Democracy vs the Kingdom of God - Two opposing Systems

Discussion in 'General Discussions' started by Angela888, Sep 25, 2014.


Could Christians create their own Country ?

Poll closed Oct 2, 2014.
  1. Yes - it would be great to have a country ruled by God

    1 vote(s)
  2. No - its impossible

    4 vote(s)
  3. Other

    3 vote(s)
  1. Democracy vs the Kingdom of God - Two opposing Systems
    In every generation since the beginning of time, man has always dreamt of a paradise on earth. This dream for the ideal has been the driving force behind the motivation , inspiration and development of all philosophical ideas and government systems in all cultures worldwide and at all times. These have been developed, refined, and formalized.

    Democracy is just another man inspired and developed system that began to develop in ancient Greece as early as the 600 B.Cs. In ancient Athens democracy differed in important ways from the democracy we know today. The word democracy means rule by the people.

    In a democracy, governments operate by the will and vote of the people making every vote and opinion important, resulting in the majority ruling.

    The Holy Bible teaches us about a Kingdom ruled by God, not man. This means that in God’s Kingdom our opinion is of no importance and the only opinion that matters is God’s. Therefore it is evident how God’s Kingdom and a democracy are two different and opposing worlds.

    The majority of Christians worldwide live in Western countries which are also democracies. Many of these born-again believers, born and raised in democratic countries have a problem understanding what it means as believers to live a strong Kingdom life, which results in the power of God not being manifested. Could this be one of the main reasons why God’s Kingdom hasn’t come on earth?

    The commandments and teachings of Jesus Christ are simple and straightforward. Yet we in democracies are so used to debating issues, giving our own thoughts and opinions on scripture resulting many times in a weakening or misunderstanding of what God is trying to accomplish. We try to reach a compromise to keep everyone happy rather than SIMPLY recognize God’s Word as Law. Many times we are hasty to give our opinion on a matter which creates laziness in truly seeking God and the purposes He is seeking to accomplish.

    For anyone to live successfully in God’s Kingdom it requires a complete mental reversal. That means to stop thinking as democrats and to start thinking like citizens of a far greater Kingdom that is incorruptible and without blemish. Most of the church is ineffective and powerless because although saved, they are not converted in a way to think like citizens of this far superior Kingdom. I believe many saved people don’t have a revelation of the Eternal and powerful Kingdom of God but continue to live in their temporal state.

    God’s Kingdom isn’t where we bring our protests, our forming committees, our schedules etc to try and influence those that God is trying to work through. If there is going to be any real power released in the church, we need to come to a place where we realize we can’t play games with God. God is King over all creation. He is not a president or any leader we can vote in or out.

    God’s people are called to be citizens of His Kingdom, meaning democratic mindsets need to be laid aside. It means that we stop going on about political leaders as if they are the ones who can make a difference and to start trusting in Him. Ambassadors of Christ, that is your Divine commission to bring the Kingdom of Heaven to earth. Jesus Christ has redeemed us from the foolishness of any world system and given us His Kingdom. Why do we subject ourselves to the world again?
    C1oudwatch3r and Great Fiction say Amen and like this.
  2. One, day, this is going to happen. You can read about it in Revelation 21.

    Consider, though, the lesson of Abraham (then Abram) and God's promise for him in Genesis 15-16. Abraham believed God when He promised that his offspring would be as numerous as the stars. But He and Sarai decided to fulfill God's promise in their own way, instead of waiting for God to fulfill it in His perfect way, in His time, and many suffered the consequences of that decision.

    So we should certainly believe God's promise, but we should also wait for Him to fulfill that promise in His own way, in His own time, or we will assuredly suffer consequences of our own.

    Until that time, it is as you say: we are Ambassadors, living in the world, but not of it, among the nations of the world, but representing the Kingdom of our true citizenship. "For anyone to live successfully in God’s Kingdom it requires a complete mental reversal"? I couldn't agree more.
    Chris1 and C1oudwatch3r say Amen and like this.
  3. A most excellent summation for our Christian focus, and I enjoyed it immensely. I agree with you implicitly as our Master who is the Kings of Kings is gathering His own from the four corners of the earth even as we tread, and toil. We are optimistically blessed to know that the thrones of evil men will all be condemned and broken without hand, and His greatness will endure forever.

    Also Welcome

    I have a question that is difficult to answer. A conundrum, a disagreement and a crossroads that seems always to face the church though time.

    When the church and Christians begin to see with clarity the incredible spiritual focus you communicated, then what is the church then to do regarding social cooperation in the here-and-now before our Majesty transforms the earth for His rule? More direct, how are Christians to involve themselves with society now; are Christians to refrain from all politics to become invisible, are they to actively support or condemn political factions (parties), or is there a “role” or “position” that the church should assume?
    Where is the Messiah likes this.
  4. I like 1 Thess. 4 as a guide to living my life until His Kingdom comes. Because I'm an American, it is my responsibility to know what's going on in politics and to hopefully make wise voting choices according to my conscience, but not in the name of Jesus. My support of pro-life, liberty and freedom of religion issues is based on inspiration from the scriptures yet the 4th chapter of 1 Thess is my guidance on how I express that inspiration.
  5. The Imperial Church attempted to do what I think you are advocating here. The Roman Emperor was enormously important to the Church after the Edict of Milan and the Council of Nicaea. After the fall of the Western Empire, Christians in the Eastern, Byzantium Empire, even gave the Emperor the title now reserved to the Pope, "Vicar of Christ" or God's representative on Earth.

    Very rarely, however, has any theocratic government actually fulfilled it's purpose of applying God's divine love onto the citizens. Usually, it turns into politicians using this perception of being closer to God to impose their will on citizens.

    In any case, democracy, as I see it, is most useful in applying a "check" on political power. It is also useful for advocating needs, petitions and even making laws. God's laws are virtually impossible to apply in a systematic and useful manner because whoever is the magistrate in charge of enforcing it is not going to be infallible.

    I've considered the possibility of an ecclesiastical check on temporal rulers. However, it is a difficult thing to swing without falling prey to the evils of theocracy.
  6. I am also pro-life, pro-liberty and pro-freedom.

    Do you feel that these issues you mentioned are supported in scripture and that scripture will employ Christians to support and protect them in a the political process?
    C1oudwatch3r likes this.
  7. I think people can get worried about any type of theocratic governance, the idea of "don't push your religious views on the rest of us". As if they are not pushing their views as well. What are religious beliefs, but a "belief system", when compared to other belief systems or philosophies of how governance is determined and what kind of law will be enacted?
    Why are beliefs based on religion of any lesser value than those based on some man made philosophy? All people should be able to promote their political views influenced by their chosen belief system.

    The governing authority Jesus left us with, after He ascended, was a committee of 11. The 11 disciples then narrowed the field of candidates to two, and allowed God to choose the new 12th through drawing lots. We then see a council in Jerusalem making decisions on recommendations of teachings. So I believe God is in favor of, and endorses, mankind forming into groups, i.e. councils, committees, republican formations, to carry out governing functions, until He comes again.

    Concentrated power always corrupts the few who possess it, as it plays on the pride of man.
    Great Fiction and C1oudwatch3r say Amen and like this.
  8. I've always thought America was democracy. Lately, I've been hearing we are actually a republic. I guess there is a big difference but I don't know what it is.
  9. Yes, I see these beliefs/issues supported in the scriptures, but not politically. However, because scripture inspires me to love these principles and because I'm an American and have the right to make my voice heard on issues, then I do try to stay informed/speak out/vote wisely politically. I'm not sure what you mean by asking if scripture will "employ" Christians to support these issues in the political process. Are you asking if I feel that God is calling me to be political in the name of Jesus? If that is what you are asking, then no, that is not how I feel. I live my life quietly and look for opportunities to gently speak the Word of God.
  10. #10 Chris1, Sep 26, 2014
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2014
    A republic is a government that is based on equal representation. A democracy is basically mob rule. In it, the majority rules. In a republic, everyone has equal representation in government - which gives the minority a voice in government as well.

    This is better especially when you have a diverse society - which is most societies. It protects the one's who otherwise would have no voice at all.

    Mob rule is never a good thing - as we can see in history. A prime modern day example is actually Syria today. That is a country with many minorities there, and then there is a majority. The minorities wanted the freedom to practice their religion freely among other things, the majority wanted Islamic Shariah law. Right now, they are fighting one against the other for the minorities to keep a voice in government, and to have freedom of religion.

    A republic is what is needed there as a result, yet groups like al-Qaeda and Daesh are fighting for mob rule - otherwise known as democracy. This will never work in Syria. Ever. If they win, every single minority would end up having to flee the country. This is why all the minority groups are siding with Assad in this fight, because under Assad they had a voice in government and freedom of religion.
  11. Thank you for explaining that so succinctly. I like the idea of a republic better than a democracy then. I wonder how slavery survived so long in this country if it was a republic back then? That looks like "mob rule" out-voiced the minority!
  12. Slavery actually ruled back then, because only free white men could vote. The slaves didn't have any voice in government whatsoever, and neither did women.

    Therefore, what we had back then was a republic that only a few were allowed to be a party to. If that makes sense.
  13. Big Moose, I agree with most of your post but I have a question regarding the council in Jerusalem making decisions after the apostles finished teaching. When did this council begin to form and how do you know about it? Just curious...I'm new to church history.
  14. If you read Acts, you soon get a feel of how this came about. After Pentecost, the church group was growing very fast from the many new believers. First the Apostles were in charge of everything, and at some point needed help ministering to the masses. They started appointing persons as deacons and elders which created this council quite naturally.

    Acts 15 tells of what unfolded at the council. The church at Antioch was being told by certain people from Judea that they must be circumcised to be saved. Paul and Barnabas argued with them on this issue, apparently with no agreement. So Paul, Barnabas and a few others were sent by the church to Jerusalem to get an authoritative decision on the issue.
    They present their case, but apparently there was a group of Pharisees, who were believers and elders of the church in Jerusalem, who stated that these Gentile believers needed to be circumcised to conform to Moses' law. Peter and James speak and, in a great example of using scripture to support decision making within the church, convince the council to not endorse circumcision as a prerequisite to be saved. This may have been a moment of understanding for the apostles and elders that we are saved by grace and not works, influencing their future teaching about the saving power of God's grace.
  15. Mob rule can happen in a republic, although it is more difficult. Overwhelming majorities do get their way in a republic. One definition of a republic is representative democracy. The first two major political parties in the U.S. were the Federalists and the Republicans, now referred to by historians as Democratic Republicans. Federalists lost support eventually and disappeared, while the Democratic Republicans split and became just Republicans and Democrats.

    Slavery continued because there was not a majority to end it. Hearts and minds needed to change before this could happen. The society formed with slavery being accepted and, as we saw, it was difficult to remove, so much so that the Civil War was needed to end it. I believe Christianity played a huge role in this changing of hearts and minds to cause slavery's end.
    C1oudwatch3r likes this.
  16. It is a distinction without a difference. Democracy refers to a more general form of government whereby governance is granted by the consent of the governed. Republicanism tends to focus on slightly more on limited government rather than governmental consent. In reality, the UK, despite being a constitutional monarchy, is actually far more democratic than the US, but whereas the US has "entrenched" laws, which we call the constitution, the UK Parliament can pass whatever law they want at any time.

    The CIA defines the USA as a "Constitutionally based Federal Republic with strong democratic traditions".
  17. I noticed you mentioned the word "groups" in a plural context, thus does decentralization also play a role in your extrapolation?
  18. I appreciate yours and Big Moose' replies. The difference is clearer to me now and it also helps explain why we use an electoral vote.
  19. This will get a little complex but bare with me

    I would disagree but not by a direct positive charge from scripture but by deduction and an “indirect charge from scripture.” For scripture charges the Christian to “submit to ruling authorities, Romans 13:1” and ruling authorities are “political.” Thus we do have a “political charge” from scripture, that is "to submit to ruling authority.” However the charge is conditional, for we must always invoke Acts 5:29 as a prerequisite, and obey God more than human authority. Thus all that scripture commands us to do is “priority over our positive law from government,” yet to your credit almost all scripture is “non-political.”

    Therefore “if” ruling authorities create “positive law or civil law” that “does not” contradict scripture, then we have an “indirect political charge.” Why? Because if the charge from government is not in contradiction with scripture then we are “scripturally charged to submit to political action.”

    Example: If the government makes a law that says, “Stealing is against the law” then that law is then an “indirect positive political charge from scripture for Christians to follow, because that authoritative charge by ruling authority does not contradict what scripture also commands us to do.” Thus the church should be “political to support and obey that stealing is wrong.”

    For more clarity:
    Supporting a law that stealing is bad are three things:
    1. A direct positive political charge from ruling authority
    2. A direct positive eternal charge from our highest authority God
    3. An indirect positive political charge from scripture because the positive political charge from government is not in conflict with scripture.

    However a devious rebuttal could then say: what of baptism? If then ruling authority were to make a law that says; “Be baptised or die.” Should the church support such an egregious law? For baptism would be positive law and is also supported in scripture? Surely many would die resisting baptism and great violence would ensue?
    The answer for this solve is Acts 5:29. For God in His delegation to mankind from Genesis is that we are born with "God-given highest authority over our own bodies." For forced baptism would be despotic. Thus our Declaration of Independence in the U.S. puts its in perspective for "why" they rejected the ruling authority of a despotic king.

    We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.--That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, --That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.
    Chris1 likes this.
  20. Yes, I think decentralization plays a huge role, whether it was intended by the early church fathers, or not. Prior to Christ and up to 70 AD, the Temple was the central focus for the Jews.
    The spread of the gospel caused churches to spring up in remote places, naturally removing power from those who had coalesced the power.

    Paul's letters give great insight into the formation of these early churches. Also the exposition of the body of Christ and how we are all members and have distinct God given abilities, and yet must work together for the church to function properly. In addition, there needs to be a mention of the freedom of the individual from the bonds of sin. Along with that, a personal relationship with Christ, foregoing the need of an earthly priest to connect you to God.
    As centuries pass, we see the ecclesiastical leadership make a power grab under the pope. Then, God intervenes again, making His Word available to more and more people. The result? The Protestant Reformation which causes all the more decentralizing of the power of authority over local churches.
    I have heard the number of Christian denominations of 41,000 bandied about. That is what I call decentralized.
    The only good I see of centralized authority is the ability to defend against a violent external threat. The U.S. has come closest to this balance of appropriate authority.

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