For very brief periods of time, liberty of individuals may have existed in this world but it was fleeting. In spite of America’s claims of being the land of liberty, it really only existed for some individuals in America and some periods in America had more liberty than others.
Moral nations could have true liberty but there are no moral nations on earth because people are immoral. Most people understand that people need controls. The history of the world makes it clear that humans choose to live under strongman rulers that govern various clans, tribes, nations or kingdoms of the world.
Today we like to look back and call past governments tyrannical police states. Sure they were, but what has changed? Most in the world are still living under such a system of government. Even in democracies where the majority rules, there is no liberty for those outside of the majority.
We in the United States like to talk about liberty and justice for all, but in our own colonial days there was no such thing for many. The rich and the elite had liberty but the slaves had none at all. In early America, common wage workers had very little real liberty, they had no choice but to work long hours for very low pay if they were going to provide a living for their family.
The common people who did have liberty were mostly those that lived in very rural areas where there was little government or rich people lording over their life (that is still somewhat true today). Even in America’s early days, the cities were already controlled by powerful people and outlaw gangs and nothing has changed today.
In America’s early days most people may have had liberty from federal government, but they did not have liberty from the oppression from control freaks that lived in their own local areas. Often that oppression came from those trying to force their legalistic version of the Christian religion on others.
Of all the nations of the world in recent times, America was uniquely identified with liberty, freedom, and justice but where was this liberty and justice during the American Civil War? Men that did not follow the dictates of their own state had no choice but to fight for the warlords that held their local area. Where was liberty and freedom in World War I and World War II or Korea and Vietnam when a government draft decided your fate?
During World War II, the federal government decreed many things that limited liberty in most of the nation. The draft, issuance of ration cards, and incarceration camps were not exactly hallmarks of liberty. Sure, national security comes before liberty but that is my point. People will give up liberty for government promised security every time. It is also why there never was or never will be much liberty in this fallen world.
Government rules everywhere through laws, regulation and taxes. Actually, fallen humans need to be ruled because if everyone had the liberty to do anything they wanted, their own liberty often would be oppressing the liberty of someone else. Without rules for society, complete anarchy and a Mad Max world becomes reality (something like in some American inner cities today).
If people could live by the moral law, there would be no need for government at all. Israel was the most moral nation on earth, but Israel found out that they could not govern themselves with their sin nature, so they told God to give them a King like the rest of the nations. The days in the time of the Judges in Israel was an early experiment in personal liberty. Everyone in Israel was doing what was right in their own eyes but God had to raise up judges because they were actually doing a great deal of evil. Every society that has attempted liberty since has had the same problem, liberty fails because liberty cannot exist where people love to do evil.
Americans and Western nations were given an unusual amount of liberty after World War II and after the anti-communist wars. So what did this experiment in unprecedented liberty lead to? It led to one of the most permissive undisciplined generations that this world has ever seen. Do we really think that this should now be the norm?? God bless America! Land of the fruits, nuts and flakes (Sorry California that moniker is not unique to your state anymore).
Obviously there will come a backlash against permissiveness in Western nations because a decadent society is dangerous in many ways. This permissive insanity will not be allowed to rule over 7 Billion people on earth. At some point, even liberal people must see that 10 years in jail for killing 77 people, or that allowing the spread of disease in the name of sexual liberty, or kowtowing to Islamic murderers is suicidal. Remember, world history proves that security always trumps liberty. There will be a backlash against liberal permissiveness and when it comes it will not be pretty.
Most in the Western world do not have a death wish, they are going to eventually come to the conclusion that it is not in their best interest to continue to play the fool with liberal idealists and a religion that wants them dead. The Far Right seeds have already been sown in Europe that will end this short exercise in permissiveness.
Fallen people cannot rule themselves. Even the founders of the American nation said that their system of government could only work with a moral people. Nobody should still be confused, we are not a moral people. There is nothing new under the sun. Western society will once again move to the opposite extreme, to authoritarian rule.
Russia and China have become saner than the West in these areas. Why? Because they have a government that has already figured out that you just cannot let people have the liberty to do anything they want or elements within the nation will work to destroy the whole civilization. A prime example again is America. The nation is more divided then it was before the Civil War, because in the name of liberty to do evil, a generation of undisciplined, immoral, rebellious, drug damaged, relativistic, criminals got control of the nation. There will be a backlash, but it could bring the end of America.
There has to be restrictions on liberty for immoral people. The proof that people want and need authoritarian government to keep them on track is demonstrated all over the world. The few countries that still actually have a democratic republic are only one national crisis from losing it, and America is no exception.
Some Christians in America have this illusion that government is the enemy. That usually is not the case. It is religion that has historically been the enemy of true Christianity. When religion controls the state, it always becomes a major threat to Christianity and that is something for Christians to keep in mind.
I see no scripture that says that Jesus was persecuted by the Roman government, but He certainly was persecuted by the religious Jews. In the days that Christians were persecuted by the Roman government, who made the emperor a god and forced people to worship him? It was the religious pagan priests of the empire. When Catholicism ran Europe during the Holy Roman Empire, it was true Christians and Jews that were persecuted. There are many other such examples that indicate the main enemy of Christianity is religion.
Someone might point out that the secular Communists were not religious, but Communism really is a humanistic religion where man declares himself to be God. Even now, in Western nations we see that persecution against true Christians is coming from either the religion of secular humanism or the religion of all paths universalism.
When true secularists run a state there is not normally persecution against Christians. However, when religious people get in power in any state there is almost always persecution of Christians. Islam is the prime example today, but they are not alone.
When religion joins with the state it always becomes tyrannical and eventually persecutes true Christians, so we better not go there even in the name of restoring American under red white and blue Christian Dominion Theology. Christian nationalism is not the gospel that brings salvation.
The Harlot of Revelation 17 with a cup full of the blood of the saints does not represent government, she represents religion. Religion is the enemy of Christianity, not governments.
My concern is that the permissiveness of our Western society, and the threat of Islam at some point, will bring a religious backlash that will promise security to the fearful, but will then turn into a world Harlot led witch hunt. The inclusive self-righteous religious Harlot, will eventually persecute the exclusive Christian people.
We already should know that the majority of people in the world find Western permissive “Christianity” disgusting. Westerners use their own liberty as an excuse to not only do evil but to promote it in the world and even to force it on others. That then gives Satan the legal right to demand the death sentence. Contrary to the opinion of some, Satan is an equal opportunity killer. He has no problem killing evil people because he know that all humans deserve death. After all, Satan is given the power to tempt humans to do evil, with the hope that he can get permission to kill them and send them to his underworld prison house.
Christians can live and carry out their commission and purpose under any form of secular government on earth. Where there is a good king or political figure ruling, Christianity will prosper. Where there is an evil king or political figure ruling, Christianity can still excel. However, when there is demonic religion ruling, true Christianity will be persecuted and will have to go underground.
My point is that Christians in the United States should not bind themselves up with government as if one type of government is going to prosper Christians and another is going to mean the end of Christianity in America. True Christianity is not dependent on the political system of America anymore than it is dependent on the political system of any other nation. Christians should not get unduly caught up into nationalism. Hitler got the churches behind him and you know where that led. The Bible does not teach Christian nationalism, it only teaches us to pray for our secular leaders so things will go well for us.
I am not saying don’t get involved in politics or try to get Christians elected to office. Just keep in mind that Christians might influence politics in nations, but nations are not under our control, and we should not think that they ever will be under our control before Jesus returns.
If the elections in America do not turn out like Christians wish, it does not change our own calling, and neither should we be looking for a fight with whatever secular government rules. A fight against secular leaders will bring a backlash against Christians that will hinder us, not help us. He who lives by the sword will die by the sword. We already had one civil war in America where Christians were fighting Christians because reason went out the window in the name of secular nationalism (the war was not really about freeing slaves). We ought to keep that in mind so we do not jump on some bandwagon leading down that road again.
Again, Christians can carry out the great commission even under a police state. Paul converted many Roman Empire military leaders. Christians are not just here or there within a secular government, Christians are in place everywhere. Our job is to make more disciples of Christ everywhere until the day that the Lord comes to remove His people. Then the Lord will deal with evil in the world.
A permissive society is not necessarily the best environment to spread the gospel, so don’t be surprised if God changes our society to one that is more authoritarian. Chinese Christians are doing a far better job under authoritarian tyranny. We live in a Christian culture but our religious freedoms are being more infringed on every day, in spite of all the claims about our constitutional liberties. This country certainly needs to get some moral discipline back into our society, if it is to survive. However, if that occurs, we better make sure it is not linked with religious dominionism, because when religion joins the state, persecution of true Christians will not be far behind.
Don Koenig founded www.thepropheticyears.com website in 1999 after almost thirty years of independent study on the Bible and learning from many astute teachers within Christendom. Don created his website to write about Bible prophecy, biblical discernment and his Christian worldviews. Don wrote a free Revelation commentary ebook in 2004 named "The Revelation of Jesus Christ Through The Ages". The World and Church and Bible Prophecy section of this website was started in 2007.