In an excellent three book study by Gary DeMar called God and Government he ascertains the usage of the word government through a study of the writings of the founding fathers. Today when we use the word “government” we think only of the elected and appointed officials in broad elected positions, and bureacracy. However the word was understood in more exact manner. Here is how it was once understood.

  1. Self-Government: the idea that we individually and collectively ought to be able to govern ourselves. This is seen in the 1st word of the Constitution - “We the people. . .”

  2. Family Government: the primary small government unit that all society is built upon. This is where the youth learns the value of government.

  3. Church Government: believe it or not, most were involved in some form of organized religion and it was considered an authority in early America.

  4. Local Government: That would be from local community, to city working out to the broader county.

  5. State Government: This level of government was supposed to take care of most things.

  6. Federal Government: Most people in the first 100 years of America, outside of war, had very little interaction with the federal government. That is the way it was intended.

Now we are facing a government shutdown. America is so in debt that we can either make some painful cuts and live within our budget, or . . . just raise the amount of our debt. The Bible has some strong warnings about debt. However, since we no longer understand government, it stand to reason that we no longer understand the slavery of debt. Some say that if government shuts down we are in trouble. However with a distorted understanding of government and debt, it is safe to say we are also in trouble if it stays open.

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