Congratulations to Sen. Ted Cruz for an upset victory in Iowa last Monday. It's clear evangelicals (and maybe a few charismatics) gave him the 6,000-vote margin he needed. Now he's headed for the New Hampshire primary on Tuesday, where evangelicals make up a much smaller percentage of the vote.
So I'm appealing to my readers in New Hampshire (and to those of you who forward this to your friends in New Hampshire) to make a difference. Even if we have small numbers, if we get motivated and turn out to vote, we can make a difference. You probably know I have endorsed Sen. Ted Cruz, and I urge you to get out the vote for him.
To my friends in New Hampshire: If you're a Spirit-filled Christian, shouldn't you be making your light shine? And aren't you tired of being marginalized and no one taking you seriously? Here's a chance to make a difference!
While it takes more than winning New Hampshire to gain the nomination and presidency, there is a lot to be said about "momentum" in these early voting states. So anything our friends in New Hampshire can do get out the vote for Ted Cruz will be significant. Consider how much momentum Marco Rubio got in Iowa coming in only 1 percentage point behind Donald Trump, who now is acting spoiled. If you missed Dr. Michael Brown's insightful commentary about Trump, read it here.
An evangelical friend told me Pentecostals/charismatics usually have a "tin ear" when it comes to politics. He said we're usually on the sidelines and don't seem to understand the political dynamic or how a few votes and momentum can make a huge difference. But maybe that is beginning to change. My longtime friend, Rev. Canon Mark A. Pearson, a frequent contributor to Charisma magazine, is a case in point. He's gotten very active in the Ted Cruz campaign and spoke as his surrogate last Wednesday night in a meeting where several of the candidates actually spoke at the same meeting. We published his remarks here.
Statistically, New Hampshire is only .0042 percent of the U.S. population. Of that, only 13 percent are evangelical Christians. Conservatives and Christians don't dominate elections in the Granite State. But in close elections, we can make a difference because while the numbers may be small, "each has an average of 300 contacts on his or her cellphone." If we use our networks, the numbers can be huge.
Pearson, who has become a sort of activist in New Hampshire for Cruz, put it this way: "He who rules over man justly who rules in the fear of God" (2 Sam. 23:3, MEV). And of course, we remember the verse from 2 Chronicles 7:14: "If My people ..."
Pearson believes Cruz is the only one who has a chance to beat Donald Trump. "So we have a responsibility not just to elect a person who would rule in the fear of God but we must be that God-fearing people ourselves," he says. "We exercise that responsibility, in among other ways, by voting for a godly person."
What happens in New Hampshire influences the rest of the race for nomination in the Republican Party. Spirit-filled Christians are not many on the ground in New Hampshire, but we have an incredibly disproportionate influence on who the next president will be.
Estimates are 40-55 million Bible-believing Christians stayed home last election. We are watchmen on the wall. We must not fall asleep this time.
Many candidates are dropping out right now. The mainstream candidates (Jeb Bush, John Kasich, and Chris Christie) may have good numbers in New Hampshire because it's more "moderate" than other states. But these candidates do not poll well in other states. So the nomination will probably come down to Trump (who is way ahead in New Hampshire), Cruz and Rubio.
In addition, a fourth candidate (the standard bearer of the mainstream party) may emerge, but it's not sure who that will be.
While Christians cannot speak of the faith of the unknown fourth candidate, we can speak of the Christian faith of the first three.
Pearson had this response to the faith of those in the New Hampshire primary:
"Trump. Really? By their fruits you shall know them. I don't have to bash Trump for you to know his lifestyle, his past record of supporting liberal causes and candidates, and the way he spouts off in a most un-Christlike way.
"Rubio is a good man," Pearson told me. "He's a strong believer. He gives honor to Jesus publicly (and I think sincerely), but he bounces around, splitting his allegiance/attendance between RC and evangelical.
Continues Pearson: "Ted Cruz is by far and most clearly the most dedicated believer in the race. Also, it's not just what is he saying (which is important) but what he been saying and doing.
"Cruz is unquestionably pro-life. Has said many times he will open an investigation into the allegations against Planned Parenthood people to see if crimes were committed and if there's enough evidence, he will move to indict.
"He will not just support bills that are pro-life, he will push for them.
"The next president will name one to three Supreme Court justices, and Ted's litmus tests include pro-life from conception.
"Ted strongly states that marriage is between one man and one woman.
"He will instruct all agencies to stop the harassment of individuals and groups based on their religious convictions. The IRS (which he hopes to abolish) will stop targeting faith-based groups.
"He will move the embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem."
The question remains: What momentum will come out of New Hampshire? I believe a strong showing by Cruz will improve his chances. I urge my readers in New Hampshire to support Ted Cruz. And if we forward this to our New Hampshire friends or put this on social media, we make a small but important shift in Cruz's direction.