Why Isn’t the State Biblically Justified? Resolving Romans 13 Objections, with Greg Baus

Summary – Why Isn’t the State Biblically Justified? Resolving Romans 13 Objections, with Greg Baus

In this episode of the Biblical Anarchy podcast, Jacob sits down to talk with Gregory Baus, one of the hosts of the Reformed Libertarians Podcast. The focus was on the confessionally Reformed “political resistance” or prescriptive-office view of Romans 13 (although the interpretation and its logical argumentation doesn’t exclusively depend upon being confessionally reformed). The discussion delved into the biblical interpretation regarding civil governance ordained by God, diverging from the prevalent providential view often associated with the state’s role.

The episode referenced crucial articles and discussions, including a Reformed Libertarians article available here. It explored the writings of early church fathers like Tertullian and Chrysostom, providing insights into the prescriptive nature of the higher powers ordained by God.

The prescriptive-office view emphasizes the delineation between God’s providential ordination and a required task within an office. It highlighted the task of civil governance specified in verses 3 and 4 of Romans 13: being a force against wrongdoing while not being a terror to good works.

The discussion addressed objections regarding God’s sovereignty, the nature of rulers, taxation, and the prescription of punishment within the context of civil crimes versus broader sin, and more.

The prescriptive or non-statist interpretation is multi-faceted, and considers the evolution of covenants and the limitations of applying Old Testament concepts to contemporary governance. The conversation challenged traditional perspectives, examining the compatibility of just civil authority with Christian principles, contrasted with the historical norms and inherent nature of the State (beyond the confines of a specific historical empire).

This thought-provoking episode challenges conventional interpretations of Romans 13, offering a fresh perspective on the relationship between civil governance and biblical principles.

Referenced links:

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The Christians for Liberty Network is a project of the Libertarian Christian Institute consisting of shows and hosts offering various perspectives on the intersection of Christianity and libertarianism. Views expressed by hosts and guests do not necessarily reflect the view of the organization, its staff, board members, donors, or any other affiliates (including other hosts or guests on the network). Guest appearances or interviews of any incumbents, officials, or candidates for any political, party, or government office should not be construed as endorsements. The Libertarian Christian Institute is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization and does not endorse any political party or candidate for any political, government, or party office. For information about the Libertarian Christian Institute’s core values, please visit this page.

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