If you examine the record of Scripture, you can discern a thread of moral propriety in dealing with other nations. The starting point is to leave folks alone. In truth, this is the broad instinct of the Children of Israel. They weren’t very war-like. Indeed, coming out of their Egyptian bondage, they were pretty whiny about having to relearn their ancient nomadic ways. It required a firm resolve to defend their people and what God said He entrusted into their stewardship, and they were consistently reluctant to fight back when attacked.
So they spent forty years in nomad boot camp until the whiner generation was dead. They were tougher then, though still reluctant to execute God’s judgment. The consistent testimony of Scripture is that the Land was theirs by divine grant, and the folks living there were the most despicable creatures God ever confronted in His lordship over Creation. Indeed, every pagan culture that encountered them agreed that the Canaanites were so depraved that it defied description.
God said quite emphatically that He would deliver them into the hands of His People. Even then, Israel simply didn’t have the toughness to carry it through, and ended up having an infestation of depraved people in their lands. But even when all of that was settled and in place, the issue of foreign relations remained a matter of letting folks keep what they had until they tried to take something God gave Israel. And it wasn’t so much a matter of the land borders as it was the borders of shalom, the essential social stability that rested on trusting God to provide reasonable prosperity, safety and health, and a generally peaceful existence. Obey the Covenant Law and these things are yours, said the Lord.
The only time it went wrong was when some portion of the nation began to lust for things God said they didn’t need, and which He had not given them. Their sin broke the covenant security, and it gave the demons permission to stir up neighboring nations over any number of false grievances to come and prey on Israel. The whole idea was for Israel to prove the power of the Covenant by living it and remaining in shalom regardless of what troubles existed in other nations. An obedient Israel could defeat overwhelming numbers of massed troops simply by sending out their Temple Choir to battle.
But when Israel was disobedient, their overwhelming numbers couldn’t defeat an old lady throwing rocks. They had no power, and all of Creation was against them.
At some point, Israel’s penchant for unfaithfulness to God’s revelation crossed a critical line and it was all over with. The record of the Covenant of Moses remains an inspiring source of how God operates in this fallen world. It helps to explain the much more sparsely recorded Covenant of Noah. By comparing the notes within Scripture, we come to understand what Noah means by using Moses as a subset, a particular instance of Noah — that people, that place, that time. Noah applies to all humanity, wherever they go, until there are no more rainbows anywhere on earth.
We know that Biblical Law is winsome in practice, winning however many hearts are capable of seeing how beautifully it brings shalom. But the Bible was not our culture; it was added into a preexisting heathen culture, first of the aging Roman Empire, and then the Germanic hordes that overran Europe. The Bible was pulled in and its message perverted through a raft of false assumptions brought to the Scripture.
What we in America have inherited is the heathen cultural spite of the Anglo-Saxons. The religious mythology has deeply infected our churches to the point that Christianity bears little resemblance to the teachings of a Hebrew Christ. The USA was founded on a form of “trade” that insists the other party must swallow wholly the entire Anglo-Saxon way of civilization. Otherwise, trade consists of the US invading in various ways and simply taking whatever it is we want from the other parties. If they resist, we wipe them out. If they can’t change their ways, we make them slaves. If they choose to buy into our culture, we treat them with some grudging respect and just do business.
As General Butler once said, our entire military history is massing troops against everyone who won’t play by our rules. Even our Christian missions were tainted with a cultural message that overpowered the true gospel. The missionaries were often little more than agents for espionage, or even invading troops. Thus, while the troops we send are motivated by that ancient Anglo-Saxon cultural arrogance, the real issue is seizing all assets for our Big Business elite to exploit at their profit.
This is the substance of everything we’ve done with our military — everything. The only difference it makes in where we fight is which particular crop of industrial oligarchs are pulling the levers in government at the moment. Up until recently, it was a matter of Hollywood and Big Technology, and their leftist allies. Now it’s Big Oil and Military Industries pulling the levers. On top of that we’ve got a very take-charge President such as we have not seen since Jackson, but this one happens to be a businessman himself. Whatever it is masquerading as “Democratic Party” is essentially serving Hollywood and Technology, while the faux “Republican Party” serves Oil and Weapons. It’s a fight over whose business interests will prevail and control the profits of national trade and production.
Meanwhile, the only friends the US has in this world is a scattering of countries that bought into that Anglo-Saxon culture, plus the one country that donated said culture to us. Everyone else is either a conditional trading partner, always looking for a better deal, or one of our many enemies, whom we have provoked endlessly. US foreign policy will slowly shift over to serve the interests of the new status quo, but it’s the same spiteful abuse it ever was.
I submit that, if you can see it from this angle, all the political posturing and grandstanding is a lot easier to understand. Indeed, it becomes fairly predictable. Granted, there are some details I’ve left out in this painting with a broad brush, but if you already know about them, you are smart enough to get what I’m saying.
The US has defied God pretty consistently. Not once have we stood up for His Word and we have never really had much shalom, just some poor substitutes that never satisfy. We can see that much as a mere matter of Noah’s Covenant. God’s wrath is upon us; we were never in compliance and His patience is gone. The only question is who gets to knock us down and how badly we will hurt when we fall.