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The Foundations of American Government Part 1 Romans 13 revisited

The Foundations of American Government
Part 1: Human Government a Responsibility of Man

The first mention of human government in the history of the world is found in Genesis 9:5-6. God instructs the survivors of the flood to take responsibility and protect the lives of their fellow citizens. God gives the responsibility of punishment of evil-doers to men. This first mention carries with it two principles: 1. The law is not made for the righteous but for the disobedient and 2. Human government is the responsibility of men. That is to say, men create their own government. They are required by their creator to create such government.

Along these lines in Genesis 10, we see Nimrod creating a tyrannical government. Secular and sacred historians alike acknowledge the existence of Nimrod’s government. It is generally recognized as the first absolute monarchy in the world. It was woefully tyrannical, ruthless, and barbaric and needed to be overthrown. In the illustration of Nimrod we see how a human government can go bad, how it can be injurious to people in general, and that it is the responsibility of the people to throw off such government and create better government.

It is evident that God does not create human government. That is our responsibility. This is easily understood. While we know the Bible says, “the powers that be are ordained of God,” this does not mean God created them. No, humans create civil government out of obedience to God given responsibility. Let that truth sink in. Government is our responsibility and since it is, especially within the bounds of a republic, it is our responsibility to keep government right. “We the people” have the responsibility to keep the creeping vines of tyranny from choking our liberty.

It is evident that Romans 13 is not referring to human government, except that we are to submit to punishment when we destroy the life, liberty or property of someone else. If “we the people” institute (create) government, then human government is not “the higher power.” Now hear this: How could government (especially a Constitutional government) be a “higher power” if the people themselves form it?

But you say, “Isn’t government ordained of God?” When the Bible says God “ordains” government, it means He determines how He will use it. I do not believe for one moment that God created the Third Reich of Hitler’s Germany. The people of Germany chose their leadership and paid dearly for it. God decided how to use and when to destroy what the people of Germany created. That is what is meant by “ordained.” These things are pertinent facts in the future world we are spinning toward.

According to our Declaration of Independence, if government is not sufficient to protect the life, liberty and property of the people, it is to be “altered or abolished,” and a new government that will protect the life, liberty and property of the people is to be “instituted” (created). Anyone—man, woman and child can see that government is our responsibility and not God’s. And, as our founding fathers rightly judged, it is ours to control, correct, make accountable, and abolish if necessary. To do less would be neglect of duty.–James Beller


1 J.S. Davenport { 07.31.09 at 11:39 am }

Amen Bro. Beller!
What you said is right on target. We can see these principles clearly in the Word of God regardless of what time period we live in. However, from a theological standpoint, it is amazing how the mouthpieces of the religious right twist some OT scriptures around in attempting to apply to us what was only referring to the theocracy of Israel. (Noah was before that time of course) We are not a theocracy in the U.S.. If we were, then we do not need a Constitution. This all goes hand in hand with not knowing Biblical church history because if we are not careful we will fall into the trap of the protestant replacement theology. Keep up the needed work.
Josh Davenport

2 Ray { 08.15.09 at 4:04 pm }

Thank you for this! Too many of us misunderstand and misapply Romans 13 and other passages of Scripture and think the Bible teaches we should remain silent.