Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Romans 13

Tom Knapp has called my attention to an interesting article at the Center for a Stateless Society:

Give Nothing Unto Caesar

It has some interesting historical research, but reaches a faulty conclusion.

Jesus said we are not to resist evil, but "turn the other cheek" (Matthew 5:39). This does not mean that cheek-slappers are a "divine institution." It simply describes a Christian response to evil-doers.

Taxation is the moral equivalent of theft. But Biblical logic does not lead us to conclude that we should not pay the thief. The Bible says pay your taxes. "Turn the other cheek." "Resist not evil."

The desire to tax other people is sinful. The desire to rule over others by force is sinful. The desire for vengeance is sinful. The desire for a civil government is therefore idolatry. The desire to have a civil government is a rejection of God (1 Samuel 8). Therefore the State is evil. The State is a judgment sent by God.

But our relationship with these evil rulers is characterized by respect and honor (1 Peter 2:17; 1 Timothy 6:1; Exodus 22:28; Romans 13:7), not insult and defiance.

Our goal is persuasion, not revolution.

We must beat our swords into plowshares and help archists repent.

But this is not "us" vs. "them."

We all have our swords and we all want to be as gods.

We're in this together.

"Honor all men. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the king."
1 Peter 2:17

For Further Study:


Rushdoony on the Tribute Money

Jesus and the Tax Revolt - Rushdoony

I'm going to have to take a closer look at these (maybe after the election!):


Romans 13:1-7 - Jesus Radicals Discussion Forum

Obedience to the state; An exegetical exploration of Romans 13. - unlearning the problem


Mark R. Kreitzer, Ph.D. said...

Sad . . . you seem to make a fundamental philosophical error at the beginning in the major premise: All force is evil. This cannot be justified by Scripture else Joshua, David, Abraham rescuing Lot, Jesus sending armies against Jerusalem, etc would be evil. ONLY unjustified aggressive force is evil. (Non-aggression principle not equal to Non-violence principle).

Second, you make an unwarranted false premise is stating that all taxation is the moral equivalent to theft. Then the tenth tax to God's Palace and his palace servants with which to help the poor and the needy as well is evil. No, taxation is to support what God defines as the ONE necessary function of civil government -- exercise of completely impartial biblical justice.

Who, however, defines impartial justice? Who defines the four governments? Who defines justified force? Who defines government spheres? Who defines functions and boundaries of each? The God of Scripture. Seen in this light and combining Rom 12 and 13 as this site does, Christian minarchy (i.e., a strictly limited Christian Constitutional Republic) is the answer not non-Christian anarchy. A strictly limited civil government is only one of four governments (ecclessial--rule by elders under Christ), familial (rule by father and mother under God-in-Christ), civil (a Christic Republic with the framework of the Decalogue under God in Christ), and the FOUNDATIONAL self-government by the Holy Spirit in Christ.

Keep thinking! (Read Chuck Baldwin on Rom 13 to see why Ron Paul says that he is a minarchist. Then read and refute Gary DeMar God and Government. Then re-read Rushdoony. He is not an anarchist but a minarchist).

Kosin University

Kevin Craig said...

Thanks for your comments, MRK. I'm honored. Here's my response.