Our Parish Teaching on Politics

To the degree that we could change anything in this world, it has to come as a secondary result of our normal mission activity. This is particularly true with politics and government policy.

Let’s review the background for this. The Covenant of Noah is binding on all human governments in the world today. Inherent in that covenant is the assumption of Ancient Near Eastern (ANE) feudalism — a tribal social structure and government. If for some reason you cannot build on blood kinship, a covenant family is proper. The summarizing statement is: No one has any business poking around in your daily life unless they are related by blood of covenant.

There is a protocol for an external conquering “imperial” government, but that government must work through tribal chiefs. The emperor has no business changing customs, folkways and religion, but can demand tribute, including money, goods and services. Military conscription must be negotiated. Whatever the end result, humans are hard-wired by God to live in a tribal social structure under ANE feudalism. That’s the Law of God; that’s how you reap the blessings, the optimal human existence on this earth.

Failing that, we who embrace that Law of God are to recognize that God still steers human affairs rather like herding cattle. Human government outside of Noah cannot pretend in any way to claim God’s blessings. Whatever good things God does through such governments will ever appear random, as it rests entirely upon His whims and plans. Those plans are seldom revealed except in terms of prophetic warnings to repent.

You and I are not divine cowboys; we don’t participate in herding the cattle of God. We most certainly should offer prophetic warnings, but we are not to engage government affairs outside the Covenant. We can influence individuals within appropriate limits, but we do not agitate for change as if we actively participate in human government. We can even serve in such governments, but there are no hard and fast rules. It’s a matter of calling, but in broad general terms, we should avoid leadership roles that amount to governing, per se. This has to do with the very serious danger of moral compromise, beholden to a heathen system.

The risk is that it amounts to idolatry. In biblical examples, we see men and women of God refusing to submit to a ruler who demanded his servants worship his deities. At the cost of death or other, lesser punishments, we do not bind ourselves to idolatrous moral requirements. You can petition for relief of grievances both as individuals and as covenant entities, but you dare not join yourself to “political allies” with significantly different moral values. You have to stick to what’s in the Law of Noah. So, for example, I can’t align with any mainstream Christian organization because their agenda includes too much that I find contrary to Noah. Vague notions of democracy, representative or otherwise, violate Noah.

But we don’t simply remove ourselves from the world, lest we lose any hope of participating in revelation. That’s another form of idolatry. We do engage our world in truth. You need to discern what’s appropriate for you in your social context. In broad general terms, we would naturally seek to reduce tyranny and oppression. We naturally prefer decentralized control; that’s the lesson of the Tower of Babel. Those things are obvious but we always do so in the power of the Spirit, not through mere human means.

If you break cattle out of the feedlot or slaughterhouse, they are still cattle. If you break them out of slavery to this world and into a heart-led life, they aren’t cattle any more. Changing human governmental systems will not raise them from their low estate. To bring them under Noah requires a radical shift in culture across the whole population. Doing that requires a level of force no less tyrannical than any current government. If they are conscious enough to recognize they suffer under tyranny, about the most we can do for them is help them find their own way out. What happens once they are out on the range again is up to them and what God chooses for them.

Thus, we are politically neutral in our compassion to all. If they have a drive to act on something, we must discern whether our conscience is clear in helping them, but we dare not get directly involved in most of their concerns. We don’t seek to change the world, only a few individuals whom God places in our lives.

About Ed Hurst

Disabled Veteran, prophet of God's Laws, Bible History teacher, wannabe writer, volunteer computer technician, cyclist, Social Science researcher
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