Repentance in America--Part 3
Apr 05, 2008
The American Constitution enthroned God as the ultimate Monarch over the nation. It did so primarily by establishing the idea that "rights" do not originate by governmental decrees, but come from God alone. Governments can only recognize those divine rights and then "secure" them for the people. In fact, the primary purpose of government is to act as the executor for the will of God.
In other words, presidents have no right to issue executive orders that violate the will of God. Legislatures do not have the right to pass laws that either legalize sin or penalize men for doing the will of God. The courts do not have the right to pass judgments upon sinners ("criminals") that are not in accordance with the divine law.
Of course, a simple look at today's situation shows just how far we have strayed from the Declaration's submission to God.
After the vote for Independence had succeeded in 1776, Samuel Adams said, "On this day we have restored the Sovereign, to whom alone men ought to be obedient. He reigns in Heaven, and . . . from the rising to the setting sun, may His Kingdom come."
That was how Samuel Adams viewed the wording of the Declaration of Independence. One would be hard pressed to hear his view echoed among politicians today.
In 1799 Justice Samuel Chase wrote in the case of Kunkel v. Winemiller, "By our form of government, the Christian religion is the established religion; and all sects and denominations of Christians are placed upon the same equal footing, and are equally entitled to protection in their religious liberty."
The early American judges were aware of the meaning of the Declaration of Independence and the fact that it had created a Christian Nation. I think many judges today know this, but they are not free to rule accordingly because of the appeals system. They would simply be overruled. The secularists have taken control of the higher courts, and they now actively prevent any judge from rising in the system if he believes that America was established as a Christian nation.
Even James Madison, the "father" of our Constitution, said, "We have staked the whole of all our political institutions upon the capacity for mankind for self-government, upon the capacity of each and all of us to govern ourselves, to control ourselves, to sustain ourselves according to the Ten Commandments of God."
The first of those Ten Commandments says, "Thou shalt have no other gods before Me." Madison's view was that the American people had the capacity to govern according to the Ten Commandments of God. He believed (mistakenly, it seems) that legislators would be elected who would seek to pass laws that were based upon biblical law, summarized by the Ten Commandments. Liberty would be maintained by outlawing sin, not by upholding the people's freedom to commit sin.
I fully recognize the problems inherent in establishing a Christian nation. I also recognize the difference between a Christian nation and the Kingdom of God. The Kingdom of God is composed of citizens who are all true believers in their hearts, and anyone who merely gives lip service to God is not a citizen at all, regardless of his church affiliation. A Christian nation, on the other hand, has much lower standards. Such a nation is concerned only with law-breaking, not with the heart. A man may be a citizen of a Christian nation even if he entirely disagrees with the laws that force him to refrain from sin.
Another huge problem is that those most motivated to turn America away from its Christian heritage are those who disagree with its laws. Such people tend to run for office so that they can make changes. And since they are not bound by the divine law, they have no scruples against lying and deceiving the people in order to secure their votes. Once they have attained power, they tend to elevate and promote their friends to positions of authority. Finally, they prevent true Christians from being promoted in order to secure and sustain their take-over of the nation.
They are then in a position to return to the humanistic principle of Rex Lex, "the king is law." The Protestant movement had reversed this, saying, Lex Rex, "the law is king." Specifically, the law of God is king, and the king is bound by it. The king (or any man) has no right to overrule God's law, but is bound by it as are all men. But yet, lawless men did rise to power. Step by step, men usurped the position of God over America. God became a figure-head monarch with no real power, and America became a hypocritical nation by biblical definition.
This would not have happened, of course, if lawlessness were not so deeply rooted in the hearts of men--even Christians. The Church itself, with its Pentecostal roots, is pictured in the life of King Saul, who was the only king crowned on the day of wheat harvest, or Pentecost (1 Sam. 12:17). It was not possible for the Church as a whole to rise above Saul, for the prophetic history of the Church had already been written in Saul's story.
Yet during Saul's reign, there was David. David was persecuted by Saul, but God used that persecution to train David in faith, and it showed David how NOT to rule. David represents the overcomers who are destined for the throne after the demise of Saul. The age to come belongs to the overcomers.
But that means great changes must occur. Change means repentance. We must know the mistakes of the past in order not to repeat them in the future. We must know the divine law so that we can truly enthrone Him. We must know the mind of Christ so that we can administer the divine law in mercy and grace and not as a legalist.
None of this will be possible apart from an impartation of the fulness of the Spirit. Pentecost gave us only an earnest of the Spirit, but the feast of Tabernacles imparts the fulness of the Spirit. All Christian governments up to now have attempted to enthrone God apart from the full level of the Holy Spirit that comes only through the feast of Tabernacles. They enjoyed partial success before degenerating into utter failure.
The Roman Church was part of Saul's reign. The various Protestant denominations were established during the reign of Saul as well. The Mormon Church was found during the reign of Saul. All churches established prior to 1993 had no chance of rising above the leaven inherent in Pentecost. Even with good intentions, the best that can be said about them is that perhaps they were born out of season.
America is no exception. Though our founding in 1776 occurred precisely according to biblical prophecy, 2,520 years after the beginning of Israel's deportation in 745 B.C., our nation was still limited to the reign of King Saul. See my book, The Prophetic History of the United States.
The bottom line, then, is that we ought not to have been surprised when America turned out to be imperfect. It should not have surprised us to discover that the goals and aspirations of our founders had failed to meet their expectations.
It was the responsibility of the Church to teach the people personal righteousness and the principles of righteous government. Unfortunately, the Church had a lengthy history of teaching that their leaders (popes) had the right to overrule the laws of God. See chapter 5 of my book, The Seven Churches, about the Church of Thyatira. Protestantism had refuted this idea, but many churches began to teach their own brand of lawlessness, in which they gave lip service to the divine law, but in practice, they discarded whatever they disagreed with.
Eventually, God put America into a Babylonian captivity. It will end when we repent. God's judgment itself will bring repentance.
This is the third part of a series titled "Repentance in America." To view all parts, click the link below.
Dr. Stephen Jones