Teaching Kids About the Presidential Inauguration
In the United States of America, we are about to inaugurate a new president into office. The word president means “the elected head of republican state,” and it is a word that ought to command the respect and honor of the people. “President” is a title that our country has bestowed upon 44, soon to be 45, leaders. For parents, it is particularly important that we teach our kids about the history of the inauguration, the importance of the peaceful transfer of leadership that it represents, the biblical principles that underlie our submission to the authorities placed above us, and the ways we can do God’s work in that submission.
THE BASIC FACTS ABOUT THE INAUGURATION
What is the presidential inauguration time? The 2017 United States Presidential Inauguration will begin at 6:00 AM PST on Friday, January 20th, with the official proceedings actually beginning around noon.
Who swears in the President of the United States at the presidential inauguration? The chief justice of the supreme court swears in the president, which means that Chief Justice John Roberts will have the responsibility of swearing in President-Elect Trump this Friday.
Where was the first presidential inauguration held? The first presidential inauguration was held on the second floor balcony of Federal Hall with a crowd gathered in the streets below to witness that moment in history. For George Washington’s second term, the ceremony was held at Congress Hall in Philadelphia, PA.
Where is the president inaugurated? Since Washington D.C. became the nation’s capital in 1790, the ceremonies have been held in the city—with most of them taking place at the Capitol Building. Donald J. Trump will be sworn in on the West Front of the U.S. Capitol.
What does the presidential inauguration mean? The presidential inauguration means that the presidential power is transferred from one president to the next. This transfer is symbolically represented through the swearing in ceremony.
What is the oath that the president takes?
I, [name], do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me God.
THE BIBLICAL PERSPECTIVE
With this upcoming presidential inauguration, we see a very strong force using tactics to discredit and disrespect our established system. We see people starting violent riots that last for weeks. We hear people yelling, “not our president.” What we don’t see or hear is a nation respecting the system. Respecting the elect, respecting authority chosen by the people of our country.
Due to the prominence of this unwillingness to submit to our system of government, it is all the more important to discuss these issues with our kids, teaching them to interact with authority in the way that the Bible teaches. Paul instructs us on this matter:
Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God.
Consequently, whoever rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves. —Romans 13:1–2
Just because God has established the rulers of this world does not mean they will act according to his kingdom—and Paul makes no exception to the fact that we should submit to them. The government, leaders of this world, and governmental systems are God’s plan for humanity. God removes kings and establishes kings, and so, every governmental leader is established by God. We are to submit to these governmental authorities as a reverence to God that this is His plan. As followers of the Lord, when we submit, we are saying that the government is God’s plan and there is no authority except from God and those, which are established by God.
HOW WE CAN FOLLOW GOD WHILE HONORING OUR PRESIDENT
Regardless of how much we may like or dislike President-Elect Trump or his actions after this presidential inauguration, he is just a man, and he will not be perfect. This reality can lead us into worshiping the true king, King Jesus, who is perfect. He is our advocate, our example, our ultimate hope.
“Remember—our only Savior and hope is Jesus, not our president, party, or political platforms.”
—Pastor Jonathan Alexander
As we swear in imperfect leadership once again at the 2017 presidential inauguration, remind your children in whom we really trust and take the time to celebrate King Jesus together. Celebrate that He will return and make the world as it was meant to be.
Since we know that God is in control, and we have the assurance that He will return to set the world right, we get to pray for God to bring heaven to earth. We get to pray that His hand would guide our leaders to lead wisely to the glory of God.
“Knowing that God is in control and His will cannot be thwarted, we can pray for our leaders with wisdom and hope—even when we do not agree with their policies.”
—Dr. David Jeremiah
The confidence and rest we have in Christ Jesus—no matter who is leading us—is one more thing that can set us apart as Christians. Prayer is one way we act out our faith in Christ.
The presidential inauguration isn’t the only time your kids need to learn to interact in the world as Christ would have them interact. Enlightium Academy is a fully accredited online Christian school with a curriculum that teaches every subject area from a biblical worldview and provides attentive teacher support from qualified, Christian teachers. If you're interested in learning more, click on the link below.