Three Biblical Branches of Government

Now here’s some “preaching” from the one of the singers in the last post.

Someone should break it to this guy that “king” is not the same thing as “President.” But he’s on such a roll that I hate to get in his way.

84 thoughts on “Three Biblical Branches of Government”

      1. I’m in seminary right now. I’ve long resolved, if i ever go for a ph.d to NEVER allow myself be referred to as “dr.” Ever. It’s a blatant appeal to authority, and usually all the more frustrating when the people who actually do flaunt their ph.d’s are really dumb.

      2. Our MOG had a D.D. that is Doctorate of Divinity. I think you don’t have to larn as much or pay as much to get a Double D as to get a Piled High and Deep.

        1. I still have far more respect for an EARNED doctor of divinity then the plethora of honorary doctorates handed out for practically nothing by fundy U’s.

        2. A doctor of divinity, or a doctor of ministry degree are usually 1-year degrees. In most schools, these DD or D-Min degrees are constituted of M-DIV courses at a higher level of difficulty: usually either much more reading than the M-DIV level, or much more serious term papers (or both).

  1. so the obvious parallel would be that the operation of the church follows a similar biblical pattern – the separation of powers – the pastor is the executive, the trustees as the representatives of the people flesh out the policies and procedures and handle the budgetary matters, and the deacons oversee the application of those policies, procedures, and funds to the specific circumstances of the people like the courts do.

    I mean this is how IFB churches work right? They don’t allow one man to be a dictator, since clearly that isn’t the biblical pattern right?

    1. When one has an agenda, one can interpret these things however one would like. In another setting, a man of this ilk will emphasize the fact that ONLY ONE GOD is responsible for all “three branches,” so of course the Pastor should be a dictator

      1. There’s no grounds for removing the executive order – it’s been in use since the Washington 1st term, derives its authority from Art. 2, and is in harmony with the general understanding of the President’s authority and responsibility. it is true that certain Executive orders have come under fire for dubious Constitutionality, but if the President does not have the ability to instruct the members of the Executive Branch, what is his job exactly? Looking pretty?

      2. @Mominator: I agree; Executive Orders may be Constitutional (I’ll look up the reference), but they have been horribly abused by both parties in at least the last 2-3 decades.

      3. The President certainly has the legal authority to give orders to the Executive Branch– just not to order anything that is illegal or unconstitutional.

    1. Fifty-four years ago, Gore Vidal wrote that “if ever there was a people ripe for dictatorship it is the American people today.” So far his implicit prophecy has been basically incorrect but I do worry for the future. In any case, you’re right about Americans’ failures to distinguish between presidents and kings. What especially worries me is the tendency for civilians to refer to the President as the “Commander-in-chief.”

      1. We’ve been ripe for dictatorship b/c God is slowly being removed from our country both in the private lives of Americans and in our schools. This has been going on for about one hundred years.

        I refer to our current one as …commander in thief.

  2. He doesn’t seem to get that the point of having three branches is separation of powers, to create checks and balances. If the Lord (or any person) is judge, lawgiver, and king (as in the verse he quotes), there’s no separation of powers. In other words, he’s just talking through his hat.

    1. Yes, I thought the same thing… if one is glib enough, any grouping of three in the Bible can probably be twisted as supporting the three branches… how about the fact that there is I John, II John, and III John?

        1. If you read that really fast it looks like you said chicken s#!t. Guess I better slow down my reading. 😆

    1. No, the Founders explicitly avoided using the British model when writing the Constitution, which was a controversy for some. And there were those who felt that having a Chief Executive separate from the legislature was dangerously close to monarchy. etc, etc. The Constitutional debates make for a good read.

    2. No. The USA has a written Constitution where the UK does not. In addition, our Congress is structured quite differently from the Westminster Parliamentary system. In parliamentary systems the prime minister is the leader of his party and the head of state. We have a directly elected head of state who may or may not be a politician. In parliamentary systems a person cannot run for the office of prime minister the way someone can run for president. MPs gain elective office and then work his/her way up through the party ranks to being the leader of a party. When their party wins an election they then become the PM. (simplified version)

      And of course the biggest difference was that Great Britain had a monarch back then. The founders wisely did not establish one over here.

      1. Err, Britain *still* has a monarch. And she’s still head of state. And incidentally celebrating sixty years of her reign this weekend. God bless her maj.

        (Sorry, but I like the Queen, and faced with a choice between Queen Elizabeth and President Blair, then I’m with Brenda all the way ;))

        1. Britain actually has a group of documents that emerged over time that are considered their Constitution including The Magna Carta, The Act of Settlement, and various acts of Parliament and case law constituting Common Law.

  3. If there are 3 scriptual entities described in the verse he read. And if there are 3 branches of the US Government that follows suit. And all of this is perfect and ordained by God. Why oh why does his hankerchief have 4 points?

    1. The 3 Godly branches of government are: 1. The Executive. 2. The Legislative Branch. 3. The Judiciary. 4. The Independent, Fundamental, Bible-believin’, sin hatin’ Baptist Church.

      This is much like the Fundy Trinity: 1. God the Father, 2. God the Son. 3. God the Holy Spirit and 4. God the King James Bible. :mrgreen:

  4. ❓ Wow. That’s not at all how I learned about government. But that’s because I was went to a secular college, I suppose. I am now dumber for having heard this.

        1. george is Don’s friend who is very happy to help everyone write typos in their posts. george is now everyone’s friend. Make a typo, blame it on george.

        2. George’s favorite amusement is to put a bunch of mistakes in your comment between the time you click on “Submit” and the time the comment appears on the blog.

        3. @Big Gary: I can see that…I know the extra word or two was not in there when I hit “submit.” Naughty George… 👿

  5. I guess he hasn’t read all of Jefferson’s, Franklin’s, Madison’s, or Adams writings where they compare organized religion to slavery and tyranny.

    1. Honestly, I always chuckle at the “Christian nation” blurb. I can’t understand how anyone who has actually read the works of our founders could ever conclude that this nation was Christian in anything more than a vague, deist, ethical-standards sort of way.

      1. The Constitution has zero mentions of God. This was a revolutionary act in and of itself in the late 1700s.

        Fundies claim to love this country and the Constitution so why are they trying to drastically alter it from what the writers wished? If they had meant to include religious text in the Constitution I am sure they would have done so.

        Our tradition in the country of being individually Christian while the government remains separated from religion has worked remarkably well over the centuries.

        The We Want America Back people don’t realize that they never had it.

        1. Amen and amen! You put that very well. The whole “founded as a Christian nation” thing has always bugged me. This latest example of Scripture Twisting just bugs me more.

        2. The Declaration of Independence STILL says….

          In the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

          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, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness…

          When Thomas Jefferson penned the DoI, there STILL was a huge reference to our Rights being derived from our Creator or God. This document has just as much importance as The Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

          Our Founders did believe that we would self govern by obeying the Bible.

          I couldn’t disagree more b/c our Founders were devout men who believed in God and Jesus Christ. It’s just that this fact has been slowly removed from our textbooks for the last hundred years or so.

          David Barton has a great article that shows several quotes from our Founders.

          http://www.wallbuilders.com/libissuesarticles.asp?id=8755

          The general principles on which the fathers achieved independence were the general principles of Christianity. I will avow that I then believed, and now believe, that those general principles of Christianity are as eternal and immutable as the existence and attributes of God.

          ~John Adams

          Just because I left the IFB, doesn’t mean I’m willing to throw the baby out with the bath water.

          I think that the proof is in the pudding. The more our country has moved away from God and his Word, the more our country has gone to Hell both morally and fiscally. Our current debt is sixteen trillion.

          The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God.

          ~Psalm 9:17

        3. 2 points Mominator:

          1. I have read the Founders writings extensively. In addition, I have read the writers who influenced them. Writers like Locke, Kant, Rousseau etc. The phrase ‘Nature’s God’ is intimately tied to Deism. Deists believed that God created all things at the beginning and then left them to run their course. This is quite different from the philosophy of the modern Christian.

          2. David Barton is not a trustworthy source. For a case in point, consider the quote from John Adams that you cited. (I assume that it came from Barton). When you hunt down the original version you find that it has been chopped and mangled to put words in John Adams’ mouth.

          A. The quote you posted: “The general principles on which the fathers achieved independence were the general principles of Christianity. I will avow that I then believed, and now believe, that those general principles of Christianity are as eternal and immutable as the existence and attributes of God.”

          B. The original quote taken from a letter to Thomas Jefferson: “Who composed that army of fine young fellows that was then before my eyes? There were among them Roman Catholics, English Episcopalians, Scotch and American Presbyterians, Methodists, Moravians, Anabaptists, German Lutherans, German Calvinists, Universalists, Arians, Priestleyans, Socinians, Independents, Congregationalists, Horse Protestants, and House Protestants, Deists and Atheists, and Protestants “qui ne croyent rien.” Very few, however, of several of these species; nevertheless, all educated in the general principles of Christianity, and the general principles of English and American liberty.

          Could my answer be understood by any candid reader or hearer, to recommend to all the others the general principles, institutions, or systems of education of the Roman Catholics, or those of the Quakers, or those of the Presbyterians, or those of the Methodists, or those of the Moravians, or those of the Universalists, or those of the Philosophers? No. The general principles on which the fathers achieved independence, were the only principles in which that beautiful assembly of young men could unite, and these principles only could be intended by them in their address, or by me in my answer. And what were these general principles? I answer, the general principles of Christianity, in which all those sects were united, and the general principles of English and American liberty, in which all those young men united, and which had united all parties in America, in majorities sufficient to assert and maintain her independence. Now I will avow, that I then believed and now believe that those general principles of Christianity are as eternal and immutable as the existence and attributes of God; and that those principles of liberty are as unalterable as human nature and our terrestrial, mundane system. I could, therefore, safely say, consistently with all my then and present information, that I believed they would never make discoveries in contradiction to these general principles. In favor of these general principles, in philosophy, religion, and government, I could fill sheets of quotations from Frederic of Prussia, from Hume, Gibbon, Bolingbroke, Rousseau, and Voltaire, as well as Newton and Locke; not to mention thousands of divines and philosophers of inferior fame.”

          As you can see, someone snipped several phrases out of that quote and strung them together to make a “quote”. That is fundamentally dishonest. In the original quote we see that John Adams explicitly includes Atheists in his definition of people brought up in the principles of Christianity.

          I do not believe that you should throw out the baby with the bath water. However, anything David Barton says should be believed with extreme reservation. He has a history of distorting the truth to advance his agenda.

          I am against the New Atheists and their drive to exclude any mention of God from the public sphere. I think though, that we Christians should be as careful as we possibly can be with our scholarship. Shoddy work only makes our work easy to attack.

          The New Atheists over reach in their desire to present the Founders as nothing but pagans. The opposite of that is not true either though. They were most certainly not hardline Christians in the modern sense. They were complicated individuals.

        4. David Holmes’ Faiths of our Founding Fathers contains a very helpful appendix which defines how language referencing God and religion was used in the period of the Declaration and Constitution. Phrases like “Nature’s God” and “Creator” as used in the Declaration are deist/Enlightenment language not traditional Christian usage. Those words were not intended to be interpreted as an establishment of Christianity. It is useful to note, as well, that they were written by Jefferson who was not in any way an orthodox Christian but embraced Deism. He was also the author of the Virginia Statute of Religious Freedom which predated the First Amendment.

  6. Regardless of a government’s organization, there are three artifacts of government: Guns, Money, and Borders. Without these three, any government collapses. One may argue that Israel did not have borders under Moses, but they did within the encampment. This is what makes the drug cartels appear so dangerous to governments.

  7. Was at Barnes and Noble tonight, and saw a Bible around the American Heritage theme. I flipped through it, pretty nauseating. Needed some Compizine.

    1. That is just yuck. While many Americans are culturally Christians, not all Christians are Americans. Why oh why do people think that we need to like the two within the Word of God??

  8. What is it with fundy preachers holding up the last three fingers to signal 3? They all seem to do this. It would confuse the deaf who I interpreted for at one time. In sign language 3 is the thumb, first finger and middle finger. The fundy preachers and song leaders always use pinky, ring and middle fingers. I think it looks silly. Do they teach this in Bible college or something? 🙄

  9. I love my country, and I personally believe that it has the best form of government. But why must we try to spiritualize it? Can’t something just be good without being specifically outlined in the Bible?

    And really? President=king? *facepalm* President thinking he is the king always leads to serious problems, as well as being inaccurate. Anyone else surprised he didn’t try to make some kind connection between the three branches of government and the trinity? 😆

  10. I would recommend the good “Dr.” read The Federalist Papers. That way he won’t have to guess the Founding Fathers intent.
    After listening to the clip above, I’m pretty sure I could proof text just as accurate a message and say that a dictatorship is the proper form of government biblically. But then, I would lose all Fundy Cred since I would be marked as unpatriotic. (But then, I may be marked already. I once pointed out that the U.S. is not O.T. Israel.)

  11. Why is it so hard for these guys to crack a first year law textbook and learn about the Anglo-Saxons and the development of the British code of common law? I’d respect the ancient Hebrews more if they had something like an Althing, but no, they were content to brown-nose priests and warlords.

  12. I always noticed, when listening to many Fundy pastors, how they move their hands around like they’re forming ceramic pots on a pottery wheel. This one does a lot of that. I wonder if that’s because they’re trying to create the illusion of substance, because it’s absent from what they’re actually saying?
    I listened several times trying to figure out how he found the legislative, executive, and judicial branches of government in that verse. Finally I had to stop because my brain was in danger of implosion.
    I seem to remember that the apostles in Acts “had all things common” and they all shared food and money with their followers in a common pool. So it would appear that the Bible advocates Marxism as a political system. I’d love to debate this guy on that one.

    1. He doesn’t work there, he is a missionary on deputation leaving his family to serve the Lord in a foreign field. How about you? By the way, doing the work of Saul of Taursus doesn’t count for serving the Lord. I believe, he too took great delight in belittling the servants of God.

  13. Why are you wasting your time examining God’s servants when you could be doing something postive for the Lord. Remember that we are going to be judged for every idle word. If you don’t like him, don’t listen to him. What happened to “Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.” Whatever happened to “be ye kind one to another, tender-hearted forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you”? At the judment seat: “What did you do with your life?” “I made fun of other believers.” Wood, hay and stubble. Where I live, people are dying in darkness without Christ and you are spending your time attacking your brothers and sisters in Christ, if you are even saved. I don’t agree with everyone who calls themself a fundamentalist, but I don’t keep my eyes on men. If I didn’t know better, I would think you all were a bunch of atheists making fun of Christians. Where do you see that in the Bible? Jesus said the world would know we were His disciples because we love one another. I don’t see any love here, only bitterness and childishness. What if a lost person came on here and saw you making fun of other Christians. You who are involved in supporting this pathetic sight should be ashamed of yourselves. By the way, I am a missionary working in the darkness of an animistic culture. I don’t have time to waste picking on other Christians. Where is the gold, silver, and precious stones here? Make fun of me all you want, I have an audience of One and He is the only one that I want to please, when I can get past my own sinfulness. This man does happen to be a friend of mine and he is a good man that loves the Lord. You don’t have to agree with him but if you are saved, you should love him and pray for him. All of you on here that think you are justified in mistreating someone because you feel that you have been mistreated by them,or by some horrible movement you think they are involved in, are far away from the truth of the Cross. You don’t have to answer for these men, but you will answer for yourselves. The abuses and bad behavior of some does not excuse your bitter rants. What sad lives you have. Get involved in serving the Lord, get your eyes on Him and you won’t have time for this.

    1. Kevin, I’m probably wasting my time, but here goes:

      Reacting to the buffoonery, lies and deceptions of fundies and fundyism is not a waste of time – it is required of us to expose those who open the Gospel to ridicule, who preach heresy and lead thousands, nay millions, astray, who bind peoples consciences with rule upon rule, precept upon precept.

      By the way, get of your high horse. Your spiritual pride is showing, and that ain’t a good thing.

    2. this is probably an exercise in futility but here goes:
      Kevin, the only “corrupt communication” here is this foolish mans twisting of scripture and wasting the time of the people listening to his “preaching”.

      As Christians, its our duty to call out false teachers and error. Just because it makes you uncomfortable doesn’t mean its wrong to call out error. And maybe by doing so the tide of error that fundamentalism is awash in will be subsided.

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