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Devotionals 2009 - 2010

Imperfect Governments
May 8, 2009By Ed Wrather

My brethren, do not hold the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory, with partiality. For if there should come into your assembly a man with gold rings, in fine apparel, and there should also come in a poor man in filthy clothes, and you pay attention to the one wearing the fine clothes and say to him, “You sit here in a good place,” and say to the poor man, “You stand there,” or, “Sit here at my footstool,” have you not shown partiality among yourselves, and become judges with evil thoughts? - James 2:1-4 NKJV.

If you really fulfill the royal law according to the Scripture, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself,” you do well; but if you show partiality, you commit sin, and are convicted by the law as transgressors. - James 2:8-9 NKJV.

About a year ago (2008) the Kentucky Fried Chicken franchise in Elk City, Oklahoma, which I live about 30 miles from, built a new restaurant. A preacher friend of mine pointed out to me at the time, a sign that is right next to the KFC building. The sign proudly announces that Elk City is a “bird sanctuary.” Apparently some birds are more protected than other birds! Surprisingly, the sign has never been moved to a less conspicuous place.

In the Declaration of Independence of the United States of America signed July 4, 1776 we find these words, “WE hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal. That they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights….” Of course, we know that some people were not actually considered to be a part of “all men” even though obviously they were.

On July 9, 1868, the 14th Amendment to the Constitution of the United States was ratified which states in part, “no state shall … deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws” Since that time “hate crime” legislation has been enacted on a federal level to attempt to further protect persecuted minorities. However, in the attempt to protect certain groups of people with “hate crime” legislation it appears that other groups of people will become less protected and less privileged.

Governments, as with people are imperfect. We, of course, desire for a government of free people to be perfect in the governance of those people. However, such a perfect government has never been seen on the face of this Earth, and it never will be until our Lord‘s return. In some ways, a government is a mirror of the people that are governed especially in a free society. As we see an increasingly corrupt government it mirrors the corruptness of the people who vote to elect those that govern.

What is the best way, the quickest way to change a corrupt, inept government? By a change in the hearts of the people. In the Book of Judges this occurred repeatedly. When the hearts of the people changed, God raised up a leader that led them to freedom from the oppression that had been placed upon them. The problem for the people began when in Judges 2:11 we read, “Then the children of Israel did evil in the sight of the LORD….” The result of their sin was that, “Wherever they went out, the hand of the LORD was against them for calamity, as the LORD had said, and as the LORD had sworn to them. And they were greatly distressed (Judges 2:15).” In Judges 3:9 we read, “When the children of Israel cried out to the LORD, the LORD raised up a deliverer for the children of Israel, who delivered them….”

Let us as Christians live as Christians treating all people as equals. Let us as Christians cry out to God seeking His will to be done in our lives and in the country in which we live. 2 Chronicles 7:14 tells us what we must do, “If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.”

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