Theocracy: A Beginning

Some personal info about me before we begin.  I am a born again Christian that believes the Bible is the inspired word of God.  This entire article is written from such a perspective that the Bible is entirely true.  It’s only been about six months since I’ve given up on human governance.  Before then I was following the relgious right like a good little boy.  I began to be disconcerted with politics when I joined the Protest Warrior bulletin board.  Reading the threads on that board the political discussions were food fights.  No organization and both sides had several points they weren’t addressing and it would always dissolve into name calling.  I saw several good leftist arguments that I had never heard before and no one was addressing.  All through high school I read World Net Daily almost religiously.  I debated anyone who took up the issue and always won because in high school even the leftists aren’t very well informed.

College came and I was still vehemently against the left.  I met people I never dreamed could exist.  Leftist Christians.  Who knew?  One day while defending the merits of George Bush I began to notice that my friend’s voice and my voice were getting louder and louder.  He eventually gave up the argument and started to walk out of the room.  I followed him into the hall continuing to shout praises to Bush.  When I finally calmed down I reflected on my behavior toward my brother in Christ.  Needless to say I felt really guilty.  Brothers and sisters in Christ are supposed to build each other up not tear each other down and especially not on something as meaningless as politics.

I eventually got around to asking myself where did Christ stand on the political compass and how should that affect me?  I began to study government structures in the Bible and how Christ and other disciples interacted with their authorities.  I started with observing Jesus interaction with the Pharisees and looking at the one political question he was asked.

Matthew 22:15-21
(15)  Then the Pharisees went away and planned to trap Jesus into saying the wrong thing.  (16)  They sent their disciples to him along with Herod’s followers. They said to him, “Teacher, we know that you tell the truth and that you teach the truth about the way of God. You don’t favor individuals because of who they are.  (17)  So tell us what you think. Is it right to pay taxes to the emperor or not?”  (18)  Jesus recognized their evil plan, so he asked, “Why do you test me, you hypocrites?  (19)  Show me a coin used to pay taxes.” They brought him a coin.  (20)  He said to them, “Whose face and name is this?”  (21)  They replied, “The emperor’s.” Then he said to them, “Very well, give the emperor what belongs to the emperor, and give God what belongs to God.”

Christ is giving an answer that recognizes God as the ultimate authority.  If he said simply to pay taxes the Pharisees would have charged him with not giving to God what is God’s.  If he had said do not pay taxes then the Pharisees would have charged him with disobeying the authority.  The Pharisees were expecting a yes or no answer.  Christ side stepped their intentions by telling them both are important.  The fact that this is the only situation he was confronted with a political question (to our knowledge) also is indicative that his concern was with people more than it was with the authorities.

Another passage I studied in search for Biblical ideals for government would be the Acts churches.

Acts 2:42-47
(42)  The disciples were devoted to the teachings of the apostles, to fellowship, to the breaking of bread, and to prayer.  (43)  A feeling of fear came over everyone as many amazing things and miraculous signs happened through the apostles.  (44)  All the believers kept meeting together, and they shared everything with each other.  (45)  From time to time, they sold their property and other possessions and distributed the money to anyone who needed it.  (46)  The believers had a single purpose and went to the temple every day. They were joyful and humble as they ate at each other’s homes and shared their food.  (47)  At the same time, they praised God and had the good will of all the people. Every day the Lord saved people, and they were added to the group.

Acts 4:23-37
(23)  When Peter and John were released, they went to the other apostles and told them everything the chief priests and leaders had said.  (24)  When the apostles heard this, they were united and loudly prayed to God, “Master, you made the sky, the land, the sea, and everything in them.  (25)  You said through the Holy Spirit, who spoke through your servant David (our ancestor), ‘Why do the nations act arrogantly? Why do their people devise useless plots?  (26)  Kings take their stand. Rulers make plans together against the Lord and against his Messiah.’  (27)  “In this city Herod and Pontius Pilate made plans together with non-Jewish people and the people of Israel. They made their plans against your holy servant Jesus, whom you anointed.  (28)  Through your will and power, they did everything that you had already decided should be done.  (29)  “Lord, pay attention to their threats now, and allow us to speak your word boldly.  (30)  Show your power by healing, performing miracles, and doing amazing things through the power and the name of your holy servant Jesus.”  (31)  When the apostles had finished praying, their meeting place shook. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and continued to speak the word of God boldly.  (32)  The whole group of believers lived in harmony. No one called any of his possessions his own. Instead, they shared everything.  (33)  With great power the apostles continued to testify that the Lord Jesus had come back to life. God’s abundant good will was with all of them.  (34)  None of them needed anything. From time to time, people sold land or houses and brought the money (35)  to the apostles. Then the money was distributed to anyone who needed it.  (36)  Joseph, a descendant of Levi, had been born on the island of Cyprus. The apostles called him Barnabas, which means “a person who encourages.”  (37)  He had some land. He sold it and turned the money over to the apostles.

Acts 6:1-7
(1)  At that time, as the number of disciples grew, Greek-speaking Jews complained about the Hebrew-speaking Jews. The Greek-speaking Jews claimed that the widows among them were neglected every day when food and other assistance was distributed.  (2)  The twelve apostles called all the disciples together and told them, “It’s not right for us to give up God’s word in order to distribute food.  (3)  So, brothers and sisters, choose seven men whom the people know are spiritually wise. We will put them in charge of this problem.  (4)  However, we will devote ourselves to praying and to serving in ways that are related to the word.”  (5)  The suggestion pleased the whole group. So they chose Stephen, who was a man full of faith and the Holy Spirit, and they chose Philip, Prochorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolaus, who had converted to Judaism in the city of Antioch.  (6)  The disciples had these men stand in front of the apostles, who prayed and placed their hands on these seven men.  (7)  The word of God continued to spread, and the number of disciples in Jerusalem grew very large. A large number of priests accepted the faith.

These societies were basically theocratic societies.  They devoted their time to sudying and growing in God.  No concern was given to the activities of the king or the government.  They had the good will of the people which likely means they were in no way shape or form coming across as overbearing or forcing their religion or forcing their politics, etc.  It seems to me this happens by being respectful of people’s opinions, talking about religion in casual conversation when it comes up and not trying to bring it up to ‘save’ them, and most importantly practicing what is preached.

Theocracy was the original government of Israel until the people decided a human leader, they could see, would be better than a flawless god.

Exodus 18:13-26
(13)  The next day Moses was settling disputes among the people, and he was kept busy from morning till night.  (14)  When Jethro saw everything that Moses had to do, he asked, “What is all this that you are doing for the people? Why are you doing this all alone, with people standing here from morning till night to consult you?”  (15)  Moses answered, “I must do this because the people come to me to learn God’s will.  (16)  When two people have a dispute, they come to me, and I decide which one of them is right, and I tell them God’s commands and laws.”  (17)  Then Jethro said, “You are not doing this right.  (18)  You will wear yourself out and these people as well. This is too much for you to do alone.  (19)  Now let me give you some good advice, and God will be with you. It is right for you to represent the people before God and bring their disputes to him.  (20)  You should teach them God’s commands and explain to them how they should live and what they should do.  (21)  But in addition, you should choose some capable men and appoint them as leaders of the people: leaders of thousands, hundreds, fifties, and tens. They must be God-fearing men who can be trusted and who cannot be bribed.  (22)  Let them serve as judges for the people on a permanent basis. They can bring all the difficult cases to you, but they themselves can decide all the smaller disputes. That will make it easier for you, as they share your burden.  (23)  If you do this, as God commands, you will not wear yourself out, and all these people can go home with their disputes settled.”  (24)  Moses took Jethro’s advice (25)  and chose capable men from among all the Israelites. He appointed them as leaders of thousands, hundreds, fifties, and tens.  (26)  They served as judges for the people on a permanent basis, bringing the difficult cases to Moses but deciding the smaller disputes themselves.

1 Samuel 8
(1)  When Samuel was old, he made his sons judges over Israel.  (2)  The name of his firstborn son was Joel; the name of his second son was Abijah. They were judges in Beersheba.  (3)  The sons didn’t follow their father’s example but turned to dishonest ways of making money. They took bribes and denied people justice.  (4)  Then all the leaders of Israel gathered together and came to Samuel at Ramah.  (5)  They told him, “You’re old, and your sons aren’t following your example. Now appoint a king to judge us so that we will be like all the other nations.”  (6)  But Samuel considered it wrong for them to request a king to judge them. So Samuel prayed to the LORD.  (7)  The LORD told Samuel, “Listen to everything the people are saying to you. They haven’t rejected you; they’ve rejected me.  (8)  They’re doing just what they’ve done since I took them out of Egypt-leaving me and serving other gods.  (9)  Listen to them now, but be sure to warn them and tell them about the rights of a king.”  (10)  Then Samuel told the people who had asked him for a king everything the LORD had said.  (11)  Samuel said, “These are the rights of a king: He will draft your sons, make them serve on his chariots and horses, and make them run ahead of his chariots.  (12)  He will appoint them to be his officers over 1,000 or over 50 soldiers, to plow his ground and harvest his crops, and to make weapons and equipment for his chariots.  (13)  He will take your daughters and have them make perfumes, cook, and bake.  (14)  He will take the best of your fields, vineyards, and olive orchards and give them to his officials.  (15)  He will take a tenth of your grain and wine and give it to his aids and officials.  (16)  He will take your male and female slaves, your best cattle, and your donkeys for his own use.  (17)  He will take a tenth of your flocks. In addition, you will be his servants.  (18)  “When that day comes, you will cry out because of the king whom you have chosen for yourselves. The LORD will not answer you when that day comes.”  (19)  But the people refused to listen to Samuel. They said, “No, we want a king!  (20)  Then we, too, will be like all the other nations. Our king will judge us, lead us out to war, and fight our battles.”  (21)  When Samuel heard everything the people had to say, he reported it privately to the LORD.  (22)  The LORD told him, “Listen to them, and give them a king.” Then Samuel told the people of Israel, “Go back to your own cities.”

God’s original intention was to provide the needs of His creation.  But as the creation rejects Him they replace His leadership as well.  God intended to provide for Adam and Eve so they wuldn’t ever have to work, but they disobeyed His one command so God made it so he would have to work for a living from the Earth to get by.  Noticing the progression of structure in the Bible from God directly ruling, to having judges, to having kings, I recognize that the more human involvement there is in government structure the farther we get from being able to discern God’s will.  I propose democracy is the least of all ideologies because putting the power to judge and legislate in the hands of the corrupt masses only furthers corruption.

Finally the last scripture that gives me a desire to understand a theocracy is because according to the account John provides in Revelation there will be one when Christ comes back to reign for a millenium.

Revelation 20:4-6
(4)  Then I saw thrones, and those who sat on them were given the power to judge. I also saw the souls of those who had been executed because they had proclaimed the truth that Jesus revealed and the word of God. They had not worshiped the beast or its image, nor had they received the mark of the beast on their foreheads or their hands. They came to life and ruled as kings with Christ for a thousand years.  (5)  (The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were over.) This is the first raising of the dead.  (6)  Happy and greatly blessed are those who are included in this first raising of the dead. The second death has no power over them; they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and they will rule with him for a thousand years.

Revelation 21:3-7
(3)  I heard a loud voice speaking from the throne: “Now God’s home is with people! He will live with them, and they shall be his people. God himself will be with them, and he will be their God.  (4)  He will wipe away all tears from their eyes. There will be no more death, no more grief or crying or pain. The old things have disappeared.”  (5)  Then the one who sits on the throne said, “And now I make all things new!” He also said to me, “Write this, because these words are true and can be trusted.”  (6)  And he said, “It is done! I am the first and the last, the beginning and the end. To anyone who is thirsty I will give the right to drink from the spring of the water of life without paying for it.  (7)  Those who win the victory will receive this from me: I will be their God, and they will be my children.

Theocracy was the original governing ideology of the Earth.  It is the governing ideology of Heaven.  It will be the governing ideology of Earth again.  I hope to live long enough to see it reinstated some day.

So now I have provided quite the Biblical background for what it was, is and will be, but practically it’s hard to understand what it may look like to the common citizen of such a government.  I am not greatly educated on the differences between socialism and communism or I could state that it looks like one or the other.  It will be a utopian society with minimal government structure, just enough to make sure those in need get appropriate care.  A government headed by Christ can not be selfish or greedy or unfair.  The only one that should have absolute power to rule is the one that currently holds it.  The one who should be allowed to judge should be the only one with an omniscient standing.  Christ is flawless and can not be the cause of corrupt government.  Communism and socialsim don’t work because the guy in charge doesn’t want to work his butt off for a wage the lowest worker gets paid for with much less effort.  However under theocracy, people become concerned with the well being of others before themselves and the higher up the government chain of command the more so that becomes true.  Utopian society has one flaw that keeps it from working and that is the selfish nature of humans.  Theocracy takes care of this problem.

Adam Smith’s theories changed the face of economic practice.  Laissez-faire economics, as time has proven IMO, has done little more than encourage social caste systems and poverty.  Eventually someone figures out how to take advantage of the system and we get monopolies because no one tried to stop the selfish desires of an ambitious few.  I remember the points of relevance made in the movie “A Beautiful Mind” about John Nash’s theory.  While I haven’t read the theory myself what I got from the movie is that the best thing for the economy is not free competition but cooperation.  Do what is best for the group and you will get off better than you would most likely than by competing.  I believe charity is the means to the end of poverty, not welfare or legislation.  People giving the abundance they have of their own free will to be distributed to the needy is the best solution.  In theocracy it would seem you would worry about people still being selfish in nature, but as the leadership provides an example to live by and they have a god they desire to please, they will desire to give what they can out of their own free will.  No one will force them or persecute them if they don’t, but they will eventually choose to because it encourages the growth of society better than anything else.

So how would I say such seemingly impractical beliefs influence my every day life?  It actually affects my life in many ways.  Most obviously I don’t support human governance.  I don’t vote or endorse any politician because I don’t want to associate my moral values with the actions of anyone else.

Psalms 118:8-9
(8)  It is better to trust in the LORD than to depend on people.  (9)  It is better to trust in the LORD than to depend on human leaders.

I try not to even talk about theocracy unless asked because I never want to come across as pushing my views on people.  Pushing my views on people would contradict the basis of the intentions of such a belief.  I don’t discuss current politics with people, as far as making judgements about whether the dems or GOP is right.  It doesn’t matter to me who is right if I don’t support them and don’t follow their beliefs anyways.  My concern is that the Church is trying to become too much of a political power and its desire for political power is severely damaging the cause it is charged with overseeing in the Bible.  The Church is supposed to be concerned with people’s souls not their political leanings.  Politics is a distraction to the purpose of the Church.  I believe it is much more effective anyways to make a moral impact by being legitimately concerned with people, caring for them, and practicing what you preach.  You can’t force people to be moral.  Legislation for moral values I think if anything only makes things worse becuase not only do you take away a person’s right to exercise free will, but you also may invoke in them a natural desire to rebel against authority.  Morality is promoted one on one by investing time in people’s lives.

I very rarely read the news anymore.  I believe freedom of the press has done little more than encourage more lies to be published than truth.  Freedom of the press has turned truth into a gray issue.  Under a monarchy or dictatorship there seems to be much less gray and more black and white.  Under theocracy God is not going lie so we don’t even have to worry about anything.

Some may say if you don’t stand up for others then who will stand up for you when you are left all alone.  I say it doesn’t matter.  No government no matter the ideology or structure can destroy my free will to do what I please anyways.  If the government wants to take away my rights let them do so.  Until they take away rights that make me unable to follow the commandments of God, I have no reason to rebel.  If they even go so far as to make Christianity illegal, it wouldn’t matter and would more likely be a mistake on their part.  People that face high amounts of religious persecution thrive better in such states anyways.  The church in China is the fastest growing on Earth thanks to the Communist party.  If the Communists really wanted to get rid of the Church they would make Christianity the official religion and provide benefits to the Christians.  Complacency kills the Church faster than anything else.  The Church in America has been weakened by our current government system because there really isn’t enough separation between church and state.  When you can make people feel they don’t need God, what they believe doesn’t matter, because their faith really does begin to lie with their own abilities.

(Note: This is definitely not super organized.  It is still very much under development.  I am hoping one day to be able to do enough background research on philosophy and history and in current events to develop the idea into a book.  What is seen here are the random arguments for theocracy that run around my own mind.  If you have suggestions of philosophers I should read I will definitely consider all of them.  I’m beginning a small collection all ready of major philosophies on my bookcase.)

252 thoughts on “Theocracy: A Beginning

  1. Theo,

    What you said is all well and good, but you left out how Christ would rule.  Are you suggesting that we eliminate government and live in a religious anarchy?  I’m not entirely sure what you’re proposing.

  2. I very rarely read the news anymore.  I believe freedom of the press has done little more than encourage more lies to be published than truth.  Freedom of the press has turned truth into a gray issue.  Under a monarchy or dictatorship there seems to be much less gray and more black and white.  Under theocracy God is not going lie so we don’t even have to worry about anything.

    (Hopefully I did that right)
    Of course, this assumes that God actually takes the path of divine intervention.  While I’m certain that many people in the past have wanted to god to come down and rule for them, that isn’t how things worked out.

    Theocracy isn’t the actual rule by God; it is the rule of people that claim to be doing the will of God by following a strict religious code.
    —-
    The press hasn’t turned the truth into more of a gray issue than it was before; rather, the widespread availability of free press has made that shade of gray much more intense.  People have always presented the news as either the way they see it, or in a manner designed to manipulate others, both of which can be dated back thousands of years.  It is just a lot easier to notice now that it no longer requires great effort to find oppossing viewpoints. Honestly, there is no basis to the claim that this new fangled ‘freedom of speech’ causes people to believe wrong things.

  3. Chris said: Theocracy isn’t the actual rule by God; it is the rule of people that claim to be doing the will of God by following a strict religious code.

    And that, theo, is the problem with theocracy.

  4. Actually, you might want to consider the form of government of the early Nazarenes. The early Christian church was centred around Nazareth, and these people refered to themselves as “Nazarenes”. They were living under the Romans in an occuppied land then refered to as “Judea”.  I am therefore not sure why you refer to “Israel” in your posting.

    Anyhow that is a bit of a diversion. I think you might like to ponder about the fact that the Nazarenes lived according to a form of “communism”.  They shunned accumulation of individual wealth and shared all resources according to need. They had a collective form of government for their local community, based around Nazareth but spreading to what is now known as Ethiopia.  Most of this church’s teachings have been lost over time, corrupted by Emperor Constantine’s holy Roman church, and by the persecution of the early Christians (mainly by other Christians).  Some of it still survives in the teachings of the Orthodox Church (“Coptic” Church) of Ethiopia, which was the earliest church founded by the original Nazarenes that is still around today.  All the others around the world seem to have been influenced by Rome and European influences (whether pagan, such as “Easter

  5. Theocrat, this will be a bit rambling, I’m afraid, but I wanted to make a couple of quick comments:

    You make several excellent points in your post. As a former Christian myself, I have never understood the attraction for Bush’s regime on the part of fundamentalist Christians—Bush’s actions seem so contrary to everything Christians claim to uphold. You’ve made a good case for a less rigid, more caring government—Bush’s “compassionate conservatism” as something more than a catch phrase.

    On the question of theocracy: During my religious phase, I went to a ‘chapel’, not a ‘church’ and we were lead by a group of ‘elders’ not ‘ministers.’ No single person held authority over the group, there were no elections or anything of the nature: people who had a gift for leadership joined to act as support for this Christian community—of course, they claimed that Christ was the head of the group and that they followed the bible and His will in all things: They prayed over disagreements. Sounds good?

    In reality, the system worked poorly. All would go well for a few years and then a few members would get into a frenzy about something or another that was going on and there would be a period of argument, hostility, and anger. The congregation would divide into camps and eventually, the chapel would split and one group would go off (or was ejected and forced) to form another chapel. Both camps claimed the moral high ground and biblical authority for their position, but of course, both can’t be right, can they?

    These spilts were absolutely bitter: entire families divided against themselves. Siblings with grown families who stopped speaking and socializing; life-long friendships ruined; parents and children divided. The most recent split in the chapel (I remain friends with someone who still attends) was over the issue of music. It appears that some of the young people had brought in some contemporary Christian music for the young people’s fellowship hour Sunday evenings.

    Let’s be clear here: the group claimed to run the chapel as a kind of theocracy. The intention and will was there, but in practice, it just doesn’t work—on even a micro level, let along on any kind of governmental level.

    The new testament contains abundant evidence that the early churches were in constant bitter disagreement from one group to another. Half of the new testament (okay, slight exaggeration here) is composed of one preacher or another exhorting one group of Christians or another to stop this, do that, love more, etc etc. They even fought about who they followed! (See Ist Corinth 1:12). 

    I don’t think a theocracy is workable. I do believe we need government and government leadership. When it was said, “Render therefore unto Caesar” . . . it seems an acknowledgement that something IS owed to goverment: That government has a place in our lives and that we play a part in the political process.

    If Christianity has an obligation to those less well off, then Christianity has an obligation to promote a government that cares for the weak, the poor, and those disadvantaged. (I remain dumfounded that fundamentalist Christians can support Bush.)

  6. Even assuming that one day God or Christ is going to come down, and everyone says “Wow! That’s God. I’m going to live in His divine theocracy from now on. Cool”, how do you know that this will happen soon?

    It’s been about 2000 years since Jesus came the first time, and people have been waiting around for him to come ever since. People in Europe thought he was going to come when it turned into the year 1000, but alas they were disappointed. I happen to be an athiest, but even if everything you say is exactly, precisely true, what makes you think it’s going to be sooner than, say another 150,000 years according to God’s divine plan that he sends his son down again? The answer is, you don’t know. It could be tomorrow or it could be a million years from now. Only He knows His own will, and assumptions that it will be sooner rather than later are basically just your wishful thinking.

    Then again, I very much do agree with your feelings vis-a-vis living your beliefs and not pushing them onto others. Regardless of your theology, that means you will probably do more good in the world than lots of other people who share my exact same beliefs but spend too much time reading weblogs.  wink

  7. For some reason, this quote seems appropriate:

    I never believed any of those stories going around a few years ago that “God is dead.” How could you be? We don’t have one weapon that can shoot that far.

    —Mike Royko

  8. 1) Circularity
    The statement that “god [is] the ultimate authority” only works for people who already believe in him. The use of the bible to prove the ultimate authority merely assumes the conclusion. Also, this same argument can be raised by people who view the bible as a story rather than a fact.

    2) “Original Government”
    This reflects a fundamental flaw in many religion and some parts of society. The desire to turn back time and the belief that the past is the solution rather than focusing on the present and future. This ties in with the popular rallying cry of many religion of a decadent society. The Christian religious right claim that society in US is in moral decay and Osama Bin Laden well frankly also makes the same point.

    3) Communism just like theocracy works great in theory
    Communism failed in part because of the lack of incentive. There is no reason why people under a theocracy would suddenly become more concerned with the well being of others any more than workers in communist society would work for the common good of all. There is no reason why the flaw of “selfish nature of humans” will be taken care of in theocracy.

    Actually there seems to be three possible means theocracy may take care of the “problem.”
    A) God zaps everyone brain with a cattle prod and remove free will so we can all be as hardworking and selfless as machines.
    B) God comes back and tell everyone be selfless and caring or you will be sent to roast like the turkey. So this either means that this is no longer a kind god but a tyrant punishing all who disobeys. Or it would mean a great change in the dogma that as long as one repent one can go to heaven and that there is a little account of all that a person does.
    C) God comes back and smoothers everyone with so much love that the people are hynothised into doing his bidding. Which of course brings up the question, what kind of heaven is this that I still need to work and that people would still suffer if not for me giving them charity.

    4) Adam Smith
    This is just a slight diversion, unlike how Adam Smith in “The Wealth of Nations” who had a diversion (on silver) that lasted over 100 pages before returning to his original point. The same problem of charity and people being selfless would still arise whether one has a theocracy or not unless one changes human mind fundamentally. Adam Smith does not just talk about laissez-faire economics. He also talks about monopolies, I cannot remember the quote but it is about a bunch of businessman in smoke filled rooms colluding and how society must act to prevent such collusion. Free market while not perfect is the best means of development. To say that poverty is created is a false assumption. It lies on the premise that people started out as being wealthy. Free market helps people to become rich and as a result there is a gulf in wealth levels. Free market does not create poverty but rather it creates wealth. Furthermore game theory focuses on optimising choices and less so for development of the entire economy. Charity is only effective if there is money to be spread around and not when everyone is dirt poor. For example, in a natural monopoly, where one provider can produce and sell more for less than two sellers, co-operation by these two companies would be bad for the economy. Remember cooperation may be beneficial to the two sellers but not the the economy as a whole.

    5) Morality
    Another small point to make is what is “morality?”

    6) Insularity
    Another problem with fundamentalist religion which ties in to my earlier point on “original government” is the belief that people no longer need to improve or that one already has all required knowledge and thus “rarely reading the news” or seeking out anything that contradicts one’s opinion. Christianity sprouted out from Judaism and if people simply believe that Judaism is all that one needs then Christianity would not even have come about.

    7) “Wise word” of Britney Spears
    You state that “Under theocracy God is not going lie so we don’t even have to worry about anything.” Does this mean that everyone is in heaven and thus need not worry? But that cannot be since theocracy suggest that peopl are still on earth. So basically, is one searching for some sort of mental laxity where one can just sit in front of a couch and go doh, much like Britney Spears saying ‘we should trust our president in every decision.’

    7) Black or White
    Well, we cannot have a discussion of religion without talking about politics and world affairs, can we. The desire to see everything in black and white, with us or against us, means that one is unable to discern the true causes of many problems. Is the current terrorism problem something that is primarily about Islam or is it a reflection of the discontent on people’s lack of development and representation in government. Is the attack on US the main motive of Osama or is it merely a manoeuvre while he focuses on the key prize of toppling the House of Saud and take over Saudi Arabia.

    Conclusion
    The discussion on ME brings us back to the point on theocracy or authoritarian government. The end result of theocracy is the stiffling of the free market leading to greater equality only because it makes people equally poor, which results in discontent that could be harnessed for a uprising.

  9. Theocrat, you might be interested in Liberation Theology.  It’s a radical reinterpretation of basic biblical themes like Creation, Exodus and the promised Kingdom of God, from the perspective of the poor and disenfranchised. With central themes that include the unity of the human family and the dignity of each individual, it’s certainly the best connection between Christian religious beliefs and political life that I’ve ever seen.

  10. Poptarts … I *Heart* You smile

    Now to a statement made by Theocrat…

    The fact that this is the only situation he was confronted with a political question (to our knowledge) also is indicative that his concern was with people more than it was with the authorities.

    Or, it could be the fact that the current bible was compiled by a bunch of nimrods who wanted to continue and expand their power, and did not want to include anything that would stop them from doing so.

    Attacking goverments would be something they would not want to include.

    One cannot have a concern about ‘the people’ without paying attention to ‘the authorities’ as they are usually diametrically opposed in their needs/desires.

  11. Originally posted by Socialist Swine:
    What you said is all well and good, but you left out how Christ would rule.  Are you suggesting that we eliminate government and live in a religious anarchy?

    I’m not exactly sure what Christ would do as a ruler.  He would do any judging that needed to be done for sure.  Beyond that probably just continue to fellowship with His creation.  I’m not suggesting anything.  I’m just presenting my ideology.  Like I said for the current real world, this isn’t practical, only idealistic.

    Originally posted by Chris Prokop:
    Theocracy isn’t the actual rule by God; it is the rule of people that claim to be doing the will of God by following a strict religious code.

    Ok, I propose a theocracy with direct rule by God himself.  Particularly in this day and age, I would not even vote or endorse the election of some priest to determine God’s will for a country.  I don’t trust human leadership and that form of governemtn would still be open to corruption.  I think history has for the most part proven that absolute power corrupts absolutely.  It would only be a matter of time.  The only one that should be allowed to have the absolute power as a governing body is the omnipotent God.

    Originally posted by bbm:
    Actually, you might want to consider the form of government of the early Nazarenes.

    I am sure I know what you are talking about, but are there any books you would specifically recommend?

    Originally posted by Shelley:
    I do believe we need government and government leadership. When it was said, “Render therefore unto Caesar

  12. The “return” of the Christ myth has been right around the corner since the Christ myth “died”.  The only thing I ask is for the “Armageddon Christians” to go off into a corner somewhere and not bother me while I attempt to live my life.

    What really struck me though was your comment that theocracy was the original government.  It brings up a very curious point.  Out of all the theocracies and religions that have ever existed, how do you know that you’re worshipping the right one?  After all, the pharohs were purpotedly gods.  There have been hundreds of rulers who claim godhood in one form or another.  How are you going to feel when you get to heaven and find out that the Japanese Emperor really IS the descendent of Ameterasu, the sun goddess.

  13. God(s) has/have taken it upon himself/itself/themselves to create a theocracy on our big blue marble. The invisible being(s) have a plan to create a utopia right here for everyone. 
    I sometimes try to think of ways to bridge the many belief systems. What would it take for everyone to live harmoniously? No small feat, but, after all, no matter the GOD(S), the major religions seem to generally espouse peace and goodwill among men (and women smile  ).
    The scenario is this: Suppose that a God/Supreme Being/Creator/Call it what you will gave a message to every living human. The message was indisputably from a supernatural force (use your own imagination as to how this may be accomplished) and gave no indication of gender or religious affiliation. The message was simply “Live in peace. Everyone get along

  14. Originally posted by Lobo:
    What really struck me though was your comment that theocracy was the original government.  It brings up a very curious point.  Out of all the theocracies and religions that have ever existed, how do you know that you’re worshipping the right one?

    There was a disclaimer at the beginning that this is from the perspective that the Bible is the inerrant inspired word of God.  I don’t expect you to believe me.  I only expect the ability to share my beliefs.

    Originally posted by prickly pear:
    They have tried theocracy in Afghanistan, it did not work, would a Christian version be any different?

    If Jesus Christ came to Earth to rule over it personally, then that situation would be very different than the Taliban.

  15. Considering that I do my best to “Live in peace” and “Get Along” without any outside supernatural fantasizing, I would have a hard time distinguishing such “divine” proclamations from any other random thought that can go through my head every day.  I doubt I’d turn to religion for something as trivial as a random thought.

    But I agree, a worldwide theocracy would at the very least require the theo-cide of all non-believers (which outnumber the christians.)  Hardly the behavior of a benevolent, loving god.  But then I look at the source material and wonder at how talented god’s PR firm is.

  16. Wow.

    It’s impossible for me to address any of the many points you’ve made in your essay, because admittedly I can’t get past the first and most important premise, that of God or Jesus governing human beings.  I guess it’s just as incredible to ME as it would be to YOU, Theocrat, if I proposed that human government should be headed up by the Queen of the Elves.

    However, I look forward to seeing what the rest of the folks here make of such a plan. grin

  17. Theo – I saw your disclaimer and I think that my question is perfectly valid.  Why do you believe in this particular god.  The evidence towards it’s existence is no stronger than the proof for any other gods existence.  Maybe you should examine the why’s of your personal beliefs.  You could come up with some very enlightening answers.

    Think of it as a proper stating of Pascal’s wager.  How do you know that you’re betting on the right pony?

  18. Theocrat said:
    If Jesus Christ came to Earth to rule over it personally, then that situation would be very different than the Taliban.

    And what if Allah, Buddah, Zeus, Odin or some other deity suddenly appeared and declared a world-wide theocracy? What then?

  19. The US is already drifting dangerously close to becoming a theocracy. With the Dominionist Christians now in positions of power, and their openly stated plans to start shredding the checks and balances that the Framers created to specifically stifle such things, the US as we know it is in deep trouble.

    Theocracies are inherently corrupt. There are no theocratic governments that treat their people with any kind of fairness or compassion. (Look at Saudi Arabia and Iran for theocratic examples.) When people attempt to interpret ‘God’s will’, they always hose it up, and using poorly translated and edited scriptures as the template is much worse.

    I would not stand for a theocracy of any sort, and would resist it with all my might. People tend to forget that our Creator gave us free will- and it is up to us to learn, grow, and fend for ourselves.

    Sunfell

  20.   theo said: If you have suggestions of philosophers I should read I will definitely consider all of them.

    OK.  “The Origin of Species”  by Charles Darwin.  On the other hand, it, like the Bible, is a classic and a bit out of date.  Better start with “Darwin’s Dangerous Idea” by Daniel Dennett.

    OB waved her manifold arms:  I guess it’s just as incredible to ME as it would be to YOU, Theocrat, if I proposed that human government should be headed up by the Queen of the Elves.

    And I’m afraid this is the limiting factor for the depth of response your ideas are going to get here from most of us non-fundamentalists.  Rather than discuss the idea on its merits, Christian belief taken for granted, nine-tenths of us will simply discard theocracy as inherently flawed, because it’s based on a false worldview.  Now, if you want to debate the existence of God or Her Attributes, we’re game.  But you might do better with this particular entry on a Christian site.  At least you’d get a different kind of criticism.

    I’m not saying you should skeedaddle- I enjoy your input, and I’m sure others do too.  Just don’t be disappointed if you don’t get the kind of discussion of theocracy you want here.

  21. Of course, the real test is how this Christian Theocracy would treat those who aren’t Christian.  Under the guise of “caring for everybody.”

  22. Okay, here we go

    No government no matter the ideology or structure can destroy my free will to do what I please anyways.

    You’d be suprised what PhysOps can accomplish. If you were wired up and shocked enough times, you would do whatever your handlers wanted.

    If the government wants to take away my rights let them do so.

    Allowing the government to do so it not all peaches and cream, and once you abdicate your rights, it is very hard to get them back. Of course, if you like having all your rights taken away, that’s fine, but don’t presume to speak for any reality-based citizen.

    Until they take away rights that make me unable to follow the commandments of God, I have no reason to rebel.

    At that point, you have waited too long and will not be able to rebel.

      If they even go so far as to make Christianity illegal, it wouldn’t matter and would more likely be a mistake on their part.

    If it wouldn’t matter, then why practice that religion at all?

  23. Bryan’s response above is very interesting, and the dialogue is very insightful. It reveals that ‘martyr’ complex that many ‘unworldly’ Christians like Theocrat has- the very unlikely prospect that Christians would be ‘victims’ in a theocracy. While these fears might be reasonable in say, a Muslim theocracy, they are ludicrous in a Christian one. After all- why would the ‘rulers’ persecute their own?

    And on the flip side, it is the ‘non-believer’ or the ‘infidel’ or the ‘unsaved’ who need to be looking over their shoulders should such people truly gain power.

    Sunfell

  24. Theo,

    I’m a born-again Christian, too! Wow, while I’m not sure about your point on the press (it might be a little unrelated to begin with), great article! I’m starting to believe Chrsitians follow the Republicans with more faith than they do God…It’s strange how the church is supposed to function in a way that’s “socialist” or downright “communist.” It’s just something to think about. Especially considering that people don’t share like that today in Christian circles. We should be ashamed.

    Your point about how politics distracts from the great commission was AWESOME. Keep it up, bro!

    ~Mike~

  25. If you’ve read Revelation then you’d know that a theocracy under Christ himself would not at all be like the Taliban. Rather, it would be a tyranny infinately worse than the Taliban ever were.

  26. Originally posted by Lobo:
    Why do you believe in this particular god.  The evidence towards it’s existence is no stronger than the proof for any other gods existence.

    The evidence from my own search of evidence is much stronger than any other evidence for the existence of other gods.  I think I have an inherent flaw in my approach.  I always assume that people that think like most of you do have done extensive research and have read most of the things I have read and that you have also found the proof against all such evidence.  This is probably limiting my ability to debate because I am assuming anything I say will get struck down.  I wonder if any of you have heard of a guy named Josh McDowell or read any of his books.  Zilch has recommended multiple times to read Daniel Dennett which I honestly hope to do some day.  I also hope to read Plato, Aristotle, Immanuel Kant, Karl Marx, Adolph Hitler, Thomas Paine, Edmund Burke, Friedrich Nietzsche, Thomas Hobbes, and David Hume.  I don’t know when I’ll ever get around to it, but the desire is there.

    Originally posted by prickly pear:
    And what if Allah, Buddah, Zeus, Odin or some other deity suddenly appeared and declared a world-wide theocracy? What then?

    Then their styles of rule would differ upon their character.

    Originally posted by zilch:
    I’m not saying you should skeedaddle- I enjoy your input, and I’m sure others do too.  Just don’t be disappointed if you don’t get the kind of discussion of theocracy you want here.

    I’m not disappointed.  This is actually more discussion than I thought it was going to get.

  27. I’d like to ask… to your own belief system, what makes you think that the garden of eden wouldn’t be repeated?

    If a Holy Being reigned on the earth – people would obey because…?  The Bible’s teachings often speak to the treachery of humankind.  Adam and Eve lived in paradise and walked with a Holy Being, according to the Bible… yet they choose to leave that walk. 

    What would make your world any different? Unless, as I think someone else mentioned, this Holy Being forced people to be homogenious in thought. Perhaps you believe that division is called by an evil force… if the Holy Being removed the evil force then perhaps you believe humanity would live in happy agreement. 

    Personally, to me, an idea of living in this environment for thousands of years, captive of a form of flesh, is depressing.

    I’m not saying your ideas are bad. I’m just wondering what would make your world any different then what happened in the story of the Garden of Eden…

    Here’s a question for you… if in that story, there was no evil force tempting eve… would she or adam have ever picked the forbidden fruit on their own?  In other words – is there a self existing “evil” out there?

  28. There can be no proof of god, therefore any evidence to the contrary is misconstrued.  God requires faith of his followers.  Faith, by definition, cannot be proven.

    Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.
    Bible, Hebrews 11:1

    Therefore, if faith is required, and runs counter to proof, then god must have ensured that his existence cannot be proved.  Assuming, of course, that you (as you say) believe the bible to be inerrant.

  29. I wrote:
    And what if Allah, Buddah, Zeus, Odin or some other deity suddenly appeared and declared a world-wide theocracy? What then?

    Theocrat responded:
    Then their styles of rule would differ upon their character.

    I find the response interesting in that it appears to indicate that you accept a god and are willing to modify your beliefs/deities based on who appears to oversee the world-wide theocracy.

    But my original point was what if there is a generic message from a supernatural power which asked for world peace and harmony. Would you, Theo, insist that the declaration came from Jesus? Is this simple message enough to establish a theocracy or would it lead to world war? I would think the message would lead to war, the exact opposite affect of the message’s intent. Why? Because most people with any religious affiliation would insist that it was obviously a message from their choosen invisible friend.

    Personally, it would have no affect on me as I live a simple life, free from the clutter and burden of unsubstantiated beliefs. But given a good enough reason, I will jump on your Christian bandwagon. Like maybe if Jesus shows up and tells me to. Just like you will jump over to the other side when Allah shows up. wink

  30. Smeeocracy:  A Beginning
    by GeekMom.

    Some personal info about me before we begin.  I am an orthodox Smeeist that believes the Book of Smee is the inspired word of Smee.  This entire article is written from such a perspective that the Book of Smee is entirely true.  It’s only been about six months since I’ve given up on human governance.  Before then I was following the Peter Panites like a good little geek.  I began to be disconcerted with politics when I joined the Neverland bulletin board.  Reading the threads on that board the political discussions were sword fights.  No organization and both sides had several points they weren’t addressing and it would always dissolve into name calling.  I saw several good arguments that I had never heard before and no one was addressing.  All through high school I read The Daily Smee almost religiously.  I debated anyone who took up the issue and always won because in high school even the reformed Smeeists aren’t very well informed.

    I eventually got around to asking myself where did Mr. Smee stand on the political compass and how should that affect me?  I began to study government structures in the Book of Smee and how Smee and other disciples interacted with their authorities.  I started with observing Smee’s interaction with the Lost Boys and looking at the admittedly few political questions he was asked.

    Noticing the progression of structure in the Book of Smee from Captain Hook directly ruling, to him being eaten by a crocodile, to having Smee ruling, I recognize that the more autocratic the government structure is, the farther we get from being able to discern Smee’s will.  I propose theocracy is the least of all ideologies because putting the power to judge and legislate in the hands of the corrupt pirates—er, priests—only furthers corruption.

    Only by following the True Word of Smee will we all be able to form the perfect society, where we all love each other like shipmates and we all row together in the same boat.  Smee Himself will take the wheel and guide us through the stormy seas.  Even if none of us can see Him, and He never actually comes out and says anything, and in fact we can only tell He’s there because we drew a picture of Him on the cabin wall, we will be able to follow His Word because of course everyone knows exactly what He meant to say in His Book.  There will be no disagreements, no need to explain or clarify anything.  We will roll the bones and Smee will speak to us in our hearts.  We will never trust or believe in each other; we will only trust and believe in Smee.

    I hope to live long enough to see this come to pass.

  31. Theocrat, my I suggestion another area of research?  Feel free to explore the origin of the individual texts in make up the bible.  When researched with a critical and open mind, including religious and secular sources, it is possible that the bible will take a whole new shape right before your eyes.

  32. lol…had a half deleted sentence left in my post that i didn’t notice…I’m a crappy proofreader. smile  meant to say, “may I suggest another area of research?  Feel free to explore the origin of the individual texts that make up the bible.  When researched with a critical and open mind, including religious and secular sources, it is possible that the bible will take a whole new shape right before your eyes.

  33. Theocracy?! This country was founded by “We the People” to escape a theocracy! (Déjà Vu) If this country ever descends into the filth that is theocracy then we deserve the end that will surely come.

    Perhaps, THEOCRAT, you forget what a shithead your god really is? You seem to pick and choose just the feel-good portions of that old collection of fables you call a bible. Taking a look at his list of “Top 10 Laws” I can only find contempt for such an evil, jealous, entity. Of course this is just one version of this rubbish, I assume this is your version (protestant) is it not? I’m not sure if this was the first version of the commands that Moses smashed or the second version that your god had to whip up. BTW what’s the deal with the commandments that your boy says were supposed to be the same as the first set but were actually a completely different set of rules. Seems like your master would have been a little ticked off about ol’ Moses throwing a hissy-fit and bustin his tablets and all, I guess he was to disturbed to remember what the hell he wrote on the first go ‘round! Poor old god.

    Only blind sheep would submit to such tyranny…

    “The Ten Commandments”

    1. You shall have no other gods before me.

      a) Whoever has served other gods shall be stoned to death.

        If there is found among you, within any of your towns which the LORD your God gives you, a man or woman who does what is evil in the sight of the LORD your God, in transgressing his covenant, and has gone and served other gods and worshipped them, or the sun or the moon or any of the host of heaven, which I have forbidden, and it is told you and you hear of it; then you shall inquire diligently, and if it is true and certain that such an abominable thing has been done in Israel, then you shall bring forth to your gates that man or woman who has done this evil thing, and you shall stone that man or woman to death with stones. (Deut. 17:2-5)

      b) If someone tries to entice you to serve other gods, you shall stone him to death.

        If your brother, the son of your mother, or your son, or your daughter, or the wife of your bosom, or your friend who is as your own soul, entices you secretly, saying, ‘Let us go and serve other gods,’ which neither you nor your fathers have known, some of the gods of the peoples that are round about you, whether near you or far off from you, from the one end of the earth to the other, you shall not yield to him or listen to him, nor shall your eye pity him, nor shall you spare him, nor shall you conceal him; but you shall kill him; your hand shall be first against him to put him to death, and afterwards the hand of all the people. You shall stone him to death with stones, because he sought to draw you away from the LORD your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. (Deut. 13:6-10)

      c) If you hear that someone has drawn others out of the city to serve other gods, you shall investigate. If it is true you shall put them to the sword.

        If you hear in one of your cities, which the LORD your God gives you to dwell there, that certain base fellows have gone out among you and have drawn away the inhabitants of the city, saying, ‘Let us go and serve other gods,’ which you have not known, then you shall inquire and make search and ask diligently; and behold, if it be true and certain that such an abominable thing has been done among you, you shall surely put the inhabitants of that city to the sword, destroying it utterly, all who are in it and its cattle, with the edge of the sword. (Deut. 13:12-15)

      d) He who does not believe will be condemned.

        He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned. (Mark 16:16)

    2. You shall not make any graven images or any likeness of anything in heaven.

      a) Sorry artists and sculpters, you’re cursed.

        Cursed be the man that maketh any graven or molten image. (Deut. 27:15)

      b) Mediums and wizards shall be stoned to death.

        A man or a woman who is a medium or a wizard shall be put to death; they shall be stoned with stones, their blood shall be upon them.

  34. Skippy and Theo, please forgive me, but I couldn’t resist…

    The pratical upshot of all this is that if you stick a Babel fish in your ear you can instantly understand anything said to you in any form of language. The speech patterns you actually hear decode the brainwave matrix which has been fed into your mind by your Babel fish.

    Now it is such a bizarrely improbable coincidence that anything so mindboggingly useful could have evolved purely by chance that some thinkers have chosen to see it as a final and clinching proof of the non-existence of God.

    The arguement goes something like this: ‘I refuse to prove I exist,’ says God, ‘for proof denies faith, and without faith I am nothing.’

    ‘But,’ says Man, ‘the Babel fish is a dead giveaway isn’t it? It could not have evolved by chance. It proves you exist, and so therefore, by your own arguements, you don’t. QED.’

    ‘Oh dear,’ says God, ‘I hadn’t thought of that,’ and promptly vanishes in a puff of logic.

    from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams.

  35. Skippy and Theo, please forgive me, but I couldn’t resist…

    The pratical upshot of all this is that if you stick a Babel fish in your ear you can instantly understand anything said to you in any form of language. The speech patterns you actually hear decode the brainwave matrix which has been fed into your mind by your Babel fish.

    Now it is such a bizarrely improbable coincidence that anything so mindboggingly useful could have evolved purely by chance that some thinkers have chosen to see it as a final and clinching proof of the non-existence of God.

    The arguement goes something like this: ‘I refuse to prove I exist,’ says God, ‘for proof denies faith, and without faith I am nothing.’

    ‘But,’ says Man, ‘the Babel fish is a dead giveaway isn’t it? It could not have evolved by chance. It proves you exist, and so therefore, by your own arguements, you don’t. QED.’

    ‘Oh dear,’ says God, ‘I hadn’t thought of that,’ and promptly vanishes in a puff of logic.

    from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams.

  36. Argh! Sorry to all for the previous double post…

    GM, you left out part:
    “I try not to even talk about Smeeocracy unless asked because I never want to come across as pushing my views on people.  Pushing my views on people would contradict the basis of the intentions of such a belief.”

    Theo, I read your post, and initially found it hopeful, thoughtful and encouraging.  But now that I’ve skimmed it a second time, it occurs to me that I may have misinterpreted your point, so I’ll ask you to clarify, if you would. 

    Is the point of your post that you are looking forward to the time when a heavenly-ordained theocracy is once again established on earth, or are you advocating that man try to establish and follow such a plan as a model government?

  37. Spocko, I’m no expert, but I believe you misinterpreted the Ezekiel text, which is pretty easy to do. 

    NIV:

    12 Eat the food as you would a barley cake; bake it in the sight of the people, using human excrement for fuel.”

    NASB:

    12   “You shall eat it as a barley cake, having baked it in their sight over human dung.”

    NKJV:

    12And you shall eat it as barley cakes; and bake it using fuel of human waste in their sight.”

    There are two types of stories that make it into the Bible – the ones who were good examples, and the ones who were bad examples.  I hope my story will be worth telling for the right reasons, but I don’t count on it. 

    You make some good points that far too many Christians overlook, because the Truth isn’t pretty.  One cannot appreciate the magnitude and the awesomeness of the grace and forgiveness extended through Jesus’s sacrifice for our lives, unless one first acknowleges the magnitude of God’s wrath against sin.  And yet, while the world did nothing to deserve it, God paid the price our sins have accumulated, and pointed the way for us to be reconciled to Him.  Thanks again for the necessary reminder.

  38. kelly,

    cooking with scat etc…

    I hope Kingsford is an acceptable substitute! What a petty thing to include in such a book. Perhaps this god of yours has ADD and just goes ramblin’ off on trivial details? I don’t know.

    You make some good points that far too many Christians overlook, because the Truth isn’t pretty. 

    You are correct, Christians do overlook the truth. I imagine that’s because they have forsaken logic and reason for “faith” and fantasy.

    One cannot appreciate the magnitude and the awesomeness of the grace and forgiveness extended through Jesus’s sacrifice for our lives, unless one first acknowleges the magnitude of God’s wrath against sin.

    So this god of yours kills everybody that pisses him off, even sucklings, then kills his own son, and I’m supposed to feel all warm and fuzzy and “saved” by this? Your god is a despicable, raving, lunatic. I think this dude needs to learn how to play well with others, must have skipped finishing school or had some bad parents er somethin’. There are far better gods to choose from with exactly the same amount of evidence for their existence. Of course, I know anyone who thinks there are things such as gods, demons, faries, angels, etc. is missing the cheese from their cracker.

    And yet, while the world did nothing to deserve it, God paid the price our sins have accumulated, and pointed the way for us to be reconciled to Him. 

    The world did nothing to deserve torture from this imaginary jewish mythological tyrant either. So this dude creates some people, dreams up a crapload of silly rules for them to follow, they decide not to do so which pisses him off royal like, he sends down his boy and has him killed so he doesn’t have to be mad any more?! Hey! Now that I’ve got it all figured out, sign me up!

    Thanks again for the necessary reminder.

    Here’s a few more; you have been deceived, you believe in ancient fairy tales designed to control and conform, there is no such thing as the supernatural – there is nothing beyond nature, there is no life after death, there is no Santa Claus, Easter is an old god, all this god shit is just about astronomy and fear of the dark anyway, if you need to be forgiven then forgive yourself – we all fuck up, be excellent to each other, do not force your beliefs on others, never quit questioning, don’t take shortcuts to knowledge, expect unanswerable questions, people don’t need gods to be good, there is more to the world than “black and white”, floss daily, wear clean underwear when traveling, may the force be with you…

  39. Spocko – The thing I found most disturbing about the Ezekiel passage was that the whole thing was for show.  The famine had not yet fallen upon the area but god wanted the Israelites to prepare their bread in this fashion to send a message of the times to come.

    I cannot fathom a being that would use and abuse his most favored people in such a manner.  The old testament god reminds me of my drunk uncle.  Always looking for a fight and making his nieces and nephews do stupid shit for his entertainment.

  40. Theocrat says:

    The evidence from my own search of evidence is much stronger than any other evidence for the existence of other gods.

    Lobo says:

    So what evidence did you find?  Or did you just do a quick read-through of the bible?  That’s usually what most fundies mean when they say they did their research.  But in essence, the evidence for the christian god is pretty much the same as the evidence for the egyptian gods, the babylonian gods, the druids, the shintoists, the buddhists (although Buddha actually did exist, but laid no claim to godhood.) etc.  The bible is nothing more than the transcription of folk tales that were orally passed down for generations.

  41. I love the circular logic of it all.

    How do we know the Bible is the word of god? Because it says so in the Bible!

    Hey, if I write an IOU that says you owe me fifty bucks, with a nice description in the IOU that says it’s authentic because it’s written in the actual IOU which has to be authentic because that’s what it says in it, will you pay me?

  42. After some thought, I realised that this entire essay is kind of “useless.” Not using the word “useless” as an insult but merely because the essay is premised on something which renders the entire argument irrelevant. Thus even if I accept everything you stated in the argument, this argument ends up not providing any insight at all.

    One of the main premise is that Jesus or God actually returned to govern and that there is no dispute that he is the “real deal” and not some human pretending to be annointed by god.

    So if God came back to rule, and he says he wants a democracy. Are you going to tell God “Sorry, God I think you are wrong on wanting to govern through democracy, you should govern through a theocracy.”

    This essay is somewhat like writing “A beginner’s guide on how to govern as a God.”

    Therefore, if God comes back he will rule as he see fit.

  43. Spocko, great post! I absolutely agree with you. I personally want no part of a theocracy of any type—let alone one with the biblical “God” at the helm.

    Theocrat, I can take seriously the idea that people would want to establish a theocracy (there have been many attempts), but until god (if such a thing exists) comes down to earth, we live in a world that must be governed in some manner. Here’s the more immediate question even if you believe that god will return to rule: How would you see the nations of the world governed in the meantime?

    The fundamentalists would see a theocracy established under their particular interpretation of god’s will. So we’re back to the question of how anyone can know god’s will in the face of innumerable interpretations of god and innumerable interpretations of the word of god—even within fundamentalism itself.

  44. spocko erupted (he’s half Vulcan, remember): So this god of yours kills everybody that pisses him off, even sucklings, then kills his own son, and I’m supposed to feel all warm and fuzzy and “saved

  45. Damn, Zilch, you do that True Believe bit all too convincingly. wink I’ve not kept up with this thread because I was busy with the huge reply I made to Theocrat under another thread, but I’ll take some time to look at this one a little more closely today.

  46. I don’t vote or endorse any politician

    Theo- check out II Thessolonians, & in our current gov’t, I think my vote & endorcement is a “rendering unto Ceasar,” because I’m not looking to them for salvation.

  47. Plato’s Republic, obviously, Thomas More, Augustine on justice, Machiavelli…Augustine City of God, Locke’s 2 Tretise of Gov’t

  48. I think prophecy sees into the inevitable identiy of us all.  In Revelation, John writes that even after 1000 year utopia of “theocracy,” a menacing enough minority will take up arms against God, presumably feeling they’ve lost their freedom to be miserable.

    We’ve been studying Hebrews & it’s discussion of Christ as a priest “in the order of Melchisedek.”  Melchisedek was the only other priest to also be a king.  The judges were more prophets than political leaders, & David, though “a man after God’s own heart,” was not a priest.  So Jesus is the 2nd ever political/spiritual leader all-in-one!  He just hasn’t taken the “philosopher king” role yet.

    Chris & zilch – Theocracy isn’t the actual rule by God; it is the rule of people that claim to be doing the will of God by following a strict religious code.

    To pridefully assume we can know any theocracy on earth before His timing will create exactly what Shelley described: disillusionment.  It’s like trying to live under an Eisenhower or JFK presidency now: it’s just not reality.

  49. I am a born again raging Bitch from hell, & believe mockery & cruelty is the only way to communicate true anti-logic that swerves everyone away from the point of discussions I’m not required to be a part of anyway.

  50. do not force your beliefs on others, never quit questioning, don’t take shortcuts to knowledge, expect unanswerable questions, people don’t need gods to be good

    No, just rant & rave & call them names when they present them within your hearing/reading while another person asked, & assume you are right.  & when they say a question is unanswerable, continue to spew your answers.  I since God doesn’t have you, you can’t be kind.  Not that GM or Spocko have ever called Christians hypocrites, but they sure are lucky to avoid that accusation themselves by simply holding to no foundational beliefs & criticizing others who try.

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