Thursday, November 8, 2012

A Nation of Leeches

The leech has two daughters; "Give" and "Give," they cry.  (Prov 30:15)

As I study church history, the parallels between ancient Rome and the United States are obvious.  After the overthrow of monarchy, a constitutional republic with a representative senate was established with regular elections for heads of state.  Over time balance of power shifted to become centralized at the federal level in one person as one Caesar after another took more and more control under the guise of efficiency, necessity, or general welfare of the Pax Romana.

The glories of the old republic were trumpeted as ideals while society crumbled around them.  Morals waned as abortion, adultery, homosexuality, and violence were not just accepted but promoted.  Inflation increased at an increasing rate.  Coins were no longer minted from precious metals, but were mixed with slag.  More and more, people became dependent on the state for their welfare, so that taxes needed to increase to meet the demand.

Does any of this sound familiar?

It is this last point that Bill Muehlenberg addresses in his post on the entitlement mentatility.  He cites several of Founding Fathers who warned that the populace would figure out they could legislate a stipend and unwittingly enslave themselves to the government.  The quote that particularly hit home with me and prompted my comparison with Rome is this one from Cicero:
Do not blame Caesar, blame the people of Rome who have so enthusiastically acclaimed and adored him and rejoiced in their loss of freedom and danced in his path and given him triumphal processions.   Blame the people who hail him when he speaks in the Forum of the "new wonderful good society" which shall now be Rome’s, interpreted to mean "more money, more ease, more security, and more living fatly at the expense of the industrious."
Our nation's downward course was set when it began, not because those who established it were evil or wrong, but because they and all who followed them are sinners.  If it is to be reversed, it cannot be by legislation or human institutions however noble.  Only God, through his word faithfully taught and proclaimed, can accomplish this.

1 comment:

Glenn E. Chatfield said...

I have been comparing the USA with the Roman empire for a long time. No one pays attention to history.