PATHWAYS OF GOVERNMENT AND POWER
In our time, two previously straight pathways are taking dramatic turns — the pathways of Government and Power.
THE PATHWAY OF GOVERNMENT
The section of this Pathway upon which we have walked these passed decades is marked “Nation-State.” This is a system of government whereby the largest denomination of government is in the form of nations. While it is true that borders may shift as the result of local squabbles, or the names of some nations may change with regimes, this basic geographic “unit of measure” has been immutable for almost a millennia.
We are now witnessing a fundamental change in the way geography is denominated. When this metamorphosis is complete, the face of the world will be quite different.
The Pathway of Government is transforming from the nation-state system to world governance. World leaders increasingly view national sovereignty as an obstacle to universal peace and prosperity. This dream of peace coupled with the planetary scope of so many problems is necessitating this transformation. We will now examine how change may be the final turn in the path which leads us to the final form of world government described in the Bible.
WESTERN CIVILIZATION 101
Before we begin discussing the fall of the nation-state system, let’s examine it’s rise.
The Roman Empire came into being through conquest and integration of tribes, city-states, and peoples and the centralization of power. That power and control eventually became over extended. Between the fourth and fifth centuries A.D., the Empire collapsed under the onslaught of fierce Germanic tribes from the north. This was the end of European central government.
Europe was subsequently governed by countless local Germanic kings and feudal lords. These kings were relatively weak and their power was limited to the borders of their own estates. Kings extended their influence by persuading other feudal lords to pledged allegiance and military support to them. Many of these lords were militarily stronger than the king himself, which created a very volatile atmosphere.
Power dramatically shifted from this diverse network of “feudal allegiance” to a strong central monarchy after the Crusades (1095-1291). Many of the feudal lords had died in combat. It was also at this time that kings gained access to gunpowder and could breach the walls of an errant lords realm. The emerging merchant class supported the king because they were very anxious to see central control over a geographically expanded realm so that their property and trade routes would be protected.
By the 16-17th centuries, these absolute monarchs became a mystical symbol of national identity. Occasionally, the king became the symbol of a people who had a common language, history, customs and body of law. More often, he became the rallying point of ethnically diverse peoples who were geographically related and who shared a common vision of the future. Ethnic differences were put aside as people gained pride in their new national identity represented by the king.
This was the evolution of the nation-state. It is hard for those of us who have grown up during it hey-day to imagine any other system.
THE RECONSTITUTION OF GOVERNMENTS
Ethnic, religious and cultural allegiance is on the rise. There is a significant misalignment between “we the people” and national boarders. Politically drawn borders have been more the rule than the exception: “Of the countries round the world, rather few are neatly filled by single nations. Japan, yes, and France too…But for the most part countries and nations are a mismatch: millions of Hungarians outside Hungary, millions of Chinese outside China (or Taiwan), a million Turks inside Bulgaria, millions of Irish in the United Kingdom. Some countries, such as India, Nigeria and Yugoslavia, contain a wonderfully diverse cocktail of nations. And some nations — the Basques, the Kurds, the Palestinians and the Cree Indians — have no country at all.
“None of this would matter but for nationalism. But nationalism…is an enduring phenomenon, and one that looks more enduring than the map of the world as it is drawn in the late twentieth century. Most of the countries on that map owe their shape to the collapse of the Ottoman, Hapsburg, French and British empires. Fueled by the fires of self-determination, and made economically self-confident by the prospect of regional co-operation, lots of those countries look set to break up again.”4
In a prescient article in the 6/24/90 New York Times, it was stated that we are “…in an era when nationalisms are fragmenting rather than enlarging geographical domains. But a process, however tenuous and exploratory, of rediscovering old cultural, historical, religious and commercial bonds is under way…”1
In the intervening years we have seen the emergence of supra-national governments and alliances. The European nations, linked by their common heritage, religion and culture come together to form the European Union (EU). Gradually, the nations of Europe have systematically surrendered responsibility and power to the EU. During this same period, we have seen the many Muslim nations, united by their religion, attempt to coalesce and advance their common agenda.
GLOBAL GOVERNMENT: The U.N.! – – NOT
Although the United Nations is thought of as a “globalist” organization, in fact, it is not. The hint is in it’s name. Rather that a global government, it is a loose confederation of sovereign nations. At the outer limit of its success, it controls the competing interests of its member states. The likelihood of the U.N. playing a key role in global governance appears remote for these reasons:
· The position of Secretary General will always be filled with a weak, compromise candidate selected by member nations. This will be particularly true if the selection process continues to select the most mutually agreeable candidate from a targeted geographic area, rather than scouring the globe for a person with the best global leadership potential.
· Anything short of total agreement between the nations in the Security Council spells U.N. paralysis.
· Europe is developing supra-national organizations that compete with the U.N. and do not have the same encumbrances. For example, the CSCE (Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe) includes all of Europe, the USA, Canada, and Russia. It now has a bureaucracy called a “secretariat” and has been chartered as a ‘dispute settlement organization’. This role appears to duplicate that of the U.N., but only includes the nations from the first and second world. Like the U.N., the first and second world “pay for it”; but unlike the U.N., the first and second world “own” the CSCE.
As tensions grow between the third world and the industrialized nations, dependence may shift to the CSCE for dispute resolution between members. Third world nations which “step out of line”, not having a voice in the CSCE, could face an iron fist.
The industrialized nations will be very happy to ‘shut out’ third world meddling and whining. The third world believes that the United Nations Security Council is controlled by the West. They point to the bribery, threats, arm twisting and lobbying in which the United States engaged in order to coerce the Security Council membership to vote for the resolutions against Iraq. Long after the Gulf Crisis is forgotten, the Security Council will still be viewed with suspicion by the third world.
The West which bankrolls the U.N., resents third world domination of the General Assembly and the U.N. bureaucracy. In the General Assembly, the tiniest nation has the same voting weight as the largest nation. In addition, it is often held hostage by third world issues that are of little or competing interest to the industrialized West. Just as U.N. activity in the Gulf War will leave bitterness in the third world, the West will have lingering suspicions about third world judgement and its commitment to peace. For as the West was attempting to bring down the regime of a dictator it likened to Hitler, third world nations across the globe were declaring their support for him. That these nations were able to overlook Saddam Hussein’s atrocities bears testimony to the third world’s intense hatred for the West. Will the West be able to trust the future judgements of these nations as they sit together at the U.N.?
The West has pressed for structural reform and accountability at the U.N., but to little avail. Alan Keyes, former assistant secretary of state for international organization affairs was recently interviewed by Insight magazine. “Keyes says strict enforcement of budget reform is the only cure for the United Nations’ bureaucratic blight and increasingly demanding voting blocs of less developed countries, whose own budget contributions are minimal.
“There must be a balance between those countries that foot the bill and those that have the majority of votes” to ensure financial responsibility, he says. Delegates of Third World countries have long campaigned for greater representation in high-level posts, while developed countries protest that those who contribute the majority of funding should have a greater voice in deciding how their money is spent. The growing strength of the developing bloc was demonstrated in late October when Perez de Cuellar appointed his private office chief, Virandra Dayal of India, to head the U.N. High Commission for Refugees, an agency responsible for the support of the world’s 15 million refugees, with a 1990 budget of $378 million. Perez de Cuellar crowned Dayal without consulting delegates of the industrialized countries that provide the bulk of the commission’s funding.”7
Mismanagement, inefficiency, inequity, and unresolved conflicts between nations will hasten the decline of the United Nations.
TOWARD TWO-TIERED GOVERNANCE
The Pathway of Government is transforming from the nation-state system into a two-tiered world government having two levels. At the global level there will be a world federation of regional organizations. At the local level there will be countless ethnic/religious states. The Economist has reported that “…flag makers and cartographers can now look forward to a new redrawing of boundaries across the globe. This time the new shapes will appear at two levels: on high, in an acronymic stratosphere where people’s lives are run not by national governments but by regional groupings of ECs, CSCEs, ACCs, NAFTAs and the like; and down below, in a basement world of Eritreas, Tamil, Eelams and Uzbekistans.”8
The ethnic state’s purpose will be to provide for the operational needs and ethnic/religious sensitivities of the local community: “…not all issues rise naturally to such lofty heights. Left to themselves, some sink to local level, where government and governed can keep easily in touch, the better to sort out their difficulties over education, transport, housing, health and even taxation. This is the case for “subsidiary” –that is promoted by the European Commission in Brussels.”10 In addition, ethnic states will ensure the survival of local culture.
Have the biblical prophets given us any indication that this trend toward the ethnic state would characterize end-time government? Perhaps they have.
First, let us consider the Russo-Israeli War. Gog, the “organizer” of the invasion, is not described as the “King of the North” — a king of a unified realm. Rather, he is called a “prince” of three very specific northern tribes: Rosh, Meshech and Tubal. Two of the other co-conspirators, Gomer and Beth Togarmah, have been identified by some scholars as being other Russian tribes. Therefore, it is possible that the reason Ezekiel mentions specific tribal names, is because they are no longer part of a “Union”, but are sovereign ethnic states.
Last, let us consider the dominion of the ‘prince who is to come’. Revelation 13:7 does not tell us that he will rule over all “nations” as we commonly think of them. Rather, it indicates that he will have authority over “every TRIBE and TONGUE and NATION”. Also, in Revelation 14:6, an angel is found preaching not just to all “nations” but to “every NATION and TRIBE and TONGUE and PEOPLE”. It is important for us to briefly look at the meaning of the original Greek words.
TRIBE: (PHULE) ‘an off-shoot’ i.e. race or clan; kindred, tribe12
TONGUE: (GLOSSA) the tongue; by implication a language, specifically one naturally acquired.13
NATION: (ETHNOS) a race, as of the same habit; i.e. a tribe, specifically a foreign, non-Jewish one; Gentile, heathen, nation, people.14
PEOPLE: (LAOS) a people.15
As you can see, the original language here connotes ethnicity and cultural identity rather than the common notion of a geographical nation-state.
As we have discussed, the top tier of government will be a global federation of regional organizations. Indeed, regional organizations are rapidly taking shape, the most notable being the European Union.
The important issue here is that mankind has begun to recognize the benefits of supra-national government. The Economist has reported that, “Countries are getting together now as never before for good reasons … As economies become more interlinked, so their people prosper. Single markets bring doubled returns.” Also, “… many of today’s non-economic problems can best be tackled internationally. Unilateral action by, say, Sweden to contain emission of nasty gases … will be of little value; concerted action is required. Drugs, defense, terrorism all demand intervention beyond the boundaries of any one country. More co-operation is essential”16
Robert Dahl in his book, Democracy and its Critics states:
“The boundaries of a country, even a country as large as the United States, are now much smaller than the boundaries of the decisions that significantly affect the fundamental interests of its citizens. A country’s economic life, physical environment, national security, and survival are highly, and probably increasingly, dependent on actors and actions that are outside the country’s boundaries and not directly subject to its government. …Just as the rise of the national state reduced the capacity of local residents to exercise control over matters of vital importance to them by means of their local governments, so the proliferation of transnational activities and decisions reduces the capacity of the citizens of a country to exercise control over matters vitally important to them by means of their national government. To that extent, the governments of countries are becoming local governments. …in my judgment for the foreseeable future transnational forces will continue to erode national autonomy…”17
Many of today’s thinkers are looking to the European Union (EU) to be the model for future world government. In one respect, the EU is being cloned to create other regional organizations such as NAFTA and others. In a second respect, the EC is becoming the test bed or perhaps the very birth place of world government itself.
The experiment currently underway is in the area of supranational monetary systems. On January 1, 1999, the EU implemented the European Monetary Unit (EMU) as their common currency. Before its introduction, an editorial in The Economist explained the need for this new monetary system – – to control and minimize the violent swings in exchange rates called “overshooting”.
“…exchange-rate architects have to design a regime that minimisesthe harm done by overshooting. The most promising embryo is the European monetary system [EMS]. For a group of countries with few formal trade barriers between them, the EMS is essential. If their exchange rates were to move erratically, the Community’s internal trading regime would not survive. It would be overwhelmed by pressure on individual governments to protect their industries against sudden and currency-driven losses of competitiveness. The EMS has another vital merit. At its heart is an independent central bank that loathes inflation. … And it allows Europe’s more slovenly countries to lock into Teutonic rectitude on inflation, which in time produces Teutonic rewards in the form of lower interest rates. …The EMS’s next task is to develop a single European currency. … Ahead of a single currency, Europe will be building its single market. The free movement of goods and services, people and capital is the complement to a common currency: that, after all is what happens within national economies. …Once Europe has a single currency in a single economic space, its system can be copied AND EXTENDED.
Well, the single European market is in place, as is the single currency. Europe’s boarders are ever expanding to include new members. Goods, services, people and capital are flowing.
The world appears poised for next step – – a world currency, serving a world economy in which trade and investment will be far more international than they are today. To clinch its attractiveness, the world currency will have to retain its purchasing power more successfully than any of the national or regional currencies it replaces. For that, IT MUST BE MANAGED BY AN INDEPENDENT CENTRAL BANK which is charged with keeping the currency stable against the price of a basket of commodities. …Fanciful? It gets less so every day. Each bout of overshooting brings more pain: each intervention by central banks provides less relief; each episode raises sharper questions. That pattern will not go on for ever. A WORLD CURRENCY COMETH.” 18 [emphasis mine]
From our previous discussion of the Prince, we have established that his kingdom will eventually “devour the whole earth.” It is also probable that the Prince will begin his dictatorial career as a leader in the European Union. As the power of Europe continues to grow, other nations and regional organizations will be voluntarily annexed. The Prince’s influence and authority will eventually become global.
The resulting Global Federation will incorporate the many, local governments of differing varieties: some base upon kinship (TRIBES), some based upon language (TONGUE), some based upon common culture (NATION); some strong as iron and some weak as clay (Daniel 2:40-43). Truly, this world federation “will be different from all the other kingdoms and it will devour the whole earth…”(Daniel 7:23)
World government is man’s “only hope” for solving the complex problems of the 21st century. The Prince will make his attempt, but will ultimately fail. Successful world government will only come when Messiah is crowned.
THE PATHWAY OF POWER
In the West, we have been walking on a section of the Pathway of Power labeled “Democracy”. Democracy is a system of order where the ultimate power rests in the hands of the people. In recent years the pathway had broadened as more and more nations adopt democratic forms of government. Truly, democracy is in vogue, or at least the espousing of it. In his book, Democracy and Its Critics, Robert Dahl says, “Never in recorded history have state leaders appealed so widely to democratic ideas to legitimate their rule, even if only to justify an authoritarian government as necessary to a future transition to a true or purified democracy.”19
Beyond the democracy movement, the path ahead may be labeled “Monarchy”. When we think of Monarchy, we think of regal figureheads who reign but do not rule. In our discussion here, let’s think about monarchy in its literal sense: “mono-archy”, rule by one individual.
As people the world over increasingly become the victims of terror and desperation, they are going to be searching for an omnipotent, paternal figure. Frustration with scandalous bureaucrats, the intractability of the world’s problems and a childish desire for a simple solution will open the door for “mono-archy”. The need to believe in a man who says, “Trust me and I’ll handle all your problems” is irresistible.
This yearning for a monarch was expressed by Yuri Shchekochikhin as democratic reforms were being introduced, “Russians simply are not ready for democracy, the new Parliament member complained. His constituents besieged him for help in getting jobs, or apartments, or telephones. “People here still want a good czar to fix everything,” he said.”21 This sentiment is not limited to Russia. “”If democracy does not work in Latin America, then the way is open for fundamentalist messianic leadership… an ultra-nationalist right-wing movement.””22
The perennial alternative to Democracy has been a system called Guardianship23. Robert Dahl defines guardianship as “…a regime in which the state is governed by meritorious rulers who consist of a minority of adults, quite likely a very small minority, and who are not subject to the democratic process.”24 This form of government is based upon the assumption that people cannot understand or defend their own interests. Rather, their interests are best safeguarded by a small body of wise guardians. Those guardians are best qualified to rule based upon their moral understanding, their ability to achieve desirable ends, and their knowledge of the best and most efficient way to achieve those ends. Guardians are specialists in the art and science of ruling and leading.25
Although guardians are “morally responsible”, there is no guarantee of their virtue. And unfortunately, there are no means to remove a bad guardian.26 History is rife with examples of bad guardianship. Robert Dahl provides us with the following counsel: “An imperfect democracy is a misfortune for its people, but and imperfect authoritarian regime is an abomination. If prudence counsels a “max-minim” strategy–that is, choose the alternative that is the best of the worst outcomes–then the experience of the twentieth century argues powerfully against the idea of guardianship.”27
If the world is not moving toward a utopian democracy, is it moving toward a guardianship on a global scale as prophesied in the Bible? Mr. Dahl has made the following ominous observation: “With respect to decisions on crucial international affairs, then, the danger is that the …[evolution of the supranational-state] will lead not to an extension of the democratic idea beyond the nation-state but to the victory in that domain of de facto guardianship.” 28
POSITION AVAILABLE: “MONO-ARCH” OF EUROPE
Soon a European Ruler will emerge. Will the “mono-arch” of Europe be purely a political position, or could it draw talent from the royal families of Europe?
Will He be a Royal?
Royalty magazine reported the following:
“And yet, and yet … the storm clouds are gathering. …The possibility of establishing a Head of State to represent the European Community is now on the political horizon. As one Brussels Eurocrat said: “There is considerable interest here in a Head of State for the European Community. It symboliseseverything the EC stands for. While such a move is not on the immediate agenda, its very proposition does call into question the [British] Queen’s position as the Head of State of fifteen other countries beside Britain and her role as Head of the Commonwealth. “Can one person continue to sustain so many diverse roles?” asks legal historian Michael Nash, author of A Single Europe. It is a perfectly practical proposition to have a ceremonial Head of State for the Community. The office would be occupied on a rotating basis, rather like the European presidency. This already works effectively in Malaysia. While there is nothing in the Treaty of Rome to accommodate such a position, the pace of change in Europe now is such that I would not be surprised if what is being seriously discussed today becomes reality by the end of the decade.”36
If a Royal Head of State for the European Union were created, it could be the key to unifying the cultural diversity of the continent. For in these royal families, who have intermarried through the centuries, flows the blood of all European nations. They are the touchstone of peoples separated by geography and time. Prince Charles of Great Britain has observed: “There is a mystical element in royalty that one finds running like a thread through the history of the world — all monarchies possess it, as we can see looking thousands of years into the past. Let us then retain this quality while, at the same time, perhaps associating it with a more modern, more contemporary image.”37
If the European Union is the test bed for world government, then a Monarch of Europe could be the test bed for a global throne.
Will He be a Politico?
Alternatively, the Prince may come out of the political world. As of this writing, the EU is holding inter-governmental conferences which are wrestling with the problem of providing the Union with a single voice. They want the President of the United States to know who will answer the phone when he ‘speed dials’ Europe. They are considering strengthening the EU Council Presidency, or strengthening the EU Commission Presidency, or perhaps more importantly, combining the two positions. But more on that later in Chapter 4.
In any case, you may recall, that the children of Israel would not wait for God to provide them with a king of His choosing. They demanded a king so they could be like other nations, and they ended up with psycho-king Saul. Soon, the world who will not wait for God to provide King Messiah, will soon settle for the ‘prince who is to come’. He is at the door.
The next steps on the Pathways of Government and Power will include the expansion of the centralized European government (EU), ultimately achieving global reach. This global machine will increased in power and in the cockpit will be a newly empowered, autocratic, “mono-arch”.
A huge intersection is ahead as the Pathways of Government, Power, and Europe converge and there we will find the Signpost: The Prince and His Kingdom.
Just as the reign of psycho-king Saul was followed by the reign of God’s choice, King David, so the reign of the “prince who is to come” will be followed by the reign of God’s Anointed, Jesus and there we shall see the Signpost: The Millennial Kingdom
1 “Central Asia Rediscovers its Identity”, New York Times, 6/24/90
2 “Goodbye to the Nation-State”, The Economist, 6/23/90
7 “Bureaucratic United Nations Finds Budget Reform Elusive”, Insight, 1/21/91
8 “Goodbye to the Nation-state”, The Economist, 6/23/90
9 “Rising Party in Italy’s North Wants to Get Rome and the South Off its Back”, New York Times, 6/24/90
10 “Goodbye to the Nation-State”, The Economist, 6/23/90
11 “Rising Party in Italy’s North Wants to Get Rome and the South Off its Back”, New York Times, 6/24/90
12 Strong, James LL.D, S.T.D., The New Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible: Greek Dictionary of the New Testament, Thomas Nelson Publishers, Nashville, 1990, p.77
13 Ibid, p 20
14 Ibid, p.25
15 Ibid, p 44
16 “Goodbye to the Nation-State”, The Economist, 6/23/90
17 Robert. A. Dahl, Democracy and Its Critics, Yale University Press, New Haven and London, 1989 p319
18 “Uncalm currencies”, The Economist, 2/16/91
19 Op Cit Dahl p.313
20 “Reality Sets In: No one ever said freedom would be easy”, World Press Review, 2/91
21 “Special Report:Seeking a New World, 2. Can Universal Democracy Work?, Los Angeles Times, 12/11/90
23 Op Cit Dahl Chapter 4
24 Ibid p57
25 Ibid p52
26 Ibid p76
27 Ibid p78
28 Ibid p320
29 “Can Kings Replace the Commissars?”, Royalty, January 1991
36 “Raising the Royal Horizons”, Royalty, January 1991
37 “I’m someone who listens to my heart, not my head: Prince Charles on French TV”, Royalty 2/91