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This Monday, the state of Georgia begins its early voting for the upcoming midterm elections.
At the forefront of the races is the battle for one of Georgia's two U.S. Senate seats.
The two men at the heart of the race, incumbent Rev. Raphael Warnock and challenger Herschel Walker, couldn't be further apart in all but one category: the importance of their faith.
Yet it would even appear that their faith is at odds, with each man heralding different interpretations of the Bible.
Son of a U.S. World War II Army veteran, Warnock was born in Savannah, Georgia. By contrast, Walker was born and raised in Wrightsville, Georgia, where his parents taught him "faith in God and the small-town values of discipline and sacrifice."
Warnock had been involved in his church's ministries for decades, working as a youth and associate pastor at Abyssinian Baptist Church. Over the years, he would earn a Master of Divinity, Master of Philosophy and Doctor of Philosophy from Union Theological Seminary.
Eventually, Warnock would become the senior pastor at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta. This historic church was pastored by Martin Luther King Jr. and is a spiritual home for many civil rights leaders and a highly respected institution of faith within the Black community.
Walker's faith took him on a different path. He is widely regarded as the greatest college football player of all time. He played for the University of Georgia Bulldogs, where he won the Heisman trophy in 1982. His career in athletics and the immense number of accomplishments that accompanied it led to his being nominated to the President's Council on Sports, Fitness and Nutrition by President Donald Trump.
Now, the two men are locked into an ideological struggle that has captivated the country from coast to coast.
Each has been accused of falling short of biblical principles, from Warnock describing himself as a "pro-choice pastor" and accusations that his church evicted people from the apartments it owns to allegations that Walker offered to pay for an ex-girlfriend's abortion while he claims to be staunchly pro-life and pro-family.
Warnock enjoys the full support of the Biden administration, while Walker is a close personal friend of Trump, supported by Republicans across the country.
What was once a cushy lead for Warnock is now a toss-up. Some Left-leaning polls show Warnock with a clear advantage, while some Right-leaning ones show Walker with a slim lead.
If 2016 taught Americans anything, it is that polls can be very, very wrong.
Enter the Christian vote.
Christian voters across the nation will, more often than not, choose the candidate who backs their biblical principles—if they get involved to vote. At least 25 million registered Christians do not vote, and 15 million believers are not even registered, per My Faith Votes. Should this change and these Christians become actively involved in the society so many believe God had a hand in creating, there would be no shortage of political victories that support biblical values.
For some, the failings of both Warnock and Walker will be a deal breaker; they will not vote for either. But there is no such thing as a perfect candidate; the only one who was perfect died on a cross for the sins of mankind.
With information from organizations such as My Faith Votes, Christians can find helpful insight into candidates who line up with biblical values, those who uplift the name of Jesus and are not afraid to stand up to the crowd who is trying to shout them down.
In the midst of this battle is a spiritual one as well. One question remains: Will Christians have a hand in this critical midterm election? Every state has Christians running for political office, not just Georgia. Who among the elect will stand and glorify God with their vote?
James Lasher is a copy editor for Charisma Media.
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