WorldNetDaily: Romans 13 means “Shoot to Kill”

WorldNetDaily is currently in a tizzy about a government program that recruits clergy members to help keep the peace in times of national disaster. I can’t say that I blame them for mistrusting these so-called “Clergy Response Teams,” though as with everything WND blows a fuse over, I suspect the program is a mite less sinister than they let on. The real crux of their outrage is the suggestion that the teams will be citing Romans 13 in order to encourage Christians to obey the civil authorities (presumably so that the men in black helicopters can take the guns straight out of people’s gullible, live hands).

Now, for those not familiar, Romans 13 basically says that since all government authorities are in place only by the inscrutable establishment of God, Christians “must submit” to authorities and not rebel against them. WorldNetDaily, however, has come up with a slightly different reading: the passage only applies to “good” government that, as Tony Perkins says, doesn’t [undermine] its very basis of support by trying to remove the Christian ethic, the Bible, the Ten Commandments from the public square. The upshot of this is that WND readers should feel free to shoot those homosexual-loving U.S. government officials right in the face if they ever issue civil orders that WND doesn’t like.

Now, I’m a little loathe to start getting into the scriptural interpretation business, but isn’t there a rather glaring problem with in this argument that someone needs to address?

I mean, the governing authority in place at the time when the Apostle Paul wrote his “Letter to the Romans,” and thus the people he cannot help but have been talking about submitting to, were, well, the Romans. If WND thinks the U.S. Government is an unacceptable authority because it won’t allow Tony Perkins to teach devotional classes in public schools, what the heck could Paul have been talking about? Far from having Perkin’s requirement of a “Christian ethic,” the Romans were whole-hog pagans who worshiped their Emperors. And the Roman government didn’t merely work “to eliminate the Bible, the Ten Commandments and prayer from any part of the formal proceedings of the government.” For quite some time, they worked to eliminate the Bible, the Ten Commandments, and Christian prayer from reality. Paul, in fact, is traditionally held to have been beheaded by these guys, and martyring yourself by basically inviting the Romans to kill you became something of a fad for many early Christians. Perhaps this was because these folks had also read Romans 12, in which Paul reiterates ideas like “bless those who persecute you,” “do not take revenge,” and not to repay “anyone evil for evil.”

Realizing that this is sort of a problem for any aspiring paramilitary Tribulation strike-teams, some of the gung-ho for God set have lamely noted that almost all of the Apostles died refusing to submit to civil authorities. But come on: none of these guys organized daring prison escapes or waged Jason Bourne-esque campaigns against their oppressors. They may well have refused to stop peacefully evangelizing, but they all accepted the civil consequences and went happily to their deaths, willingly submitting to unjust and evil punishments in emulation of Jesus.

Now, I’m perfectly happy to declare that if your local pastor comes by in the middle of nuclear winter and advises you to come help work at the concentration camps, you should feel free to tell him to get bent. But then, I’m not a nutty right-wing newspaper committed to the infallibility of the Bible’s advice on everything under the sun.

I don’t discount (and as an unbeliever, am ultimately indifferent to) the idea that there could be a legitimate reading of Romans that permitted rebelling against, say, Hitler. But it’s simply mind-boggling that anyone could honestly get away with painting the U.S. Government as illegitimate because it doesn’t directly sponsor Jesus camps with tax dollars while happily accepting rule by the very same Romans that freaking killed Jesus.

9 Responses to WorldNetDaily: Romans 13 means “Shoot to Kill”

  1. Bug Girl says:

    They seemed to particularly be focused on the “giving up guns” part.

    Perhaps they’ve been reading this NRA pamphlet?
    http://membracid.wordpress.com/2006/12/27/please-get-us-a-copy/

  2. Bad says:

    George Soros (God like) sitting on stacks of money, guns burning all around him.

    Egad. Don’t know how I managed to miss that: it’s almost beautiful. And it features an OWL CARRYING DYNAMITE. Raptors will totally rule the Rapture.

  3. Bad says:

    George Soros (God like) sitting on stacks of money, guns burning all around him.

    Egad. Don’t know how I managed to miss that: it’s almost beautiful. And it features the sheer awesomeness of an OWL CARRYING DYNAMITE. Raptors will totally rule the Rapture.

  4. Bug Girl says:

    don’t miss the “land lobster” in that graphic too. ;)

  5. Bad says:

    Land lobster is sort of tragic: lobsters communicate with each other by peeing out of their faces onto other lobsters, but on land this system would be effectively useless, and land lobster could never get a date.

  6. Kelly says:

    “Clergy Response Teams”! Good gods of politics and common sense, what’s next!? “Jehovah Witnesses for Medical Care”?

  7. Bad says:

    As bad ideas go, the Clergy Squads aren’t quite 100% crazy: you can see how government officials figured it would make sense to tap people that are already leaders and respected in their communities to convey important safety messages and instructions in national emergencies. Trying to prevent mass panic and folks breaking out into MadMax style-anarchy is a fairly decent goal during Armageddon.

    Of course, the plan is doomed to fail simply because it totally neglects the fact that hordes of atheists, free from the laws that just barely hold us back as it is, and totally unaffected by the pleadings of the clergy, would immediately start raping, pillaging, and looting en masse. I mean, this was all scientifically proven via rigorous videogame modeling, after all.

  8. Seeing as you don’t care much for the correct interpretation of this or w/e passage I’ll stick to other points.

    As is you have a populace which is rather armed and many (my opinion) restrictions on gunrights and such – so those that own firearms ‘legally’ are not full-autos or whatnot.

    There IS such a thing as a black market here in the States. In two places or among two races (primarily). It is due to lax border control which allows things like what the gov considers “illegal” firearms, drugs (also illegal) and immigrants…(again illegal). So either by profiteers amongst them or by gangster-like Chicanos themselves you have this occuring. There is also that amongst the black communities in cities across america. Now yes there are exceptions like perhaps some mobster-like Russians in the L.A. area or some hardcore asian gangs but mostly this holds true and in the case of New Orleans it was. You had blacks who didn’t own arms legally according to the gov with full-auto AK-47′s and whatever else firing on rescue workers, coastguard folks, and police (a friend of mine in the coast guard was shot by one). Now whether you like it or your sensibilities can get around it there will be people who not only own guns but own hardcore guns (Legally or illegally) and when the shit hits the fan and I think Katrina was a case in point then others around them are going to need protection from somewhere.

    The police (many of whom were looting themselves) were unable to control the situation so the military came in, but again avoiding the heaviest areas and instead patrolling the higher & Drier areas. As a response to the high violence in those ‘chocolate’ areas the areas where order was kept were targetted first (assuming the gov was telling the truth about its pretext for disarming american citizens). So despite its inability to police properly most of the city, and the high rape and violence they were taking and destroying arms from those who generally speaking were dry, holed up with food and ready to wait it out and protect their families while the chaos continued elsewhere. It would’ve been very easy for a few armed thugs to go to any of these areas after a nice military sweep and steal, kill, rape at will. This is concerning that the gov/military either can’t see that confiscation of arms isn’t a solution to their problem or that they actually consider it good that these people are defenseless.

  9. mountainguy says:

    I’m a christian, and I found your post to be nice. Off course, Paul had to accept the Romans as governors, and Roma is not so diferent from USA (moreover, as a southamerican I find USA to be the actual Rome).

    Check this; if you’re christian, perhaps it will refresh you. If you’re not a christian, this will (perhaps) be surprising to you:

    http://propheticheretic.wordpress.com/2009/02/04/romans-134-and-irony/

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