Most Christians, including those who genuinely want to uphold family life, are convinced that government as an institution was placed on earth by God. They include the well known “family values” campaigner, Dr. James Dobson who recently said publicly:
“The institution of the family is one of the Creator’s most marvelous and enduring gifts to humankind …before He established the two other great human institutions, the church and the government.”
There are, of course, chapters of the Bible dedicated to or explaining the creation of Adam and Eve. And there are many chapters, even the whole book of Acts, dedicated to the establishing of the church. So if Dr. Dobson is correct, then surely there must be at least some verses establishing that other “marvellous and enduring” gift to mankind?
But nobody seems to know where they are, so let us look for any signs around a key Biblical checkpoint:
In the New Testament (Romans 4:11) Abraham is called, the “father of all those who believe“. Swords Into Plowshares... Best Price: $4.00 Buy New $15.99 (as of 11:36 EST - Details)
Because Abraham persisted in believing and then acting upon a particular promise from God, in doing so he received a “credit” for righteousness, even though he did not deserve it. That is, although his outward behaviour often came up short, the internal choice he made to trust God contrary to all appearances got him into a special contractual arrangement with God, who promised:
“Surely in blessing I will bless you, and multiplying I will multiply you.”
Prior to the New Covenant, which came based upon exactly the same principle of internal faith, that is about as good a relationship with God as it could be.
So in order to search for any divine origin of the State as an institution, the question here has to be: Did God therefore set Abraham up as a king over all the others, to rule them righteously and make them better people, by force if necessary?
The Natural Order
Of course, God did not… Instead, in relating to Abraham, the unit of social order upheld by God was the same one established in the beginning: Abraham’s family household. It was also a family business and in time, hundreds came to work for him and some became permanent members of his household as servants.
Since Abraham is called the “father of all those who believe” and since he was under no government and was head of no government: Why then would those of us who believe today seek any other way of life?
Abraham did rule his own household and businesses reasonably well, no doubt. But in a world that was a minefield of private and state violence, it was the contract or “covenant” with God that made him very rich. In a world of tyranny, Abraham was also a perpetual traveller, which enabled him to retain independence from the oppressive systems around him.
There is a specific word for this kind of civil and social order. Today it often conveys only images of old men, with flowing beards and walking staffs – rather like Charlton Heston’s portrayal of Moses. The word is also sometimes wrongly associated with brutal or irresponsible male machismo behaviour.
But it is the Book of Hebrews, chapter 7 and verse 4, which makes reference to Abraham as: “the patriarch.”
The true meaning of “patriarchy” or of a “patriarchal” society is almost lost: Not unlike the word “anarchy” its meaning omits any reference to the state as a legitimate authority. Since the record shows Abraham was personally free from state power, owned much private property, had great wealth – and paid no taxes – in terms of economic order, he could therefore be called an “anarcho-capitalist“.
Anarchy, Chaos and Natural Order
However, unless qualified in this way, the general term “anarchy” alone might to some also imply opposition to household authority, business management structures, private property, or to any other form of non-state jurisdiction. Government propagandists have long seized upon this ambiguity to render the word as a euphemism for “chaos” and apply it to any and all opposition to tyranny.
Conveniently for these ministries of propaganda, there are some so-called “anarchists” who actually do seek to destroy all private authority. Despite their name, the reality is that their prime instrument to accomplish this dark vision is… the state. According to their theory, only when the final idyllic dream of perfect equality is eventually fulfilled, might this instrument of its imposition be discarded too. Rather like a bank robber promising to put the gun down only when he is sure everyone will voluntarily do exactly as they are told. Of course, that is a day which will never come.
In other words, they are statists: Unwashed, unkempt examples of which – often with earrings in unusual places – are those typically held up as evil “anarchists” by the mainstream media, and usually only after they have damaged some private property.
Statists can also claim that the Bible makes no direct mention of “anarchy” per se. But even given some possible ambiguity over whether or not the word refers to government rulers exclusively, that point is still a technicality. Paul the Apostle for example instructed:
“…your faith should not be in the wisdom of men but in the power of God… we speak… not the wisdom of this age, nor of the rulers of this age, who are coming to nothing”.
If these rulers are indeed “coming to nothing” then it is clearly God’s will that we be without them. For confirmation of this, look also at 1 Corinthians 15:24-25 where such rulers are identified as “enemies” – and could hardly therefore be the “ordained” servants of God:
“Then comes the end, when He delivers the kingdom to God the Father, when He puts an end to all rule and all authority and power. For He must reign till He has put all enemies under His feet.”
Even that last bastion of supposedly “limited government” conservatives – government as a God-ordained monopoly force of “law and order” – was directly addressed and contradicted by God through the Apostle Paul:
“Dare any of you, having a matter against another, go to law before the unrighteous, and not before the saints? …If then you have judgments concerning things pertaining to this life, do you appoint those who are least esteemed by the church to judge? I say this to your shame…. Why do you not rather [let yourselves] be cheated?” 1 Cor 6
“Limited government” Christian conservatives are then reduced to arguing that a “good” government would not be included in that scripture. Yet they will struggle to name one, or to define “good” – especially when to be “good” a government would have to stop stealing under threat of force and ultimately death (ie. taxation). In which case it could no longer be called a government.
That occasionally a law on the books might be good; or that it may be right to pray and act to see that evil laws are eliminated or taxes reduced; or that some governments may be more restrained than others; cannot camouflage the evil at the very heart of the kingdoms of this world – all of them:
Then the devil, taking Him up on a high mountain, showed Him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time. And the devil said to Him, “All this authority I will give You, and their glory; for this has been delivered to me, and I give it to whomever I wish.Therefore, if You will worship before me, all will be Yours.” And Jesus answered and said to him, “Get behind Me, Satan! For it is written, ‘You shall worship the LORD your God, and Him only you shall serve.’”
The word “anarchy” simply means “without rulers” and it is an expression in the negative – just as “anti-war” for example, is the negative form of being positively for “peace”. So while the word “anarchy” is not used in the Bible and is only implicit within these and other scriptures, the more positive word, “patriarch” – or “fatherly rule” – is used explicitly.
In a similar way, Christians are instructed to be positively for the Kingdom (domain) of God, which would directly imply the “anti-state” negative – i.e. opposition to any other king, kingdom or government… a point which is made clear even within the Ten Commandments:
“You shall have no other gods beside me; you shall not bow down to them, nor serve them...”
The wording of the Commandment here recognises that those who do serve heathen gods, may not deny there is a Creator God, but simply perceive another god or power to be a necessary and additional intermediary or assistant.
So it is with the state – and confirmation of this is to be found even more explicitly in 1 Samuel, Chapter 8. When after 450 years, God’s people of Israel did seek a government, it was specifically identified as turning away from God and toward another false god:
“But the thing displeased Samuel when they said, ‘Give us a king to judge us.’ So Samuel prayed to the LORD. And the LORD said to Samuel, ‘Heed the voice of the people… for they have not rejected you, but they have rejected Me that I should not reign over them… they have forsaken Me and served other gods…’”
War on the Family
Except for academic purposes, in reality it is not possible to separate social from economic aspects of life. Greedy, power hungry officials know this and so for over a hundred years at least, the race to expand the state has included crushing the family and fatherhood.
In the Christian West, the state-contrived and unnecessary First World War severly devastated the population of men. Women having suffered from that loss as dependants, along with their children, then began looking for provision from the state – which could only be accomplished by becoming voters. These were joined by other women, who more purposefully looked to the state to “empower” or “liberate” them from natural male leadership – which has indeed, to some degree, always been abused.
After creating The Great War, state central planning and central banking played its role in creating the Great Depression and then other economic problems, undermining the ability of ordinary men to provide for their families. Many, in their unbelief, helplessness and human weakness called on government for help. As they did so, the culture began to turn from faith anf fatherhood, to begging for and then demanding “entitlement” to the fuits of other’s labour.
Gradually at first, the state began to assume the roles that the father of a family had earlier borne, including responsibility for the upbringing of children, beginning with their education. But it took yet another World War cull of males, to unleash the full-on welfare state with its army of social workers. Heavily infiltrated by socialist idealogues and by networks of paedophiles, their “authority” is today enforced not with the painful but harmless fatherly “rod of correction” – but with the terror of child-abduction, and with secret courts, decisions and assessments backed by the force of police clubs and guns.
As this progressed, the state-regulated mass media also replaced the role of Christian churches as a moral guide. Vice became virtue: Money for nothing, housing for nothing, healthcare for nothing, families without fathers, smacking criminalized, sex without responsibility for its consequences. The lies of the state – just as in the economic realm – offered “freedom” from social responsibility and consequences.
This culture then overflowed to influence church doctrine on family matters, which became corrupted across most denominations – and with the flimsiest of extra-scriptural justification: Abortion, divorce, contraception, women in church leadership (ie. publicly overruling their husbands – 1 Tim 2-3, 1 Peter 3) and homosexuality were all once almost universally opposed.
Today instead, attempting to “fix” politics with pseudo-moral fads (while beating the drums of war, killing, and the police state) has become the primary tool and focus for authoritarian religious conservatives.
So called “family values” fascism matches the pattern of economic fascism or “corporatism” exactly – where the superficial appearance of a business framework exists, but in reality all is subordinated to and one with the state. With great reverence and religious ceremony in many churches, even the lives of the young are offerd to the military state as a sacrifice. The modern day Pharissees fight only for the strongest grip on exactly the same tool of violence and force as the modern Sadducees – the more secular social “liberals”. Today’s “Herodians” – the politicians and officials – win either way.
Although government has failed miserably by any social measure, mainstream mass propaganda machines have convinced the now dependant populations that their problems are caused by still insufficient government money, power and socialist welfare – and that any steps towards freedom and family would be oppressive and disastrous.
In fact, the opposite is true: Not that fathers are always good or always right – but that the institution of family and fatherhood has always been the best there can ever be, and that the state alternative is always much, much worse – a hellish slippery slope to social chaos and tyranny.
The institution that must be fixed is not government, but the family framework of society.
Our Heavenly Father and Earthly Fathers
God our Father is identified in the New Testament as:
“the Father… from whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named” Ephesians 3:14-15
Here, the word “family” is actually the Greek word “patria” which is elsewhere combined with “archo” to form the word, “patriarch” – to literally mean fatherly or family rule.
It is therefore the term “patriarch” that best represents the correct Biblical word for the truly God-ordained leaders of spiritual, social and civil order. That word upholds fatherhood as the root and hub of all ruling natural authority, as instituted by God on earth – as it is in heaven.
For academic purposes, this might be termed a “patriarcho-capitalist” society, which serves to add a social dimension that is complementary to the primarily economic focus of the term, “anarcho-capitalist”.
Above all, such a society is founded upon respect for the human value, free will and earthly sovereignty bestowed upon each person by God our Father. Indeed, the choice to enter into a family/marriage in the first place is itself a voluntary contract. Even in spiritual matters, to accept or reject our Heavenly Father and the Lordship of Christ is an absolutely individual and voluntary choice. This also means that in addition to the core family framework, there are many other secondary forms of contractual association – economic, social and spiritual.
However, although free as individuals, everyone is necessarily a dependant for a significant part of their life – if not most of it. For men and women, that can mean 20 years or more from birth. For women, there are then decades more when taking on the responsibility to bear, properly nurture and educate children as a wife and mother. In addition to dependant women and children, who are normally a majority of the population, there are those who are old and/or unwell.
Fatherhood remains the most basic and natural form of authority for the protection, provision and social welfare of dependants: Fatherhood also offers the maximum possible liberty for dependent family members by functioning at the lowest possible level, by being closely tied to healthy self interest, and through a deep natural instinct of personal care and emotional affection.
The Psalmist wrote that children are like arrows, and blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them.
Recently, the London Daily Mail covered Britain’s biggest family – a married couple with a small bakery business and 17 children. In her 40’s, the mother still looked good.
Few of us manage, for health or other reasons, to “be fruitful and multiply” to that degree – but I often wonder just which part of “be fruitful and multiply” most denominations today (thankfully so far, Catholics excluded) do not understand?
Properly brought up in a family framework, children are nothing but a benefit to a free society.
Certainly, the state has made it much harder and more expensive to have children – seemingly impossible even, in places like the UK. But they are a curse and a burden only in the mindset of the dying, centrally planned societies of the welfare and healthcare state – along with death panels and euthanasia for the old and the sick.
Western populations have not only abandoned family life, they are literally dying out because their numbers are simply not being replenished, thanks to birth control and the forces that drive it. For millions without families or children – who will be there as they grow old in the coming years of economic turbulence? Or if they become unwell?
The welfare state? The welfare state is already economically unsustainable and overburdened with inefficiency and waste. In an economic collapse, it must do the same. Families are supposed to come together, churches and neighbours are supposed to fill the gap. But in most places, that culture is long gone, together with the morality and sense of duty that underpinned it. Will it return? Not unless Christian church teaching returns to the basic natural order of the Kingdom of God and stops glorifying the kingdoms of this world – and in ignorance therefore, the evil one who owns them.
I can personally recommend fatherhood and family above anything on this earth. Yet even above that, I can recommend the faithfulness of the God who promised, again through the Psalmist:
“I have been young and now I am old, but I have never seen the righteous forsaken nor his seed begging bread“
I refer prospective fathers – who like the rest of us, based on outward behaviour, might disqualify themselves from that promise – back to the opening paragraphs on obtaining that “credit” of righteousness, which was the starting point of Abraham the Patriarch’s free and blessed life. The kind of outward “righteousness”, soundness of mind and responsibilty that it takes to make a good father, can then spring up from an already established righteousness at the spiritual core of our being that only God can give.
Thankfully, from the greatest Father of all, through his Son the Christ, who was physically of the “seed” of Abraham – that gift is now freely available to all.