Foundations What the Bible says about government
Given to Moses to establish a system of rules for God’s people
The old testament traces the development of the government and the history of Israel
Shows both the good and the bad with the responses of the people and God’s expectations
Used to support medieval beliefs in a “divine right of kings”
The New Testament
Jesus speaks to a citizen’s obligation to their government – even a secular one
Sets an example of appeal to governing officials
Why do we have government?
student gov. at BCA
Town meeting organization
Anytime humans have grown numerous, governments have formed….
What functions do they serve
God established and to govern over his dominion & Eve as hi helper in the task
How does the environmental movement fit in with this? We are supposed to take care of things.
This can be modeled in any form of human government – leaders to organize, and those who work to make things happen.
Human nature tends towards destruction & disobedience
Government protects us from ourselves
Anarchy (an absence of gov’t) >>> Chaos
Attempts through history have been tragic and short
“if people were angels no government would be needed” J. Madison
What is the gov’t supposed to do?
Assist mankind in working towards the creation mandate
Solomon, Paul, and the kings of Israel speak to this
Failure to do so leads to a collapse of gov’t
Solomon, Paul, and history apply here too…
Protects from within& without
Speaking of Righteousness
What is it?
Conformity to a standard
Just government establishes a moral code which reflects God’s character
Does this mean Theocracy
Theocracy – gov’t ruled directly by God or the clergy
Responsibilities of the Governed
Obedience – doing what authority commands
Serving jury duty
Submission – Recognizing authority with an attitude of respect
This applies not just to good & just governments
1 Peter 2:13-17
So what do we do about ungodly governments?
David- refused to kill Saul when given the opportunity – waited on God’s time
Paul – worked within the Roman legal system
When commanded to the directly disobey the Bible, the ultimate submission is to God
Interactions with the gov’t
Does this mean we don’t try to change the gov’t?
A government can’t be expected to follow God’s law if there are no godly people involved
In the US – the government – the people
Voting, being educated, voicing opinions, supporting candidates, becoming candidates
Be contributing citizens, not just critics
Patriotism vs. Jingoism
Love & devotion to one’s country
Shared language, ideology, location, or experience can create it
Has been given a bad name by action taken by various individuals & groups
Looking out for yourself by looking out for your country
The hatred of other countries disguised as love of our own
Unquestioning support for the state
Whatever is advantageous to one’s country is just
The dark side of patriotism
How do we differentiate?
CHRISTIAN BEGINNINGS IN AMERICA
Christian influences in culture & politics
Think of some examples of this influence in our politics and national symbolisms.