On the day that we set aside to celebrate our nation’s independence, I thought it would be appropriate to see what the Bible says about freedom and how it is achieved and maintained. For a client nation to remain free, the Biblical principle of freedom through military victory must be utilized. The alternative is to be conquered by another nation under the fifth cycle of discipline from God. This is exactly what happened to Israel and eventually to the Roman Empire.
The reason that the United States of America is free at this very moment is that well-trained professional soldiers fought for our freedom. The true symbol of our freedom is not our flag (though we love it); the true symbol of our freedom is the uniform worn by the men and women of our military. Many brave men and women have given their lives to secure the freedom that we enjoy. A strong military has been ordained by God so that the human race can survive. Since every human has a sin nature, evil from within a nation (crime) and evil from outside a nation (war) will continue to exist. God has designed two remedies for dealing with the sin nature. The spiritual remedy is salvation and the filling of the Holy Spirit. The other remedy is the Law of Divine Establishment, which includes a strong military.
Throughout human history, man has attempted to solve his problems through peaceful negotiations, treaties, etc. All these attempts have failed and will continue to fail because of the sin nature. No one can guarantee freedom and peace, including organizations like the United Nations. Either the sin nature must be dealt with spiritually (salvation and the execution of the Christian Way of Life) or judicially by the military or the police. God’s system of dealing with criminals is somewhat different from what most people think. Most people do not know or understand what the Bible teaches about the subject of national freedom. (James 4:1-2)
Nationalism is a system established by God in order to preserve the freedom of a nation. The United States is one of the most blessed nations in history and has operated as a client nation to God from the day it was founded. A client nation is one in which freedom exists for all people. This freedom includes freedom of religion, freedom of speech, freedom of assembly, freedom of thought, etc. One of the keys to the success of client nation U.S.A. is a strong military organization, which is a very Biblical concept. Throughout history, the nations that did not development a strong military were overtaken and enslaved by stronger nations.
The protection of our citizens from all enemies (within the nation and outside the nation) is a principle of nationalism. This does not mean that we are isolationists. On the other hand, God does not want us allying ourselves with evil, corrupt, tyrannical nations. The client nation to God is responsible for the protection and perpetuation of freedom. If there is an enemy that threatens that freedom, the client nation must be prepared militarily to deal with it. Christians within the client nation are responsible for the preservation of God’s Word and the dissemination of the Gospel of Christ throughout the world.
When a nation fails to acknowledge the divine establishment principles from God, it will ultimately fail. A nation that acknowledges these principles will survive and freedom will be perpetuated. Such was the nation of Israel until they turned their back on God and His principles of freedom.
The Jewish nation of Israel is a perfect example of a nation that at times followed and at other times neglected the principles of divine establishment regarding a strong military. In the time of Nehemiah, Israel revolted against the authority of God and became split into two nations. The Northern tribes (ten) called themselves Israel and the Southern tribes (two) called themselves Judah. After a series of failures and captivity, from which most Jews (Northern and Southern) learned absolutely nothing about the discipline of God, one group returned to their homeland to rebuild the city. They thought the first step was to fortify the city by rebuilding the walls.
Here is where we pick up the story. When these younger descendents returned after Israel’s seventy years in captivity, their first desire was to rebuild. However, in those seventy years Israel had not lost their enemies. When their enemies got word that Israel was rebuilding, they became angry and began to conspire together to destroy them.
The response of the Jewish nation is our illustration of the principle of freedom through military victory. Two things were done by the nation immediately upon return to their land. First they re-established the priesthood (spiritual response) and second they put together a strong army (divine establishment response). Every able-bodied male was trained militarily and could be called up for battle at a moment’s notice. Nehemiah then utilized military strategy and tactics to deploy his troops. Nehemiah even armed the civilian population. The amazing end to this story is that when their enemies heard of Israel’s military preparation and readiness they retreated and no battle ensued. It is only through a strong military that wars are averted or won. This is God’s system for freedom.
One thing is clear from the Word of God, wars will continue until the millennial reign of Jesus Christ. Warfare is part of man’s history and the existence of the sin nature assures its perpetuation. Even the Rapture will not eliminate wars. As a matter of fact, wars will increase and intensify during the Tribulation, which immediately follows the Rapture.
Contrary to popular belief, war is often necessary in order for freedom to continue. No one likes war, and its results, with the loss of life and property, but it has been necessary many times in history. The key for the client nation is to be prepared to wage war and win a decisive victory. As a client nation, the nation has the distinct advantage of having Jesus Christ as the Lord of Armies. Therefore, both spiritual and military preparation should take place before an army goes to battle.
The only time in human history that wars will cease is when Jesus Christ rules on earth during the Millennium. All uprisings will be dealt with swiftly and harshly under the principle of capital punishment (a Biblical concept). Satan and his demons will no longer plague mankind nor be responsible for instigating wars, having been removed from the earth during this period. However, man will still have a sin nature and will still need to accept the salvation solution of faith in Christ. (Gen 9:5-6; Mt 26:52; Rom 13:3-4; Ex 21:12; Num 35:30)
God created man to be free and not to be enslaved by another person or nation. It is this human freedom that needs to be preserved in order for mankind to resolve the Angelic Conflict. If freedom of choice is totally removed from the human race, the Angelic Conflict could never be resolved. God in His grace perpetuates human freedom through client nations that establish strong military entities. The Laws of Divine Establishment protect the volition, the rights, the privacy and the property of everyone.
It must be remembered that the Laws of Divine Establishment are designed for believer and unbeliever alike. Every person deserves to be free, even those who reject Jesus Christ as Savior. Human freedom, of course, is not “free.” Not only does human freedom cost the lives of brave men and women, it sometimes costs us a few personal freedoms for the good of the nation. Everyone in a free society is expected to adhere to the laws of the land, for example. In the home, children are not always free to do as they please, but are mandated by God to obey their parents. Men and women who join the military often give up certain personal freedoms in order to function as a unit under strict discipline and authority.
Human freedom is not to be taken for granted nor is it to be abused. When a human being reaches maturity he must be allowed the freedom to succeed or to fail. Taking the responsibility for our own actions is the most basic of all human freedoms. Even the freedom to sin is a function of God’s grace (freewill of the individual).
The ultimate in human freedom is spiritual freedom provided for the human race by Jesus Christ. He gave up His freedom and gave His life as the payment for sin for all mankind. The truth that sets one free is found in the Person of Christ when an individual accepts Christ’s payment for his sin by faith. Once a person becomes a believer, he becomes truly free (experientially) by learning and applying the truth (Bible doctrine).
Even as a believer who has been “set free”, we are often called upon to set aside our individual freedoms so that we do not offend or become a stumblingblock to another person. The existence and perpetuation of freedom demands respect for authority and for law. It also demands self-sacrifice, self-discipline and the moral courage to defend that freedom at all costs. National freedom is maintained by military victory.
“We, the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and to our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America”.