I really don’t want this ministry to become a political sounding board, but I am going to make an exception today because of what I see happening.
It doesn’t have to do with any policies or choices that President Trump (yes, he is- deal with it) has recently initiated, or with the controversy (ongoing and most likely, never stopping) associated with the past election, but with the reactions of the people to these events.
I have read about a shooting in a Canadian mosque where the main things written about the shooter is that he is pro-Israel and pro-Trump. Maybe those were his motivations, but I think he was probably anti-Muslim before he decided to be pro-Israel or pro-Trump.
In fact, what I think is this (and please comment below if you agree or disagree, although I will not let this discussion get out of hand): anyone who has a grudge against a people or a religion have it for their own reasons and not because of who is in charge. What they do, though, is use the person in charge as their excuse for taking the actions they would have done, anyway. And the media? They eat it up!
Was it Jodie Foster’s fault that John Hinckley, Jr. tried to assassinate President Reagan? This attack against a mosque has no more merit to it than that excuse did.
When the American diplomat’s in Iran were taken hostage, many Americans attacked and brutally mistreated many Arab people living in America. No one protested that.
During the Second World War, Japanese Americans (who, for the record, were Americans that were of Japanese descent) were herded up and forced into concentration camps (yes, that is what they were) for years until the war was over. It was a despicable event in our history (just one of many), but no one protested or attacked President Roosevelt for doing it, at least not on the same level as what is happening today.
When the world seems to be falling apart (or maybe we should say, tearing itself apart) the best thing to do to seek answers to what we, those who worship God, should do is to look in the Manual and see what God has told us to do:
Proverbs 24:21-22– My son, fear the Lord and the king, and do not join with those who do otherwise, for disaster will arise suddenly from them, and who knows the ruin that will come from them both?
Hebrews 13:17- Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they are keeping watch over your souls, as those who will have to give an account. Let them do this with joy and not with groaning, for that would be of no advantage to you.
Titus 3:1- Remind them to be submissive to rulers and authorities, to be obedient, to be ready for every good work,
1 Peter 2:17- Honor everyone. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the emperor.
(OK, let the jokes fly about ‘Trump’ and ‘Emperor’ in the same sentence)
Romans 13:1-7- Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment. For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad.
Some of these may be a little out of context, but what Yeshua (Jesus) tells us, as well as God, is to obey God, and trust in God that the rulers He has appointed over you will also be judged by God. This, of course, is culturally a little different today, since in the biblical days the rulers were not elected. As such, in our day, because we elect the rulers we do have a responsibility to ensure that our rulers are just and true, subjecting themselves to the laws that govern all of us.
As a life-long student of history (my undergraduate degree specialized in early American history), I have to say that more often than not, our rulers have fallen short of that ideal. And when they have, to the extent that it is known, we have taken action: President Johnson (Andrew, not Lyndon) was impeached, President Clinton was impeached, and President Nixon was (essentially) forced to resign. Thomas Jefferson has been quoted as saying that the tree of liberty must be watered with the blood of revolution, which today is more peaceably accomplished through demonstrations and protests, as we have seen since the election results of last year.
So, what’s the point? The point is that God is in charge, and if you believe that then you need to show it by accepting and respecting His choices.
We all complain, and we all seem to want someone else to do something about it. So, unless you are willing to do something against the leadership that God has placed above you, just give it a rest! I am fed up with all this hullabaloo about Russians hacking our systems- they’ve been at it for decades; the Chinese hack into our networks to gain political and military secrets and the Russians have their pharmaceutical websites to rip off the world. They have been doing this for years and will continue to do so. The media is making a big deal out of it not because it is a recent development, but to ride the wave of discontentment that had this country nearly split apart, politically.
I believe in our American system of jurisprudence, and I also know from my study of history that we have done more to promote justice, fair treatment and democracy than any other country in the world. We have our problems, and we will always have our problems; you can never please everyone. Now here’s a rose-colored glasses viewpoint, if ever there was one: if everyone was willing to go along with the majority and work together for the common good, we would be as close to an ideal form of government as human beings could ever create.
I am waiting for the only truly perfect government: a pure theocracy with Yeshua sitting on the throne over the earth as King of kings. It is coming, and until then all I can do is respect what rulers we have (if not the person, then the position) and work with them to try to make this country better. And if I disagree with the policies, and think I have a better one, then do something about it within the legal system. When I was in management and someone didn’t like what I was doing I would ask them for a better plan. If they had one, I would be willing to consider it (asking for suggestions doesn’t mean having to take them) and if they only wanted to complain, I didn’t want to hear it.
I am still the same way- either put up or shut up!
God is very much like that, too; He is always willing to listen to prayer; however, if you only complain about something, but won’t walk in faith to make change happen, God will not be going out of His way to support you. Prayer is asking God to make something happen, but we have to work towards it in faithful expectation.
In Matthew 21:22 , Yeshua tells us that we can pray for anything, and if we have faith, we will receive it. Yacov tells us (James 2:17) that faith without works is dead, so put these two together and we what we are being told is that when we pray for something, faithfully believing it will happen, we will receive it, and the way we show faithfully believing is to perform works, i.e., do what we prayed to receive as if we already have it.
So, if you want to change the legal system, write a bill and start getting the requisite number of signatures to put it before the Congress. If you want to change a policy, come up with a better policy and begin to get support, legally and respectfully.
In the meantime, respect the authority placed over you by GOD and work with it to make things as good as they can be.