American Decency Association (203 E. Main St. Fremont, MI) is having an event at 7:00 PM on Thursday, February 10, 2022 regarding the doctrine of Lesser Magistrates. Make plans to attend because this is vital information, particularly for the day in which we find ourselves. We look around, see the troubles that surround us, recognize where the path we are on is leading us, and ask ourselves, “What can we do? What is a responsible Christian response to what is happening here in America?” Those are good and important questions. The answer, of course, is to trust in the Lord and to measure truth by God’s Word; and then, walk in and proclaim that truth. For this reason and for such a time as this, we are holding this incredibly important event. Do not miss it! Get a taste of what you’ll hear by clicking here.
Having covered the general idea of lesser magistrates in previous emails (here, here) we will limit the scope of this article to a specific objection to the doctrine of Lesser Magistrates. To better understand what a lesser magistrate is and their role according to this doctrine, please read our earlier emails linked above.
Pastor Matthew Trewhella, our conference speaker, will help us understand what the Word of God says in regards to the questions in the first paragraph. For too long now, many American Christians have fallen under the mistaken assumption that the civil government is owed unlimited obedience. But is that what Paul really said in Romans 13? What about the limitation clauses found in verses 3-4? The ruler is to reward good and punish evil. As we witness those in authority reverse their responsibilities, punishing good and rewarding evil, it is our duty to obey God rather than man.
In light of Romans 13, let’s recognize a few more things. First, remember that God is the highest power. Second, the law of this land is not a person(s); but rather, it is a document called The Constitution of the United States of America. When any magistrate – executive, legislative, judicial – attempts to go against these laws and compels the people to do likewise, they act lawlessly and are attempting to move the people to unrighteousness as well. Christians must, with gratitude and praise, be thankful for God’s Word and for the blessing of this Constitution which we are bound to uphold, as it represents Biblical values, freedoms, and responsibilities. Third, there are many Biblical examples of godly men who did not simply bow to the powers that be. A few such examples would be Daniel praying at his open window three times daily (Dan. 6), the Hebrew midwives who did not kill the Hebrew male babies (Ex. 1), and Paul escaping over the wall in a basket to avoid capture (2 Cor. 11). None of these gave unlimited submission to the authority at hand; choosing rather, to fear God. Watch a 7-minute video on this here.
Truly, “Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty.” Without vigilance, duty, and right Biblical thinking guiding them both, the precious God-given gift of national liberty will be lost to the evil machinations of men. Even then, in all that we do, we must do it in the name of Christ and to the glory of God. Ultimately, we are to recognize the sovereignty of God; but we must never forget that man has a responsibility to act in the power of the Holy Spirit and to use the God-given means available to us for His glory, His honor, and His praise! Lesser magistrates are a means of right that we are to use. They also are a God-ordained authority already in place.
However, many of our lesser magistrates, like Esau of old, have sold their power and authority for a bowl of pottage. In doing so, they have sold those who they are meant to protect into a form of shackles and tyranny as well. It’s time for us to find out which authorities are for us, standing righteously, and which are against us, implementing unconstitutional and unbiblical federal or state policies.
Pastor John Weaver, in the forward of Thomas Cobbett’s book The Civil Magistrate’s Power, urges us to recognize how badly our thinking in the area of civil government needs to be reformed; strong Biblical minds of yesteryear dealt with these issues by clinging dearly to the Word of God.
“In order to have a solid, biblical view of government, one must read Vindiciae Contra Tyrannos, or A Defence of Liberty Against Tyrants, written by Hubert Languet, Lex Rex by Samuel Rutherford, and The Civil Magistrate’s Power by Thomas Cobbett. Once you have thoroughly digested the truths of these volumes, you will realize how far we have fallen, how deeply we have apostatized, and how grievously we have sinned against God in the area of civil government. It is time to repent and subject our thinking on civil government to the Word of God.” (emphasis mine)
No one likes to think that they’ve been thinking wrongly about anything and no one likes to think that they have sinned, even ignorantly so. Until we are willing to see the truth and consider our own ways, we will continue in the path we have been willing to walk along. May we, in every area of our lives, do as David did as described in Psalm 119:59-60. “I thought on my ways, and turned my feet unto thy testimonies. I made haste, and delayed not to keep thy commandments.”
Prayerfully prepare yourself and decide now to attend The Lesser Magistrates conference with Matthew Trewhella on Thursday, February 10, 2022 at 7 PM. Join us and other seekers of truth at the American Decency building (203 E. Main St. Fremont, MI). Let your church know about this important event and bring someone with you.
Pastor Trewhella will be at various locations throughout Michigan during this time. If you are unable to attend at American Decency, please make sure to get this information at one of the following locations:
2/3 5880 Bethany RD – Casco, MI. 6 PM
2/4 VFW Post #4659 “Old Settlers” 8311 Wilson Dr. – Shelby Twp, MI. 6 PM
2/5 If you’re interested in a paid event which includes dinner in Commerce, MI., click here for more information and to purchase your ticket.
2/7 Howard Miller Community Center – Zeeland, MI. 6:30 PM
2/8 Transformation Life Church – Muskegon, MI. 12 PM also at 6:30 PM
2/9 Oak Hill Church – Grand Rapids, MI. 6:30 PM
2/10 American Decency – Fremont, MI. 6:30 PM