Introduction: Nations are most often defined by the type of governments they have, for the type of government usually reflects the nature of the people of that nation.
According to Romans 13:1 government, has been established by God. Here’s what it says, “Let every soul be subject to the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.”
Romans 13:3-4 give us the purpose of government, “For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? Do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same:” “For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.”
In other words, God has established government to execute justice among the people. As we choose to govern ourselves, or restrain the natural tendencies of the flesh to sin, we require less government control of our personal lives. As we ease the restrictions we place on ourselves, more government control is required to restrain our evil tendencies in order that justice may reign.
With this in mind, let’s look at some of the types of governments.
Types of Governments
Governments can be classified into several types. Some of the more common types of governments are:
The word “democracy” literally means, “rule by the people.” In a democracy, the people govern.
A literal democracy is impossible in a political system containing more than a few people. All “democracies” are really republics. In a republic, the people elect representatives to make and enforce laws.
A monarchy consists of rule by a king or queen. Sometimes a king is called an “emperor,” especially if there is a large empire, such as China before 1911. There are no large monarchies today. The United Kingdom, which has a queen, is really a republic because the queen has virtually no political power.
An aristocracy is rule by the aristocrats. Aristocrats are typically wealthy, educated people. Many monarchies have really been ruled by aristocrats. Today, typically, the term “aristocracy” is used negatively to accuse a republic of being dominated by rich people, such as saying, “The United States has become an aristocracy.”
A dictatorship consists of rule by one person or a group of people. Very few dictators admit they are dictators; they almost always claim to be leaders of democracies. The dictator may be one person, such as Castro in Cuba or Hitler in Germany, or a group of people, such as the Communist Party in China.
6. Democratic Republic
Usually, a “democratic republic” is not democratic and is not a republic. A government that officially calls itself a “democratic republic” is usually a dictatorship. Communist dictatorships have been especially prone to use this term. For example, the official name of North Vietnam was “The Democratic Republic of Vietnam.” China uses a variant, “The People’s Republic of China.”
So then, a barbaric people will most often be governed by a totalitarian type government such as a dictatorship; while a righteous people will often be allowed to enjoy the liberty of living under a democratic type of government.
Understanding the nature of man and the purpose of government will help us to understand the observations we’re about to make; and to arrive at the right conclusions concerning our own nation, America – where it is headed, why this is so, and what must be done if liberty is to be kept.
Psalm 33:12a says, “Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord…”
What is the significance of this verse, more than just being rhetorical words honoring the Lord?
Well, God is the Designer and Manufacturer of all things, including people; and of the guidelines by which they are intended to operate.
Following the Manufacturer’s prescribed guidelines of operation will ensure smooth, efficient interaction, with the least friction among operational parts…in our case, among people.
God has recorded His guidelines in His owner’s manual, the Bible.
These guidelines are the commandments (or laws) and principles contained in the Bible.
As we read and study these laws and principles, and choose to pattern our personal attitudes and actions after them, we require less external governance, because we have chosen to govern ourselves internally; and can be entrusted with greater external liberty.
If, however, we choose to reject these laws and principles that were designed for the greater good of all; and instead choose to pursue a self-centered agenda, this will always result in harm to those around us, and we will require greater external governance in order to restrain our sinful pursuits.
This abandonment of biblical standards of conduct will move us toward a more tyrannical type of government and nation.
All individuals and nations have gods. These gods range from a false, imaginary god such as Allah, to materialism, to pleasure, to leisure, to the real one and only true God.
The God/god that we choose, then, will determine the lifestyle we pursue; and, in turn, will determine the type government we will operate under.
This is one of the primary principles of nation building. But let’s look at some of the other observations in our scripture today.
1.Psalm 33:14 informs us that God observes all peoples from His place of habitation. None are exempt from His active observation for the purpose of establishing His purposes among them.
2.Psalm 33:15 informs us that He fashions their hearts alike, and that He considers everyone’s works. No one escapes God’s scrutiny of the way he conducts himself. This applies to individuals and to nations.
3.Psalm 33:16 – 19 inform us of some common mistakes leaders and nations make in trying to protect and preserve themselves.
A. Verse 16a lets us know that there is no king that is ever saved by the number of his army, or the number of his subjects (size of his labor force).
B. It is not the size of his military or his work force that protects him, or delivers him from his enemy or from natural disasters.
C. Verse 16b tells us that a mighty man is not delivered by his power. This would apply to an individual, or to a leader with great political power.
D. His power to control or influence is limited, regardless how great his power may appear to be.
E. Regardless how great his power appears to be, he is really much more vulnerable than his power would seem to indicate.
F. Verse 17 gives us another common mistake made by leaders and nations.
G. It says that safety is not guaranteed by a horse; or, in our case, our equipment or military hardware.
H. Verse 19 hints at another vain source that leaders and nations often depend upon for protection: “…to keep them alive in famine.” – natural resources.
I. America is a nation rich in natural resources. We are literally awash in natural resources.
J. We have great sources of fresh water – rivers, streams, and lakes.
K. We have vast rich farmlands to produce crops and livestock.
L. We have vast mineral reserves such as natural gas, oil, and coal.
M. We have woodlands and mountains.
N. We are bordered on the east and on the west by the Atlantic and Pacific oceans, giving us great natural defenses against attack by our enemies.
O. Yet, these cannot “…keep them [us] alive in famine.”
P. So, some of the resources that leaders and nations commonly rely on for defense and deliverance are: vast militaries, vast labor forces, political power, equipment or military arms, and natural resources.
Q. We’re told, though, that all of these resources are unreliable when it comes to defending ourselves; or delivering ourselves from enemies, or from famine or pestilence.
4.Verse 20 gives us the One and only true Source of deliverance and defense (help and safety) that we can rely on – God.
5.Verse 21 tells us that we will rejoice in the Lord; not just in His presence; but also in the protection and preservation He provides for those who choose to place their trust in Him instead of the resources He provides.
6.Verse 22 informs us that God’s mercy to protect, provide, and preserve us is apportioned to us according as (in proportion to the degree) we hope in Him.
In nation building a people must choose the core code or creed that will form the foundational basis of their purpose and course.
In establishing their code or creed, they have, in fact, established their God/god.
A code of conduct cannot be detached from the God/god Whose/whose authority establishes it.
Establishing the code or creed to which all agree to be adherents, will then often determine which form of government a people will operate under.
The more personal license the individuals take; the greater degree of tyranny they require in order to restrain their personal ambitions, so that the greater good can be achieved.
Thus, a licentious people will usually be governed by some form of tyrannical government, such as a monarchy or dictatorship.
When a people refuses to select a common code or creed unto which all become adherents, they must of necessity be governed by strict tyranny because of their refusal to commit themselves to any self-governance.
Choosing the true God to be God in our nation, or in any nation, will do two important things:
1.It will cause us to adopt His commandments and principles as our code of conduct.
2.It will secure His personal protection, provision, and preservation.
First, the commandments and principles of God in the Bible have been designed to promote justice and blessing to every individual, regardless of station or status. Adopting these commandments and principles, causes a nation to have a built in system of equity and justice.
Second, when we commit ourselves to be bound by them, God Himself adds His personal divine protection, provision, and preservation to us. When we choose Him as our Authority, He adds His benefits as well.
But what about religious pluralism and multiculturalism that we hear so much about today; how does that work?
Religious Pluralism – def. a term used to describe the acceptance of all religious paths as equally valid, promoting coexistence
Multiculturalism – def. multiculturalism advocates a society that extends equitable status to distinct cultural and religious groups, with no one culture predominating.
Notice the terms “equally valid” and ‘equitable status’.
These terms mean that people with opposing and competing religious beliefs and cultural practices, must not only be granted equal status themselves, but that equal status and validity must also be granted to their religious beliefs and cultural practices.
This, of course, is not a feasible philosophy to adopt if national cohesiveness is sought. It would, instead, splinter the nation into multiple factions, with each one vying for control.
Competing people groups within a nation, being granted equal status and validity, will never peacefully coexist. They will continue to compete for dominance until one wins.
Now, let’s talk about America!
When the founders of America chose in her establishment, to become a nation governed by the laws of God, a common code was established to which all have agreed to adhere.
Henry Blackstone in the Blackstone Commentary on law, speaking of God stated, “For he has so intimately connected, so inseparably interwoven the laws of eternal justice with the happiness of each individual, that the latter cannot be attained but by observing the former; and, if the former be punctually obeyed, it cannot but induce the latter.”
The second paragraph of The Declaration of Independence reflects this very principle in America’s founding document. Here’s how it begins:
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness…”
Thus, America was established on the common commitment of its people to be governed by “…the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God…” (Declaration of Independence)
Choosing then, the Bible as the authority by which our laws would be fashioned; and the God of the Bible as the Authority to which we as a people would submit, America chose the true God as her God.
All who came to her shores to be participants in this great experiment of “…government of the people, by the people, for the people…” (Gettysburg Address – President Abraham Lincoln), regardless of their religious affiliation, agreed to be governed by the laws enacted by the government of the United States that were based in and upon “…the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God…” (Declaration of Independence)
To the degree they adhered to this code, America grew stronger and stronger, and greater and greater as a people submitted to the governance of the one true God, though individuals may have differed in their religious adherences.
But, when personal liberty bounded by the laws of God begins to be rejected for personal liberty outside the bounds of the laws of God; or, when the laws of God are diminished to equal status with the laws of competing gods; the glue of common devotion to a single core creed is splintered, and the foundational underpinnings of a nation begin to crumble.
Such is the case with America today.
When personal liberty and license is elevated above the common good, anarchy is established. The only antidote for anarchy is increased governmental control; in other words, a move toward totalitarianism.
John Adams wrote: “… Because we have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion. Avarice, ambition, revenge or gallantry, would break the strongest cords of our Constitution as a whale goes through a net. Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”
Sadly, America is much farther along the course to tyranny than almost anyone is aware of or willing to admit.
Sadly, she is willingly giving herself to tyranny. Thinking she is achieving greater personal liberty, she is in fact, well on the way to losing all personal liberty.
As self-governance (personal restraint) dissipates, greater external governance is required; meaning greater governmental control is on the way.
Likewise, as competing religions (including atheism) demand equal status and validity with America’s God and America’s law, and if America capitulates to their demands, she will be departing from the true God, and will eventually be subjugated by men who serve idols.
America is a nation made up of people from diverse backgrounds, and with diverse religious beliefs and practices.
What about those who hold opposing or competing religious views; who say they just cannot accept living by the laws of America and America’s God; and who demand that America accept their creed and god as equally valid with equal status?
While reasonable accommodations are being made for minority religions, America must not allow her core code and creed to be diminished and relegated to equal status and validity with competing religions.
In other words, America must not allow her God to be relegated to equal status with…say, Allah.
If this happens, and it appears that it is, then accommodation will lead to capitulation which will lead to subjugation.
Let them find or start a nation with laws they agree with; but do not allow them to cause us to surrender our national standard to theirs.
Is there hope for America? What is the solution to what is happening in America today?
Since a nation’s only source of blessing, protection, provision, and preservation is a common commitment to submit to the authority of the one and only true God Who expresses His will in the commandments and principles of His Book, the Bible, America’s only hope is to return enmasse to the true and living God as her God.
This then, requires a spiritual solution because the problem is, at its root, a spiritual problem.
We will not have a political or social solution to this problem.
It will only be when Christians in America realize the height from which they have fallen in their devotion to God, and repent, and return to faithful allegiance to Him and to His Word, that America, as a people, will be able to see the way back from the brink of tyranny.
We Christians then, as personal representatives of God Almighty, who alone are capable of seeing the danger and understanding the solution, must step up to the rescue of our nation by personally repenting of our sin and backsliding; and then return to doing the first works; lest our nation slip into unrecoverable loss of liberty…lest our nation of freedom become a nation governed by oppression.
II Chronicles 7:14 says, “If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.”
Satan is actively involved in silencing the voice of opposition to what he is trying to accomplish. That’s why socialists and social engineers have been given overwhelming control of our elected national offices and persecution against Christians and Christian voices has been on a dramatic rise.
Sadly, “You ain’t seen nothin’ yet.” These radical social engineers are rapidly transforming our once free and great society into one that is the antithesis of what our founding fathers envisioned and established. By slick rhetoric and lies they deceive the hearts of the simple into remaining silent, and even into continuing to vote them back into office.
But again, we will not win this war in the courts, or even in the Congress or the White House. It can only be won in the hearts of men and women by a spiritual renewal, spurred by a genuine national revival among those who genuinely belong to the God of the Bible.
So, the question to each American, and especially the Christian American, is to what degree are you willing to see your country destroyed; to see your children grow up without the freedom that you have enjoyed; just in order to hold on to the personal sin you protect?
Will you repent of your personal dereliction of duty to God and to your country; and will you return to the God you have slowly but surely abandoned, and re-surrender your will to His right now?