Until the Lord Returns to Rule, the Rule of Law is Best
We learned some startling truths from our last post, in this important series of posts. First, we learned that America, which is symbolized by Revelation’s MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, is to be mercilessly judged by God for seducing world leaders and inebriating this world’s inhabitants with the intoxicating wine of democracy. Second, we learned, much to our chagrin, that democracy is not a Biblically taught nor divinely ordained system of human government. Third, we learned that God’s preferred form of government is a divine despotism. It’s theocracy, the rule of God, not democracy, the rule of the majority. And finally, we learned that until Christ returns to set up the Kingdom of God upon the earth, as well as to rule over it with His rod of iron, the best we can hope for under human government is to live in a land where the law is supreme.
As we saw in our previous post, God’s preferred form of government is despotism, as was practiced in Babylon, the world’s first great Gentile world power. Babylon, as well as its despotic ruler, Nebuchadnezzar, are symbolized in the second chapter of Daniel by Nebuchadnezzar’s nightmarish image’s head of gold. Medo-Persia, which conquered Babylon to become the world’s second great Gentile world power, is symbolized in Daniel chapter two by Nebuchadnezzar’s nightmarish image’s silver breast and arms. The fact that Medo-Persia is symbolized by silver, which is only inferior to gold, leads us to conclude that the form of government practiced in Mido-Persia must be second best in God’s estimation. The big question is: What form of government was practiced in the Mido-Persia Empire? The answer is: The absolute rule of law! In Mido-Persia, the law, not the king, was supreme. Not even the king was above the law or a law unto himself.
The Bible presents us with two good illustrations of Mido-Persia’s “silver” rule of law. The first is in the book of Daniel, where King Darius, after being tricked by the Prophet Daniel’s enemies into signing a law that made him god for a month, was forced by the unchangeable law he signed to throw Daniel into the lion’s den (Daniel 6:1-28). Daniel’s enemies, being unable to find any grounds of accusation against him, knew that he would never worship or pray to any other god besides the God of Israel. Therefore, they hatched this plot to get Daniel thrown into the lion’s den for his easily predictable refusal to bow in prayer for a month to King Darius alone. Although Darius realized, after the fact, that he had been played the fool by the prophet’s foes, he was still unable to change the foolish law he signed or to spare Daniel from the lion’s den, since the law was not only supreme in Mido-Persia, but also unalterable.
The second good Biblical example is found in the book of Esther. Here, in the scriptural story behind the Jewish holiday of Purim, we are told about a plot hatched by the evil Haman to eradicate the Jewish people living throughout Persia. Haman, because of his hatred of Queen Esther’s cousin and adopted father Mordecai, convinced the Persian King Ahasuerus that the Jewish people in Persia were insurgents threatening his throne. As a result, Ahasuerus signed a law designating a particular day as a day for the Persians to attack and eradicate the Jews living throughout Persia. However, upon discovering his beloved queen was a Jew, her adopted father Mordecai’s former role in saving him from a plotted assassination, and Haman’s evil motive for eradicating the Jews, which was fueled by his personal hatred of Mordecai, King Ahasuerus signed another law permitting the Jews to defend themselves against their attackers.
As a result of the second law, the Jews were able to defend themselves and defeat their attackers rather than being eradicated by them. Still, it took a new law to protect the Jews from their enemies, since the previous law allowing their enemies to attack them could not be rescinded or changed. Once again we see the supremacy of the law, not of the king in Mido-Persia. No one in Persia was above the law, even the king was subject to it and unable to alter it.
According to Nebuchadnezzar’s nightmarish image, the rule of law is second best to God’s man on the throne when it comes to government restraint of fallen man’s sinful passions. Whereas a divinely ordained despotism is golden, the rule of law is still silver. It is certainly better than any arbitrated and alterable restraint imposed by subjective public opinion in a representative form of government.