When is civil disobedience something that we, as Christians, both approve of and participate in? Ever?

In the end George and Colson tells us that we must be ready to draw a “line in the sand” as Christians. Obviously the “line” is the line of civil disobedience. This can come in many forms. Indeed, it has come in many forms. Civil disobedience, many would say, is an implied constitutional right and obligation of the citizens of America when the government does cross a line (as the constitution was more about limiting the government than it was limiting the people). Failure to respond to this call of action could ironically be rebellion against our constitution and the principles upon which this country was founded. Civil unrest starts with a utilization of the means provided within the law. When unproductive, it turns into civil disobedience (as was the case in the 1960s when civil rights was at issue). Next rebellion. Then all out revolution.

My questions for you are many:

Is Chuck Colson really making a “call to arms” in America?

How do we know when the line is crossed?

Is there any issue right now that justifies such a call to arms as Colson seems to be suggesting? Sanctity of life? Dignity of marriage? Religious freedom? These are the three that George suggested.

Would you respond to a “call to arms” for any of these?

C Michael Patton
C Michael Patton

C. Michael Patton is the primary contributor to the Parchment and Pen/Credo House Blog. He has been in ministry for nearly twenty years as a pastor, author, speaker, and blogger. Th.M. Dallas Theological Seminary (2001), president of Credo House Ministries and Credo Courses, author of Now that I'm a Christian (Crossway, 2014) Increase My Faith (Credo House, 2011), and The Theology Program (Reclaiming the Mind Ministries, 2001-2006), host of Theology Unplugged, and primary blogger here at Parchment and Pen. But, most importantly, husband to a beautiful wife and father to four awesome children. Michael is available for speaking engagements. Find him everywhere: Find him everywhere

    82 replies to "Is Chuck Colson Really Making a “Call to Arms” in America?"

    • Curt Parton


      The examples that you’re giving such as assassinations, illegal entry by the police, are not examples of the government per se, but of individuals violating the laws of the government. We don’t need your argument to oppose such actions because they are unambiguously contrary to current law as enforced.

      Where this kind of principle is often argued though, is when some claim that a current law passed by congress is actually unconstitutional. Then do we have the right to disobey such a law? Or even a moral obligation? Even if it doesn’t force us to disobey God? If so, on what biblical principle do we base such an obligation?

      And I don’t think you can dismiss the first two verses of Romans 13 because, in your opinion, such obedience is not constitutionally due them. I think you’re reading far too much into one reading of verse seven.

    • Rich H

      For me, the real question is if there are any circumstances where a Christian may take up arms. A home invasion? Revolution against an unjust government? In a “Just War”, classically defined?

      I know that if my home were invaded, and my wife or children threatened or killed, I would *want* to take action, up to and probably including killing the invader. But does that make it right? Does that make it in conformance with being a disciple of Jesus Christ?

      Same thing for war. When I see the photos of the Jews who were tortured or killed in the Nazi concentration camps, and I imagine how I would react if such were happening today, I would want to force justice, well, by force. But is that what Jesus would have me do?

      Or, consider the abortion issue of today. Would we, as Christians, ever be justified in taking up arms to stop the abortions?

      There are many Christians who would answer “No” to these questions. And I find myself moving more in that direction as I get older (and presumably wiser). When I look at the totality of God’s revelation in Scripture, and self-revelation in Jesus Christ, I see a God who is willing to die instead of imposing his will on humanity.

      I realize that this stance will seem “far left” for many of you. But it is increasingly what I believe.

    • Greg

      Because the Founders of America held to belief in a Creator, who instituted natural law for His creation, they drafted a Declaration of Independence from Britain, along with a subsequent Constitution for the new, American Republic. In these documents, it was made clear that no one, not even the Congress or President were to be considered “above the Law” (natural law). Along came secular humanism, with its assertion, in essence, that man (humanity) is the measure of all things (how Hellenistic of them).
      While the Founders weren’t perfect, after all, slavery was allowed to remain even though it violated the Declaration of Independence that stressed the equality of all men; still, after 100-plus years of secular humanism, it should not surprise any of us that America, and the West’s, moral compass has been turned inside-out.
      Much has been made of Romans 12-13 in this feed. My thinking, though, is that America, and the West, are simply following the Reprobation Road as described in Romans 1. The only question is whether Christians will join them on that road, or stand firm on the solid Rock, clothed in the armor of God.

    • Ed Kratz


      I think your answer and stance is perfectly understandable and can find much biblical support. Thanks for sharing (even though I don’t think I agree).

      I have simply not been able to come to any conclusions on this. I would be different. If someone broke into my house and threatened my children and I had the chance, that guy would go meet God. I would like to think I would do the same for anyone on the street, even if I did not know them. For example, if I knew a murder was going to take place at such and such time in such and such place and I could stop it only by harming the murderer, I would do so. If the government allowed this murder and did not protect the person who was the “savior” of the threatened party, I would still like to say I would do so.

      However, I sit as a hypocrite in some ways to my own ideals as so many babies are being killed and I am not protected in saving them. Therefore, I hope in legislation. I hope in changed hearts. I hope in preaching.

      While I perish the thought that I would simply pray for the murderer as he kills my children (hoping that God would change his heart), that is what I do with those who have not voice to protect them. (Not that the parallel is exact since killing the mother would do no good!)

      Anyway, just thoughts.

    • Michael T.

      Rich H,
      I find much that you say that I agree with. I would note as someone who has studied “Just War” theory though that one of the requirements for classical just war is “Proper Authority” meaning an individual simply can’t make the decision to go to war – a recognized sovereign authority has to make that decision (i.e. the elected government in a democracy, the king in a monarchy, etc.). The Christians must analyze that decision to determine if the war is justified in such a manner that Christians could participate. Christians acting alone could not execute a just war under classical just war theory.

    • Michael T.

      I’m going to propose a bit of a paradox here by asking the question “does necessity make a sin acceptable”? Or phrased another way is it possible that the realities of the fallen world in which we live may leave us no other option then to sin?

      Let me explain a bit. In the case of a robber who is going to kill you’re family if you kill them you are violating the command that we love our enemies and bless those who persecute us. If on the other hand you stand by and do nothing you are violating the command to love your family or your neighbor (in the case of a stranger). Either way you are violating the 2nd most important commandment in the Bible. Since you like tension (our past discussions on Calvinism) perhaps the correct answer is to not resolve this tension instead stating that taking a human life is always sin and always something to repent of, but may still be necessary given the fallen world we live in.

      This is the position taken by Christian Realists such as Reinhold Niebuhr and others. While I find some things to disagree with them on theologically (most were Barthian Neo-Orthodox) I find their view of the nature of war, violence, and the command to love ones neighbor to be the most logical and coherent view.

    • Michael T.


      “Much has been made of Romans 12-13 in this feed. My thinking, though, is that America, and the West, are simply following the Reprobation Road as described in Romans 1. The only question is whether Christians will join them on that road, or stand firm on the solid Rock, clothed in the armor of God.”

      No one here is denying that the moral compass of the West is severely messed up or just completely not functioning. The question also isn’t whether or not Christians should swim against the stream of the depravity of our culture. Just like in Paul’s time we are commanded to do this.

      The question is rather whether or not we should seize political power and use force, violence if necessary, to force society to conform to Christian ideals. To this I answer with an emphatic NO!! The love of Christ cannot be shown and the changing of peoples hearts cannot occur at the end of a sword. That wasn’t the manner in which Jesus operated, it wasn’t the manner in which Paul operated, and it I find no Biblical support for it being the manner in which we should operate today.

    • Rich H

      Michael T.

      I think you and I may be closer in thought than first appears. Although it’s probably not theologically rigorous, I think a good operational definition of sin is, “that which causes us to separated from God.”

      By this definition, it is very possible to find yourself in a circumstance where there is no way not to sin. It seems to me that just to live in our society is to participate in the sinfulness that pervades it.

      This is probably the only reason that I do not commit myself completely to pacifism. I may find myself in such a “no win” situation, and find myself choosing the “lesser of two evils” being to use force.

      One danger of using this approach: it can lead you to a place where you become less sensitive to sin, or less willing to choose a hard but “sinless” path over the easier but sinful path.

      Also, it’s a dangerous thing, this choosing of the lesser of two evils. I am certain that we must focus our efforts on choosing the path that leads towards Christ, not choosing which path will take us the least away from Him.

    • Ed Kratz

      Michael T,

      “The question is rather whether or not we should seize political power and use force, violence if necessary, to force society to conform to Christian ideals. To this I answer with an emphatic NO!!”

      I am not saying this either if you mean “we as Christians should do this.” In any other nation, where our constitution, history, and principles of foundation are not in play, say…where there is a dictatorship, I would agree with you.

      What I struggle with is whether or not we have this obligation “as Americans.” Did the founding fathers build into the constitution a mandate for the people of the government to overthrow the government when the government goes against natural law, not necessarily biblical law.

      This I don’t know, but I know that the formers were not afraid of corrupt people as much as they were of corrupt government. What would they tell us to do in the case with abortion? I don’t know.

    • Rich H

      C. Michael Patton,

      I fully understand your vital concern for abortion as a Christian. But I really don’t understand where you’re coming from when you put it in terms of American citizenship.

      From a purely legal/governmental standpoint, the question of legalized abortion has come before the Supreme Court, and has been decided. This was all done without violation of the Constitution (as far as I know. I could be wrong, but that doesn’t seem to be your argument).

      The Constitution itself defines the means by which it is to be legally interpreted and implemented. It defines the means by which it can be changed. If you are looking to the constitution as the final law of the land, I don’t see what your objection is to the current abortion laws.

      Now, there have been times when the Supreme Court has ruled one way, and the Executive Branch has ignored the ruling (something dealing with a treaty with the Native Americans, if I recall correctly). This sort of thing could bring about a “constitutional crisis”. In those situations, there are no clear paths defined by the constitution, because the constitution is not being followed.

      If that sort of thing applies in the case of abortion, you have not made the case for it.

    • Nazaroo

      23. Curt Parton Posted:


      Do I understand you correctly to be saying that Romans 12-13 is an interpolation? If so, it’s very likely that you will arrive at a different conclusion from many others posting here, since you are not reasoning from the same scriptural standard. On what basis do you excise Romans 12-13?”

      Nazaroo’s Short answer: On the basis that it suggests obedience to earthly governments, which stinks to high heaven. The standard given in Acts is quite different: Obey God rather than man. QED.

      30. EricW posted:

      “A covenant made with a single nation of people, and to be lived and followed by them when they dwell in the promised land of Israel under a Levitical priesthood, is… prescribed for and commanded to “ALL men…governmental bodies, civil servants, police and the army” – EVERYWHERE and in ALL nations?


      Nazaroo’s response: Yes. All men, …everywhere in ALL nations are commanded. “God, who IN PAST TIMES overlooked…” etc.

    • Nazaroo

      35. Michael T. posted:

      “Nazaroo, …It was even worse. In Plato’s time men having sex with boys was mentioned in his writings without even a blush.”…

      Dear Michael, I fear you haven’t a grasp of the true depravity going on around you: Not only do we have millions of babies aborted (direct result of unprecedented sexual promiscuity), but small children are being sexually abused and murdered, and photos and videos being exchanged on the internet, among huge serial-killer rings and gangs.

      These things were unprecedented in ancient times, even when people were sacrificing children to Moloch by fire. Those deaths were only in the thousands, and the worst whore-houses in the Roman Empire only each claimed a few hundred murdered babies over their span of operation. Abortion clinics and “hospitals” do this kind of quantity monthly or weekly nowadays. Today’s homosexual murder/cultist is not interested in mentoring boys as in Plato’s society, but cruelly exploiting and murdering them.


    • Michael T.


      1. We’re going to just have to respectfully disagree on who had it worse. I would humbly suggest that this is a case of the grass is greener/browner on the other side. Both are undeniably bad, but at least about half the people in our culture still think homosexuality is evil, 99% think men having homosexual sex with boys is evil, and 99.999% think exploiting and murdering boys is evil. That compares to 0% for all but the last one in ancient cultures.

      2. You and I obviously have different standards on how to interpret the Bible and the authority of the commands contained therein. I can’t simply ignore a verse because I don’t like it as you do. Ultimately what you are doing is no different then what so called “homosexual churches” do when they ignore the passages on homosexuality. You’re just picking different verses to ignore based upon you’re prejudices. Now if you have evidence of textual variants or textual criticism that would support you’re assertions you might have a case. Otherwise you are just giving your opinion because you don’t like what it says which again is just as bad as the homosexuals you abhor.

      3. Acts 17:30 has nothing to do with the Old Testament Law being applied to all nations.

      17:29 So since we are God’s offspring, we should not think the deity is like gold or silver or stone, an image made by human skill and imagination. 17:30 Therefore, although God has overlooked such times of ignorance, he now commands all people everywhere to repent, 17:31 because he has set a day on which he is going to judge the world in righteousness, by a man whom he designated, having provided proof to everyone by raising him from the dead.”

      In this passage the people were worshiping false gods made of silver and stone. This is what Paul was saying God overlooked and what He was calling them to repent from and turn to the real God who had given evidence of Himself by raising Jesus from the grave. This passage ultimately has nothing to do whatsoever with governments in general, our relations to governments, or how governments are supposed to behave. Rather it is about individuals being called to repent of worshiping false gods, and instead turn to worship the one true God, or else face judgment.

    • Nazaroo

      63. Michael said:

      “I can’t simply ignore a verse because I don’t like it as you do. Ultimately what you are doing is no different then what so called “homosexual churches” do when they ignore the passages on homosexuality. You’re just picking different verses to ignore based upon you’re prejudices. Now if you have evidence of textual variants or textual criticism that would support you’re assertions you might have a case. Otherwise you are just giving your opinion because you don’t like what it says which again is just as bad as the homosexuals you abhor.”

      Well, we can agree to disagree on much, but I can’t let this stand, for truth’s sake.

      (1) I don’t “simply ignore a verse because I don’t like it”.

      As trained scientist I am extremely sensitive and cautious of my own bias and check it at the door during the investigative phase of any doctrinal question.

      (2) I’m not “just picking different verses to ignore based upon you’re prejudices”.

      I am certain my text-critical choices or options are *NOT* determined by my personal prejudices. If they were, I’d be far more eclectic, and my Bible would be “Reader’s Digest” size, like Jefferson’s. You severely misjudge me and my position from unfamiliarity and lack of knowledge.

      (3) I don’t abhor homosexuals, personally.

      Frankly, I couldn’t care less, except for the fact they are a physical, medical and moral danger to others, which imposes annoyingly on my time when I’d rather be thinking about other things.

      I don’t serve my flesh, or selfishness, or ‘natural man’ when attempting to authenticate and obey Holy Scripture.

      If I did, I’d just go with “love my neighbour” and maybe “do as be done by”, and chuck the rest. It only holds interest for me because I believe it holds interest for God. What horny whoremonger would turn down a hot looking adulteress? What self-indulgent glutton would refrain from alcohol and drugs, when so much cheap pleasure…

    • Nazaroo

      …beckons all around?

      My point is simple: You are simplifying my position and charicaturing me.

      Sure I have some blindspots, weaknesses, and sinful preferences. But I for the most part pretty successfully ignore them like I ignore many things. My biggest problem is probably pride…but which verses does that sinful flaw predispose me to delete? I can’t think of any.


    • EricW

      Nazaroo’s response: Yes. All men, …everywhere in ALL nations are commanded. “God, who IN PAST TIMES overlooked…” etc.

      The statement in Acts 17:30 is about repentance in the face of God’s impending judgment, and does not tell ALL men, including Gentiles, to subscribe to or live under the Sinaitic covenant.

      My point is simple: You are simplifying my position and charicaturing me.

      Actually, you’re doing a pretty good job of that yourself.

    • Rick

      Does anyone remember what Francis Schaffer’s justification for civil disobedience was? I think he wrote about it in How Shall We Then Live.

    • Greg


      I’m pretty sure the founding fathers didn’t include a mandate in the Constitution to overthrow a corrupt, out-of-control, federal government. For that, you need to look at the Declaration of Independence, which can be argued is more important that the Constitution. After all, we don’t date the birth of this nation from the ratifying of the Constitution, we date it from the signing of the Declaration (July 4, 1776). In our founding document there is a definite mandate for replacing the government; after all, that’s what the Declaration was all about, replacing a tyrannical government (Britain) in the colonies with a self-governing Republic.

      The question, though, is whether Christians should ever exercise physical force when fighting a battle with evil. I don’t think I can find any biblical mandate for that. In the case of abortion, we should do all we can to be lights in the darkness, but I don’t think being a light can include physical violence. Remember, whatever our sentiments toward the nation in which we live, the truth is- every Christian in this world is in enemy territory. Until Christ returns, this is our position. We can do what we can to influence those around us, but we are not called to force nations to become Christian. For those who perform abortions, we can only believe the promise of Jesus, who had a very stern warning for those who harm children. In the end, though, we must let vengeance belong to God.

    • Ed Kratz

      Let me post that part of the declaration.

      “That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security. — Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.”

      I am not so sure that being “Christian” aleviates ourselves of these type of responsibilities. On a personal basis, yes, our fist in unclinched. But when it is someone else’s life that is at stake, we must clinch if it becomes absolutely necessary. That is my understanding.

    • Greg


      I, too, would clinch my fist in defense of another person (and I have done so, on occasion). Whether what I did to the attacker was appropriate is another matter. I hate seeing the innocent suffer, and if there is anything I can do to stop it, I will. Whether what I do is approved by God, though, is another matter. My form of justice may have been palatable (to allude to another of your blog entries) to me, but was it right? I don’t know, and I may never know this side of the veil.

      This is the thin line Christians must confront when dealing with the matter of justice. In our zeal for righting wrongs, are we in danger of becoming that which we detest? This is a difficult matter to address, but it is one that Christians, particularly Evangelicals, have to do. It is clear that we have been targeted by the enemy, for whom the government is merely a tool. How will we fight? What weapons will we use? Can we prevail without hurting ourselves, spiritually? Which answers are palatable, and which are right, and can there be a synthesis of the two?

    • Del

      I think Greg nails it. No matter how unjust the world, no matter how much our sense of justice is offended, we aren’t called to set right all wrongs.

      I think what sets us apart as Christians is our pursuit of peace, not justice. And that peace can’t come from the end of a sword. This makes us appear weak in the eyes of the world, even despised. Now that I think of it, even despised by many Christians. Being a pacifist is seen as left-wing, liberal, weak, etc.

      The call lately to “social justice”, which seems to mean using the sword of government to right all wrongs, will quickly turn Christians into warmongers. Oh wait, too late. We’ve been setting right the wrongs of the middle east for decades now.

      Does this mean I wouldn’t defend my wife and children if attacked? I imagine the instinct for self and family preservation would kick in and I would do what I had to to protect them. This doesn’t change the principle that Christ expects us to strive to live by.

    • Ed Kratz

      Greg, I don’t know either. Obviously, if there was an easy “biblical” answer, there would not be so much variance in opinion and uncertainty.

      That is why this particular video was interesting to me. Not because I am making the same call, but because 1) I don’t know what the call is, and 2) I don’t know if it is right.

      While I said that I would protect people with force, I really don’t know what is right. I know that it is not the church’s responsibility to engage in any of these things, but the individual Christian is another story. I do think it depends on the mandates of the country. America, however, is an interesting entity considering our Declaration.

      When someone’s life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness is being threatened, it is the obligation of the country to rise up and use whatever means are necessary to right the wrong. Therefore, what is our responsibility as American individuals before God in such a situation? Is it part of our “job” just as a Christian policeman is to protect the innocent against a murderer. What about when the government is the murderer?

      Hard to say. One million babies a year…

    • Michael T.


      1. It is worth noting that while the Declaration is a great statement of ideals it is not a binding authority in this Country. I cannot as a lawyer make an argument before the Supreme Court based upon the language of the Declaration, only the Constitution.

      Furthermore, it should be noted that the Constitution was not the first attempt at a national government in this country. It was the successor to a earlier document called the Articles of the Confederation which failed because the central government it created was to weak to accomplish anything. So the Constitution was made creating a significantly stronger Federal government.

      Sorry for the history lesson if you already know this (I’m sure you do), but it’s just some things to keep in mind.

      2. On the actual language of the Declaration would you consider the current regime to be “Absolute Despotism” in the United States?

    • Michael T.

      Sorry if I seemed overly harsh in my last posting, but I really do believe that absent some hard evidence that a passage in the Bible was an interpolation one has to follow it. Absent this evidence my indictment stands.

      As to you’re prejudices, one can ever completely leave their prejudices and presuppositions at the door. The idea of a white coat scientist who is able to objectively determine everything in and of themselves is a myth. In the present case since you are going against two thousand years of history without even so much as a thread of evidence, you’re assertion is going to be suspect.

    • Curt Parton

      And we shouldn’t just assume that our nation’s Declaration of Independence is precedent-setting for us as believers. Just because the Founding Fathers followed a course of action does not mean it is a right one. Was armed rebellion a justified response for believers to take in 1776? Many at the time (on both sides of the Atlantic) did not think so. It’s at least something upon which we should reflect. And to the extent that even asking such a question seems almost heretical, to this extent we may be guilty of idolizing our own national heritage. Regardless, we should think through the suppositions, and presuppositions, of the Declaration of Independence before utilizing it as a standard for Christian citizens to follow in determining what kinds of actions are allowable or even obligatory.

    • Rich H


      Absolutely right. There are some people who treat the documents of our founding fathers — the Declaration, the Federalist Papers, even the Constitution — as though they were Scripture.

      There is a sort of American God who shares some characteristics of, but is definitely not, the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. I am far from the first to observe this, or to note that some Christians in the US get their gods confused some times.

    • Ed Kratz

      Michael, no in answer to #2. But I am not saying that I understand why I say no. Is it the frog in the water?

    • Ed Kratz

      I think of being a citizen of the USA and its relationship to Christianity a lot like being on the director’s board of a complany. Scriptural principles apply to how you run the company, but don’t inform you in the slightest to the details. The companies charter, history, and reasons for existence determine the particulars. I can’t say “The church is not to be involved in the company for it is of the world.” This would be an easy way to alleviate myself of particular responsibilities God has given me. Sure, these responsibilities are not laid out in Scripture, but the “If it is not in Scripture, it is not right” approach does not play in any area of life, and not here either.

      I feel as if I am a director on the board of USA. As a Christian, I feel that this gives me even more of a mandate to be involved and do what I can to change things. However, I am a lazy board member!

    • Curt Parton


      I can somewhat see what you’re saying if we are only discussing details about how to be good citizens. But even then—just like Hebrew National—we answer to a higher authority. God’s instructions to me as a believer trumps any national heritage or obligation. I don’t hear anybody saying that we have to find every specific approach in Scripture. But the Bible does have a lot to say about this very issue (how believers interact with the state). Should we ignore scriptural standards and principles? Should we make it up as we go along? Should we just follow our national, historical culture without evaluating it according to Scripture? Wouldn’t a Christian who served on the board of a corporation put the corporate policies and traditions to the same exact tests we’re talking about?

      And, I hate to break it to you, but you’re not a director on the board of USA. You’re just another stockholder with a vote like the rest of us! 🙂 We’re responsible to do our part, but we can’t determine the ultimate course of the company.

    • Ed Kratz


      Here is my way of thinking though…we are not just following instructions on how to interact with the government, but we are the government. This changes things in my opinion and makes it hard to parallel our responsibility exactly with the “give unto Caeser” mentality. It tells me that me, you, and every citizen has been established by God to run things responsibly. We are Caesar!

      I know we may think that our stock is too small to make much difference, but if we can influence a lot of other stockholders to run the country right.

    • Curt Parton


      I think you’re presenting a false dilemma. Either we do nothing, or we are the government! I don’t accept either extreme. Just because we have one vote each doesn’t put us in charge. You don’t determine the direction of this nation. Neither do I. Neither of us is Caesar. Even the united voice of Christians in the US do not constitute the government. We can not enforce our will on the rest of the nation. This doesn’t mean that we have no recourse or no way to effect change. But our ability to influence has limitations. The majority of stockholders, or citizens, win an election. There’s more to our system than that of course, but in a nutshell, we are at the mercy of the populace. As the old saying goes, “We get the government we deserve.” But this is a far cry from saying, “I am Caesar; I am the government.”

      Even according to our civic traditions, we have a government of the people, by the people, for the people. This does not equate to ‘the people = the government.’ That just doesn’t work. And even if it did, that’s all the people, not just you, me or Christians.

      (BTW: Just to clarify, by evaluating a corporation’s policies and traditions according to Scripture, I meant regarding how the Christian should be involved. I’m not suggesting that we should be insisting that the corporation [or nation] follow God’s standards.)

    • Curt Parton

      “I know we may think that our stock is too small to make much difference, but if we can influence a lot of other stockholders to run the country right.”

      I agree wholeheartedly with this. I try to make this happen and will continue to do so as I have opportunity. But we also have to face the realization that we may not cause all of the changes that we’d like. That doesn’t mean to give up and not try, but it does mean that we shouldn’t despair and start crossing lines that are inappropriate for us as Christians to cross.

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