What Qualities Would We Want In The Perfect President?

What if this country could have the perfect President? What would that person be like? What qualities would he or she need to be the best President this nation has ever seen?

He or she would first of all need to be experienced and extremely wise. This person would need to be a powerful leader, strong and capable, one who could look into the future and know what would be best for every person in our nation. He or she would be able to stride through the halls of power, yet feel deeply for the the poor, the elderly, and the single mom trying to make ends meet. We would want an incorruptible president, one who was morally pure and upright. We would want someone who genuinely cared about us. We’d also want a President who we could come to and would listen to our requests.

Unfortunately, there is not a single human being on earth who would meet all those qualifications. But there is a perfect leader. There is someone in the position of absolute power who is infinitely wise, perfectly good, is in control of history itself, yet cares deeply about our needs. And this person invites us to come to him every day, moment by moment and bring our cares and desires to him. He is never to busy to see us; we don’t need to make a special appointment to meet with him for 10 minutes. We can come to him a hundred times a day if we want to. And even when we aren’t speaking with him, he is watching over us, protecting us from a thousand enemies, and directing the events of our lives for our well-being.

Jesus Christ embodies all we are looking for in the perfect leader:

Would you have your Savior to be great and honorable, because you are not willing to be beholden to [an unworthy] person? And is not Christ a person honourable enough to be worthy that you should be dependent on him; is he not a person high enough to be appointed to so honourable a work as your salvation? Would you not only have a Savior of high degree, but would you have him, notwithstanding his exaltation and dignity, to be made also of low degree, that he might have experience of afflictions and trials, that he might learn by the things that he has suffered, to pity them that suffer and are tempted?…

Would you have your Savior to be one who is near to God, so that his mediation might be prevalent with him? And can you desire him to be nearer to God than Christ is, who is his only-begotten Son, of the same essence with the Father? And would you not only have him near to God, but also near to you, that you may have free access to him? And would you have him nearer to you than to be in the same nature, united to you by a spiritual union, so close as to be fitly represented by the union of the wife to the husband, of the branch to the vine, of the member to the head; yea, so as to be one spirit? What is there wanting or what would you add if you could, to make him more fit to be your Savior?

— Jonathan Edwards, quoted by John Ensor in The Great Work of the Gospel

It seems these days that so many hang their hopes on a human being. If only we could get the right President then we would have hope. Well, we are never going to have a President who is the kind of leader we would all wish for. Every President we have ever had has been flawed and had many weaknesses. Every single President this nation has had has been a mere human being and a sinner. Don’t hang your hopes on a human being. Yes, the Bible tells us we should pray for our leaders, and I try to do that regularly. But there is only One who is infinitely great, honorable, and worthy of trusting with our lives. Only One who is almighty yet acquainted with suffering, who can relate to our struggles and temptations. Only One who is near to God and near to us at the same time. Only One who is God and man, and a perfect Mediator between the Father and his children, our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

Not only do we have the perfect King, the ultimate Leader, the One who is in control of all history, but he is our personal Shepherd.

Our human President can’t possibly be involved in each of our lives, but as David says in Psalm 23, “The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want.” The Lord Jesus Christ is my personal shepherd. He leads, guides, protects, and tends me. He is personally and intimately interested in my well-being. First of all, he left his throne in heaven, and became a human being, like me, and experienced every temptation I will ever experience, yet he never sinned. Then he suffered torture and mockery and poured out his blood for me on the cross to pay for my sins. No human President has ever done anything like that for anyone.

And Jesus rose from the dead, proving that God had accepted his sacrifice for sins. And he ascended into heaven where he reigns as King of Kings and Lord of Lords. The perfect Ruler of the Universe.

And Jesus came after me when I was living in sin and filth and darkness, and drew me to himself, and gave me faith to believe in him. And through Jesus’ work, God adopted me as his very own son and made me one with Christ. I am one with the Shepherd of my soul. I can abide in him. I have access to my Shepherd 24 hours a day. And unlike any human leader, Jesus can fill me with joy and peace. He promises to never leave nor forsake me. I can trust him like no one else. He promises that nothing can or will ever separate me from his love. And my Shepherd knows exactly what I need, and the perfect timing to give it to me.

We will never have a perfect President, so I would encourage you not to look to any man for hope, but look to Jesus Christ. If you have never called upon him to save you and wash your sins away, and give you new life, do so today. And you too can have a true and lasting hope.

Mark Altrogge

I’m a pastor at Saving Grace Church in Indiana, PA. I’m married to Kristi, have 5 kids, and a growing number of grandkids. I enjoy songwriting, oil painting and coffee, not necessarily in that order.