What Happens to a Nation When Politics Becomes Its God?

Written by Jeff Carlson on .

RiotMost of us have been watching the national chaos the last week or so that has been unfolding since the senseless and tragic death of George Floyd in Minnesota. Sadly, Mr. Floyd's life was ended by some of the worst police abuse of power we have ever seen in American. All of us should be in horror for what has happened and should pray that justice will be done for Mr. Floyd. At the present time, the police officer responsible for this crime has been charged with murder and we hope and pray that justice will be done as soon as possible. This horrific crime has also unleashed a series of protests, some peaceful and some not, that have raised serious questions about a variety of issues in our nation.

At the heart of these recent battles is the goal of finding true justice for what has been done. Some of the protestors are peacefully demanding that justice be done for Mr. Floyd, while others are looting and destroying property as their way to express their version of justice. But finding justice for Mr. Floyd, at any level, is only the tip of the iceberg. Mr. Floyd's death also touches on much deeper issues regarding supposed injustices that have been committed by our entire society. In other words, if America were not an unjust society, then Mr. Floyd would not have died and so everyone is somehow guilty. As a result of this widespread guilt there is a call for something to be done; something must change. But what exactly needs to be done? How do you change an entire guilty society? After all, changing an entire society in any way is not an easy thing to do, so multitudes of people seem to just be left with their anger and nowhere to go with their feelings of injustice.
Now if you can't change a society in a way that corrects these injustices, it leaves the door open to bypassing the legal system entirely and putting the issues into the hands of the media and politicians to create the needed justice. Not a very good place to leave anything these days. True justice will always need to remain in the hands of the Lord operating through a set of laws that are applied through a justice system with checks and balances as outlined in our Constitution. If justice only starts and ends with human opinion and emotion you invite injustice, disaster and mob rule to take over. Only such a divinely inspired legal system, with Biblical roots, can attempt to seek justice for anyone on this earth.

And yet, even the best justice system in the world cannot possibly bring the ultimate justice we all want. The first and last word regarding that ultimate justice is reserved for the Lord of justice, not us. After all, would the public execution of the police officer that committed the injustice against Mr. Floyd stop this national chaos today? Would an apology from every American for being some part of this crime, along with a cash payment, bring this issue to an end? Of course, the answer to those questions is "No"! Only the Lord Himself can bring justice for Mr. Floyd or any of us. Short of that divine justice system, there will never be a totally perfect justice for anyone in this life. It is NOT until people begin to see this reality that we can hope to heal our nation in this search for justice.

Now if I was able to ask every American just one question, it would be to clarify these issues regarding divine justice that Mr. Floyd deserved and will get one day. That one question would be this: "Are you willing to trust the Lord to bring ultimate justice for Mr. Floyd in His way and His time?" Of course, such a question presupposes people believe in God. But even in post-Christian America such a question would cause people to stop and think. You see such a question reminds people that final justice is coming one day and that thought causes people to stop and think about the Lord. Most people still believe that every person is somehow accountable to God, whatever their specific religious beliefs might be. And so, the moment the Lord gets into the picture the entire justice narrative about Mr. Floyd will change. But without the Lord in view in some way we have to jettison our nation's history and national motto of "In God We Trust". Without the Lord in view, we just degenerate to simply trusting ourselves and end up becoming a national mob run by politicians and the media, without laws and due process to guide and shape our national character and search for justice.

All of this leads to a very important point that we Americans have started to lose track of in our secularizing culture. Politics is a lousy God. Politics is becoming a "god" to many and when such things happen the only moral and spiritual framework we have left to seek justice is ourselves. We become god. How can we miss that such things are happening to us, especially through this current season of societal chaos and unrest? As a society, many have already abandoned God's justice system; many don't really care about the Bible or the 10 Commandments much anymore. If you wonder about that just ask yourself why the 10 Commandments, the heart of God's justice system, can't even be posted in public anymore. And we expect justice? But when you kick God out of the justice system you lose any real attempt at finding justice and are simply left with people's opinions and emotions, with few being safe or finding true justice. No one is safe in such a climate because everyone is guilty according to someone's agenda in power. Their misguided attempts to define justice their way will always allow anything to be done to the people they disagree with about any issue.  We call that system of justice totalitarianism.  Every American that ever died in all of our wars from July 4, 1776 to the beaches of Normandy and beyond, all died to stop just such a system of justice from ruling.

If you wonder about such an assessment and what is happening to America, we need only look to what happened to Germany during the 1930's. The Jews were seen as a guilty race that had to be punished for their collective crimes against the German people during and after World War I. German laws that had once protected all citizens' rights under the Weimar Republic were abolished or ignored. The Jews were taken and beaten, robbed and eventual killed. The justice system collapsed because it was left in the hand of politicians, street thugs and mobs to bring their form of justice without checks and balances. The Jews became Germany's scapegoat to address past injustices. German law and courts became a formality, while real justice evaporated because the Jews could never fix these supposed wrongs because they were never clearly defined or even understood by anyone. In the end, the Jews didn't have anything to satisfy the German need for justice, so they just became targets of their hate and eventual political violence.

One of the terrifying confirmations that underscore the issues going on in America today is that some of the peaceful protests for Mr. Floyd have been hijacked by the terrorist group Antifa. Antifa wears black uniforms, hides their faces and holds to a radical socialistic view of life with a desire to bring down America and everything it stands for. Their hatred for others of differing views and their willingness to use extreme violence against anyone who stands up to them has turned them into being the new "Brownshirts". People may have forgotten that term, but the "Brownshirts" were a paramilitary group, last seen in Germany in the 1930's, that were used to inspire fear, intimidation and violence against others to accomplish their political aims of overturning Germany's government toward totalitarianism. The exact same issues are underway in America tonight.

Now the prophetic issues underway here are simply enormous for our nation and the world. Can you see them emerging? The moment any nation or society loses a sense of real justice, that is rooted and established in law, you are moving toward a lawless state that will be driven by partisan politics and hatred for individuals and/or groups they want to blame. In such a world, God is gone and has been replaced by people whose political search for power and control has become a new god. All of us must be sober in this hour to realize that America is moving down that road like never before and few seem to see it.....or want to do anything to stop it. Many Americans are simply afraid of speaking up for fear of being targeted by the media or corrupt politicians that are allowing this chaos to continue for their own desire to gain power.

In the end, only the Lord can and will bring His perfect justice to this world, since justice is the Lord's idea and not ours. The Bible could not be clearer when it states how the Lord wants us to deal with people and to remember that His justice will take place in His time as we hear in Romans 12:17-21,
Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God's wrath, for it is written: "It is mine to avenge; I will repay," says the Lord. On the contrary: "If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head." Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
So, for everyone today, whatever our political feelings about all the issues underway, we must turn to the Lord and His Word for guidance and a way to settle our hearts in this polarizing hour. In the end, our Lord cares more for justice in this world than any of us and showed us that in the fullness of His justice on the cross for our sins. Everyone must look at Calvary to see afresh that justice is the heart of the Gospel. That heart of God must be our heart as well as we seek justice where possible. But whatever happens we must ultimately leave the final justice to the Lord and to Him who raises the dead and makes all wrongs right on that Last Day.  Even so come, Lord Jesus.