GOD OR STATE: To Whom Will You Bend The Knee?

Written by Wes Walker on July 3, 2022

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If you think the State usurping divine authority is a modern problem, you’ve not been paying attention.

One American statesman said it this way in the 19th Century:

Men, in a word, must necessarily be controlled, either by a power within them, or by a power without them; either by the word of God, or by the strong arm of man; either by the Bible, or by the bayonet. — Robert Charles Winthrop

We see an example of exactly this dynamic of a hostile king demanding his own lordship be held above any divine worship going back about 2600 years.

Political rivals to the Prophet Daniel saw that his moral life was unimpeachable, so they found a way to use his religious life to run him afoul of a religiously hostile government.

Finally these men said, “We will never find any basis for charges against this man Daniel unless it has something to do with the law of his God.”

So these administrators and satraps went as a group to the king and said: “May King Darius live forever! The royal administrators, prefects, satraps, advisers and governors have all agreed that the king should issue an edict and enforce the decree that anyone who prays to any god or human being during the next thirty days, except to you, Your Majesty, shall be thrown into the lions’ den. Now, Your Majesty, issue the decree and put it in writing so that it cannot be altered—in accordance with the law of the Medes and Persians, which cannot be repealed.” So King Darius put the decree in writing. — Daniel 6

A choice was forced: obey man and the state, or obey God.

Naturally, Daniel continued in his ordinary religious practices, and the trap was sprung by his enemies.

King Darius, unaware of how the trap would be sprung on Daniel, was horrified at this outcome. But the decree had been written and could not be revoked, and so the sentece was carried out.

Have we seen anything similar in more recent times? Have we seen ultimatums given to the Church about compliance with State demands? Have we seen Christians thrown to lions because they wouldn’t say ‘Caesar is Lord’? Sure did. What about more recently? What about when we were told not to meet in worship because the state said our health authority thought WalMarts, Home Depots, strip clubs and pot dispensaries were safe to congregate in, but Churches were not?

When God and men were in conflict, what did we do?

It’s easy for us to say that God saved Daniel’s life. But Daniel had no reason to think his life would be spared from the lion’s maw.

Here’s how the story ended:

At the first light of dawn, the king got up and hurried to the lions’ den. When he came near the den, he called to Daniel in an anguished voice, “Daniel, servant of the living God, has your God, whom you serve continually, been able to rescue you from the lions?”

Daniel answered, “May the king live forever! My God sent his angel, and he shut the mouths of the lions. They have not hurt me, because I was found innocent in his sight. Nor have I ever done any wrong before you, Your Majesty.”

The king was overjoyed and gave orders to lift Daniel out of the den. And when Daniel was lifted from the den, no wound was found on him, because he had trusted in his God.

At the king’s command, the men who had falsely accused Daniel were brought in and thrown into the lions’ den, along with their wives and children. And before they reached the floor of the den, the lions overpowered them and crushed all their bones.

Daniel obeyed his conscience and God, not the dictates of some petty potentate, and he left the consequences of that obedience up to God. Whether he’s killed, imprisoned, or suvives intact, he’s already pledged his head to heaven, the obedience is already assured, it’s just the consequences of that obedience that remained to be revealed.

It’s the same go-to-hell speech Daniel’s 3 contemporaries gave before being thrown into the fiery furnace.

Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego replied to him, “King Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to defend ourselves before you in this matter. If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to deliver us from it, and he will deliver us from Your Majesty’s hand. But even if he does not, we want you to know, Your Majesty, that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up.”

The fire didn’t touch them. But the faith came first.

Dear Christian: Your Fear Is Full of Crap

by Doug Giles

Beginning in March 2020, many Christians went into lockdown-freak-out mode.

They “socially distanced” themselves from corporate worship and from pretty much everyone and everything else, except, of course, liquor, and grocery stores.

Uncut, irrational, unbiblical, and not to mention, unconstitutional, fear gripped many churches and church leaders.

Should pastors publicly repent if they obeyed Fauci in regard to how they conducted their ministry instead of adhering to the clear commands of the King of Kings and Lord of Lords?

That’s a legit question, eh?

Get your copy of Dear Christian: Your Fear Is Full of Crap now. Better yet, grab an extra copy for any petrified pastor who dutifully put obedience to the unconstitutional edicts of Mayor McCheese ahead of obedience to the explicit commandments of the LORD God Almighty.