By Stephen Carrier, missionary to Chile
Chile has been undergoing several changes recently. Between the Covid rollercoaster and a new referendum on their constitution, it’s been quite the year to be a Chilean. Just this past week, Chilean citizens headed to the polls to nominate those who will be drafting their new constitution.
There was a depressed turnout for this vote, as several right-wingers are a bit disillusioned with their political leaders, and several Chileans seemed to be okay with the constitution being rewritten, regardless of who is doing the writing. For these reasons, left-leaning independents and liberals ended up winning a large majority of the nominations to draft the constitution.
Since no political group won an outright majority, there will need to be concessions and exchanges made as the drafting process takes place. However, it seems clear that the constitution will take a much more leftward approach than the previous one, especially regarding social programs. While some are hoping for great things to come out of the process, others are worried that Chile may have gotten more than it bargained for when it voted to change the constitution.
It’s somewhat reminiscent of a familiar story in the Bible found in I Samuel. The Israelites, who had been ruled by God, wanted a king to lead them into battle. They wanted to be like the heathen nations around them in this regard, and while they thought they knew what they wanted, they didn’t know what they were getting into. Samuel tried to warn them that the grass was not greener on the other side and that this king would not turn out to be this wonderful leader they were expecting. Indeed, once King Saul took the throne, he was proven right. All was well at first, but it didn’t take too long for the cracks to begin to show.
In the same way, Chile may have decided it wanted one thing and isn’t realizing it’s getting another. However it works out, though, God is still in control. Perhaps one of the greatest things about the reign of Saul is reading of another young man that God was preparing for the kingdom–David. Where there’s a Saul, there will ultimately be a David. And, just as God raised up a David in Israel, so He will still be raising up Davids in Chile to show them Jesus Christ, the One Who can save their souls and Who will set up an everlasting kingdom based, not on a constitution written by man, but on His very own Word.