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The beheading of self-government

The revolutionary concept of God, man and the American political experiment is based on the principle in Genesis that man is “made in His image and likeness.” Apart from that concept, the whole idea of the form of government we embrace, a democratic republic, comes apart at the seams.

Our form of government was designed by the Founding Fathers to ensure that the citizens exercised their God-given right to be responsible to, and for, themselves. It was not God’s plan that mankind should be subjugated to any ruler other than himself and God.

The second president of the United States, John Adams, pointed out the basic flaw in our constitutional form of government: “Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”

How far away we have come from the principles of civility and self-government that brought upon our nation the blessings of the Creator. We see elected officials bluntly refusing to follow the laws of the land. We are experiencing the radicalization of our views and perspectives. And last week, we witnessed, in one of the biggest news stories lately, comedian Kathy Griffin’s appalling lack of decency and self-government. Beheading another human being is never funny.

What in the world do we think is ahead for us, as a nation, if we continue to defy God and every good and decent principle necessary to sustain a civilized citizenry? The whole spiritual and civil form of government envisioned by God and embodied in America by the Founding Fathers is predicated upon the truth that man is a self-governing sovereign.

Understand that government was not one of man’s original life duties. A tithe of 10 percent was set aside to God in recognition of His sovereign governing of man. This was not a dictatorship, as evidenced in God’s relationship to Adam in the Garden of Eden. Had this been a dictatorship, the cherubims, which “He placed at the east of the garden of Eden … and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life” would have been placed there prior to the original command.

Inherent in God’s command regarding the “tree of the knowledge of good and evil” is the concept that man should be self-governing. He is to make decisions, sovereign decisions, based on his moral understanding of God’s law. This truth is as much a part of the concept of America now as it was in the days of our Founding Fathers and can be traced back through God’s dealing with man in the garden.

Governments, as noted in the Declaration of Independence, were instituted to secure and defend the rights given to us by the Creator, God the Father. A cursory examination of other forms of government, including monarchies, oligarchies, dictatorships and even pure democracies dramatically illustrate the failure of these types of governments to secure the rights and property of subjects.

It is only a government such as ours, a republic, that takes into consideration God’s design of man and incorporates that into an exercise of our free will to ensure that the government is, as Lincoln said, “of the people, for the people, by the people.”

God’s version of government and his confidence in man is expressed in his option to choose either the forms of government as before the flood, of the Egyptians, of the nations around them or even a king of their own choosing. Each form of government was a rejection of God as the ruler, and their subjugation of themselves to other than God as their Sovereign.

Man is designed by God to be a self-governing sovereign, responsible only to himself and God. Any government he chooses should, in order to fulfill God’s plan, be a government that takes that truth into consideration. This is the genius and the strength of our American republic.

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