Summary: This sermon details how and why "Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord..."; and describes various types of governments and why they bear rule.
Psalm 33:12 – 22
Preached by: Pastor J. B. Hall
Introduction: Nations are most often defined by the type government they have; for the type government usually reflects the nature of the people.
According to Romans 13:1 government has been established by God. Here’s what it says, “Let every soul be subject to the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.”
Romans 13:3 & 4 give us the purpose of government, “For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same:” “For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.”
In other words, God has established government to execute justice among the people. As we choose to govern ourselves, or restrain the natural tendencies of the flesh to sin, we require less government control of our personal lives. As we ease the restrictions we place on ourselves, more government control is required to restrain our evil tendencies in order that justice may reign.
With this in mind, let’s look at some of the types of governments.
Types of Governments
Governments can be classified into several types. Some of the more common types of governments are:
The word "democracy" literally means "rule by the people." In a democracy, the people govern.
A literal democracy is impossible in a political system containing more than a few people. All "democracies" are really republics. In a republic, the people elect representatives to make and enforce laws.
A monarchy consists of rule by a king or queen. Sometimes a king is called an "emperor," especially if there is a large empire, such as China before 1911. There are no large monarchies today. The United Kingdom, which has a queen, is really a republic because the queen has virtually no political power.
An aristocracy is rule by the aristocrats. Aristocrats are typically wealthy, educated people. Many monarchies have really been ruled by aristocrats. Today, typically, the term "aristocracy" is used negatively to accuse a republic of being dominated by rich people, such as saying, "The United States has become an aristocracy."
A dictatorship consists of rule by one person or a group of people. Very few dictators admit they are dictators; they almost always claim to be leaders of democracies. The dictator may be one person, such as Castro in Cuba or Hitler in Germany, or a group of people, such as the Communist Party in China.
6. Democratic Republic
Usually, a "democratic republic" is not democratic and is not a republic. A government that officially calls itself a "democratic republic" is usually a dictatorship. Communist dictatorships have been especially prone to use this term. For example, the official name of North Vietnam was "The Democratic Republic of Vietnam." China uses a variant, "The People’s Republic of China."
So then, a barbaric people will most often be governed by a totalitarian type government such as a dictatorship; while a righteous people will often be allowed to enjoy the liberty of living under a democratic type of government.
Understanding the nature of man and the purpose of government will help us to understand the observations we’re about to make; and to arrive at the right conclusions concerning our own nation – where it is headed, why this is so, and what must be done if liberty is to be kept.
Psalm 33:12a says, “Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord…”
What is the significance of this verse, more than just being rhetorical words that honor the Lord?
Well, God is the Designer and Manufacturer of all things, including people; and of the guidelines by which they are intended to operate.
Following the Manufacturer’s prescribed guidelines of operation will insure smooth, efficient interaction, with the least friction among operational parts…in our case, among people.
God has recorded His guidelines in His Owner’s manual, the Bible.
These guidelines are the commandments, or laws, and principles contained in the Bible.
As we read and study these laws and principles, and choose to pattern our personal attitudes and actions after them, we require less external governance, because we have chosen to govern ourselves internally; and can be entrusted with greater external liberty.
If, however, we choose to reject these laws and principles that were designed for the greater good of all; and instead choose to pursue a self-centered agenda, this will always result in harm to those around us, and we will require greater external governance in order to restrain our sinful pursuits.