Religion and Politics? 4/19/20

A Sermon By: Pastor Henry T. Anderson

Windsor Avenue Bible Church, Oceanside, NY

Ecclesiastes 8:9

9 All this have I seen, and applied my heart unto every work that is done under the sun: there is a time wherein one man ruleth over another to his own hurt.

Intro: This is how the Bible sums up the history of human rule.

“one man ruleth over another to his own hurt”

I’ll be doing a little Series on what God and His Bible has to say about Religion and Politics! And Oh-boy, hasn’t The Government been in our lives lately…

Let’s look at The Bible History of Politics.

1. Human Government began after the Flood.

Genesis 10:8-10

8 And Cush begat Nimrod: he began to be a mighty one in the earth.

9 He was a mighty hunter before the Lord: wherefore it is said, Even as Nimrod the mighty hunter before the Lord.

10 And the beginning of his kingdom was Babel, and Erech, and Accad, and Calneh, in the land of Shinar.

After the Flood man started to repopulate the Earth, but they weren’t spreading across the world, instead they remained in one area with one language and one ruler: Nimrod.

Nimrod was a very significant man in ancient times, the grandson of Ham and great-grandson of Noah. Nimrod started his kingdom at Babel in the land of Shinar is the Chaldean region of southern Babylonia in present-day Iraq. It identifies Babel with Babylon which lies about 50 miles south of today’s Baghdad. The future Babylonian Empire later reached its zenith under king Nebuchadnezzar (sixth century BC).

And we know the rest of the story, Nimrod starts to build the Tower of Babel and God comes down and visits them and then he confounds their language and God then scatters them throughout the world.

As people scattered and populated arears of the world, Kings and Governments followed. Genesis chapter 14 starts to name a few Kings:

Genesis 14:1-2

1 And it came to pass in the days of Amraphel king of Shinar, Arioch king of Ellasar, Chedorlaomer king of Elam, and Tidal king of nations;

2 That these made war with Bera king of Sodom, and with Birsha king of Gomorrah, Shinab king of Admah, and Shemeber king of Zeboiim, and the king of Bela, which is Zoar.

And as man expanded so did Government.

Along with kingdoms in Iraq, and Egypt, man was setting up kingdoms throughout the world. The Indus Valley Civilization flourished in areas extending from what today is northeast Afghanistan to Pakistan and northwest India. The kingdom of D'mt in Ethiopia. The ancient Mayan civilization flourished in Central America. You have civilizations in China, Persia, Greece and later other areas of the Mediterranean.

Also mentioned early in The Bible were The Pharaoh’s of Egypt.

Fast forward Moses and The Children of Israel flee Egypt and eventually God leads them to the Promised Land and God says in:

Exodus 19:6

6 And ye shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, and an holy nation. These are the words which thou shalt speak unto the children of Israel.

Question: When The Children of Israel left Egypt who became their King. Answer: God became Israel’s King! This is called a Theocracy.

A Theocracy is a Government of a state by the immediate direction of God; or the state thus governed. Of this species the Israelites furnish an illustrious example. The theocracy lasted till the time of Saul.

You had a Theocracy in The Garden of Eden,

The theocracy during the time of Moses was not a government by priests as opposed to kings, but it was a government by God Himself as opposed to government by priests and kings. Theocracy exalted Israel above all other nations, thus causing the nations of the world to hate the people who claimed God as their supreme Ruler.

God ruled Israel as Moses, then Joshua, then the Judges ending with Samuel. And we know the rest of the story. The people didn’t want God’s Theocracy, but the people’s wanted Saul to become king, Saul fails as king and David becomes king and throughout Israel’s History you had some good kings who loved and followed God and you had some bad kings.

And the point I’m trying to get at is this; I believe that when God is The King and Government and the people follow Him then there won’t be any problems in fact there will be Blessings!

Exodus 19:5

5 Now therefore, if ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto me above all people: for all the earth is mine:

But man has rejected God and His Theocracy and God has now allowed and Ordained Empires and Governments with man-made political systems.

And the question is:

2. What do Humans do to each other in the Governing each other?

Answer: Man hurts man! Ecclesiastes 8:9

9 All this have I seen, and applied my heart unto every work that is done under the sun: there is a time wherein one man ruleth over another to his own hurt.

Here’s a 3000 year History lesson in five minutes:

The Bible lists four Major Political Empires they are:

1. Babylonian Empire - 612 B.C. King Nebuchadnezzar

2. Persian Empire (Medo-Persian Empire) - 549 B.C. King Cyrus the Great

3. Macedonian (Greek) Empire of Alexander the Great - 336 B.C.

4. Roman Empire - 27 B.C. to 395 A.D.

These Empires were not God friendly, their Religion was Pagan and Polytheistic.

They all persecuted and dispersed God’s people the Jews, King Nebuchadnezzar conquered the Kingdom of Judah, took the Jews as captives to Babylon and, in 586 B.C., burned Jerusalem and destroyed its temple. It was during the reign of Cyrus the Great that captive Jews were allowed to return to Jerusalem.

The Roman Empire persecuted Jews and Christians and it was Rome that put Jesus on a Cross to die.

The Roman Empire legally recognized Pauline Christianity. In 313 Constantine issues The Edict of Milan which stated that Christians could practice their Religion without persecution. The Christian church that Constantine promoted was a mixture of true Christianity and Roman paganism.

In 380 AD, Roman Catholicism became the official religion of the Roman Empire. During the following 1000 years, Catholics were the only people recognized as Christians. This time in History is called The Dark Ages!

The Byzantine Empire, which existed independently from 395 to 1204 A.D. and from 1261 to 1453 A.D.

You also have The Holy Roman Empire from 800-1806 A.D. starting with Frankish King Charlemagne as Emperor.

In 1054 AD, a formal split occurred between the Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox churches.

In 1517 the Protestant Reformation takes off in Germany.

The Napoleonic Empire from 1804-1814.

The Ottoman Empire from 1299-1922.

The British Empire from 1497-1997.

And what’s the point? The point is that they all used Religion, but they really didn’t practice Bible Religion…

Ecclesiastes 8:9

9 All this have I seen, and applied my heart unto every work that is done under the sun: there is a time wherein one man ruleth over another to his own hurt.

From Nimrod to Napoleon to Hitler to ISIS man has ruled over man with violence, with Wars, with terror and fear, man has displaced man, man has killed man and man has done this with religion but without God…

In the past these leaders were called Kings, Emperors or Caesars and they were basically a One Man rule with a very supportive Senate, now:

Today we have Presidents and Prime Ministers and:

Now basically there are five Modern types of Human Government, they are:

I’ll describe them to you through this simple illustration:

If a Man has two Cows, under:

1. Socialism: The Gov’t lets you keep one Cow, and makes you give one Cow to your Neighbor. Under:

2. Communism: The Gov’t takes both Cows and gives you some Milk.

3. Fascism: The Gov’t kills you and takes both the Cows.

4. Liberalism: The Gov’t kills one Cow for meat and puts it in a Warehouse where it spoils, milks the other Cow and pours the Milk down the drain and then puts a new Tax on Beef and Milk products.

5. Free Market Democracy: The Cow owner sells one of his Cows and with that money buys a Bull so the Bull and Cow can mate and produce more Cows and Bulls for sale and consumption.

And God will allow any people to be ruled to the extent that they will not trust God to rule themselves.

Which leads us to our third point.

3. What is the New Testament Christians modern view of Government?

Then You have The New York Empire which started last month…

Isn’t it Funny but the Nickname of New York is The Empire State!

And they have been putting the hurt on us!

Let’s turn to Romans 13:1-7

1 Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.

2 Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation.

3 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:

4 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.

5 Wherefore ye must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake.

6 For for this cause pay ye tribute also: for they are God's ministers, attending continually upon this very thing.

7 Render therefore to all their dues: tribute to whom tribute is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; honour to whom honour.

Verse 1 in Roman 13 says: “For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.”

That simply means that a Gov’t has no existing Power except that which God has given to it. God in His way is involved in Politics.

The word Ordained in verse 1 means: Fixed or established especially by order or command and that Command comes from God. The Laws of God are Commanded by God and when a Gov’t makes Laws it had better come from His Law Book The Bible.

Now 1 Peter 2:13 says:

13 Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord's sake: whether it be to the king, as supreme;

Now an Ordinance of Man are: Laws and Rules created by Man for the Control of Man.

Man makes a Ordinance that says that if you’re driving your car 95 mph in a 30mph, I believe that God approves that Ordinance.

What about the Law of Abortion? What about the Law of Homosexual Marriage, what about the State Liquor, Tobacco Laws and Lottery where the Gov’t reaps a great amount of Revenue? These are often called: Sin Tax! All of these have been deemed Essential by New York State because they bring in Millions of Tax $$$$

Do you think that God has Ordained and approved these Laws?

The ungodly Nero was emperor when Paul wrote Romans 13, and Paul had been in jail several times for breaking the law of the land. Do you think that God approved when His Apostle was put in jail for Preaching The Gospel?

Do you think that God approved when the Gov’t threw Kim Davis in jail?

Do you think that God approved when New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said that if You’re Pro-Life and You’re Pro-Traditional Marriage then You’re not Welcomed in New York?

The Christians must answer No! God has never given man the Authority to overrule His Law, and every Christian has an obligation to God and to stand for His truth no matter how much the Gov’t may persecute him.

In fact we live in the Laodicea Church age, The meaning of the word Laodicea is: People’s Rights,

Notice that for the last 50 years, all we have heard about is People’s Rights, people’s rights, civil rights – my needs, my-self, my will, my way,

But a wise person will live by God’s rights, God’s needs, God’s will and God’s way, Amen!

Now, God allows evil Rulers to Reign. Hitler, Stalin, Mao, Castro, Kim Jung Il, and they all their man made laws,

The Bible reminds us that God is the Law Giver.

Isaiah 33:22 says: 22 For the Lord is our judge, the Lord is our lawgiver, the Lord is our king; he will save us.

And Gov’t is empowered only to carry the Laws of God into effect and to Administer God’s Laws.

We must conclude that Gov’t is Ordained of God, but that all Gov’t is allowed by God. And that God expects Christians to be Law-abiding citizens in whatever Governmental situations they find themselves in, to the extent of not violating God’s Law!

Why does a Judge wear a Robe? Why is on a Platform above the people? Why is he referred to as: “Your Honor”? Ans. - Romans 13!

A Judge wears a Robe for the same reason an OT Priest wore a Robe. As God’s Minister/Representative addresses the people, he is signifying that he is not speaking as a man, but as the Minister (Rom. 13) of God. He is executing God’s Law!

Look at verse 4 & 6:

4 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.

6 For for this cause pay ye tribute also: for they are God's ministers, attending continually upon this very thing.

In verses 4 & 6 the Gov’t or Ruler is three times called the Minister of God. A Minister is a person who carries or brings with him whatever it is he is ministering into effect.

For example, a Minister carries The Gospel into effect by Preaching and Teaching The Laws and the things of God, so Gov’t has Ordained Powers from God and empowered of God to carry them into effect in Society.

Gov’t is a Minister of God, Amen!

Gov’t is Ordained of God to represent His Law.

The Gov’t is God’s Minister for maintaining order over His Creation!

Interestingly the Greek word translated as “Ministers” in Romans 13:6 is the same word for “Priests” in Hebrews 10:11, it describes Church Leaders in Acts 13:2, and Angels in Hebrews 1:14.

The word combines the ideas of Serving and Worshipping.

So a Minister is Serving God by carrying out God’s Laws, and a Minister is Worshipping God because God is the One they are serving for.

That’s why we say: “We want God’s Man or God’s Woman in Office”

Proverbs 29:2 says:

2 When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice: but when the wicked beareth rule, the people mourn.

When Gov’t goes outside of God’s Laws, it does not act with God’s Power as God’s Ministers, but rather it acts as a “Man Made Institution” in defiance of God.

Romans 1:22 says:

22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools,

On June 25, 1962, in the Engel v. Vitale case, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled 6-1 that the prayer practice violated the establishment clause of the First Amendment. What’s interesting is that four out of the six Justices that voted against prayer, and therefore voted God out of the public school system, were Freemasons and Mainline Protestants.

The banning of prayer in assemblies affected the state of our Nation. Since the Masons helped to kick God out of our public schools in 1962, the rate of violent crime has risen over 500 percent, national productivity has dropped over 80 percent, and the per capita alcohol consumption has increased by 35 percent. Post 1962-63, America leads the western world in teenage pregnancies and high illiteracy rates. We are now the world leaders in violent crime, prison population, aids, divorce, and illegal drug use. And by removing any reference to God, you remove references to respect for authority, Gov’t, Police, Teachers and the Church.

But when a Nation follows God’s Laws, Psalm 33:12 says:

12 Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord; and the people whom he hath chosen for his own inheritance.

I’m gonna conclude with this: Ten Tips for the Christian Citizen:

1. Christians should be the best citizens towards Gov’t and Society.