SUMMARY: I don’t align with any political parties and respect those who vote differently. But if we are to stay free and reduce crime and injustice that people on both the left and right see and not be complicit in wrong choices of leaders, our political choices must be based on Bible principles. The most important ones are to choose leaders who
–love and do good for everyone from all backgrounds as God does
–oppose greed (the root of all evil-1 Tim. 6:10), are faithful to their wives/families and know God’s principles of justice and government well (Deut. 17:17-20)
–protecting as many lives as possible by focusing on justice for all because God says justice makes nations great. This involves opposing everything from abortion (poverty is the biggest cause of abortion btw, and science shows abortion harms both fetuses and also women who do abortions), communism and secularism to health injustice, racism, ecocide, poverty and capitalism (according to its founders, capitalism is based entirely on greed, rejects almost all Bible economic principles and research shows it has caused more poverty and exploitation and abuses of the poor worldwide than anything else) and many others.
In short, Christians need to recognize injustices that BOTH the left and right see and realize that injustices on BOTH sides ALREADY kill 10s of millions of people per year, and support leaders who accept the full range of what the Bible and science show and follow principles for the good of all!
A great deal of science is showing that Bible principles about government/politics are very crucial now, but they also show that no matter who is elected, churches can make a much bigger difference by following these principles in their communities. See also other articles in the section under politics. If you are SDA, after reading the Bible principles below, check this page for more biblical/godly insights from SDA leaders.)
What makes nations great? What makes them stable, peaceful and thriving. Many presidents say we can make our nation great together. A few authoritarian/narcissist types say things like “I alone can make this nation great.” Many said various economic systems would make nations great. But the Bible tells us something simple, yet profound.
“Righteousness/justice makes nations great. But sin is a disgrace to all people.” Prov. 14:34 (the Hebrew word tzedekah means Righteousness and justice, synonymous terms in the Bible)
One of the reasons this is true is that Harvard biologist E. O. Wilson pointed out that selfish individuals sometimes succeed, but
“A group of altruists will beat a society of selfish individuals every time.”
And it’s extremely difficult or impossible to get large numbers of people to live in altruistic ways if they don’t believe in God/have confidence in eternal life and a doctrine that all people are equal.
When the Bible comes to nations and people learn and follow its principles, especially government leaders, it can revolutionize nations. If individuals, churches and governments follow these principles together, it can create miraculous changes in a short time as happened in S. Korea’s miracle on the Han River. But when governments abandon God’s principles, individuals and churches can still bring dramatic changes. The early church demonstrated this in Acts 2 and 4 while living under not just one hostile government but two hostile governments, both Rome and the Jews.
Dr. Robert Woodberry has done exhaustive research showing that Christians/missionaries who were not connected to government pioneered education, printing, medical work, science, civil rights and many other institutions in society. He concluded that Christians/Protestant missions are responsible for over 50% of democracy, more than all other factors COMBINED:
“In cross-national statistical analysis Protestant missions are significantly and robustly associated with higher levels of printing, education, economic development, organizational civil society, protection of private property and rule of law and with lower levels of corruption…missions seem to explain about half the variation in democracy outside Europe.”
“The Missionary Roots of Liberal Democracy”
Loren Cunningham also explains how missionaries have brought profound advances in various nations.
So regardless of who is in power in government, people of God can still transform society as the early Christians did (Acts 17:6).
Every generation has challenges and crises, but at the bottom of every crisis that the world faces is almost always a spiritual crisis, people being ignorant of or rebelling against God’s principles which are actually what makes nations great.
Many researchers such as Dr. Tytler have studied an interesting phenomenon called the Cycle of Nations. Tytler described it like this:
Some graphical representations of this are here:
You can see this cycle throughout the history of Israel. This cycle happened in all ~28 atheist states that existed. In each human rights tragically declined as always happens when government make people ignorant of all their fundamental God-given rights in the Bible. Eventually they collapse into tyranny, chaos or totalitarianism. But it is happening in many western countries now, largely because economic systems have abandoned God’s principles and followed greed instead of altruism and rights and dignity for all.
You can see this cycle throughout the history of almost every nation on earth. These are 2 good links that go into more depth about this cycle.
Surprisingly, I learned about one of the most profound examples of what happens when nations, leaders and their people don’t follow God’s principles or have confidence in eternal life in China. Yuan Zhiming was co-leader of the 1989 Tianenmen Square protest, and later fled to America and became a Christian. He made a series of documentaries about Christianity in China. One of of them, China’s Confession 神州忏悔录 (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jh5cBIZscSA) covers ~5,000 years of Chinese history.
There is a key thought in the documentary that is true of all nations and fulfills the Bible’s claim that righteousness makes nations great (Prov. 14:34):
“Oh China! This is where your misery resides. The one who sits on the central throne is not God, but an earthly man…men who did not know God became gods of men. Is not this the source of all China’s tragedies?…because you firmly believe there is no God, you give full reign to sinful men to carry out their self-abuse in hopelessness.”
God has principles for the government and the church as well as other institutions. Sometimes they are completely separate duties, but in some cases they overlap. Below you will see most of the major traits and duties that the Bible tells us that national leaders and governments should follow for long term security and stability and also in order to thrive.
These principles don’t include the numerous laws on civil rights and criminal justice that God gave, that all governments around the world follow to some degree (such as laws against murder, theft, etc.). See some of them here.
But these are ~15 valuable principles that should help Christians and any who wish to have their nation thrive and progress know what leaders to support and which ones to reject has harmful to our future.
Israel was given many of these principles by God as an example to show the world a much higher way of wisdom that would bring wealth and freedom from debt, health, strong families, happiness, intelligence and national stability with thriving civilizations (Deut. 4:1-8, Deut. 28, Deut. 30:15-20).
Through Israel, these principles would be an example and blessing to all nations of the world as has most certain come true in areas ranging from human rights to civil law to education to medicine to Nobel Prizes and more (Gen. 18:22, 22:18). In time, other nations would be expected to follow these principles as well and they would also receive blessings for doing so or be uprooted and destroyed for not doing so (Jer. 12:14-17). There was a bare minimum level of ethical justice and human rights standards and prevention of poverty that even the worst pagans were expected to follow as well (Ez. 16:49, Daniel 4:27 ).
Vast economic research by many researchers, both Christian and non-Christian has confirmed that following the simple principles of God that contain unrivaled wisdom will resolve a host of other problems that societies have. Economic professors such as Harvard professor of economics Dr. Niall Ferguson to Dr. Richard Wilkinson retired Professor Emeritus of Social Epidemiology at the University of Nottingham to the widely respected Christian economist Dr. Michael Hudson have proven clearly in their extensive research that God’s principles are the ones that work.
FOUNDATION A–LOVE EVERYONE, ALWAYS.
In Matt. 22:37-40, Jesus says that all God’s laws are based on love, love for God and love for people. And this is true in politics too. So even if people, disagree with us, love them anyway, no matter what. We can separate the person from the idea. We may strongly oppose some views or ideas that certain people have and know or believe that it is wrong or harmful, but we can still can love the person as a creation of God.
If both the people and government of a nation follows these principles, it can be quite powerful, as S. Korea demonstrated in its “Miracle on the Han River”. But as the church in Acts demonstrated and history and science show, the church can even beat poverty and injustice without the governments help (Acts 2:42-47, 4:32-35).
What Christians, biblical churches and moral people do day to day and week to week can be far more powerful than what political parties do.
If they grow church gardens, that brings about 25 benefits to their communities for example.
Research shows that moving even 5 percent of consumer transactions to poorer neighborhoods can reduce income inequality by up to 80 percent.
FOUNDATION B–MAKE POLITICAL CHOICES AS IF YOU DIDN’T KNOW HOW YOU WOULD BE BORN (the golden rule)
“always try to do good to each other and to all people.” 1 Thessalonians 5:15 (see also Phil. 2:4 and others)
This means looking for all the ways you can do as much good as possible for individuals AND all people (communities, nations, the world, etc.)
Harvard biologist E. O. Wilson pointed out that selfish individuals sometimes succeed, but
“A group of altruists will beat a society of selfish individuals every time.” Weintraub, Pamela. “#3: E.O. Wilson’s Theory of Altruism Shakes Up Understanding of Evolution”. Thursday, April 28, 2011, discovermagazine.com/2011/jan-feb/03
John Rawls is one of the most famous scholars in political theory in the 20th century, so much so that some people call themselves “Rawlians”. One reason for this is his views on principles that people should follow to make the best decisions in politics.
Rawls argued that people are biased by the benefits and privileges that they have often gotten without any choice of their own (research shows that ~80% of the salary we make is because of the family and country we are born in for example). So we should try try to eliminate this bias in our thinking. Citizens should try to imagine themselves in an “original position” where they don’t know what gender, race, abilities, tastes, wealth, or position in society they will have. They don’t know if they will be born rich or poor, grow up healthy or sick, male or female, native or foreign, etc. Because they don’t know this, they would be more likely to make choices based on real equality.
You can see a short summary of it here:
Veil of Ignorance by BBC Radio 4
People raved about John Rawls ideas as the best concept in modern politics.
But he basically just copied Jesus concept of the Golden Rule and a number of principles in the Bible below where political leaders are supposed to make their decisions without favoring anyone, rich or poor, native or foreign, and applied them to politics etc. God always knows best.
1) LEADERS MUST KNOW GOD’S PRINCIPLES & AIM FOR PERFECTION (crucial for national stability):
If nation want to have success and thrive long term, God says they need to choose leaders that know God’s law well, leaders who are not addicted to greed or pride or sex with many women. These are some of the most important principles for making nations secure for generations. Here are some verses about that…for both Israeli and foreign leaders.
“When he sits on the throne as king, he must copy for himself this body of instruction on a scroll in the presence of the Levitical priests. He must always keep that copy with him and read it daily as long as he lives. That way he will learn to fear the Lord his God by obeying all the terms of these instructions and decrees. This regular reading will prevent him from becoming proud and acting as if he is above his fellow citizens. It will also prevent him from turning away from these commands in the smallest way. And it will ensure that he and his descendants will reign for many generations in Israel.” Deuteronomy 17:18-20
“If you want to live securely in the land, follow my decrees and obey my regulations.” Leviticus 25:18 (NLT)
“If a king judges the poor fairly, his throne will last forever.” Proverbs 29:14
The Bible repeatedly teaches people at all levels to aim for perfection. So leaders should not just know the principles above, but also do all they can to follow them.
“Aim for perfection…and the God of love and peace will be with you.” 2 Corinthians 13:11
If government leaders are ignorant of God’s laws or don’t care about the goal of perfection, it will be easy for the elite and powerful to exploit the leader, like the wily politicians did to Darius, conniving to kill Daniel.
Now, because many leading politicians don’t know God’s laws regarding politics, they have become so corrupt and controlled by powerful forces that former Goldman Sachs managing director Nomi Prins, author of “All the Presidents’ Bankers: The Hidden Alliances That Drive American Power”, says:
“The presidents, Democrat or Republican, it doesn’t matter, support the nation’s most powerful banks and politically connected bank leaders because the most elite players in Washington truly believe that a small set of uber powerful banks and bankers, and not wide-spread financial stability or prosperity, is what gives America its global superpower edge.”
ALL THE PRESIDENTS’ BANKERS: HOW A CENTURY OF WALL STREET FINANCIERS PURCHASED DEMOCRACY www.occupy.com/article/all-presidents-bankers-how-century-wall-street-financiers-purchased-democracy#sthash.WwlCnN99.dpbs
“It no longer matters who sits in the White House…Presidents no longer even try to garner banker support for population-friendly policies, and bankers operate oblivious to the needs of national economies. There is no counterbalance to their power.” www.salon.com/2014/04/15/we_are_in_great_danger_ex_banker_details_how_mega_banks_destroyed_america/
“The king must not take many wives for himself, because they will turn his heart away from the Lord. And he must not accumulate large amounts of wealth in silver and gold for himself.” Deut. 17:17When Jesus was on earth, he said:
“You cannot serve God and mammon [money, possessions, fame, status, or whatever is valued more than the Lord].” Matt. 6:24 (AMP)
Why? One reason that history teaches us is that if someone betrays marriage for sex, friends/customers for money, they will have no problem betraying an entire nation for greed.
When governments follow greed, soon the government structure becomes corrupt, which as many historians and pastor Ty Gibson have pointed out, results in much crime and violence, then tyranny, and then revolution, ala French Revolution style.
Billionaire Nick Hanauer writes in an article about the dramatic dangers of serious inequality in an article called “The Pitchforks Are Coming…For Us Plutocrats”. He writes:
“What do I see in our future now? I see pitchforks….Unless our policies change dramatically, the middle class will disappear, and we will be back to late 18th-century France. Before the revolution. And so I have a message for my fellow filthy rich…Wake up, people. It won’t last. If we don’t do something to fix the glaring inequities in this economy, the pitchforks are going to come for us. No society can sustain this kind of rising inequality.
In fact, there is no example in human history where wealth accumulated like this and the pitchforks didn’t eventually come out. You show me a highly unequal society, and I will show you a police state. Or an uprising. There are no counterexamples. None. It’s not if, it’s when….We think we’re immune to the same forces that started the Arab Spring—or the French and Russian revolutions, for that matter…You’re living in a dream world…Any student of history knows that…revolutions, like bankruptcies, come gradually, and then suddenly. One day, somebody sets himself on fire, then thousands of people are in the streets, and before you know it, the country is burning.”
a day after the latest Oxfam report was published and presented at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.
“It’s disgusting, let’s be honest, it’s absolutely grotesque. That’s eight people, eight men, who own the same amount of wealth as 3.6 billion people. That’s huge. At the same time, we have 1.9 billion people going hungry very night, we have close to a billion people who are living on less than $2 a day. It’s completely unacceptable,”She continues,“Voices across the world, across the political and economic spectrum, have voiced that concern, for example, Obama, the pope, but also billionaires like Nick Hanauer, and even the World Economic Forum itself, for the third year in a row, has named inequality as the biggest threat to our security,” Arendar noted. https://www.rt.com/news/373966-oxfam-report-poverty-wealth/
“We may have democracy in this country, or we may have wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we cannot have both.”
This is not just future, it’s the present. Research shows that almost all of the developed countries (including America, Europe, Canada, South Korea, Australia, etc.) are plutocracies*** and while people think they are living in freedom, they aren’t. Certain areas of America are now becoming like the 3rd world. And the 3rd world is losing up to $2 trillion a year due to various kinds of embezzlement by corporations, especially western corporations.***
3) JUSTICE MAKES NATIONS GREAT, SIN IS DEGRADATION
The Bible says justice is crucial for all levels of society to follow in order for us to thrive. The alternative is degradation, crime, ruined lives, slavery and in time national ruin and collapse, the most serious evils possible.
God as Sovereign of the universe models perfect justice and all leaders on earth are supposed to follow this example. National leaders are supposed to imitate the rule of God in bringing compassion and justice for everyone (NOT creating oligarchies and plutocracies), defend the poor/protect them from grinding poverty and crush their oppressors as these and other verses say.
One of the most important job of national leaders in Israel (as well as in other countries in ancient times) was to prevent extremes of economic injustice. Wise leaders realized that high levels of injustice would result in crime, and eventually revolution and/or war.
“Give your love of justice to the king, O God,and righteousness to the king’s son. Help him judge your people in the right way;let the poor always be treated fairly. May the mountains yield prosperity for all,and may the hills be fruitful. Help him to defend the poor,to rescue the children of the needy,and to crush their oppressors….He will rescue the poor when they cry to him;he will help the oppressed, who have no one to defend them.He feels pity for the weak and the needy,and he will rescue them. He will redeem them from oppression and violence,for their lives are precious to him.” Psalms 72:1-4,12-14
“King Nebuchadnezzar, please accept my advice. Stop sinning and do what is right. Break from your wicked past and be merciful to the poor. Perhaps then you will continue to prosper.” Daniel 4:27“Sodom’s sins were pride, gluttony, and laziness, while the poor and needy suffered outside her door.” Ezekiel 16:49
- “Righteousness and justice are the foundation of your throne. Unfailing love and truth walk before you as attendants.” Psalm 89:14
- Sing praises to God and to his name!..Father to the fatherless, defender of widows— this is God, whose dwelling is holy.” Ps. 68:4,5 (NLT)
- “His government and its peace will never end. He will rule with fairness and justice from the throne of his ancestor David for all eternity. The passionate commitment of the Lord of Heaven’s Armies will make this happen!” Isaiah 9:7 (NLT)
- “Praise the Lord your God, who delights in you and has placed you on the throne of Israel. Because of the Lord’s eternal love for Israel, he has made you king so you can rule with justice and righteousness.” 1 Kings 10:9 (see also 2 Chron. 9:8) (NLT)
- “Solomon also built the throne room, known as the Hall of Justice, where he sat to hear legal matters. It was paneled with cedar from floor to ceiling.” 1 Kings 7:7 (NLT)
- “Let true justice prevail, so you may live and occupy the land that the Lord your God is giving you.” Deut. 16:20 (NLT)
- “If you want to live securely in the land, follow my decrees and obey my regulations.” Leviticus 25:18 (NLT)
- “If a king judges the poor fairly, his throne will last forever.” Proverbs 29:4-14 (NLT)
- “Righteousness makes a nation great, but sin degrades any people.” CJB
- “Godliness makes a nation great, but sin is a disgrace to any people.” Proverbs 14:34 (NLT)
Each person is created in the image of God, the very imago dei. So because they are created by God and are fully equal to us, God tells us to make sure that everyone receives justice and has a basic decent quality of life (Prov. 31:8,9).
The Hebrew word for righteousness/godliness in the last verse above is tzedekah. It is most often translated justice and refers to both individual efforts and community/government duties to ensure people’s basic rights to a decent quality of life. This Jewish site and others explain that Tzedekah can refer to individual privileges to help the suffering, but it’s also a community/govt. responsibility (and clearly it’s a government responsibility in some Bible verses):
“Although the term tzedakah is applied to giving to individuals in need only in post-biblical Judaism, the Bible is replete with admonitions to show concern for the poor. Biblical laws like those calling on farmers to leave aside some of their crops during harvest for the landless become in rabbinic Judaism the basis for an extensive social welfare system built on individual initiative and shared responsibility. Communities of sufficient size created…societies to care for the ill, provide for newlywed couples, house travelers, bury the dead, and offer interest-free loans to the needy. This tradition of grassroots organizing to assist those in need is even now a distinguishing feature of Jewish communities.” https://www.myjewishlearning.com/article/tzedakah-101/
***Another term for justice in Hebrew, Mishpat, is often used with tzedekah and means to ensure the civil rights of people, that there are no double standards in the law, that everyone receives what is due them, in a more legal sense. See also:
“Lying lips are abomination to the Lord: but they that deal truly are his delight.” Proverbs 12:22
Dr. Timothy Snyder studied totalitarian regimes in dozens of countries, esp. communist totalitarianism in eastern Europe.
“Believe in truth. To abandon facts is to abandon freedom. If nothing is true then no one can criticize power because there is no basis upon which to do so. If nothing is true then all is spectacle; the biggest wallet pays for the most blinding lights.” Dr. Timothy Snyder
He says that Trump is using the same principles of propaganda they did.
“Fascism says nothing’s true. Your daily life is not important. The facts that you think you understand are not important. All that matters is the myth ― the myth of one nation as together the myth of the mystical connection with the leader. When we think of “Post-truth,” we think it’s something new. We think it’s something at campuses. We think it’s something irrelevant.
Actually, what post-truth does is it paves the way for regime change. If we don’t have access to facts, we can’t trust each other. Without trust, there’s no law. Without law, there’s no democracy. So if you want to rip the heart out of a democracy directly, if you want to go right at it and kill it, what you do is you go after facts. And that is what modern authoritarians do.
Step one: You lie yourself, all the time.
Step two: You say it’s your opponents and the journalists who lie.
Step three: Everyone looks around and says, “What is truth? There is no truth.”
And then, resistance is impossible, and the game is over.”
“Of course, I don’t mean your giving should make life easy for others and hard for yourselves. I only mean that there should be some equality. Right now you have plenty and can help those who are in need. Later, they will have plenty and can share with you when you need it. In this way, things will be equal.” 2 Cor. 8:13-14
6) PERMANENT LAND RIGHTS/BAN INTEREST
God told the Israelite nation again and again that each family must have a permanent right to land (outside cities). It is only the government that can protect this right and prevent the powerful or rich from violating it. The value of land around the world now is ~$217 trillion and most is monopolized by a few people which inevitably destroys several kinds of freedom for all others. God said about this:
“If you want to live securely in the land, follow my decrees and obey my regulations….Then the land will yield large crops, and you will eat your fill and live securely in it…“The land must never be sold on a permanent basis, for the land belongs to me…In the jubilee year, the land must be returned to the original owners so they can return to their family land. Do not charge interest or make a profit at his expense. Leviticus 25:18-19,23, 28, 36 (see also Joshua 13-18)
“During the lifetime of Solomon, all of Judah and Israel lived in peace and safety. And from Dan in the north to Beersheba in the south, each family had its own home and garden.” 1 Kings 4:25 NLT
“About this time some of the men and their wives raised a cry of protest against their fellow Jews…We belong to the same family as those who are wealthy, and our children are just like theirs. Yet we must sell our children into slavery just to get enough money to live. When I heard their complaints, I was very angry. After thinking it over, I spoke out against these nobles and officials. I told them, “You are hurting your own relatives by charging interest when they borrow money!” Then I called a public meeting to deal with the problem. At the meeting I said to them, “We are doing all we can to redeem our Jewish relatives who have had to sell themselves to pagan foreigners, but you are selling them back into slavery again. How often must we redeem them?” And they had nothing to say in their defense.
“What you are doing is not right! Should you not walk in the fear of our God in order to avoid being mocked by enemy nations?…now let us stop this business of charging interest. You must restore their fields, vineyards, olive groves, and homes to them this very day. And repay the interest you charged when you lent them money, grain, new wine, and olive oil. They replied, “We will give back everything and demand nothing more from the people. We will do as you say.”” Nehemiah 5:1,5-12 (NLT)
“Distribute the land as an allotment for yourselves and for the foreigners who have joined you and are raising their families among you. They will be like native-born Israelites to you and will receive an allotment among the tribes. These foreigners are to be given land within the territory of the tribe with whom they now live. I, the Sovereign Lord, have spoken!” Ezekiel 47:22,23
This page shows how greed, esp. denial of land rights, eventually destroys entire civilizations.
”Do all that you can to live in peace with everyone.” Romans 12:18There are many passages in the Bible advising that we avoid violence and war if at all possible.
And since many wars are just for greed and/or power, they devastate countless lives and most problems can be solved far easier and more quickly, we should do everything we can to avoid violence.
8) NO FAVORS FOR THE POOR OR RICH
“A person who gets ahead by oppressing the poor or by showering gifts on the rich will end in poverty.” Proverbs 22:16
Corruption is Legal in American Oligarchy
1 A Princeton study shows that the super rich have controlled what laws are passed or not passed in America since at least the 1980s. That is an oligarchy or plutocracy.
3 Corporations lobby the government and get huge kickbacks.
In the last 5 years, the top 200 politically active companies spent $5.8 billion and got $4.4 trillion back.
See also this one:
Robert Reich: Socialism of the Rich, Harsh Capitalism for the Rest
In the conservative mind, the spectre of socialism conjures up a society in which no one is held accountable and no one has to work for what they receive. Yet that is exactly the society Trump and the Republicans are promoting for the rich. Hardworking people need a bigger piece of the pie. If you call this socialism, OK. I call it fair.
US BANKS WIN $21 billion Trump tax windfall, then cut staff, loaned less. Bloomberg
What is profoundly disappointing about the Trump campaign’s stab at a semi-coherent economic plan is that it is a dog’s breakfast of some plausible policy ideas, really bad fiscal math and a relapse to the discredited, 35 year-old dogma of sweeping income tax cuts which pay for themselves.
They don’t. As the great Dwight D. Eisenhower proved in the context of the modern welfare and warfare states, politicians have to earn the right to favor the voters with tax reductions by firstdispensing the pain of spending cutbacks and without an exemption for the military-industrial complex, either.Following those precepts, Ike balanced the budget several times; generated an average deficit of less than 1% of GDP during his tenure; shrank the defense budget by 33% in real terms; and presided over the strongest 8-year growth rate (about 3.3%) of any post-war GOP president, including Ronald Reagan.By contrast, the Reagan White House—me included—-fell for the theory of “dynamic scoring” and that the big cuts in the income tax rates would partially pay for themselves via revenue “flowback”. Back in those days the latter was expressed in an economic forecast known as Rosy Scenario, which assumed that in response to the supply side tax cuts, the US economy would get up on its hind legs and leap forward at a real GDP growth rate of more than 4% per year, and as far as the eye could see.What happened instead, of course, is that the US economy plunged into the drink of the deep 1982 recession and the Federal deficit soared to 5% of GDP—a truly shocking outcome back in those innocent days when the old-time fiscal religion still had roots inside the beltway. And it would have also caused enormous economic havoc had not the Gipper’s advisors—me included—talked him to signing three tax bills over 1982-1984 that recaptured roughly 40% of the revenue loss from his cherished tax cuts.Even then, the public debt grew by 250% during Reagan’s eight years—-or by more than under any peacetime President in American history. Yet even to this day the GOP politicians and their economic advisers profess a case of heavy duty amnesia about what happened, claiming that real GDP grew by upwards of 4.5% and that these results were proof positive that “dynamic scoring” of budget of tax cuts is valid.Worse still, they appear to have convinced Donald Trump of this same fallacious revisionist history because it was embedded at the core of the Thursday speech’s fiscal math. (David Stockman’s Contra Corner)Reagan’s chief budget advisor, David Stockman would have delighted in telling the world that Reagan’s tax cuts accomplished exactly what the Reagan administration promised … if he could as an honest man. Here is his own evaluation of the Reagan tax cuts in response to Trump’s tax plan: (I admire his honesty.)http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2016-09-22/trump-tax-plan-turns-donald-trickle-down-kingSee also:http://www.salon.com/2014/04/19/reaganomics_killed_americas_middle_class_partner/
9) NO DOUBLE STANDARDS/FAIR RIGHTS FOR ALL(natives AND foreigners):One aspect of justice means that we must treat the civil rights of the rich and poor, native and foreigners/immigrants, etc. as equal to our own and refuse to engage or support double standards or oppression. It’s the golden rule. God repeatedly instructed leaders not to rule with prejudice. They must judge all fairly and objectively.
“You must never twist justice or show partiality.” Deuteronomy 16:19 (2 Chron. 19:7, Prov. 28:21, Deut. 10:17)
“True justice must be given to foreigners living among you and to orphans…” Deuteronomy 24:17“Do not twist justice in legal matters by favoring the poor or being partial to the rich and powerful. Always judge people fairly.” Leviticus 19:15
“Native-born Israelites and foreigners are equal before the Lord and are subject to the same decrees. This is a permanent law for you, to be observed from generation to generation.” Numbers 15:15 (NLT)
“You must not mistreat or oppress foreigners in any way.” Exodus 22:21 (see also Ex. 23:9, Zech. 7:10)“Do not oppress widows, orphans, foreigners, and the poor. And do not scheme against each other.” Zechariah 7:10 (see also: Malachi 3:5)“This is what the Lord says: Be fair-minded and just. Do what is right! Help those who have been robbed; rescue them from their oppressors. Quit your evil deeds! Do not mistreat foreigners, orphans, and widows. Stop murdering the innocent! Jeremiah 22:3
So if you see a political leader double standards, racism, sexism, nativism, and esp. advocating violence or bombing as primary solutions to a problem, this is not someone who can be biblically supported.
10) ALL SHOULD PAY TAX EQUITABLY
All must pay taxes so that government workers can be paid (Romans 13:6,7). This must be done with no partiality, so no special handouts to the rich.***limit on taxes***
11) REDISTRIBUTION FOR JUSTICE
In Genesis, God predicted that His people would be sent into slavery, and oppressed, but would be compensated for it with great wealth. That’s reparations/redistribution for injustice.
“your descendants will be strangers in a foreign land, where they will be oppressed as slaves for 400 years. But I will punish the nation that enslaves them, and in the end they will come away with great wealth.” Gen 15:13-14
A Jewish article comments:
“…The Rabbis understood Egyptian spoils as reparations and imagined that this should be legally coherent and just in the eyes of the international community. Egypt exploited the Israelites for hundreds of years, stealing their labor; any Egyptian perception of prosperity was delusional. The wealth in their hands was not theirs. Judged by morality and Divine law, it was money owed to Israelite laborers…The Sages also don’t want us to underestimate the value of these reparations. We took a lot — really, really, a lot. In the Talmud (Bekhorot 5b), Rabbi Hanina reports that Rabbi Eli‘ezer taught that every single Israelite left Egypt with “ninety Libyan donkeys laden with Egypt’s silver and gold,”
…The Torah does not frame the Israelites’ taking of Egyptian reparations only as an important historical element to their past liberation, but as a core component of the Divine law moving forward, a lesson translated into practical economics.
In the fifteenth chapter of Deuteronomy, as the Torah prepares the free Israelites for life in the Land of Israel as an independent and hegemonic nation in control of an economy, God warns them of the proper way to supervise vulnerable and dependent indentured servants, and the proper way to transition them to freedom. The value of indentured servants’ labor always exceeds the value of the debt they are repaying, as it is monetized in unfavorable conditions. Landowners are able to use that labor to generate not just income, but wealth. They are commanded, therefore, to endow freed servants with fruits of that labor that will enable them to escape the poverty that plunged them into servitude in the first place, and that will set them on the path of economic independence. The Torah insists that this pricey legal burden is a lesson and legacy of the redemption from Egyptian slavery.
12 If your brother, a Hebrew man, or a Hebrew woman, is sold to you, he shall serve you six years; and in the seventh year you send him free from you. 13 And when you send him free from you, do not send him empty. 14 Provide for him liberally from your flock, and from your threshing floor, and from your winepress; from that which YHWH your God has blessed you, give to him. 15 And remember that you were a slave in the land of Egypt, and YHWH your God redeemed you; therefore I command you this thing today.
(יב) כִּי יִמָּכֵר לְךָ אָחִיךָ הָעִבְרִי אוֹ הָעִבְרִיָּה וַעֲבָדְךָ שֵׁשׁ שָׁנִים וּבַשָּׁנָה הַשְּׁבִיעִת תְּשַׁלְּחֶנּוּ חָפְשִׁי מֵעִמָּךְ: (יג) וְכִי תְשַׁלְּחֶנּוּ חָפְשִׁי מֵעִמָּךְ לֹא תְשַׁלְּחֶנּוּ רֵיקָם: (יד) הַעֲנֵיק תַּעֲנִיק לוֹ מִצֹּאנְךָ וּמִגָּרְנְךָ וּמִיִּקְבֶךָ אֲשֶׁר בֵּרַכְךָ יְקֹוָק אֱלֹהֶיךָ תִּתֶּן לוֹ: (טו) וְזָכַרְתָּ כִּי עֶבֶד הָיִיתָ בְּאֶרֶץ מִצְרַיִם וַיִּפְדְּךָ יְקֹוָק אֱלֹהֶיךָ עַל כֵּן אָנֹכִי מְצַוְּךָ אֶת הַדָּבָר הַזֶּה הַיּוֹם:
The Torah emphasizes a connection between releasing indentured servants responsibly and remembering that we were slaves in Egypt, liberated by God. What is the nature of that connection? The passage highlights this connection with an important literary allusion. Verse 13 says, “And when you send him free from you, do not send him empty.”
This echoes God’s promise of reparations at the Burning Bush: “And I will give this people favor in the sight of the Egyptians, so that when you go, you will not go empty” (Exodus 3:21). God redeemed us from slavery with reparations, resources to break the cycle of poverty and subordination. Accordingly, when we have economic security, we must never prop ourselves up with wealth exploited from those subordinated to us through financial misfortune.
…Our ancestors were rescued from slavery with reparations bountiful enough to build long-term financial security, to kick-start their economy. Our free society is commanded to ensure the same for those plunged into economic privation and subordination, to ensure that temporary poor-ness never becomes structural poverty, that a society does not build itself as wealthy on a foundation of stolen beams.”
*** 4 times punishment for stealing
God gave people various ways to rest and wise government leaders will do the same. 2 of the major ones were:
SABBATH: Every week God gave people a Sabbath to rest on as a symbol of creation (Ex. 20:8-11), and that people were created to be free (Deut. 5:15). Sabbath was also closely connected with justice (Isaiah 56).
FESTIVALS: God also instituted 7 festivals that occurred throughout the year. They took up ~1 month or so of the people’s time, but they were very valuable in helping people to interact and develop closer bonds, interdependence, synergy and to point minds to God and that He wanted them to enjoy life.
These breaks certainly improved happiness for people as well. And Dr. Shawn Achor of Harvard, has shown that when people are happy, their brains function ~20-30% better.
You may lend on interest to the foreigner, but to your countryman you may not lend on interest, so that Yahweh your God may bless you in all your undertakings in the land where you are going, in order to take possession of it. Deuteronomy 23:20
“Since 1981, the United States has followed a policy, until the last year or so when we started rethinking it, that we rich countries that produce a lot of food should sell it to poor countries and relieve them of the burden of producing their own food, so, thank goodness, they can leap directly into the industrial era. It has not worked. It may have been good for some of my farmers in Arkansas, but it has not worked. It was a mistake. It was a mistake that I was a party to. I am not pointing the finger at anybody. I did that. I have to live every day with the consequences of the lost capacity to produce a rice crop in Haiti to feed those people, because of what I did. Nobody else…
I first saw Bob Zoellick say the same thing, the head of the World Bank, where he said, you know, starting in 1981, the wealthy agricultural producing countries genuinely believed that they and the emerging agricultural powers in Brazil and Argentina, which are the only two places that have, parenthetically, increased wheat yields per acre, grain yields per acre in the last decade, because they’re the only places with more than twenty feet of topsoil, that they really believed for twenty years that if you moved agricultural production there and then facilitated its introduction into poorer places, you would free those places to get aid to skip agricultural development and go straight into an industrial era.
And it’s failed everywhere it’s been tried. And you just can’t take the food chain out of production. And it also undermines a lot of the culture, the fabric of life, the sense of self-determination. And I have been involved for several years in agricultural products, principally in Rwanda, Malawi, other places in Africa, and now increasingly in Latin America, and I see this.
So we genuinely thought we were helping Haiti when we restored President Aristide, made a commitment to help rebuild the infrastructure through the Army Corps of Engineers there, and do a lot of other things. And we made this devil’s bargain on rice. And it wasn’t the right thing to do. We should have continued to work to help them be self-sufficient in agriculture. And we — that’s a lot of what we’re doing now. We’re thinking about how can we get the coffee production up, how can we get other kinds of — the mango production up — we had an announcement on that yesterday —- the avocados, lots of other things.
Kim Ives of Haiti Liberté : This is Slick Willie, and they come with the message. They know the sensitivity of the Haitian community — I can say of the progressive American community, too — to all these maneuvers. And so they know the language. We hear the word “solidarity.” We hear the word “sovereignty.” We hear the word — we hear all the right words. But once again, to me, it’s total smoke.
“Have mercy on me, O God, because of your unfailing love. Because of your great compassion, blot out the stain of my sins. Wash me clean from my guilt. Purify me from my sin. For I recognize my rebellion; it haunts me day and night.” Psalms 51:1-3
“My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge…” Hosea 4:6
Now Israel pleads with me,‘Help us, for you are our God!’ But it is too late.The people of Israel have rejected what is good,and now their enemies will chase after them. The people have appointed kings without my consent,and princes without my approval.By making idols for themselves from their silver and gold,they have brought about their own destruction….Even though I gave them all my laws,they act as if those laws don’t apply to them.” Hosea 8:2-4,12
You’re going to find people who don’t agree with you on politics. Try to educate them about the importance of the principles above. You can warn them about the serious and severe consequences of ignoring them as God did repeatedly with Israel. Pastor Dietrich Bonhoeffer in warning Christians about the consequences of supporting Nazis said that sometimes love means severe rebukes to save people from sinful disasters***.
But don’t forget that Jesus said we are to love even our enemies. Jesus is King. If we aren’t able to achieve some parts of justice on earth, Jesus will do full and fair justice in the end and whatever we have had to endure on earth will be rewarded in heaven.
These are some principles that God gave in regard to national stability and the traits national leaders should have. I hope they have helped you learn a few things. There are I’m sure some others beyond these. And God’s word is a gold mine on every topic that you can think of. Science keeps on confirming its value. So dig deep in God’s word. You will not be disappointed!