Sjolander Road Fellowship




Declaring the God of Unconditional Love

Divine Right of Kings

8/27/13

 

Centuries ago most European governments operated in accordance with the so called divine right of kings. Certain individuals claimed a sacred mandate to rule over the citizenry. These divine rulers had absolute power because it was God's Will. In these claims, such rulers usually enjoyed the complete support of the institutional church.

 

For the most part, in Christendom, monarchies have been replaced by representative governments. As a consequence, this former notion of some being divinely anointed as a despotic ruler has been largely renounced, even ridiculed.

 

Incongruously though, what we witness instead today is the claim by various political figures that they are divinely called to govern, not as despots per se, but has part of representative governments. Such individuals quite often assume to themselves a divine appointment to make rules which oppress and suppress in support of church doctrine, thus insuring a powerful collusion between church and state. These claimants trumpet the cause of so called freedom of religion, conveniently defining that freedom as the church's freedom from governmental restraint. Instead of this freedom being an individual matter, it suddenly becomes a corporate license to do whatever, including undermining the rights of those who dare to reject its dogma. Government promotion and restraint in support of religious doctrine will never be the basis for individual freedom; that should be obvious.

 

If the divine right of kings has been repudiated, largely because of the evident abuse of the resultant power, how can a new divine right to govern be proposed and supported? Such sentiments may not be as potentially dangerous in a representative government, but operating a democratic government with people who openly express contempt for democratic principles is strange way to express a love of freedom. Boldly stated religious elitism, distain for equality, and claims of infallibility- nothing seems to deter unbounded admiration for political figures who sound just like the divine monarchs of yesteryear.

 

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