The Beginnings of Christian Reform (45)

Christianity and International Relations (3)

                    God’s World Government Through Biblical Law:

The third aspect of the Biblical covenant is law, specifically Biblical law.[1]

Obeying the laws of God is to become a way of life for all men. The covenant-keeper is supposed to talk about the law from morning to night as he works beside his children. [Deut.6:8] The law governs every aspect of our lives, and so we are to talk about it throughout the day. Our very conversations are to remind us of the comprehensive nature of God’s law. Because God’s law is comprehensive, our discussion of the law is to be comprehensive. Every covenant-keeper is to become an expert in the law of God. He is to think about it, discuss it, and explore its implications every day. Men are to discuss God’s law daily because they are to honour it daily through obedience.[2]

The principle of leaven which Jesus spoke of (Mat.13:33), is this: God’s kingdom progressively replaces Satan’s as the dominant power in world history. Leaven is silent, and it seems unimpressive; but it gets the job done.

After the resurrection, the disciples came to a mountain. Like the mountain Garden of Eden, where God gave the law to Adam, and like Mt. Sinai, where God gave the law to Moses, so was this mountain in Galilee: Christ gave them the law. He gave them His Great Commission. Christians are to make disciples of the nations. They are to bring the nations under the discipline of Christ, through the law of God –“teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you” (Mat.28:18).

Christians must discipline the nations. This discipline begins with self-discipline under God’s law. What we must understand, however, is that it does not end with self-discipline. This is what Protestants and traditional conservatives have long ignored (HON, p.82). The universalism of the Great Commission must be recognised by Christians. God requires that nations submit to Him covenantally: legally, formally and publicly, and that they obey His law.

For two thousand years, Christians have resisted this. They have cried, “We’re not under law; we’re under grace,” implying that God’s law is irrelevant in the New Testament context. Then they have wondered why the world around them has been dominated by oppression, tyranny and bloodshed. Is there a correlation? Of course. As a consequence, the church has generally been willing to substitute natural law for God’s law, being unable (or unwilling) to recognise that natural law is a humanistic, pagan substitute that leads directly to oppression, injustice and tyranny.

Man’s problem has never been a lack intellectual ability. Man’s problem has always been sin: a lack of ethics; his unwillingness to submit to God. Biblical ethics, not intellect (beginning with a recognition that Jesus Christ is the Saviour of the world), is the key to righteousness, whether it be for the individual, the family, the church, the community or the nation.

Christians have understood the universal claims of Jesus on the hearts of men, but they have continued to ignore the universal claims of Christ on the mind, lives, and public allegiances of men. They have not restructured their worldview in terms of the idea that God is King of kings and Lord of lords. God has laid down the law to mankind, yet His disciples have paid very little attention to God’s law, generation after generation, century after century. They think that they can escape the requirement of the Great Commission to discipline the nations (HON, p.96). Where the Bible speaks of “nations,” we have substituted “individuals.”

It is time for Christians to abandon the myth of natural law. It is time for them to declare instead the covenants of God. It is time for them to proclaim the ethical terms of the covenant, God’s revealed law, for God is the Sovereign Creator who governs all of history. It is time to abandon the myth of neutrality. If “natural law” really is a Greek, pagan construction with no absolutes, and no relationship to Biblical law, there is no alternative to a Biblical, bottom-up theocracy.

 

 

[1] For more on this, see Gary North, “Tools of Dominion: The Case Laws of Exodus,” 1988.

[2] Gary North, “Inheritance and Dominion,” 1999, Ch.28.