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GoldenEagle

Did U.S. War of Independence Contradict the Bible?

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I would like to discuss peacefully and logically the following quote...

The Founding Father’s of America violated Scripture and the nation was conceived in sin.

The backing for such a statement is Romans 13.

I believe this statement to be FUD - Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt. This statement does not consider the historical context of the American Revolution.

I'm not saying America is perfect but I do not believe the Founding Father's in America violated Scripture. I intend to give evidence of this claim being the promotion of FUD.

Were the Colonies in rebellion? Was the revolution justifiable? I beleive the answer is yes.

Let us first consider some of the acts passed by British Parliamant leading up to the American Revolution.

Second let us look at the reasons for the Revolution.

I hope this discussion brings to light the truth and is fruitful to all.

God bless,

GE

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First - Acts 1764-1775 Passed By British Parliamant Following the End of the French and Indian War in 1763

Some of the key reasons the American colonists rebelled against England were because of the Sugar Act, the Stamp Act, the Declaratory Act, the Coercive Acts, and Prohibitory Act. These acts were passed from 1764 to 1775.

These acts were passed by Great Britain to primarily assist with payment for the French and Indian War which ended in 1763.

A. The Sugar Act of 1764*

This act was passed not to simply regulate trade but also increase revenue. The most important act was lumber that the act declared could only be exported by the Colonies to the Great Britain. An already depressed economy was taxed further.

The preamble to the act stated: "It is expedient that new provisions and regulations should be established for improving the revenue of this Kingdom ... and ... it is just and necessary that a revenue should be raised ... for defraying the expenses of defending, protecting, and securing the same." (Miller, John C. Origins of the American Revolution. Page 101. 1943)

B. The Stamp Act of 1765*

The act determined that printed materials in the Colonies be printed on paper produced in Great Britain. This included magazines, newspapers, legal documents, etc. used and sold in the Colonies.

C. The Declaratory Act (or The American Colonies Act) of 1766*

The Act repealed the Stamp Act of 1765 as boycotts were hurting British trade and some say used primarily to save face. This act stated that British Parliament had the same authority in America as in Britain. The act further declared that British Parliament had the right to pass laws that were binding on the American Colonies while providing no representation for the colonies.

D. The Coercive Acts (Also known as the Intolerable Acts)

D1. The Boston Port Act of 1774* – punishing all Boston citizens for the few who engaged in the famous “Boston Tea Party”. This was corporal punishment instead of finding the individual culprits.

D2. The Massachusetts Government Act of 1774* – Limited town meetings by Colonists to once a year and replaced a majority of the colonial government in Massachusetts with appointments by the British Governor or the King. This showed the Colonies that their government could by a swift legislation of Parliament be taken over by the Crown.

D3. The Administration of Justice Act of 1774* – allowed trials of royal officials to be moved by the Governor to another colony or even back to Great Britain. Few colonists could afford to travel to other colonies much less to Great Britain to testify;

D4. Quartering Act of 1774* – Applied to all colonies allowed for housing of British troops in the Colonies. This act or amendment to the 1765 act granted the governor the power to house British troops in colonial homes and buildings. This directly contradicted the British law Parliament had passed entitled the Mutiny Act (Of 1689 and 1718) that prohibited British troops to be housed in the home of private British citizens against their will.

E. Prohibitory Act of 1775*

Blockade by England on American trade ships. “All manner of trade and commerce” would be prohibited, and any Colonial ship that was found trading “shall be forfeited to his Majesty, as if the same were the ships and effects of open enemies.”

*All data below is found on the Encyclopedia Britannica and Wikipedia. This was written in my own words for simplification and clarification.

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Second let us look at the reasons for the Revolution.

1. King George abdicated his protection on the Colonies and waged war on the Colonists

The relationship of each colony to the King was one of allegiance to him in exchange for his protection.

"He {King George} has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us." ---- Declaration of Independence

When the Christian hears "revolution today", he thinks in terms of "Communist Revolution" and equates this with the "American Revolution". False equation. There was no Communist-style revolution to Birth America. Textbooks further teach that our forefathers wanted to break from the cover of the Crown and be separate. They, therefore, revolted to bring forth their desires, a new nation. Such teachings are not the best interpretation of facts.

2. Charters of the Colonies

Charters were contracts between proprietors and companies and the King of England. Parliament was not a party to these contracts or charters. The charters granted the founder executive, legislative and judicial authority. The King had only restraining authority. David Ramsey writes in his Prelude to the American Revolution, 1765-1775.: "They (founders) looked upon their charters as a voluntary compact, between their sovereign and themselves, by which they were bound neither to be subject to, nor seek protection from any other prince: nor to make any laws repugnant to those of England: but did not consider them as inferring an obligation of obedience to a parliament, in which they were unrepresented."2

As an example of many possible examples, the Charter of Maryland given to Lord Baltimore in June, 1632, and his heirs contains this clause: "free, full and absolute Power...to ordain, Make, and Enact LAWS of what kindsoever, according to their sound Discretion."

Colonial America was self-governed people. The Encyclopedia Britannica says: "The Crown delegated rights of settlement and subordinate rights of government to proprietors...The patentees governed the colonists, and the Crown only interfered at intervals to adjust matters."4

As an example of the independence the Colonial Assemblies had of internal British control, only 5% of the thousands of laws colonial legislatures passed between 1691 and 1763 were vetoed by Britain.5

3. Revolution and Rebellion?

Revolution and rebellion are harmful states of mind. Christians need to learn that America did not want to be independent of England; it was forced upon her. Before 1776, she made numerous Godly appeals to the Crown for reconciliation to her pre-1763 relationship with England, but without success. Actually, England declared war upon America and granted her independence on 22 December 1775.

4. The French and Indian War and Britain’s Debt

After the ending of the French and Indian War in 1763, Great Britain was left with a large debt. From this point, serious interference by Parliament into the lives of colonists began. Parliament passed a series of famous acts beginning with The Sugar Act (5 April 1764) and ending with the Prohibitory Act (22 December 1775) to raise money to pay war debts and to control the Colonial Assemblies. The Colonial Assemblies resisted Parliament on grounds that the Charters did not grant her legislative power over them.

Additionally, the colonists were not represented in Parliament, hence the cry "taxation without representation." The leaders in the colonies understood the Colonial Assemblies to be the lawmakers of the colonists and Parliament her counterpart of the English people. Parliament and the Assemblies were co-equal. Both legislatures reported to the King representing their separate peoples. Parliament was outside the colonial relationship with the King per Charters.

5. Reconciliation was Rebuked

During the ensuing years of 1763 to 1776, the colonists made several attempts of reconciliation. They desired to retain their independence that existed prior to 1763, being free of internal British control. They were not striving to gain independence, but to preserve it. Parliament was attempting to erode it by usurping the legislative authority of Assemblies. After the war had begun on 19 April 1775 (Lexington and Concord), the Continental Congress voted to make one last effort to reconcile with England. The outcome of this vote was the Olive Branch Petition (8 July 1775). It was a petition to express loyalty to the King and seek a change of heart by England. In quoting from a portion of the Petition, does it sound of an attitude of rebellion and revolution? This was a Godly appeal.

Source: http://www.israelect...Revolution.html

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what are the Biblical reasons given for revolution?

I’m glad you asked regarding the Biblical reasons...

5. Reconciliation was Rebuked

During the ensuing years of 1763 to 1776, the colonists made several attempts of reconciliation. They desired to retain their independence that existed prior to 1763, being free of internal British control. They were not striving to gain independence, but to preserve it. Parliament was attempting to erode it by usurping the legislative authority of Assemblies. After the war had begun on 19 April 1775 (Lexington and Concord), the Continental Congress voted to make one last effort to reconcile with England. The outcome of this vote was the Olive Branch Petition (8 July 1775). It was a petition to express loyalty to the King and seek a change of heart by England. In quoting from a portion of the Petition, does it sound of an attitude of rebellion and revolution? This was a Godly appeal.

Source: http://www.israelect...Revolution.html

Sorry realized I didn’t include the quote:

That your faithful subject on this continent request...that the wished for opportunity would soon be restored to them, of evincing the sincerity of their professions by every testimony of devotion becoming the most dutiful subjects and the most affectionate colonists. Gene Fisher & Glen Chambers, THE REVOLUTION MYTH. (Greenville, SC: Bob Jones University Press, 1981 ), p. 34.

This was the final colonial attempt to appeal to the King to return to the pre-1763 days of independence. The King refused to respond to this Petition.

On 6 July 1775, the Continental Congress issued the Declaration of the Causes and Necessity of Taking Up Arms. The Continental Congress felt that it was necessary to state why the colonies were taking up arms against England. Notice in the following quote from that Declaration that the delegates did NOT desire to separate from England. This indicates a responsible act of self-defense.

We have not raised armies with ambitious designs of separating from Great Britain, and establishing independent states. We fight not for glory or for conquest. We exhibit to mankind the remarkable spectacle of a people attached by unprovoked enemies. Gene Fisher & Glen Chambers, THE REVOLUTION MYTH. (Greenville, SC: Bob Jones University Press, 1981 ), p. 35.

Source: http://www.israelect...Revolution.html

This was in keeping with Matt. 18:15-19 regarding discipline and prayer as the King of the British Empire was a brother in Christ to those in the Colonies. This is the correct way to deal with discipline is it not? When two or three of us agree in Christ we are to act are we not?

Matt. 18:15-19

Discipline and Prayer

15 “If your brother sins[k], go and [l]show him his fault [m]in private; if he listens to you, you have won your brother. 16 But if he does not listen to you, take one or two more with you, so that by the mouth of two or three witnesses every [n]fact may be confirmed. 17 If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church; and if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as [o]a Gentile and [p]a tax collector. 18 Truly I say to you, whatever you [q]bind on earth [r]shall have been bound in heaven; and whatever you [s]loose on earth [t]shall have been loosed in heaven.

19 Again I say to you, that if two of you agree on earth about anything that they may ask, it shall be done for them [u]by My Father who is in heaven. 20 For where two or three have gathered together in My name, I am there in their midst.”

It’s not like the decision wasn’t grievous to the Founding Father’s of America. It was a very hard realization to come to understanding that the King no longer viewed the Colonies as equal citizens under the British Empire don’t you think?

If the United States based on the above was not supposed to become independent would God have blessed George Washington and his troops with victory? An interesting question to ponder.

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what are the Biblical reasons given for revolution?

Re: Revolution

Why is it important to reexamine, in a Christian publication, the founding of America? Because the prevailing view of the birth of America is stilted. This stilted view has led Christians into rebellion. Rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft (11 Samuel 15:23) which is always judged by God.

Were there no Prohibitory Act, there would be some justification to defend an American rebellion; but with it, none. Since, in fact, our Christian forefathers did not rebel against the King of England, Christians can no longer use our founding fathers as an example and excuse to rebel today. Rebellion is a dangerous attitude and response to any action. It is condemned by the Word of God: "An evil man seeketh only rebellion: therefore a cruel messenger shall be sent against him" (Pro. 17:11).

It is important to remove the curse of misapplying what our forefathers did during the Revolutionary War era. These words of Solomon come to mind: "For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he." (Pro. 23:7). When Christians hold in their heart the deceptive teaching of "revolution/rebellion", the implication upon personal lives is obvious.

The Passage of the Prohibitory Act meant that the colonies were free of English rule as of 22 December, and the subsequent Declaration of Independence was announcing that independence. It states in the Declaration: "He (King George) has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us." The Unanimous Declaration of the Thirteen United States of American in Congress, 4 July 1776 (Declaration of Independence), was announcing that which had already happened months ago. This Declaration gave reasons why reconciliation with Britain would not be possible.

Quoting from the Notes of Proceeding: "That the question was not whether, by a declaration of independence, we should make ourselves what we are not; but whether we should declare a fact which already exists. That as to the people or parliament of England, we had always been independent of them...That as for the King, we had been bound to him by allegiance, but that this bond was dissolved by his assent to the late act (Prohibitory) of Parliament, by which he declares us out of his protection, by his levying way on us, a fact which had long ago proved us out of his protection; it being a certain position in law that allegiance and protection are reciprocal, the one ceasing when the other is withdrawn." - Gene Fisher & Glen Chambers, THE REVOLUTION MYTH. (Greenville, SC: Bob Jones University Press, 1981 ), p. 50

http://www.israelect.com/ChurchOfTrueIsrael/American-Revolution.html

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Great information GE, I appreciate a good history lesson. I guess calls for revolution against the US Government are a little premature, as we should petition the Church to act more like Christ, then petition God for His help with changing our government.

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Great information GE, I appreciate a good history lesson. I guess calls for revolution against the US Government are a little premature, as we should petition the Church to act more like Christ, then petition God for His help with changing our government.

I agree in bold. :)

I'm not super big into end times studies but let's remember too that things are going to get worse before they get better. But the great news is Christ will return.

As American individuals in less than 300 years we have enjoyed more freedom than most citizens of nations/empires/cultures enjoyed in over 1000 plus years. Yet as a nation we seem so discontent. I've lived in third world countries. Even the poorest person here in America lives kings and queens with often such luxuries as AC, TV, electricity, cell phones, running water, internet, computers, ample reliable transportation (personal cars and public transportation), etc.

Perhpas we're more blessed than we want to believe? Perhaps the cup is half full not half empty?

Persecution is a part of the Christian walk. If we're not being persecuted perhaps we're not being enough of a witness for Christ in standing up for the truth of the Good News in love, accepting that Christ was persecuted and we're His servants, and in general disrupting our enemy's (Satan and the other fallen angels) efforts to thwart God.

Some thoughts to consider.

Just my 2 cents.

God bless,

GE

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goldeneagle, funny but when I first wrote about this a number of years ago I did not know it was such an ongoing controversy. Most of the articles I read today claim it was a violation, those that did not had to follow a lot of twisted logic to "prove" their point (as well as fudging on some historical facts), as did the colonists who duly considered Romans13 and the seriousness of what they were doing. Rationalization and justifications, yet they convinced themselves their cause was just. (What was also curious to me is that those who defended the actions as biblical, all started off with a comment about liberals.) Did you know that John Wesley spoke for a pacifist stance? There are numerous examples of civil disobedience in the OT.

1Peter2:13 “Submit yourselves for the Lord's sake to every authority . . .,”

Romans13 was written under Nero; hard to find just cause to rebel with those words coming while he reigned. And no rebellion by the Early Church during persecution or under the succeeding reigns of Claudius, Caligula, and Tacitus. We see in Psalm75:7 and Daniel2:21 that every ruler has their power by the sovereign will of God. I see no biblical case for the American Revolution and ample biblical evidence it missed the mark.

Jesus is the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow. All the historical facts and inuendo do not change Him.

Yet Paul stood in direct rebellion against the Roman Empire, in particular, the imperial cult, which stood as the law of the land in the Roman empire. Paul was martyred as an enemy of the state, as well as Peter.

Their crime was calling Jesus, "Lord." According to Roman law, the only "lord" was Caesar. For anyone to declare another Lord other than Caesar was punishible by death.

What about the Christians who defied the Roman government's demand that they sacrifice to Caesar?? Were they inviolation of Scripture??? Should Christians obey the government and submit to its statutes if those statutes require us to compromise the statutes and principles of Scripture???

Your approach to this issue is foolishness. Paul, for those using God-given commonsense is saying that we are not resist the government where the laws of our governing authorities are rightful and reasonable. We are to pay our taxes, obey those laws that are meant to keep the peace and promote the welfare and good of our communities. We are not, however, required to submit to governing authorities when those laws put us crossways with the Bible and we are forced to choose between our government and our God.

Paul's admonition is not meant to be understood that we obey the government,no questions asked, no matter what they demand.

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The American Revolution, as is plain, does not qualify as the proper response to government as demonstrated in the Bible.

But the American Revolution was not an impulsive, hair trigger reaction to the injustices being imposed on the colonies by England. From the Declaratino of Independence:

"In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.

Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our Brittish brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which, would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends."

Patriot, Patrick Henry echoed the same sentiments:

"Shall we try argument? Sir, we have been trying that for the last ten years. Have we anything new to offer upon the subject? Nothing. We have held the subject up in every light of which it is capable; but it has been all in vain. Shall we resort to entreaty and humble supplication? What terms shall we find which have not been already exhausted? Let us not, I beseech you, sir, deceive ourselves. Sir, we have done everything that could be done, to avert the storm which is now coming on. We have petitioned; we have remonstrated; we have supplicated; we have prostrated ourselves before the throne, and have implored its interposition to arrest the tyrannical hands of the ministry and Parliament. Our petitions have been slighted; our remonstrances have produced additional violence and insult; our supplications have been disregarded; and we have been spurned, with contempt, from the foot of the throne. In vain, after these things, may we indulge the fond hope of peace and reconciliation. There is no longer any room for hope. If we wish to be free² if we mean to preserve inviolate those inestimable privileges for which we have been so long contending²if we mean not basely to abandon the noble struggle in which we have been so long engaged, and which we have pledged ourselves never to abandon until the glorious object of our contest shall be obtained, we must fight! I repeat it, sir, we must fight! An appeal to arms and to the God of Hosts is all that is left us!"

Attacking (resisting/rebelling) against the government is strictly forbidden and non-violent civil disobedience can be see as the opposite: a willing sacrifice of self for the truth of God's Word. Killing others for one's best interest, that is for fairer taxes and representation as in the American Revolution, is far from what God would have us do.

But that only demonstratres your lack of understanding about why the Revolution was fault. Here again, from the Declaration of Independence are the reasons why we sought indedpendence the King of England and why we were willing to fight and die for it:

  • He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.
  • He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.
  • He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.
  • He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.
  • He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.
  • He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected; whereby the Legislative powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.
  • He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.
  • He has obstructed the Administration of Justice, by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary powers.
  • He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.
  • He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harrass our people, and eat out their substance.
  • He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.
  • He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil power.
  • He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:
  • For Quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:
  • For protecting them, by a mock Trial, from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:
  • For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:
  • For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:
  • For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of Trial by Jury:
  • For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences
  • For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies:
  • For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws, and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:
  • For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.
  • He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.
  • He has plundered our seas, ravaged our Coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.
  • He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.
  • He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.
  • He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages, whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.

Further, and this just occurred to me to add, what distinguishes us as belonging to Christ is our love for the brethren and this love does NO HARM. The British were predominantly Christian. The colonists killed the brethren for worldly goods and worldly expectations of freedom.

The problem is that you are operating from a double-standard. They did us plenty of harm, but you only fault one side.

As for not doing harm, if someone tried to hurt my child or my spouse, you can bet I would do the evil-doer quite a bit of harm. How about you?? Would you fight to death to defend your child or spouse??? Or would you let them die so as to "do no harm?"

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Goldeneagle, a lot of great history, thank you for that, but you were asked for biblical support for revolution/rebellion and you gave none. You wisely pointed out where Scripture considers rebellion as sin. Mt18:15-19 is not a call to or excuse for rebellion.

Also, no support for FUD.

Really? I'm so glad you wanted more. Let us dig a little deeper and consider the Bible passages that deal with civil disobedience and obeying God rather than men then...

Fear - Our country (the U.S.) was founded on rebellious and sinful principles... (Not true)

Uncertainty - So do we deserve what is coming down on us? (We don't deserve anything. God's mercy and grace is sufficient)

Doubt - So since our Founding Fathers were wrong is being involved with politics today worldliness and against the Bible? (No it is not.)

The American Revolution, as is plain, does not qualify as the proper response to government as demonstrated in the Bible. Attacking (resisting/rebelling) against the government is strictly forbidden and non-violent civil disobedience can be see as the opposite: a willing sacrifice of self for the truth of God's Word. Killing others for one's best interest, that is for fairer taxes and representation as in the American Revolution, is far from what God would have us do.

Further, and this just occurred to me to add, what distinguishes us as belonging to Christ is our love for the brethren and this love does NO HARM. The British were predominantly Christian. The colonists killed the brethren for worldly goods and worldly expectations of freedom.

There are several famous characters in the Bible including the “Heroes of the faith” in Hebrews 11 as well as in other passages where these servants of the King of Kings were given their special position of honor because they committed civil disobedience (e.g., Daniel's 3 friends, Daniel, the Hebrew midwives, Rahab, Samson, Moses, David, etc.; and the Apostles in Acts 4-5 also established their willingness to be civilly disobedient against tyrannical commands of civil and religious rulers).

Let's start with two examples: Daniel's Friends and Daniel

Daniel's three friends (Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego) disobeyed the King Nebuchadnezzar and did not worship the King as the Chaldeans had convinced the King into ordering all his subjects to do. The King even promoted the three young men. Civil disobedience? Yes. Obeying the laws of God over the laws of men? Yes.

Daniel 3:8-30

Daniel’s Friends Disobey the King

8 Therefore at that time certain Chaldeans came forward and accused the Jews. 9 They spoke and said to King Nebuchadnezzar, “O king, live forever! 10 You, O king, have made a decree that everyone who hears the sound of the horn, flute, harp, lyre, and psaltery, in symphony with all kinds of music, shall fall down and worship the gold image; 11 and whoever does not fall down and worship shall be cast into the midst of a burning fiery furnace. 12 There are certain Jews whom you have set over the affairs of the province of Babylon: Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego; these men, O king, have not paid due regard to you. They do not serve your gods or worship the gold image which you have set up.”

13 Then Nebuchadnezzar, in rage and fury, gave the command to bring Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego. So they brought these men before the king. 14 Nebuchadnezzar spoke, saying to them, “Is it true, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego, that you do not serve my gods or worship the gold image which I have set up? 15 Now if you are ready at the time you hear the sound of the horn, flute, harp, lyre, and psaltery, in symphony with all kinds of music, and you fall down and worship the image which I have made, good! But if you do not worship, you shall be cast immediately into the midst of a burning fiery furnace. And who is the god who will deliver you from my hands?”

16 Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego answered and said to the king, “O Nebuchadnezzar, we have no need to answer you in this matter. 17 If that is the case, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and He will deliver us from your hand, O king. 18 But if not, let it be known to you, O king, that we do not serve your gods, nor will we worship the gold image which you have set up.”

Saved in Fiery Trial

19 Then Nebuchadnezzar was full of fury, and the expression on his face changed toward Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego. He spoke and commanded that they heat the furnace seven times more than it was usually heated. 20 And he commanded certain mighty men of valor who were in his army to bind Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego, and cast them into the burning fiery furnace. 21 Then these men were bound in their coats, their trousers, their turbans, and their other garments, and were cast into the midst of the burning fiery furnace. 22 Therefore, because the king’s command was urgent, and the furnace exceedingly hot, the flame of the fire killed those men who took up Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego. 23 And these three men, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego, fell down bound into the midst of the burning fiery furnace.

24 Then King Nebuchadnezzar was astonished; and he rose in haste and spoke, saying to his counselors, “Did we not cast three men bound into the midst of the fire?”

They answered and said to the king, “True, O king.”

25 “Look!” he answered, “I see four men loose, walking in the midst of the fire; and they are not hurt, and the form of the fourth is like the Son of God.”[a]

Nebuchadnezzar Praises God

26 Then Nebuchadnezzar went near the mouth of the burning fiery furnace and spoke, saying, “Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego, servants of the Most High God, come out, and come here.” Then Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego came from the midst of the fire. 27 And the satraps, administrators, governors, and the king’s counselors gathered together, and they saw these men on whose bodies the fire had no power; the hair of their head was not singed nor were their garments affected, and the smell of fire was not on them.

28 Nebuchadnezzar spoke, saying, “Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego, who sent His Angel and delivered His servants who trusted in Him, and they have frustrated the king’s word, and yielded their bodies, that they should not serve nor worship any god except their own God! 29 Therefore I make a decree that any people, nation, or language which speaks anything amiss against the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego shall be cut in pieces, and their houses shall be made an ash heap; because there is no other God who can deliver like this.”

30 Then the king promoted Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego in the province of Babylon.

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