. In his Prologue, Irving asks the following questions that he then attempts to answer as he looks at these nineteen candidates:
“How often were the voters discerning, how often dumb? How frequently were they fooled, and how frequently did they go unerringly to the better man? How often did they elect the apparently superior candidate, only to find that the presidency was the one job in the nation that he couldn't handle? How often did they choose the man who was more capable of solving the existing problems, only to have a radical change in the course of history render his particular qualities useless and make the defeated one the ideal executive to handle the new situations?” (vii).
Fortunately, as Christians, though we may not understand God’s reasoning for placing one individual in office rather than another, we have a certainty that the individual is only there by God’s permission as the following verses remind us.
Romans 13:1––“ … there is no authority except from God, and those which exist are established by God.”
Daniel 2:21––"It is He who changes the times and the epochs; He removes kings and establishes kings ….”
Daniel 2:37-38––“You, O king, are the king of kings, to whom the God of heaven has given the kingdom, the power, the strength and the glory ….”
Daniel 4:17––“This sentence is by the decree of the angelic watchers and the decision is a command of the holy ones, In order that the living may know That the Most High is ruler over the realm of mankind, and bestows it on whom He wishes And sets over it the lowliest of men."
John 19:11 Jesus answered, "You would have no authority over Me, unless it had been given you from above ….”
And let me leave you with one more thought as we consider our past and present presidents and our world leaders:
Psalm 27:1––“The Lord is my light and my salvation – whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life – of whom shall I be afraid?””