As I was reading the book Liberty and Justice for Some, my mind kept going back to the Larry King show of many years ago where he had a panel of religious leaders on discussing the, I believe, the church’s response to Bush43’s decision to go to war with Iraq. My mind has held on to John MacArthur’s response where he abdicated the church’s role of dissenting against sinful actions and built a defense for blind obedience to government.
He used the verse talking about Christians are to obey their government but that verse never said Christians are to support sinful acts of government. It was sad to see such a travesty take place as the church should be the moral conscience of a nation keeping it on track encouraging doing what is right, just, fair and so on. Instead we have many churches who turn a blind eye to the sin committed by a government, rarely challenging it to mend it ways.
The church should strive towards being two things, amongst everything else it needs to do:
#1. It needs to be Nathan, who was not afraid to stand up to King David and tell him he was wrong
2 Samuel 12:7Nathan then said to David, “You are the man! Thus says the Lord God of Israel, ‘It is I who anointed you king over Israel and it is I who delivered you from the hand of Saul.
#1. Like all private companies, the prison industry has an insatiable appetite for more business, thus it agitates in favor of greater demand for services– demand created through longer prison sentences, fewer opportunities for parole, and constant increases in the number of transgressions deemed prison-worthy. (pg. 254)#2. America’s war on drugs set in motion some of the most brazen systematic attacks on equality under the law in the modern era. But the ‘war on terror’ has taken those attacks to new depths of injustice. (pg. 258)#3. The American justice system relentlessly ‘looks backward”, however, to seek out and punish the crimes of ordinary Americans and Obama has done nothing to retard the booming growth of America’s prison state. (pg. 259)#4. While immunizing high-level lawbreakers, the Obama administration not only has failed to extend the protective shield of immunity to America’s whistle blowers but has pursued them with uncommon vigor. (pg. 259)#5. It’s true, of course, that leaking classified information is a crime. That’s what makes whistle blowers and leakers so courageous. And if all the wrongdoing, including that of the politically powerful, were always fully punished according to the law, one could accept whistle-blower prosecutions. But that is not the situation that prevails. (pg. 262)#6. Since September 2001, the ‘war on terror’ has opened up an entire dimension in which the rule of law simply vanishes. For those who are accused of being terrorists–even if they are never charged with any crime– there is now a limbo world in which there is exists not even the pretense of due process, let alone equality. (pg. 263)#7. This is how the multitiered justice system preserves itself: by targeting those with the weakest voices, the smallest constituencies, and the least ability to resist. (pg. 266)#8. Thus did the pardon of Richard Nixon — justified in 1974 as a onetime exception necessitated by unique circumstances– lay the foundation for elite immunity: a lawbreaking license that spread throughout the political class and then to its partners in the private sector. (pg. 266)#9. The proclamation of John Adams that we are ‘a nation of laws, not men’ now rings hollow as does Thomas Jefferson’s insistence that the essence of America is that ‘the poorest laborer stands on equal ground with the wealthiest millionaire…(pg. 266)#10. And Madison’s proud declaration in federalist 57 that America’s political class, by definition, ‘can make no law which will not have its full operation on themselves and their friends,as well as the great mass of society,; now seems to describe a country entirely other than our own. (pg. 267)