When I was a child I was taught the beginning of a wonderful poem penned in 1862
“Jesus loves me! This I know,
For the Bible tells me so.
Little ones to Him belong;
They are weak, but He is strong.”
The Scripture surely supports this theses, as in Matthew 19:13-15 King James Version (KJV):
“13 Then were there brought unto him little children, that he should put his hands on them, and pray: and the disciples rebuked them.
14 But Jesus said, Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven.
15 And he laid his hands on them, and departed thence.”
Now comes the Attorney General of the United States to defend the “zero tolerance” policy in taking children away from their parents who illegally cross our Southern Border.
Donald J Trump says the law requires this terrible, inhuman act, an assertion that is not true (the law allows it but does not require it and former presidents have never subscribed to a “zero policy”).
In defending Trump’s order, Attorney General Sessions carefully does not say the law “requires” the stripping away of children from their parents only that such policy which the law does allow must be followed because Trump says so and God says those who rule should be obeyed.
“Illegal entry into the United States is a crime — as it should be…Persons who violate the law of our nation are subject to prosecution. I would cite you to the apostle Paul and his clear and wise command in Romans 13 to obey the laws of the government because God has ordained them for the purpose of order.”
And exactly what did the Apostle Paul say?
Romans 13 King James Version (KJV):
“13 Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.
2 Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation.
3 For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same”
So, Paul said Rulers are put there by God to do good (“for rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil”) and to keep us safe from evil.
But clearly, Paul erred in that not all rulers are “good” when they demand obedience to orders that harm their subjects, not protect them.
For instance, Our Founding Fathers laid out their reasons for declaring Independence from England, charging King George the Third with transgressions against humanity and justice.
Again, In this Country we fought a Civil War to overturn Governors orders that made humans slaves to other humans.
And if the ruler is Hitler or Stalin, should they be obeyed? Would a loving God want them to be obeyed?
The Bible itself argues against a mis-reading of Paul’s words.
Jesus commanded us to “Love they neighbor as thy self” and the Apostle Peter rebuked the idea that rulers should be obeyed when their commands clearly run counter to the overwhelming thrust of Jesus’s teachings,
Acts 5:29 of the King James Bible reads:
“Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men.”
Thus our Founders staked their “lives and sacred honor” on the proposition that Jesus teachings, not King George’s commands, ought to be followed.
They labeled the King a “tyrant,” that is by Webster’s definition:
1 a : an absolute ruler unrestrained by law or constitution
b : a usurper of sovereignty
2 a : a ruler who exercises absolute power oppressively or brutally
b : one resembling an oppressive ruler in the harsh use of authority or power.”
Only one of the above definitions is required to label a ruler a “tyrant,” not all (see 2b, above).
And how should we treat Tyrants?
In the 13th Century, the Catholic Saint Thomas Aquinas answered unequivocally: “to [a tyrant] no obedience is owed”.
Moreover, Our Founders , led by Thomas Jefferson, strongly considered making the national Motto the ancient phrase:
“Resistance to Tyrants is Obedience to God”
Jefferson went even further in defining to what lengths resistance should go.
“The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants. It is its natural manure,” Jefferson wrote in a letter to William S. Smith, a diplomatic official in London, on November 13, 1787.
The Trump policy of stripping children from their parents in the false name of “required by law” is wrong.
Attorney General Sessions defense of that policy in asserting that God requires obedience to it is doubly wrong.
The policy and the men who have commanded it and defended it must be resisted.
They should take care that Jefferson’s Tree of Liberty does not await them if they continue,