“ALL WE ASK IS TO BE LET ALONE”
If only Samuel’s sons had been better men.
But, no, we are told in 1 Samuel 8 that they “walked not in his ways, but turned aside after lucre, and took bribes, and perverted judgment.” For this reason, the elders of Israel petitioned Samuel to make for them “a king to judge us like all the nations.”
Everybody else was doing it, you see. It’s important to do (and think, and speak, and dress) like the cool kids.
In that same chapter of God’s word we learn how displeased Samuel was with this request, and he prayed to the Lord, Who instructed him to “hearken unto the voice of the people…for they have not rejected you, they have rejected Me…”
The Lord instructed Samuel to first “protest solemnly” to the Israelites, explaining to them that conformity to the world comes at a cost. Repercussions would follow. The predominant verb in Samuel’s resultant warning is “take.” Your earthly king “will take your sons…he will take your daughters…he will take your fields…your vineyards…your oliveyards…he will take your menservants and your maidservants, and your goodliest young men…”
This was and remains the overall result of the relationship of the state to the people of God, whom it sees as its raw-material servants and moneymakers. The king takes and takes.
“Nevertheless,” so God tells us, “the people refused to obey the voice of Samuel; and they said, nay, but we will have a king over us…”
Indeed, we are a stiff-necked, stubborn people because we descend from a stiff-necked, stubborn people.
Four chapters later, Samuel scolded the Israelites. “…you said unto me, ‘Nay, but a king shall reign over us,’ when the Lord your God was your king.” This reprimand should reverberate in the ears of any Christian, liberty-loving person of sound mind. Yet, it seems the number of Americans who rely on cradle-to-grave government to meet all their needs continues to swell exponentially.
The cost of living continues to rise as we of the working class awake to “another day, another dollar,” knowing full well we must do so in order to support ourselves, our families, and the growing number of unemployed who rely on us for their “benefits.”
The republic (“if you can keep it”) that Dr. Franklin supposedly termed to the lady in Philadelphia who inquired what form of government the framers had devised for the people is long gone. Instituted to protect the rights and property of its citizens, we citizens have succumbed to the reality of an ungodly king whose purpose is to take and take from us. They do not even go to the trouble of attempting to disguise it any more. They are satanic Robin Hoods, who take from the good and give it to the evil.
And our only mode of fighting back is “voting harder” for the lesser of evils. We exchange one group of crooks for another, hoping their hostility will be of a milder type and rejoicing in political “victories” of Oppression Light. Those behind the curtains, pulling the strings of those in purported power (regardless of their designated parties) smile as the ancient practice of bread and circuses keeps anything of true value from occurring.
For the remnant of the much-despised unreconstructed Southerners still among us today, there is another statement of fact from our not-so-distant past that should also ring in our ears.
In the spring of 1861, newly elected Confederate President Jefferson Davis submitted his first message to the provisional congress that had hastily been called to assemble in Montgomery, Alabama, due to the pressing necessities caused by Lincoln’s “militia proclamation” (i.e., declaration of war) calling for 75,000 soldiers to subjugate the South and suppress their independence. A new constitution had been ratified by the States of a new, independent country compelled to fight for their existence through force of arms against an overwhelming invasion.
“We feel that our cause is just and holy; we protest solemnly in the face of mankind that we desire peace at any sacrifice, save that of honor and independence; we seek no conquest, no aggrandizement, no concession of any kind from the States with which we were lately confederated; all we ask is to be let alone…”
“All we ask is to be let alone.”
It sounds like such a reasonable request. It lacks even the sternness of “Don’t Tread on Me,” which can still be found on flags flying throughout the land. (Psstt… Hey, buddy. Cool flag. But…they are treading on you. And they have been for a really long time. And they will continue to do so.)
There are those of us who, for many years, persevered amidst sacrifices aplenty to work to build something worthwhile upon the ashes of Western Civilization to bequeath to our posterity. Finally, we realized the apathetic people for whom we were fighting had embraced their role as good little statists. What is left for us to do? For the king is definitely NOT going to leave us alone.
We thrust our dependence upon God, the author and finisher of our faith. We steadfastly refuse to reconcile ourselves to the whims of the world. We control what we can control, striving, with the grace and sufficiency provided by Christ alone, to be good stewards over what He has granted us. We wait patiently for whatever opportunity Providence provides and take consolation and joy with the eternal life that awaits those whose faith is in the Lord Almighty.
“Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw near to God, and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded.”
-- James 4:7-8