This is part of a series of posts on the sin of Assimilation. Click here to see the entire series.
Theonomy is a hated word in the Church today. Theonomy means “God’s law”. Theonomists believe that the Law of God is sufficient for all civil matters and should be the law of the land. Theonomists believe that God has not only given the State the authority to be a minister of God for good (Romans 13), but He has also given specific, written instructions in His Word about how the State is supposed to administer that authority. Because the Church has become fully assimilated to the State and culture of the United States it finds the idea that God’s law should be the law of the land to be reprehensible.
There are only two possible choices with respect to law. Either the State adopts the law of God or the State adopts the law of man. There are no other alternatives. The Constitution of the United States clearly declares that the law of man is to be the law of the land. Evangelicals give hearty approval to the idea that the law of the land should be based upon natural law and rational thought. Evangelicals specifically repudiate the law of God as having anything to do with the law of the land. Humanistic law is what Christians want and humanistic law is what Christians have. Unfortunately, many Christians have fully assimilated to the culture of the United States by becoming activists for the apostate, humanistic law.
Because Christians are ignorant of economics and the philosophy of law, they are inexorably drawn into sinful behaviors with respect to secular humanist law. Ignorance is no excuse in the eyes of God. They will still be judged for their sins. A very common practice of evangelicals is to become activists in their local communities by means of exploitation of the zoning laws.
Zoning laws are immoral expressions of the Messianic State in which the State claims the right to tell a private landowner what he may or may not do with his property. The biblical right to private property asserts that a man has a right to do with his property whatever he wants, so long as it is not in violation of the Law of God. If a neighbor believes that the activities of the man on his property are doing him harm, he has the right to bring a suit against him for damages.
Zoning laws allow citizens to forbid a property owner to use his land as he sees fit, even without having to prove that the use of the land has somehow caused harm. Most commonly zoning laws are used by people who have moved into a community as a means of controlling what those who move into the community later may do with their property. The natural, sinful tendency of man is to want to close the door to all others once he has arrived. Zoning laws allow sinful men to try to bring their dreams to fruition. Under the guise of “reducing danger to the children” or, “preventing excess automobile traffic” or, “protecting the quality of life”, the select few try to control the behavior of others. I have known many Christians who have initiated and participated in petitions to enforce zoning laws that would immorally control how another person wishes to use his property. When I pointed out that the Bible does not give a Christian the right to control the activities of another person on his private property I was greeted with blank stares. Any attempt to argue that it is immoral to attempt to use the coercive power of the state to control the moral behavior of my neighbor on his property was dismissed as theonomic ravings.
Another area where Christians continually stumble is with class action lawsuits. These things arrive in the mail all the time. The notice usually reads something like “You have been determined to be a part of a class that has been harmed by so and so in such and such a fashion. Please return this form to get your fair share of the settlement.” No Christian should ever return one of those solicitations. The temptation to enter the litigation lottery is just too much for most people to resist. If somebody is going to be dishing out a nice, fat settlement, why shouldn’t I get my fair share? This is the sentiment despite the fact that the individual did not even realize that he had been sinned against prior to receiving the notification. How is it possible to be a victim of a tort without even knowing it? The answer is, it is not. Deciding to participate in the class action suit is nothing more than an attempt to get something for nothing. A person has the right to bring a suit against another person only when he believes that he has been wronged. And bringing a biblical lawsuit against another is not without risk. Under the legal system of the United States, an individual may file as many frivolous lawsuits as he wishes with impunity. God has a different opinion.