Politics and Righteous Government
Bringing a spiritual perspective to world events and daily life.
Right now in many nations, people are unhappy with government, with elected officials, or with the nature of politics at almost all levels. In democracies those who campaign for elected office often seem to forget or neglect campaign promises after being elected, and become self-serving rather than dedicated public servants. Everywhere citizens want changes, which in many instances never come to pass.
Is there anything that can help situations such as these? Yes, there is much that individuals can do. First and foremost, they all can turn to God in prayer. God, the all-knowing, governs the universe. Since He is good, His government is one of goodness. When people turn to God, they are recognizing His government. This can help them bring their governments more and more in line with divine law, God's law. Because people's thoughts determine human experiences, clearly realizing that God is the omnipotent Lawgiver can result in a greater degree of honesty and forthrightness expressed in government; in an increased satisfaction with the operation of government and those responsible for its functioning.
God controls Himself and His creation. Acknowledging God's complete control of the lives of His children-something professed by Christian Science-also exposes what in human nature undermines sound government.
The Golden Rule is a human expression of the divine law. It says we should do to others what we would have done to ourselves. Obeying the Golden Rule promotes goodwill among people. Nations, which are made up of individuals, must benefit from this goodwill. The book of Psalms in the Bible gives a glimpse of the path to righteous government. It states: "All the ends of the world shall remember and turn unto the Lord: and all the kindreds of the nations shall worship before thee. For the kingdom is the Lord's: and he is the governor among the nations" (22:27, 28). In proportion as people around the world recognize the source of government itself as vested in God, not in other human beings, they will perceive what characterizes righteous human government and lend their support to it. In helping to do this, the individual might ask himself, herself, whether he or she is mentally and spiritually promoting the improvement of a government, or just apathetically accepting a corrupt one and doing little more than grumbling about it. In the same way that one should resist the temptation to gossip about a neighbor, so can one resist the temptation, even if it is justified, to make unfair or unkind statements about people in various posts of government. After all, the absolute fact is that those officials are God's children just as much as everyone else, and so they are due the same love and respect we should give our neighbors. If we expect our governments to fulfill their responsibilities, we can start with ourselves and fulfill the two simple instructions of Christ Jesus: to love God supremely and to love our neighbors as ourselves (see Matthew 22:37, 39). The teachings of Jesus are the basis for Christian Science, the denomination founded by Mary Baker Eddy. She wrote the book Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, which explains that acknowledging God's power brings healing. Consider the following statement: "One infinite God, good, unifies men and nations; constitutes the brotherhood of man; ends wars; fulfils the Scripture, 'Love thy neighbor as thyself;' annihilates pagan and Christian idolatry,-whatever is wrong in social, civil, criminal, political, and religious codes; equalizes the sexes; annuls the curse on man, and leaves nothing that can sin, suffer, be punished or destroyed" (p. 340).
As I have been endeavoring to make these truths more a part of my daily prayers, I have become less agitated at some of the things I hear in the news. It has been helpful for me to see more clearly that there is but one true government, God's government. It is not only correct; it is, above all, righteous.