Secular Government - The view from the Bible
1 Timothy 2:1-2 First of all, then, I urge that requests, prayers, intercessions, and thanks be offered on behalf of all people,even for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life in all godliness and dignity.
It is the Christian's duty to influence government, even if only with prayer. When we want to encourage government in a certain direction, we must first ask the questions: "What is government?" and "What is its mission?". Until we have answered these, we will be tossed to and fro upon the waves of media hype and election posturing.
Government as a means of punishment
Romans chapter 13 has few verses on the topic, but true to biblical style, there is very much wisdom to be found. Common sense acknowledges and respects the clarity and simplicity of the Apostle Paul's viewpoint. Romans 13 illustrates the design of secular government.
Romans 13:4b It (government) is God’s servant to administer retribution on the wrongdoer.
In this section covering secular government, we venture into the history of government action as recorded in the Bible. Here, we find that there truly is nothing new under the sun. What has been done before, will be done again. The material is provided to the reader to help him understand political discussions of today. The tricks, deceit and the like can be spotted if one pays attention. Fraud, just and unjust war, coup d'état, murder, intrigue, abuse of power and even socialism are all there for study.
The Apostle Paul made the blanket statement that government holds the power of violence. In God's eyes, the violence is to be used against evil-doers. The Devil, according to his nature, wants the government to punish good-doers and reward evil-doers. Violence in itself is not evil. The question is whether the violence is used to punish wrong-doers, or good-doers.
Every law and policy threatens to punish somebody. The questions are "Who?" and "Has that person done evil?" We can understand and take an educated stance for or against every law depending upon the answer to these two question. Every law punishes someone. Never forget that.
Perversion of government power
We should not be surprised to find that violence against good-doers is not presented as such. Whenever a law or policy is proposed where it is not clearly stated who the punished is and what his crime might be, this is the raised red flag and glaring siren that alert us to mischief. When the public enterprise we call government uses violence in this manner, there must be a diversion of attention away from this theft mechanism via cleaver packaging. The politicians will demand that those who have done no wrong pay to fund programs officially designed to help those who are needy. The needy may be an individual, or a corporation. The politician claims that those against such programs are greedy, evil, and lovers of money. These are bold allegations indeed, but are they justified?
However, the needy allow themselves to be abused as convenient pawns to justify the plundering of tax payers. And once one understands that there is no honor among thieves, we realize that the loot never ends up on the hands of those to whom it was promised to go! Since maximizing the plunder is in view, rich individuals and successful companies are the prime targets. Again, we should not neglect to notice that these programs do not help the needy, but rather keep them dependent on government. It is a modern form of slavery: those who get sucked into welfare schemes rarely escape. And this is by design. Should the needy become self-sufficient, they do not need government; government loses power. The welfare schemes pushed by policy makers make damned sure that none escape.
These sales pitches for taxation against the successful have two parts: first covet the wealth, then steal the wealth. Coveting is the seed that buds into stealing. The politician must only get the voters to lust after the wealth of others, believe that the wealth actually belongs to them. Once this seed has spread its roots, politician must only water the tender plant with greed, and he knows that the loot is his for the taking. At this point he says, "If you support me, I'll help you get his money!" Simple, straight forward, effective. And also evil.
Separation of Church and State
Looking beyond the deceit with the intent of theft, we understand the wisdom of the separation of Church and State. In the same way that the Church should not be punishing wrong-doers by throwing them in prison and extracting fines, the State should not be looking after the poor and downtrodden. God commissioned both, and empowered both with their respective tools, to complete their respective missions. The perversion of using the one for the other results in disaster. Just as the Church is ill suited to warden jail cells, the State is equally ill suited to help the hungry, the sick, etc. The lack of understanding concerning this difference between their respective areas of operation has resulted in destroyed economies and crushed families.
Evil men with evil intentions
Common sense reminds us that there are people who make it their goal to kill, steal and destroy. Their motives, reasons and justifications are immaterial to us. We just know we should watch our six agains schemers. Some of these schemers find their way into public office. These kinds of people are more than willing to destroy a nation to increase their wealth and power.
Psalms 52:2-4 Your tongue carries out your destructive plans; it is as effective as a sharp razor, O deceiver. You love evil more than good, lies more than speaking the truth. You love to use all the words that destroy, and the tongue that deceives.
Proverbs 12:20 Deceit is in the heart of those who plot evil, but those who promote peace have joy.
Proverbs 26:24-26 The one who hates others disguises it with his lips, but he stores up deceit within him. When he speaks graciously, do not believe him, for there are seven abominations within him. Though his hatred may be concealed by deceit, his evil will be uncovered in the assembly.
Remember, dear reader, we live in a real world, with real dangerous. Those who want to make you their slave will not knock on your day and say, "I am here to make you my slave." He will beguile you with sophistries and promise you "health" and "wealth" at the cost of another. You can bet on it. And against this we must guard, against this we must war.
In these writings the reader will often find the phrase aggressive violence, and defensive violence. Aggressive violence is to be understood as violence employed to enforce an exchange of wealth, i.e. to steal. Alternatively, defensive violence is made use of to defend against aggressive violence. So government policy can be viewed as being either aggressively, or defensively violent. This is the decisive factor in determining if a policy as good or evil.