God, Us and Government

Let’s keep this simple. The role and responsibility God gave to civil government is different from the responsibility God gave to us, His people. Just as my hands have a different role and purpose than my feet do, but they are part of the same body and work together. Government and Christians, as well as Christians in government, can and should work together, each functioning in their respective roles.

Scripture gives us some insight into the purpose God has given for civil governments in Romans 13:3-4.For rulers are not a cause of fear for good behavior, but for evil. Do you want to have no fear of authority? Do what is good and you will have praise from the same; for it is a minister of God to you for good. But if you do what is evil, be afraid; for it does not bear the sword for nothing; for it is a minister of God, an avenger who brings wrath on the one who practices evil.

Government was God’s idea and He is the One who established the main role of civil government. The authority God gave to civil government is to be a minister of God for good to keep citizens safe from those who break the law and practice evil. As Christians, our number one commandment is to love God and love our neighbors as ourselves.

Government has a different role and different responsibilities than we as Christians do. We should not expect the government to do what we are called to do. No place in scripture does God tell civil government to turn the other cheek, love your neighbor as yourself or freely give to those who ask of you. Those things He has spoken to us as His people.

Jesus taught us to pray that God’s will would be done on earth as it is in Heaven. We need to pray for our elected officials that they will follow Romans 13 and the U.S. Constitution. Pray and vote for those who will enact and uphold righteous laws that establishes a “more perfect union” where “justice”, “tranquility”, “a common defense” and the “blessing of liberty” exists for our people.

We also must be involved in the political process to maintain the continuity between the mandates we are given from Lord and the U.S. Constitution (the supreme law of our land). The least we can do is pray and vote. Voting is a right and a privilege that many people around the world do not have. However, it goes beyond that, it is our duty as God’s people to vote. Voting is our voice and an expression of our will. Our will should align with God’s will. Jesus told us to pray God’s will be done on earth as it is in Heaven. Therefore, when we vote, it should be an expression of the will of God to be done on earth, in our nation, as it is in Heaven.

How should we vote as God’s people? What did God say was the purpose for government? Civil governments are a minister of God, an avenger who brings wrath on those who practice evil. So, which candidates will best accomplish this? Which candidates, judges, laws and questions on our ballots best fit the will God as outlined in scripture and the Constitution of the United States? Assuming of course we and the candidates know the Constitution and what is evil as God has defined it.

How are we going to be able to disciple nations, as Jesus told us to do, if we do not participate in the political process of our nation, thereby affecting the governmental mountain? We are commanded by God to love people. Government and politics affect every person in our nation. Moreover, the United States is a forerunner among nations. Many nations look to us to set the example and follow in our steps. What we do will affect the lives of countless others around the world. When the people of God are unengaged from the political process, they are abdicating their responsibility and authority.

 

Joe Nicola

 

I Come Now As…

This is an updated post from Oct. 2018

Over a year and a half ago the Lord spoke to me that we are in a kairos moment of accelerated restoration. In this kairos moment there are decisions to make. Things have changed. In 2018 the Lord spoke to me from the Book of Joshua as to where we are and what is required. I do not believe this is the whole picture as we only know in part and prophesy in part, 1 Cor. 13:9. However, we need each other’s part. 

The first Passover was a miraculous dress rehearsal for the coming of Messiah, His crucifixion and resurrection. The Jews observed Passover for 1,400 years before Jesus came and fulfilled it. God’s plan for Passover (which means, exemption) was for the Israelites to be passed over or exempt from death, delivered from slavery, travel through the wilderness and arrive in the the Promised Land. However, the generation that participated in the first Passover never made it out of the wilderness. They died before reaching their destiny. Joshua 5:6 tells us they perished because they did not listen to the voice of the Lord. Hebrews 3:19 tells us they could not enter the Promised Land because of unbelief. 

 In Joshua chapter 4 and 5 everything changed for the people of God. The generation born in the wilderness crossed over into the Promised Land with a new leader. Joshua circumcised this new generation, reestablishing the Covenant with the Lord. They observed the Passover and the next day the manna stopped and they began to eat the produce of Canaan.

After four hundred and thirty years of slavery in Egypt and forty years of wandering in the wilderness, this new generation crossed over into the Promised Land. They have a new leader, they celebrated the Passover, they are eating new food and the Covenant has been re-established. Very significant details and timeliness of events laid out here for our instruction. Let the reader understand. 

Then, Joshua is standing near Jericho. He looked and a man was standing opposite of him with his sword drawn in his hand. Joshua went to him and asked, “Are you for us or for our adversaries? He said, “No; rather I come now as captain of the host of the LORD.” Notice two things. First He answered “No” to the question, “are you for us or for our adversaries”? The question is not, Lord are you on my side? The question is, are we on His side? Second, He said, “I come now”. This man with his sword drawn was Jesus. We know that because Jesus is the captain of the army. Also, as Joshua bowed in worship, calling him Lord, he was not instructed to stand up and stop worshipping as other times in scripture when a man was speaking with an angel. In saying I come now, Jesus was manifesting Himself much differently now than the past forty years wandering in the desert. He is ready for battle, His sword is drawn! We must have discernment when the Lord manifests Himself differently from what we are used to or we are in danger of rejecting Him.

Joshua fell on his face to the earth, and bowed down, and said to him, “What has my lord to say to his servant?” The captain of the LORD’S host said to Joshua, “Remove your sandals from your feet, for the place where you are standing is holy.” 

The first thing Jesus told him to do was remove his sandals for the place he was standing was holy. Chapter 5 ends with, and Joshua did so. When Moses approached the burning bush, God said the very same thing, “Remove your sandals for you are standing on holy ground”. In both cases, immediately following the removal of their sandals they were given strategy. Moses was given strategy for a military mission of rescue. Rescuing the Hebrews from slavery in Egypt. Joshua was also given strategy for a military mission; conquering and possessing the Promised Land. Each objective requires precise strategy from the Lord and strict obedience to that strategy. His first objective for Joshua from this encounter was to conquer Jericho.

In Ruth 4:7 we read something very interesting about removing sandals. Now this was the custom in former times in Israel concerning the redemption and the exchange of land to confirm any matter: a man removed his sandal and gave it to another; and this was the manner of attestation in Israel. Without going into detail here, Boaz redeemed Naomi’s Land as well as Ruth by the legal transaction of removal of a sandal. Boaz and Ruth then gave birth to Obed. Obed gave birth to Jesse and Jesse gave birth to David. It was through the family line of David that Jesus was born and through Jesus, all that receive Him and are born again into the Family Dynasty of the Lord God.

So, as Joshua was instructed to remove his sandals, Jesus was making a legal transaction for acquiring land! Joshua worshipped by submissive humility in removing his sandals and bowing before Jesus.

Genesis 1:28 tells us that God blessed man and woman and said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth, and subdue it; and rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” Jesus reconfirmed this in Matthew 28:18-20 when He said, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”

We must have divine strategy in this kairos moment of accelerated restoration. Man’s wisdom and strategies of the past will not work now. As Jesus said, “I come now as the captain of the Host of the Lord.” And, “Remove your sandals from your feet, for the place where you are standing is holy.” Then strategy is given and action must be taken in precise obedience. 

Things have changed and decisions must be made.

Joe Nicola