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The United States Constitutional Republic was built on the concept of immutable rights. Nearly all Americans have bought into this idea, believing individual rights are the path to freedom and prosperity. However, “immutable rights” is but another bill of goods that has further enslaved us, both physically and spiritually.

Rights vs. Responsibilities

The Bill of Rights was a compromise between the constitutional framers and the anti-federalists who opposed the Constitution as originally framed. In theory, the Bill of Rights protects the “unalienable rights” of “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness,” among other things. But have life, liberty, and happiness been advanced or protected since the first Ten Amendments were ratified? Since the Bill of Rights was adopted, have we had less government intrusion or has the Constitutional Republic merely licensed and limited those rights?

The Scriptures provide no evidence of God-given (or unalienable) rights. Even life and liberty are not rights, but rather responsibilities delegated by Yahweh.1 Of course, rights are much more popular than responsibilities. Everyone, including homosexuals and infant murderers, demand their rights. Few are interested in fulfilling their responsibilities.

The Puritan idea of rights and liberty was quite different from what the constitutional framers had in mind:

 John Winthrop [first governor of Massachusetts Bay Colony] … reminded his fellow-citizens of Massachusetts that a doctrine of civil rights [as in the Declaration of Independence and the Bill of Rights] which looked to natural or sinful man as its source and guardian [as in the Constitution’s Preamble] was actually destructive of that very liberty which they were seeking to protect. True freedom can never be found in institutions which are under the direction of sinful men, but only in the redemption wrought for man by Jesus Christ. Christ, not man, is the sole source and guarantee of true liberty.2

R.J. Rushdoony pointed out the sophistry of governments based upon freedom:

 ….[A] society which makes freedom its primary goal will lose it, because it has made, not responsibility, but freedom from responsibility, its purpose. When freedom is the basic emphasis, it is not responsible speech which is fostered but irresponsible speech. If freedom of press is absolutized, libel will be defended finally as a privilege of freedom, and if free speech is absolutized, slander finally becomes a right. Religious liberty becomes a triumph of irreligion. Tyranny and anarchy take over. Freedom of speech, press, and religion all give way to controls, totalitarian controls. The goal must be God’s law-order, in which alone is true liberty.3

True Liberty

True liberty is found only in the Spirit of the Lord and in the perfect law of liberty:

 …where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. (2 Corinthians 3:17)

But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed. (James 1:25)

James was not describing some New Covenant law that freed us to do whatever we wish. That kind of freedom is nothing more than baptized humanism, which eventually leads to anarchism, one of the quickest paths to legal slavery. Instead, James described the same perfect law of liberty—Yahweh’s commandments, statutes, and judgments—as did King David:

 The law of Yahweh is perfect, converting the soul…. (Psalm 19:7)

So shall I keep thy law continually for ever and ever. And I will walk at liberty…. (Psalm 119:44-45)

Forgiveness (liberty from our personal sins) is realized through Jesus’ blood-atoning sacrifice and resurrection from the grave.4 All other liberty is found in the implementation of Yahweh’s perfect law of liberty. It is never found in the hollow promises of man-made covenants such as the United States Constitution. Yahweh’s grace on the personal level and Yahweh’s law on the community level are our only means to true freedom. When either of these is abused, freedom is also abused:

 Whenever freedom is made into the absolute, the result is not freedom but anarchism. Freedom must be under law, or it is not freedom…. Only a law-order which holds to the primacy of God’s law can bring forth true freedom, freedom for justice, truth, and godly life. Freedom as an absolute is simply an assertion of man’s “right” to be his own god; this means a radical denial of God’s law-order. “Freedom” thus is another name for the claim by man to divinity and autonomy. It means that man becomes his own absolute.5

Constitutional Rights

Constitutional rights are now interpreted to include natural rights, human rights, civil rights, political rights, and women’s rights. They also include the right to openly worship and promote gods other than Yahweh, the right to commit sodomy, and even the right to murder your unborn child:

 Justice William O. Douglas … joined the majority opinion of the U.S. Supreme Court in Roe [v. Wade], which stated that a federally enforceable right to privacy, “whether it be founded in the Fourteenth Amendment’s concept of personal liberty and restrictions upon state action, as we feel it is, or, as the District Court determined, in the Ninth Amendment’s reservation of rights to the people, is broad enough to encompass a woman’s decision whether or not to terminate her pregnancy.”6

Former Assistant Attorney General Stephen J. Markman confirmed that the unbiblical rights enumerated above are included in the Ninth Amendment’s unidentified enumeration of rights:

 …the Ninth Amendment constitutes a “license to constitutional decisionmakers [sic] to look beyond the substantive commands of the constitutional text to protect fundamental rights not expressed therein.” Rights to abortion, contraception, homosexual behavior, and similar sexual privacy rights have already been imposed by judges detecting such rights in the Ninth Amendment.7

Because the framers failed to expressly establish the Constitution on Biblical ethics, it was inevitable that the Ninth Amendment would be interpreted to include the above list, as well as other Biblical infractions.

The theory of unalienable or natural rights can be traced back to the Age of Enlightenment. The term “natural rights,” as employed by 18th-century men, is not compatible with the Bible. Deuteronomy 28 does not say we have a natural, human, or civil right to anything. Rather, we must serve Yahweh as God in order to receive His blessings:

 And it shall come to pass, if thou shalt hearken diligently unto the voice of Yahweh thy God, to observe and to do all his commandments which I command thee this day, that Yahweh thy God will set thee on high above all nations of the earth: And all these blessings shall come on thee, and overtake thee, if thou shalt hearken unto the voice of Yahweh thy God. (Deuteronomy 28:1-2)

People who demand their rights are like children, focused only on themselves. People who pursue righteousness are focused on Yahweh and their fellow man. The former promote a government of, by, and for the people; the latter promote a government of, by, and for Yahweh.

The “rights” already mentioned, along with countless other legal immoralities, can be traced back to the United States Constitution. Had the framers provided for a government established upon Yahweh’s moral laws, the constitutional “rights” claimed by so many people today would be recognized and punished as moral aberrations.

 

Related posts: Amendment 1: Government-Sanctioned Polytheism

Amendment 9: Rights vs. Righteousness

 

1. YHWH, the English transliteration of the Tetragrammaton, is most often pronounced Yahweh. It is the principal Hebrew name of the God of the Bible and was inspired to appear nearly 7,000 times in the Hebrew Old Testament. In obedience to the Third Commandment and in honor of His memorial name (Exodus 3:15), and the multitudes of Scriptures that charge us to use, proclaim, swear by, praise, extol, call upon, bless, glorify, and hold fast to His name, I have chosen to memorialize His name by using it throughout this blog. For a more thorough explanation concerning important reasons for using the sacred name of God, see “The Third Commandment.”

2. C. Gregg Singer, A Theological Interpretation of American History (Phillipsburg, NJ: Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Co., 1964) p. 19.

3. Rousas John Rushdoony, The Institutes of Biblical Law (The Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Company, 1973) p. 581.

4. Mark 16:15-16; Acts 2:36-41, 22:1-16; Romans 6:3-4; Galatians 3:26-27; Colossians 2:11-13; and 1 Peter 3:21 should be studied to understand what is required to be covered by the blood of Jesus and forgiven of your sins. For a more thorough explanation concerning baptism and its relationship to salvation, the book Baptism: All You Wanted to Know and More may be requested from Mission to Israel Ministries, PO Box 248, Scottsbluff, Nebraska 69363, for free.

5. Rushdoony, p. 583.

6. Roe v. Wade, 410 U.S. 113, quoted in “Ninth Amendment to the United States Constitution,” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ninth_Amendment_to_the_United_States_Constitution.

7. Stephen J. Markman, “The Coming Constitutional Debate,” Imprimis (Hillsdale, MI: Hillsdale College, 2010) vol. 39, num. 4, p. 5.

 

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1547673249 Norm Farnum

    Excellent article. We used it this morning for part of our our family’s devotional time. The quotes by Winthrop & Rushdoony were of a particularly prophetic nature!

    Thank you for your diligence!

    • http://www.bibleversusconstitution.org/ Ted R. Weiland

      Norm, you’re welcome. I’m especially pleased you found it good fare for your entire family.

  • Roger Mitchell

    Ted, I am in agreement with Norm Farnum. This is an excellent article. Incidentally, I tried a couple times to post this on Facebook via your link, but was unable to make the connection. Nevertheless, I will post a link the old-fashioned way, that is, manually.
    Good work!

    • http://www.bibleversusconstitution.org/ Ted R. Weiland

      Roger, thanks for passing it on to your list. Thank you also for your contributions toward the kingdom. I don’t have it handy. If you want to provide the URL here to your blog, that would be great.

  • Karl Ready

    I haven’t read much of your writing, I find this to be very well done. It appears as though the French had accepted the basis for the Bill of Rights in their Declaration of the Rights of Man only one month before work began on the Amendments to the U.S. Constitution, quite a coincidence don’t you think? Jesus asked in Luke 18:8-9, whether or not the Earth would be filled to the full with the self righteous or would their still be people of faith?

    • http://www.bibleversusconstitution.org/ Ted R. Weiland

      Karl, I did not know that about the timing of France’s Rights of Man and the Bill of Rights. Thanks for sharing that piece of interesting information.

    • T. Edward Price

      Karl, thanks for your input. You are correct about the timing of the two documents. This is one of the reasons I adamantly state that the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution both trace their origins directly to the Age of Enlightenment. This is where we can find the natural law concepts of property, liberty, and life. Does this sound familiar? What a “coincidence” that in 1789 Thomas Jefferson was in Paris as a U.S. diplomat. It is clear to any astute observer that the seventeen enumerated articles contained in the Declaration of the Rights of Man and the Citizen had significant influence on the Bill of Rights. Understanding the humanistic nature of the Enlightenment and the French Revolution makes it easier to understand the same philosophy deeply entrenched in the hearts and souls of the framers.

  • David Loring

    What else can be expected from men who publicly proclaim one thing and are members of the secret society of Freemasonry? Freemasonry’s triune godhead is called Jobaalon (sp.?) and is comprised of YHWH (Jo), Baal and Apollyon (on). This is a clear violation of the 1st Commandment. One only needs to study ancient history to see the abominable practices of Baal and Apollyon worship to understand why we are experiencing the moral decay that is happening today.

    • http://www.bibleversusconstitution.org/ Ted R. Weiland

      David, although not all the framers were Masons, enough of the key one’s were so as to certainly have their influence upon the Constitution and the government. They’re still with us today doing the same. Thanks for sharing.

  • jime1

    Well, the argument as presented here, seems to be predicated upon the notion that men can be like angles. IF that were true then mans law would in fact be rather unnecessary. Unfortunately, men are not angels, never have been and never will be. There is absolutely nothing angelic about the human race. Man has a innate instinct to do the unspeakable. Thirty minutes spent reading in any reasonably good history book will demonstrate that quite well. The Almighty gave us rather large brains and He has every right to expect us to use them. Who ever wrote this nonsense seems to have forgotten that.

    As for the quackery of calling our Founding Fathers anything other God fearing men is abject insanity. We have enough conspiracy theorists among us, we SURE don’t require any more. To those who claim our Founders were NOT Christian men, show us PROOF or hush. Can anyone truly know what is in another man’s heart? Remember, bearing false witness is a grave matter to the Almighty and some should keep that in mind at all times. “Let he who is without sin cast the first stone” Remember that ? Now hush !

    • http://www.bibleversusconstitution.org/ Ted R. Weiland

      jime1, thank you for sharing your thoughts. However, it would seem you’re saying that unregenerate man can do a better job of governing other men with their fickle and usually immoral edicts than can regenerate men with Yahweh’s immutable morality as codified in His commandments, statutes, and judgments. It’s because man is not angelic that Yahweh provided us with His perfect law and altogether righteous judgments to govern ourselves and, of course, with Christ’s redeeming blood sacrifice to redeem us from our sins (our failures in keeping His perfect law perfectly–1 John 3:4).

      As for proof that the founders/framers were not the Christian men that we Christians so desperately want them to be, I recommend Dr. Albert Mohler’s (President of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary) recent interview with Dr. Gregg Frazer (Professor of History at the Master’s College in California) at http://www.albertmohler.com/2012/09/10/what-did-america%E2%80%99s-founders-really-believe-a-conversation-with-historian-gregg-frazer-transcript/. The framers’ own writings, as provided by Dr. Frazer, demonstrate that they were neither deists in the purest sense of the word, nor were they Christians in the Biblical sense of the word.

    • Roger

      Jime1, there’s a saying that you can’t beat something with nothing. Whether you want to admit it or not, Ted Weiland has something. Can you beat what he has or do you only have criticism and foolish comments to offer?
      There’s another saying. Put up or shut up. If you can refute his arguments in a mature, Christian way, then do so. If you can’t, maybe you should consider the possibility that you might be wrong.
      Why don’t you start by proving that the founders actually WERE Christian men instead of demanding that someone prove they weren’t. As far as I’m concerned, Ted has done a pretty good job of that already. Now it’s up to you to show him where he’s wrong.
      Oh, just one more saying. The proof is in the pudding. My guess is that you don’t have any pudding. And by the way, before you attack me for not offering anything, you should read what I post on my own blog.
      http://poorrogersalmanac.wordpress.com

    • Lorenzo Oyle

      VERY GOOD! I stumbled upon this site and have very mixed thoughts (and feelings) about the veracity of the author’s ideas. I am considered by liberals to be an extreme right-wing-gun-toting-Christian-nut……but i fear a government based upon religious dogma, even if it be Christian, may morph into a Christian version of Sharia Law!! Meanwhile, I will continue to affect change (as I am able) within this current Communist coup fiat “government” hell-bent on destroying America! I fear Christian fanatics almost as much as i fear Islamic fanatics. Although, i have yet to see a Baptist blowing up an airplane or an I.E.D!

  • jime1

    Oh, how easy it is is to condemn someone unavailable to defend himself. Someone below asks about the self righteous. Really? Listen to yourselves!

  • http://www.facebook.com/meg.tapley.flutist Meg Tapley

    It is easy to allow other people to pursue their rights, but difficult or impossible to make people fulfill their responsibilities. Our government has chosen to not interfere with our rights, in hopes that we reciprocate by choosing to take responsibility, because they know they cannot force us to do so. If you feel that taking responsibility, and finding true liberty, means following God’s laws, then follow them wholeheartedly.

    In any case, if you are a US citizen, then you benefit from the Bill of Rights. For example, if you go to church, you can do so openly, no matter what denomination or religion you are. That was not always the case, and it is not certain that it will continue to be the case (although I certainly hope it will!). Be thankful while you can.

    • http://www.bibleversusconstitution.org/ Ted R. Weiland

      Meg, thanks for joining the dialogue. If you’re as young as your profile picture appears, you are very articulate for such a young person. Good for you!

      Here’s where I believe your reasoning breaks down. Yahweh’s morality and the Bill of Rights are not compatible. In fact, there is hardly an article or amendment in the entire Constitution that, in some fashion, is not antithetical, if not hostile to Yahweh’s sovereignty and morality as codified in His commandments, statutes, and judgments.

      If you will spend time reading “Bible Law vs. the United States Constitution: The Christian Perspective” at http://www.bibleversusconstitution.org/BlvcOnline/blvc-index.html, I believe you will see what I’m talking about.

      If you will take our Constitution Survey, found in the right-hand sidebar, I will send you a complimentary copy of the 85-page “Primer” of the book just mentioned.

      • http://www.facebook.com/meg.tapley.flutist Meg Tapley

        I spoke to a friend of mine about this, who is a 26-year Christian and has made significant study of both the Constitution and the Bible, about this, and he had this to say:

        “Not to put too fine of a point on it, but your claim to know the “moral” boundary in any way, of an infinite God is bordering heresy. It is not possible to ascribe morality to an infinite being; and none of the esteemed authors in any of the Scriptures, about which I am intimately familiar, attempt to do so.

        P.S. the Constitution, as an amendable document, is by its very nature positivist and not normative, and therefore amoral.”

        • http://www.bibleversusconstitution.org/ Ted R. Weiland

          Meg, I can trump your friend’s 26 years as a Christian by 13 years, most of which time I’ve also served as a Pastor. Hopefully, this should demonstrate that this is NOT the way to determine truth. I suggest that instead you do as Paul charged Timothy in 2 Timothy 2:15.

          Furthermore, if your friend has been a Christian for 26 years, he should know that to make such a judgment about something he’s never read is, according to Proverbs 18:13, to only prove himself a fool. Please pass this response on to him and let him know that the same offer for a free “Primer” is on the table for Him as well. This way he can remedy his Proverbs 18:13 mistake.

          To say the least, I’m taken back by your statement about morality. Are you saying Yahweh is immoral–that is, unrighteous? As for knowing His morality, He’s conveyed it to us in His moral law–that is, in His commandments, statutes, and judgments.

          To claim the constitution is amoral is to claim it is morally neutral. There is no such thing in life. Moreover, the very fact that there is hardly an article or amendment that is not antagonistic to Yahweh’s morality proves it is not an amoral document.

          • http://www.facebook.com/meg.tapley.flutist Meg Tapley

            You are correct, of course, in that the Constitution and Bill of Rights are not totally amoral, being written by humans, and in that they are based on ideals rooted in the Enlightenment Humanist movement. But Enlightenment ideals, themselves, come partly from a reading of Scripture, and in particular the New Testament, which emphasizes the dignity of all human beings, exemplified by Jesus himself, as he ministered not only to the Jews, but also to tax collectors, prostitutes, the disabled, and criminals. The Bill of Rights was an attempt to legally protect that dignity.

            It wasn’t perfect, of course. But because the Founding Fathers knew that they were only men, writing laws for men, they made provision for the Constitution to be amended. If they had not done this, women would not be able to vote and we would probably still be using slave labor today. It is hard to claim that is not an improvement.

            Today there are two countries in the world that are run using the laws of a religion – “God’s Laws” as opposed to the laws of man. One is the Vatican; the other is Iran. Perhaps you know more about the situation in these countries than I do; but the impression I’ve received is that the Vatican tends strongly towards corruption, while Iran is a good place only for men. (Yes, I do have a vested interest in women’s rights. Can you blame me?)

            I am curious, though. If this country were yours to run, how would you do it?

            (My friend’s point, incidentally, about Yahweh and morality is that a)
            God is incapable of doing wrong, and therefore does not need a system
            of morality for Himself, and b) even if he did, we, as finite human
            beings, would not be able to comprehend it. He was not debating that God gave humans a system of morality to follow; that much is obvious. Apologies on his behalf; his choice of words in that remark made him seem less wise than he is.)

          • http://www.bibleversusconstitution.org/ Ted R. Weiland

            If “the Founding Fathers knew that they were only men, writing laws for men,” they should have looked to Yahweh’s immutable morality as codified in His perfect law and altogether righteous judgments (Psalm 19:7-11) as the foundation of government. Had they done so, they would have created a government of, by, and for Yahweh rather than a humanistic government of, by, and for the people. The latter provides for the people to destroy themselves (look where we’re at today). The former provides for the ultimate government for the people.

            Yahweh’s perfect law cannot be judged by the theocracies of false gods.

            If you’re truly interested in how a government should be run on Yahweh’s law, a good place to begin is with “Bible Law vs. the United States Constitution: The Christian Perspective” at http://www.bibleversusconstitution.org/BlvcOnline/blvc-index.html.

          • http://www.facebook.com/meg.tapley.flutist Meg Tapley

            I am reading through the material you linked to; so far I have seen many enumerations of what is wrong with the Constitution, but nothing that resembles a solution. You provide some glimpses of what a government run on Yahweh’s law would look like, but you don’t show us the way to get there. If a Christian decides to cast down the idolatrous Constitution and enthrone Yahweh, what must he do to be righteous?

          • http://www.bibleversusconstitution.org/ Ted R. Weiland

            Keep reading, you’ll find bits and pieces of solutions throughout the entire book. Start at the beginning and read through to the end. I don’t recommend jumping around.

            First things first. No need to flesh out all of the details on how until we can get most of Christianity convinced they’ve been worshiping an idol. This battle has only just begun. We may be, in fact, generations from actually putting this into practice.

          • http://www.facebook.com/meg.tapley.flutist Meg Tapley

            In the meantime, we should abide by Matthew 22:21 and Romans 13:1-2.

          • http://www.bibleversusconstitution.org/ Ted R. Weiland

            I doubt your applying these passages correctly. If interested, I’ve written a book on Romans 13:1-7 entitled “Christian Duty Under Corrupt Government: A Revolutionary Commentary of Romans 13:1-7.” You can find at http://www.bibleversusconstitution.org/books-summary.html.

            As for Matthew 22:21 (or Mark 12:17), please consider the following:

            “In Mark 12:17, we find Jesus’ oft-misused statement “Render to Caesar
            the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.”
            Many people interpret this to mean Yahweh and Caesar have separate
            jurisdictions, powers, and possessions. Is this true?…

            “What belongs to Yahweh? And what belongs to Caesar? The answer to the first question answers the second question. Yahweh reigns over and owns everything:

            ‘The earth is Yahweh’s, and the fulness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein.’ (Psalm 24:1)

            “What does this leave for Caesar? Even Caesar didn’t belong to Caesar.

            “Jesus’ answer was merely another example of His trapping the Pharisees with their own words – in this instance, forcing them to choose their god, Yahweh or Caesar.”

          • http://www.facebook.com/meg.tapley.flutist Meg Tapley

            I can’t locate the text of this book on your website. However, while the “render unto Caesar” passage is deliberately enigmatic, Romans 13:1-7 is not. It clearly states that “there is no authority except from God, and those which exist are established by God.” (Romans 13:1, NASB) The U.S. government is an authority which exists, therefore it has been established by God. Even the context in which Romans was written makes it clear that it is applicable to Christians today, as the Roman empire would allow its subjects to worship as they pleased, so long as their religion was not perceived as a threat to society.

            Honestly, I feel that this passage effectively refutes your entire position that the Constitution and the government based on it are somehow counter to God’s will. If they were actually counter to God’s will, they would not exist. Since they clearly exist, Paul tells us that we should respect the authority that is in place. The fact that you wrote an entire book about what is actually a fairly self-evident passage demonstrates that you had to severely twist its meaning in an attempt to make it consistent with your interpretation. It is you who is not applying the passage correctly.

          • http://www.bibleversusconstitution.org/ Ted R. Weiland

            Meg, thank you again for your input.

            The only reason you’ve come to the conclusion you have is because you have divorced Verses 1 and 2 from Verses 3 and 4 in which Paul clearly delineates the type of government he’s referring to.

            “Christian Duty Under Government” is the only one of my books that is not presently available online. However, if you will go to our Main Site at http://www.bibleversusconstitution.org/ and provide me your email address via our Contact Button, I will be pleased to send you a complimentary Ebook. Please specify whether you would like it in Kindle, Epub, or PDF format.

          • http://www.facebook.com/meg.tapley.flutist Meg Tapley

            Verses 3 and 4 describe the proper exercise of authority – to praise/reward good deeds and punish evil ones. While the U.S. government, as I’ve said before, is not perfect, it has not strayed so far from that ideal as to relinquish its right to authority. The phrase “minister of God”, which is used in my version, does not have to mean a witting minister of God – simply that God is using them as a force for good, even if no one realizes how.

            It is clear from other passages, and from common sense, that if it comes to a choice between following the human authorities and following God as you believe is best, then God wins. But there are not many instances in which following God and obeying the law come into direct conflict, and the reason for that is because the U.S. has historically been Christian, and still is to a large degree. So most of the laws, and the structures on which laws are made, reflect Christian values. Even if many of the Founding Fathers were not devout Christians themselves, the society they lived in was very much governed by Biblical beliefs, and shaped their system of morality. They were, after all, politicians, and knew that their fellow citizens would not accept a system of government that was incompatible with the Biblical laws.

            I believe that the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights, represent a skillful piece of work that has formed the basis for a lot of positive change in the world. They were never intended to be anything more than instructions on how to run one particular government in such a way as to preserve as many freedoms as practically possible for the citizens. This meant not forcing non-Christians to live according to Christian rules, and in exchange, Christians are not forced to live according to non-Christian rules.

            But a theocracy, which is what you seem to advocate, is nothing more than a means of spiritually enslaving the people to the state. This, in today’s world, would be disastrous, because it would then be easy to justify destroying any nation that stood in our way, as they would be “thwarting God’s will”. Nuclear war could be a real possibility again, were the U.S. to become a theocracy.

          • http://www.bibleversusconstitution.org/ Ted R. Weiland

            Meg, you have appropriately used the word “authority” in this reply. Paul is ONLY addressing Biblically lawful authorities in Romans 13, NOT what otherwise are merely powers. Being that the Constitutional Republic (much the same as the Roman Republic of Paul’s day) was established upon a document that is both antithetical and hostile to Yahweh’s morality, it is merely a power, not a God-ordained authority. Therefore, what Paul has written in Romans 13 has no bearing upon our present government–except where it happens to be in agreement with Biblical law.

            I hope you will take me up on my offer. If you’re more inclined to audio presentations, you might want to listen to “Romans 13: Misused and Abused” at http://www.bibleversusconstitution.org/tapelist.html#T115. If after you’ve listened to this message, you would like more audio messages on this subject, I can direct you to a few more from the current expository series I’m preaching on the book of Romans.

            As for theocracy, the United States Constitutional Republic is a theocracy to which people are already enslaved. Please consider this from the following perspective:

            “There is no escaping theocracy. A government’s laws reflect its morality, and the source of that morality (or, more often than not, immorality) is its god. It is never a question of theocracy or no theocracy, but whose theocracy. The American people, by way of their elected officials, are the source of the Constitutional Republic’s laws. Therefore, the Constitutional Republic’s god is WE THE PEOPLE.

            “People recoil at the idea of a theocracy’s morality being forced upon them, but because all governments are theocracies, someone’s morality is always being enforced. This is an inevitability of government. The question is which god, theocracy, laws, and morality will we choose to live under?”

            Excerpted from Chapter 3 “The Preamble: WE THE PEOPLE vs. YAHWEH” of “Bible Law vs. the United States Constitution at http://www.missiontoisrael.org/biblelaw-constitutionalism-pt3.php.

          • Roger

            Meg, it is a pleasure to debate with you. I don’t agree with your statement that “there are not many instances in which following God and obeying the law come into direct conflict…” Acceptance of homosexual behavior, infanticide, rampant corruption, aggressive and abusive military action, unchecked government regulation, excessive taxation, unjust punishment of criminal activity, etc, etc., are only a few examples of where the “law” of this country go directly against and counter to the Word of God.

            The day is drawing closer when those who call themselves Christian are going to have to make a decision as to whether they will follow Jesus Christ or the State. I have an essay (Two Masters? Make up your Mind!)on my blog, http://poorrogersalmanac.wordpress.com which covers this very topic. The excerpt below is from that. Be blessed in your search for the truth.

            “Today America is becoming more humanistic, more socialist, more demanding, more brutal. There is virtually no place left in the United States that is not touched by the long, regulatory arm of the State. More than eighty thousand pages per year are added to the Federal Register, which have the force of law as soon as they are written. Wars are started and fought at the whim of the President who doesn’t even bother to ask permission any more. Special interests and lobbyists persuade Congress to write laws which will benefit them regardless of who it will harm. Police brutality is on the rise. Justice has given way to “law enforcement”. No one is exempt; everyone must pay and we pay dearly.”

            “Can a person profess to be a Christian and still support the State system which is against many, if not most, of the principles of the Christian religion? Again, no person can serve two masters. This is where the rubber meets the road. Here is where self-conscious thought about what it means to be a Christian comes in because these two philosophies are at odds with each other and can never be reconciled. In order to avoid any misunderstanding on that statement let me rephrase it. The rule of Jesus Christ and the rule of a secular humanist State are in conflict with each other and every self-conscious, professing Christian has to make a decision as to which side he is going to serve. There is no straddling the fence, no playing both sides. It is one or the other, but not both.”

          • Roger

            Meg, I appreciate your comments and think you bring valuable insight into this discussion.
            You mentioned above that Ted’s entire position that the Consitution and the government based on it are counter to God’s will. I haven’t read everything Ted has written, but I don’t recall ever seeing anything like that. As far as I know, he has always focused on the theme that the Constitution is against God’s moral law. Would you cite the references please?

          • http://www.facebook.com/meg.tapley.flutist Meg Tapley

            Good point – I think I may have misinterpreted that particular part of his message, and cannot bring any references to mind to support my former comment. The sentiment remains, though. Although, as I’ve stated, the U.S. government is far from perfect, there is Biblical support for standing behind it and trying to repair it rather than simply writing it off.

            Also, I disagree with the idea that all governments are theocracies. It is true that the people must respect the government, but there is a huge difference between having respect towards a thing and worshiping it. I respect my father, for instance, and generally do what he tells me to, but he is neither an idol nor a god to me. In addition, in order to meet the dictionary definition of a theocracy, a state must officially recognize a divine being as its supreme ruler. The Constitution does not claim to derive its authority from any divine being, instead appealing to the non-divine “We The People” – an entirely earthly source of power – and therefore the U.S. is not a theocracy.

            As for infanticide and acceptance of homosexual behavior – well, the fact that it is allowed by law does not mean that it should be encouraged. Promiscuity is not illegal, nor should it be, but neither is it moral or advisable. Smoking might not be illegal or even immoral, but it’s a bad idea just the same.

            On the matters of corruption, over-regulation, and excessive use of force in both the military and police, I agree completely. Our nation is in debt because we keep getting involved in wars we won’t lose but can’t win, the health care system is being crippled by massive regulations and litigation, small businesses are finding it more and more difficult to stay open because they can’t compete with the megacorporations, and the deeply divided nature of today’s politics make it nearly impossible to achieve any kind of unity, or even approach a solution.

            That’s why it’s important to choose your battles. No one is forcing you to have an abortion or commit sodomy, and you can tell other people not to until their ears fall off – they might even listen, if your argument is good enough. But these issues are so divisive, politically, that they prevent other problems from being solved. Perhaps it would be better to lay them aside for now, and focus on those things that affect everyone, such as corruption, excessive litigation, lack of justice, over-regulation, and general abuse of power. This would bring the nation closer to God’s ideal, but without alienating those who do not share your religious views – and they are many.

            I know this is not a satisfactory solution to those of you that believe the Constitution is beyond redemption. Nevertheless, it may be the only way to bring about any real change.

          • http://www.facebook.com/meg.tapley.flutist Meg Tapley

            I listened to the audio presentation. Assuming that it accurately represents your interpretation of the passage, the only real difference between our viewpoints here, I think, is whether, in order to be legitimate, a government that rewards good and punishes evil must formally recognize Yahweh as its authority or not.

            Also, it seems we disagree on exactly how well the U.S. government fulfills the qualification of rewarding good and punishing evil. Almost all of the “good” actions that this pastor describes, are not punishable by law (not, at least, by laws that abide by the Bill of Rights you hate so much), although they may be unpopular or not “politically correct”, or, in the cases of natural healing or carrying firearms, require a license in order to be legal. On the other hand, many (though, sadly, not all) “evil” acts are punished, if not as swiftly or as severely as we would like.

          • http://www.bibleversusconstitution.org/ Ted R. Weiland

            Meg, please consider that to license something is to otherwise make it illegal. I hope you will take me up on the Ebook. You will find that most of the pre-Revolutionary pastors took the same position I’m taking on Romans 13. If you don’t have Ebook capabilities provide me with your address through our main site’s contact button, and I will be pleased to send you a complimentary copy of the book itself.

          • http://www.facebook.com/meg.tapley.flutist Meg Tapley

            All right, I’ve e-mailed you through your site.

            You have to get a license in order to drive a car, too – is driving a car “illegal”? On the contrary, most parts of the nation basically expect everyone to own a car. Licenses are an attempt to keep dangerous things out of the hands of people that might abuse them, without banning them outright. Licenses are also used to make sure that someone claiming to provide a service actually has the knowledge and training required to do so.

            I do agree that firearms are, in general, over-regulated. If we want freedom, we have to pay for it, and sometimes we pay with our lives because some low-life enjoys that same freedom, and used it to purchase a gun.

          • http://www.bibleversusconstitution.org/ Ted R. Weiland

            Meg, I just emailed it to you. If you don’t receive it in your mail box, be sure to check your spam folder.

            Yes, without the government’s license, driving your car is illegal.

          • http://www.facebook.com/meg.tapley.flutist Meg Tapley

            Got it – thanks!

            Of course. But getting your driver’s license has become a rite of passage; it’s almost as though you’re not a real citizen if you don’t have your license. Also, on private property, anyone can drive any vehicle they want (as far as I’m aware), it’s just when you get onto public roads where you pose a potential risk to others that not having a license becomes an issue.

          • http://www.bibleversusconstitution.org/ Ted R. Weiland

            Thanks Meg for letting me know. I hope it proves to be a blessing.

            Ah, citizenship and “public roads”! But those will have to wait for another time.

            Blessings!

          • http://www.facebook.com/meg.tapley.flutist Meg Tapley

            To you as well :)

          • Roger

            Excellent reply! Thank you very much. You write very well and I appreciate the fact that we can discuss differences without letting our emotions get in the way.

            I looked up three or four dictionary definitions of theocracy and have to say that you are correct, as far as dictionary definitions go. I tend to think that this is like adhering to the letter of the law rather than the spirit of the law. Dictionaries may define theocracy this way, but I prefer to view it in the way I learned from someone older and better educated than myself. Theos (God) + kratos (rule) = God rules. Since God IS the ultimate ruler and all governments derive their existence from Him, in the purest sense of the word it can literally be argued that every government IS a theocracy, even though most people believe differently.

            Personally, I am in agreement with you on this for the most part. I think that we probably are playing word games with this and would be better served to not get too excited about the whole issue. Therefore, I will continue to use theocracy in my own way and will not blow a gasket when you do the same thing.

            That being said, however, I must say that BECAUSE the Constitution doesn’t recognize divine authority and derives its power from sinful people is the exact reason why we are in the mess we are. I would prefer that America and the world explicitly state that we are under God’s Authority and base our societies laws on that authority. Even if they were to implicitly admit it would be an improvement. Fact is, though, that unredeemed, sinful, rebellious man will not do that and will always seek to impose some other type of “law” on creation. It is this attitude and action that so many of us are working to overcome.

            One thing that has been beneficial to me in my relationships with other people is to understand that while all crimes are sins, not all sins are crimes. As Christians, we have to know what the difference is and to judge accordingly. As a consequence, I will never be popular with those who want to believe that morality must be legislated and sin penalized. It really doesn’t matter to me. I certainly DO believe that criminal activity MUST be dealt with appropriately, but when it comes to sinful activity which is NOT criminal, I stand with Jesus. “Let whoever is without sin among you be the first to cast a stone.”

            Whether the Constitution survives or not is debatable and we will simply have to wait and see. In the meantime, I am going to do what I can to work for a better world tomorrow, as I’m sure we all are.
            It’s been fun. Blessings and God’s peace to you.

          • http://www.facebook.com/meg.tapley.flutist Meg Tapley

            Amen to that!

          • http://www.bibleversusconstitution.org/ Ted R. Weiland

            Meg, thank you for your reply. Your response to what I shared concerning the theory of theocracy is common. I would ask you to read “The Preamble: WE THE PEOPLE vs. YAHWEH” at http://www.bibleversusconstitution.org/BlvcOnline/biblelaw-constitutionalism-pt3.html and I think you will better grasp what I’m saying. This is a crucial point to all that’s being said regarding the Constitution, so I hope you and Roger both will take the time to do so.

    • Lorenzo Oyle

      My dear, when you say, “the government has chosen to not interfere with our rights” are you referring to the current Democrat Obama administration? Where have you been living? Never before have the Constitutional guaranteed (but God-given) Rights of Americans been challenged as now! I know a lot of Christians did NOT vote for Romney because he is Mormon…..fine…look at what we got now! A Communist Muslim on a Jihad to “deconstruct” (read: destroy) American values, culture, and prosperity. BTW who DID you vote for?