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 The Purpose of Government

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Sir Emeth Mimetes
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PostSubject: The Purpose of Government   Thu Jan 08, 2009 7:09 am

The Purpose of Government.

The purpose of government is one of the most crucial points that we must have all decided upon before any great progress can be made in other discussions. Government has responsibilities just like a person, and it is our duty to discern them so that we may construct ours to be able to most efficiently and capably fulfill those obligations. It also has boundaries and jurisdictions of influence like a person, and it is also our duty to do our best to limit our nation and confine it within those constraints. And so we must delimit the purpose and function of government.

I believe that the biblical purpose of government is solely to punish crime and reward good. It does not prevent crime, nor does it bestow so-called welfare on the poor. What other functions that people have come to expect from government (such as utilities, regulation, and welfare) can now come from private organizations that can now compete for the market where before they could not.

  • Why should we care about the purpose of government?
  • Where should the boundaries of government start and stop?
  • Is there anything other than punishing crime and rewarding good that ought to be the government's responsibility?
  • To what extreme can we carry decentralization?
  • What scriptural support can be given for this, my view, or for you views on the subject?


With joy and peace in Christ,
Jay Lauser

_________________
I am Sir Emeth Mimetes (knighted to the warfare of truth by the calling of Christ, the Master of my order), and thus, though poorly is it ever met by my feeble abilities, is my mission: to combat those ideas that are rooted in mindsets that are contrary to my Master.
May I never forsake abiding in Him, and may His ways never cease to thrive within my heart, for He only is my strength and hope.
note: emeth is Hebrew for truth, right, faithful;
mimetes is Greek for an imitator or follower.
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Peter G.
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PostSubject: Re: The Purpose of Government   Thu Jan 15, 2009 4:04 pm

Why should we care about the purpose of government?

Becuase, if the government gets too powerful, then it would be too late to do anything about it. and once the purpose of the government has been changed from what it originaly was supposed to be, then we will have issues. and if the purpose of the government is too much, then its our own fault because we have grown too lazy. (see my lazy people thread if its available)

Where should the boundaries of government start and stop?

it should start by doing what the bible says, feed the poor, help the oppressed, not be the oppresor. Stop when they start to rule the lives of the people. like in socialiism and the such. taking ones rights away is wrong (depends on the right though),taking away ones responsibilities is wrong, one the government has complete or near complete control on our lives, then we have big issues.

Is there anything other than punishing crime and rewarding good that ought to be the government's responsibility?

well, who can take care of our armies? who should take care of diplomicy? the government I think we can all agree on is twisted and messed up correct? but the government if they take more responsibilites needs to make sure that whatever they are, is one, okay with the people, two, doesn't overlap the families authority.
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PostSubject: Re: The Purpose of Government   Fri Jan 16, 2009 3:49 am

Peter,

Peter wrote:
well, who can take care of our armies? who should take care of diplomicy?

I believe that diplomacy and military action possibly ought to be under the government, since they are a means of defense against crimes against the nation from outside. But I also believe that it is possible to be like Switzerland in its militia: not having a standing army or general, only a militia. Diplomacy could also possibly be done by an organization authorized by the government to represent the nation. What do you think?

Peter wrote:
it should start by doing what the bible says, feed the poor, help the oppressed, not be the oppresor.

From your Lazy people thread I was under the impression that you did not believe that government ought to feed the poor. I do not believe that it should, as it is not a necessary agent in charity, nor is it an efficient one. Why should we give money to the government for it to give to somebody else? When this happens government is no longer punishing theft, but practicing it, as well as hindering us from the liberty to give as charitably ourselves (by increased taxes and fund demands). Giving to the poor ought to be left to the people and the church. What do you think?

With joy and peace in Christ,
Jay Lauser

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I am Sir Emeth Mimetes (knighted to the warfare of truth by the calling of Christ, the Master of my order), and thus, though poorly is it ever met by my feeble abilities, is my mission: to combat those ideas that are rooted in mindsets that are contrary to my Master.
May I never forsake abiding in Him, and may His ways never cease to thrive within my heart, for He only is my strength and hope.
note: emeth is Hebrew for truth, right, faithful;
mimetes is Greek for an imitator or follower.
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Peter G.
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PostSubject: Re: The Purpose of Government   Fri Jan 16, 2009 8:04 am

yeah, sorry about the mix up. I occationally lose my spot. but yes, the government shouldn't pay for the poor. but here is another side that I thought up. you said that taxes could be voluntary correct? therefore, when you give to the government, you could specify where the money should go. follow me?
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PostSubject: Re: The Purpose of Government   Fri Jan 16, 2009 11:15 am

Why should we care about the purpose of government?

If the government steps over its boundaries, then it is endangering our liberty. Also if the government goes beyond its purpose, it is infringing on the church's and the people's duties/liberty as set by God in the Bible. If we don't care about the purpose of the government, we are basically saying the the government has the right to control our lives and this is not true. The purpose of the government should be a big concern of ours so that our liberty given by the Bible is not violated.

Where should the boundaries of government start and stop?

The boundaries start were the laws/ten commandments of the Bible do. If the government goes any further beyond enforcing the laws as set by God Word, then they are infringing on our liberties and government has no right to do that.

Is there anything other than punishing crime and rewarding good that ought to be the government's responsibility?


No, punishing crime and rewarding the good are the sole purposes of government.


Quote :
well, who can take care of our armies? who should take care of diplomicy?

The Israelites did not have a standing army in place, they had men willing to fight if need be. This is how the armies of our government should be, a militia like Sir Emeth Mimetes said. However, if a country attacks our country, then the government has the right to take control of the militia because it falls under punishing crimes category. Diplomacy
would also fall under government because it directly relates to the sole purpose of government.
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PostSubject: Re: The Purpose of Government   Mon Jan 26, 2009 2:53 am

Hello,

So, do you have any ideas for can we define the purpose of government in one simple statement that can be later used to guide our decisions? We need a working definition that applies across the board to any culture and any time and place. This is possible, I believe, since the Law is a reflection of the unchanging God, so we should be able to formulate an
unchanging definition of His institution. Any ideas?

With joy and peace in Christ,
Jay Lauser

_________________
I am Sir Emeth Mimetes (knighted to the warfare of truth by the calling of Christ, the Master of my order), and thus, though poorly is it ever met by my feeble abilities, is my mission: to combat those ideas that are rooted in mindsets that are contrary to my Master.
May I never forsake abiding in Him, and may His ways never cease to thrive within my heart, for He only is my strength and hope.
note: emeth is Hebrew for truth, right, faithful;
mimetes is Greek for an imitator or follower.
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Hannah Marie
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PostSubject: Re: The Purpose of Government   Mon Jan 26, 2009 2:25 pm

The purpose of the government is to punish crime (crime as defined in the crime thread) and to protect the people's liberty (liberty as defined in the liberty thread).

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PostSubject: Re: The Purpose of Government   Mon Jan 26, 2009 6:36 pm

Quote :
The purpose of the government is to punish crime (crime as defined in the crime thread) and to protect the people's liberty (liberty as defined in the liberty thread).

Exactly. The Government's purpose is emphatically not to make people happy, rich, or equal (monetarily). What do you think about environmental concerns? Maybe lobbies and boycotts could take care of that. For example, demanding clean smokestacks. Once the government gets involved, it will get bigger and bigger.

In Christ,
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PostSubject: Re: The Purpose of Government   Mon Jan 26, 2009 7:25 pm

Jonathan S. wrote:
Quote :
The purpose of the government is to punish crime (crime as defined in the crime thread) and to protect the people's liberty (liberty as defined in the liberty thread).

Exactly. The Government's purpose is emphatically not to make people happy, rich, or equal (monetarily). What do you think about environmental concerns? Maybe lobbies and boycotts could take care of that. For example, demanding clean smokestacks. Once the government gets involved, it will get bigger and bigger.

In Christ,


You asked a very good question, Jonathan. I think if the government became involved in environmental issues, we would open doors for them to evade and violate our liberty. Though environmental issues are surely a concern, I do not think the government should have control of this area. The government is not there to solve all of our problems but rather to help us recognize the problems. Therefore, it would be entirely up to the people to correct environmental issues. This can be done through lobbies and boycotts, like you said, or the people working harder in general to correct the issue on their own. Thus, environmental issues would not be for the government, at least not in respect to the purpose of the government as outlined above.

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If you accept my words and store up my commands within you, turning your ear to wisdom and applying your heart to understanding, and if you call out for insight and cry aloud for understanding; and if you look for it as for silver and search for it as hidden treasure, then you will understand the fear of the Lord and find the knowledge of God. Proverbs 2:1-5
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PostSubject: Re: The Purpose of Government   Tue Jan 27, 2009 9:04 am

Hannah Marie wrote:
The purpose of the government is to punish crime (crime as defined in the crime thread) and to protect the people's liberty (liberty as defined in the liberty thread).

Very good start, Hannah.

1 Peter 2:14 Or unto governors, as unto them that are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers, and for the praise of them that do well.

Based off of this verse, which from the context is indirectly defining a righteous government, could we add "and reward good"? (Good being defined as something that furthers liberty, or something along those lines). I believe that it would fall within the government's role to reward those who do good for the nation. If someone apprehends a criminal and thus furthers liberty and justice, government ought to reward him for his act. What do you think?

With joy and peace in Christ,
Jay Lauser

_________________
I am Sir Emeth Mimetes (knighted to the warfare of truth by the calling of Christ, the Master of my order), and thus, though poorly is it ever met by my feeble abilities, is my mission: to combat those ideas that are rooted in mindsets that are contrary to my Master.
May I never forsake abiding in Him, and may His ways never cease to thrive within my heart, for He only is my strength and hope.
note: emeth is Hebrew for truth, right, faithful;
mimetes is Greek for an imitator or follower.
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PostSubject: Re: The Purpose of Government   Tue Jan 27, 2009 9:58 am

Sir Emeth Mimetes wrote:
Hannah Marie wrote:
The purpose of the government is to punish crime (crime as defined in the crime thread) and to protect the people's liberty (liberty as defined in the liberty thread).

Very good start, Hannah.

1 Peter 2:14 Or unto governors, as unto them that are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers, and for the praise of them that do well.

Based off of this verse, which from the context is indirectly defining a righteous government, could we add "and reward good"? (Good being defined as something that furthers liberty, or something along those lines). I believe that it would fall within the government's role to reward those who do good for the nation. If someone apprehends a criminal and thus furthers liberty and justice, government ought to reward him for his act. What do you think?

With joy and peace in Christ,
Jay Lauser

Yes! I agree that we can add 'reward the good' to define the purpose of government because it is supported by that verse.

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If you accept my words and store up my commands within you, turning your ear to wisdom and applying your heart to understanding, and if you call out for insight and cry aloud for understanding; and if you look for it as for silver and search for it as hidden treasure, then you will understand the fear of the Lord and find the knowledge of God. Proverbs 2:1-5
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PostSubject: Re: The Purpose of Government   Tue Jan 27, 2009 2:42 pm

I would agree with rewarding good (it's in the Bible), but we should define reward. And good. If the government is dishing out "rewards" left and right for "meritorious" accomplishments, then that is a problem.
What do you think?

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PostSubject: Re: The Purpose of Government   Tue Jan 27, 2009 5:08 pm

Jonathan S. wrote:
I would agree with rewarding good (it's in the Bible), but we should define reward. And good. If the government is dishing out "rewards" left and right for "meritorious" accomplishments, then that is a problem.
What do you think?

I agree with you, Jonathan. The government is not there to reward every little thing. I think that reward could also be seen as encouragement. If you go back to the bible verse that Jay mentioned (1 Peter 2:14), it says "praise of them that do well". I see that as meaning not exactly physical items so to speak but rather recognization for their good deeds through words. While some items do indeed deserve some concret items (such as promotions and such), the majority of rewarding can be done simply through the government verbally recognizing the accomplishments of people.

Also like you said, not everything deserves rewards. Even in the Bible somethings are meant to be given in secret to others because being public about it promotes haughtiness. I think we can determine what things are 'good' enough to have rewards for by simply looking in the bible. The actions that God says are best done in secret should not be recognized, thereby encouraging the type of attitude spoken of in the Bible.

Those are just some of my thoughts on the topic.

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If you accept my words and store up my commands within you, turning your ear to wisdom and applying your heart to understanding, and if you call out for insight and cry aloud for understanding; and if you look for it as for silver and search for it as hidden treasure, then you will understand the fear of the Lord and find the knowledge of God. Proverbs 2:1-5
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PostSubject: Re: The Purpose of Government   Wed Jan 28, 2009 2:22 am

Greetings,

I was actually going to point that out. Great job! You are really getting the hang of this. Do you think that we should discuss the definition of "reward" and "good" in a discussion thread or in here?

By the way, the definition of the purpose of government now stands as: The sole purpose and function of government is to punish crime, protect the people's liberty, and reward good. Right?

Do you think that we should rephrase "protect the people's liberty" to something like "defend liberty" to include defending other people's liberty? What do you think?

With joy and peace in Christ,
Jay Lauser

_________________
I am Sir Emeth Mimetes (knighted to the warfare of truth by the calling of Christ, the Master of my order), and thus, though poorly is it ever met by my feeble abilities, is my mission: to combat those ideas that are rooted in mindsets that are contrary to my Master.
May I never forsake abiding in Him, and may His ways never cease to thrive within my heart, for He only is my strength and hope.
note: emeth is Hebrew for truth, right, faithful;
mimetes is Greek for an imitator or follower.
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Hannah Marie
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PostSubject: Re: The Purpose of Government   Wed Jan 28, 2009 2:42 pm

Yes, I think we can change it to "defend liberty" and it would still be an accurate definition. As to definitions of "reward" and "good", I think it should just be discussed here because it is part of and directly relates to the purpose of the government.

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If you accept my words and store up my commands within you, turning your ear to wisdom and applying your heart to understanding, and if you call out for insight and cry aloud for understanding; and if you look for it as for silver and search for it as hidden treasure, then you will understand the fear of the Lord and find the knowledge of God. Proverbs 2:1-5
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PostSubject: Re: The Purpose of Government   Wed Jan 28, 2009 5:23 pm

I would agree that the government should protect liberty in general. I think that we were wholly justified in deposing Saddam Hussein, for instance, even though he was not a threat to our liberty. Any government with the power to do it should reward good and punish evil not only within its borders, but also in international relations.

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PostSubject: Re: The Purpose of Government   Thu Jan 29, 2009 2:44 am

Good, so:

The sole purpose and function of government is to punish crime, defend liberty, and reward good.

So let us start by defining "good," (unless you want to start with "reward," I am flexible). How can we delimit what actions are worthy of reward by government? I think that an action that defends the liberty of another would justify a reward of some kind. What do you think?

With joy and peace in Christ,
Jay Lauser

_________________
I am Sir Emeth Mimetes (knighted to the warfare of truth by the calling of Christ, the Master of my order), and thus, though poorly is it ever met by my feeble abilities, is my mission: to combat those ideas that are rooted in mindsets that are contrary to my Master.
May I never forsake abiding in Him, and may His ways never cease to thrive within my heart, for He only is my strength and hope.
note: emeth is Hebrew for truth, right, faithful;
mimetes is Greek for an imitator or follower.
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PostSubject: Re: The Purpose of Government   Thu Jan 29, 2009 10:52 am

My personal (and longer!) definition would be along the lines of:

The purpose of Government is to protect the inalienable rights of the people, represent the people in matters of state (which would include things like foriegn policy, the military, etc.) and enforce such laws as are deemed necessary for the mutual protection and benefit of the people as a whole.

The problem with an unqualified defense of "liberty" is that you could easily end up defending a person’s right to harm another. For instance, if your focus is only on defending "liberty" you could easily come to the conclusion (for instance) that the consumption of alcohol should not be in anyway regulated by the government. But, if there were no laws regulating the consumption of alcohol (prohibiting driving while intoxicated, serving an intoxicating amount at a restaurant, etc.) then alcohol related deaths would sky rocket. You would have many more people like my sister-in-law who was about 30 seconds away from bleeding to death from a head on collision initiated by a drunk driver that had been served too much alcohol at an establishment known to consistently serve too much to it's customers.

Liberty is good, but for a society to be JUST some alienable rights need to be given up. So, I believe the focus of government should be more specific than to protect liberty; it should be to protect those self evident and inalienable rights and to represent (by a democratic process) the people in regulating such matters of societal justice as are appropriately regulated (like the consumption of alcohol). I would consider the right to do something that unreasonably endangers the life or property of another to be subject to the regulation of the people and government.

Did that make any sense? I understand that might be a bit nit-picky, but I thought I'd throw it out there anyway. ;-)
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PostSubject: Re: The Purpose of Government   Thu Jan 29, 2009 12:38 pm

Mark,

I like your definition. I think that it actually agrees with ours mainly, though. In this forum we have separated the meanings of the words "freedom" and "liberty." We have defined freedom as being able to do what you want without impedance, which seems to be what you are talking about. The current definition of liberty is: Liberty is the freedom to do what is good, right, and true. And what is right, good and true is determined by God's law and word. Under that definition, "the inalienable rights of the people" would be their liberty, the right to do right, essentially.

Also, based on our definition of crime (in progress), your last clause ("and enforce such laws as are deemed necessary for the mutual protection and benefit of the people as a whole") would fall under punish crime, Right?

I think that we could stipulate "represent the people in matters of state" in our purpose of government, though. I think that that would be justifiable. Does anybody have any objections or clarifications to make?

If I misrepresented you, or missed something, go ahead and point it out, I can easily be wrong. Smile

With joy and peace in Christ,
Jay Lauser

_________________
I am Sir Emeth Mimetes (knighted to the warfare of truth by the calling of Christ, the Master of my order), and thus, though poorly is it ever met by my feeble abilities, is my mission: to combat those ideas that are rooted in mindsets that are contrary to my Master.
May I never forsake abiding in Him, and may His ways never cease to thrive within my heart, for He only is my strength and hope.
note: emeth is Hebrew for truth, right, faithful;
mimetes is Greek for an imitator or follower.
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PostSubject: Re: The Purpose of Government   Thu Jan 29, 2009 9:17 pm

Sir Emeth Mimetes wrote:

I think that we could stipulate "represent the people in matters of state" in our purpose of government, though. I think that that would be justifiable. Does anybody have any objections or clarifications to make?

With joy and peace in Christ,
Jay Lauser

I agree that we can add this to our current definition, but also, it might be a good idea just to define what "matters of the state" are exactly. I agree with Mark on foriegn policy and the military. However, some of modern day's "matters of the state" also include finances, education, and adding amendments to the law. Would we include all of modern day's "matters of the state" or only a select few that apply when we add this statement to the definition?

_________________
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PostSubject: Re: The Purpose of Government   Fri Jan 30, 2009 2:37 am

Hannah Marie wrote:
Sir Emeth Mimetes wrote:

I think that we could stipulate "represent the people in matters of state" in our purpose of government, though. I think that that would be justifiable. Does anybody have any objections or clarifications to make?

With joy and peace in Christ,
Jay Lauser

I agree that we can add this to our current definition, but also, it might be a good idea just to define what "matters of the state" are exactly. I agree with Mark on foriegn policy and the military. However, some of modern day's "matters of the state" also include finances, education, and adding amendments to the law. Would we include all of modern day's "matters of the state" or only a select few that apply when we add this statement to the definition?

Perhaps we could replace "matters of state" with "international disputes." Would that work?

It would then read: The sole purpose and function of government is to punish crime, defend liberty, represent its citizens in international disputes, and reward good.

(I included "its citizens" to clarify that it wouldn't be representing resident non-citizens, right?)

Any comments?

With joy and peace in Christ,
Jay Lauser

_________________
I am Sir Emeth Mimetes (knighted to the warfare of truth by the calling of Christ, the Master of my order), and thus, though poorly is it ever met by my feeble abilities, is my mission: to combat those ideas that are rooted in mindsets that are contrary to my Master.
May I never forsake abiding in Him, and may His ways never cease to thrive within my heart, for He only is my strength and hope.
note: emeth is Hebrew for truth, right, faithful;
mimetes is Greek for an imitator or follower.
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PostSubject: Re: The Purpose of Government   Fri Jan 30, 2009 5:28 am

Sir Emeth Mimetes wrote:


It would then read: The sole purpose and function of government is to punish crime, defend liberty, represent its citizens in international disputes, and reward good.

(I included "its citizens" to clarify that it wouldn't be representing resident non-citizens, right?)

Any comments?

With joy and peace in Christ,
Jay Lauser

Yes, that one I agree with. And the "its citizens" part is necessary and correct.

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PostSubject: Re: The Purpose of Government   Tue Feb 03, 2009 8:20 am

Alright, so, back to defining "reward good." (If there are no objections).

Here is my idea:

Reward = public praise and/or monetary benefit. if someone is being rewarded for providing capital or such like to the government, praise would be all that makes sense. Amounts for the monetary benefits would be determined by the judges (government officials).

Good = an act that actively assists the government in its function and purpose. A free-will monetary donation would be included. An act of defending liberty would also be rewarded. Apprehending a criminal would be "good." Revealing an evil plot would be included as well, and etc.

I like the above definitions because they are mine, and fit in well with my vision for how the government would operate, but I would like to know what you guys think. You have noticed lots of things that I have missed. What do you think?

With joy and peace in Christ,
Jay Lauser

_________________
I am Sir Emeth Mimetes (knighted to the warfare of truth by the calling of Christ, the Master of my order), and thus, though poorly is it ever met by my feeble abilities, is my mission: to combat those ideas that are rooted in mindsets that are contrary to my Master.
May I never forsake abiding in Him, and may His ways never cease to thrive within my heart, for He only is my strength and hope.
note: emeth is Hebrew for truth, right, faithful;
mimetes is Greek for an imitator or follower.
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PostSubject: Re: The Purpose of Government   Wed Feb 04, 2009 2:56 am

Greetings,

I presented our current version of our definition of the purpose of government to my father, and he had some very wise counsel for us.

Our current draft is as follows:

The sole purpose and function of government is to punish crime, defend liberty, represent its citizens in international disputes, and reward good.

Here are my dad's thoughts on the several pieces.

The sole purpose and function of government is to punish crime - Good. Biblical.

defend liberty - The Bible does not say that government ought to defend liberty in any way except by punishing crime, which is quite sufficient in my view. If we state it the way we have it, the government would have license to control and do things that defend liberty, but that it has no business meddling with. Schooling is one of these things: biblical schooling is something that preserves our liberty, but it is not something that government ought to be controlling, right? So the upshot is this: what we mean by this clause is already contained in "punish crime," and "defending liberty" includes too many things that government ought not to be doing.

represent its citizens in international disputes - There are many kinds of international disputes that government has no business in. International representation by government needs to be more limited. The thing is, what we would have to limit it to is also contained in the first clause, if we define crime right. Punishing crime includes both internal justice and external defense, if you think about it. So we need not include this clause because it is already in the definition.

and reward good - Good, but we need to stipulate in the definition of government what this means. I did some research into 1 Peter 2:14, and came to some conclusions. What government does in what we labeled "rewarding good" is praising righteousness. The praise does not take the form of physical benefit, but lauding someone for good doing. Virtually any righteous act is included as candidates for this. The concept of paying monetary benefits to someone comes from another place.

Genesis 9:6 is where government was instituted in the first place. Frederic Bastiat did a very good job of explaining this in The Law (which you better have read by now).

Whoso sheddeth man's blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made he man.

Here God gives to man the duty to execute His Law of justice upon his fellow men. Government is simply the gathering together and organization of the individual right to work justice. It does not obsolete it. So government should encourage its citizens to fulfill their individual right and assist the government in its duty. The government in such cases playing the referee in a sense, making sure that justice really was carried out. This does not necessarily mean each man acting the detective, judge, jury, and executioner all rolled into one all the time. There needs to be a system to give checks and balances to justice, but that is what we are here for. Anyway, the point is that if a man apprehends a criminal and brings him to the judges (and is right in his action, as in, the man really was guilty and he knew it), then the government is perfectly justified in paying that man for his action, since, in a sense, he was acting as an agent of the government and is thus worthy of his hire. Am I making sense or am I just obfuscating? What do you guys think?

So the amended definition would read:

The sole purpose and function of government is to punish crime and give praise to those who work righteousness.

Everything we have discussed is contained in that. What do you think?

With joy and peace in Christ,
Jay Lauser

_________________
I am Sir Emeth Mimetes (knighted to the warfare of truth by the calling of Christ, the Master of my order), and thus, though poorly is it ever met by my feeble abilities, is my mission: to combat those ideas that are rooted in mindsets that are contrary to my Master.
May I never forsake abiding in Him, and may His ways never cease to thrive within my heart, for He only is my strength and hope.
note: emeth is Hebrew for truth, right, faithful;
mimetes is Greek for an imitator or follower.
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View user profile http://siremethmimetes.wordpress.com
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PostSubject: Re: The Purpose of Government   Wed Feb 11, 2009 6:30 am

Because crime is defined as depriving another of life, liberty, or property, Government automatically has the right to protect liberty. Although I guess I see how if we aren't specific enough, the government can get too much into our affairs. I do think it is important that the government can punish crime and reward good in other countries too. For instance, if a totalitarian regime is acting criminally, than it is reasonable for a government the ability to do it to get rid of that regime. Kind of like we did in Iraq. Does everyone agree with me?

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For God has not given us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power and love and discipline. --2 Tim 1:7
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